10 Staycation Ideas for the Summer in the Dallas/Fort Worth Area

The key to a great staycation, is uncovering fun new places you previously hadn’t know about and choosing something that spends those hard-earned dollars wisely. girls swimming   However, not all of us have the time or the funds to take a big trip away in the summer. A memorable family vacation doesn’t have to cost a fortune or require you to take a full week off work. In fact, taking short day trips or a staycation around the DFW area will not only take the stress out of traveling with kids but will also keep your budget intact.   I have put together some of our favorite staycation things to do in the summer that are close to home and not too costly, I hope you enjoy them.  

Hawaiian Falls – Garland, Mansfield, Roanoke and The Colony.

First I want to start with the most noteworthy cost effective idea….Hawaiian Falls! I like this smaller waterpark it never seems over crowded, there is always a place to sit and you never have to stand in lines very long. The way it is laid out, moms or parentals can chill out with a book and the kids can be crazy. We personally always opt for the season pass it runs around $70-$80pp ($22.99 for Big Kahunas taller than 48 inches; $15.99 seniors and kids under 48 inches; free for kids 2 and younger. Prices may vary.)  

Fort Worth Museum of Science and History – Fort Worth.

Robots, dinosaurs, planetariums – oh my! Get lost in the many exciting exhibits offered and have an arsenal of fun facts ready for your next trivia game! There is a Children’s Museum, dedicated to children 8 and younger.  A grocery store, build-your-own train tracks, ambulance/hospital play, interactive computer games and so much more. Older kids can play the role of a forensic science investigator at the “CSI: The Experience” exhibit ($15 adults and $11 children plus you get a ½ off price admission to the National Cowgirl Museum next door)  

Dallas Museum of Art – Dallas.

This one of the largest art museums in America, located in the nation’s largest arts district in downtown Dallas. The museum provides many contemporary collections to view. In the summer the museum has late night showings and events if your day is already packed full of things to do.  FREE  

Dyno-Rock Climbing Center – Arlington.

Another noteworthy, the Dyno-Rock Climbing Center is well worth your time. There is over 16,000 square feet of climbing area with a ton of difficulties so the entire family can conquer one of the 25 foot walls. (Day pass $12, Shoe Rental $5, Harness/Belay fee $4 – Full Gear $20.)  

Southfork Ranch – Parker.

Go see where Dallas was filmed and to experience the lifestyle made famous by the Ewings. Southfork is open daily, year round for guided tours of the ranch. Tour the famed Ewing Mansion and re-live exciting moments from the series in the Dallas Legends exhibit, featuring an exciting array of memorabilia from the series. See the gun that shot J.R., Lucy’s Wedding Dress, the Dallas Family Tree, and Jock’s Lincoln Continental. Relax on a guided tour of the ranch grounds. Eat at Miss Ellie’s Deli and shop in two themed retail stores, offering a diverse selection of clothing, accessories, gifts, and collectibles ($15 adults; $13 seniors; $9 children age 6-12; kids 5 and younger free.)  

Log Cabin Village – Fort Worth.

The Log Cabin Village is a living history museum owned and operated by the City of Fort Worth. The Village is devoted to the preservation of Texas heritage. The purpose of Log Cabin Village is to educate the public through the collection, preservation and interpretation of artifacts, representative structures, and other items of social and cultural significance to Texas’ pioneer era (1840-1890) ($5 adults; $4.50 ages 4–17.)   If you want to leave the house overnight, you can explore a new area of DFW for a fraction of the cost of a big vacation by enjoying the amenities of a local hotel. Even one night away from home can make a big deposit in your family’s memory bank! It’s a staycation that’s an overnight vacation!  

The Hilton Anatole – Dallas

The game-changer for many families looking for a Dallas resort the Hilton Anatole is in a prime location to explore the city,  with the launch of Jade Waters, the 3-acre water experience at the Hilton Anatole. The resort pool complex offers a lazy river, two 180-foot water slides, kids’ water features, a swim-up bar in the adult pool, pool-side spa treatments, and luxury cabanas. The Fun Pass can be purchased daily or for a full weekend. It gives you access to kid’s activities at Geppetto’s Marionette, s’mores parties, and craft workshops. The kid’s activities at Jade Waters run every Friday to Sunday, and the resort pool is open only to hotel guests.  

Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center – Grapevine.

Cool off from the heat in Gaylord Texan’s 10-acre water park, Paradise Springs. There’s a lazy river, a lagoon pool, and a 27-foot-tall waterslide as well as a multilevel water play structure. Tots have their own toddler pool away from chaos of the big kids. When water play is done, take a stroll under the 4.5-acre Lone Star Atrium. The indoor lush gardens, walkways, and restaurants create a mini city wrapped under air-conditioned comfort. There are 10 food and beverage options, from the Texas-inspired Old Hickory Steakhouse to casual Italian at Zeppole Coastal with courtyard seating. Every summer there is a different them with free family activities including Friday night fireworks overlooking Lake Grapevine, a Saturday night Glow Party and nightly live music.  

Great Wolf Lodge – Grapevine.

Quite possibly one of the coolest hotels ever. 80,000-square-foot indoor water park is massive There’s only one way in or out, and there are several lifeguards throughout the complex. There’s also an area where the little ones can splash around. Plus, there’s complimentary use of life jackets and towels — one less thing to pack. You can use the water park all day on your arrival and departure dates, so you can maximize your time by arriving early. Once you check out, leave your bags with the concierge, then head back into the park for a few more hours of fun. There is free story time in the lobby each night. MagiQuest, a hotel scavenger hunt, this is quite a game, be ready for some exercise. (fees vary) Check the front desk on package deals for these activities. If you already have a Magic Wand from a previous stay, bring it and just pay the game fee. The price may seem steep, but that’s because the water park passes are included with a hotel stay. (room rates vary.)  

North Texas Jellystone Park/Yogi Bear Campground Resort – Burleson.

Finally, whether you’re an RV enthusiast, enjoy the comfort of a luxury cottage, or dream of tent camping, you’ll see why our resort features and accommodations have won awards. From campfires and s’mores to fishing, hiking and hay rides. Spend the day at the Pirate’s Cove water park sing karaoke or splash in the pool. There is something for everyone!   Are you planning a DFW family staycation this summer? Do any of these ideas or resorts sound like fun? Am I missing your favorite from this list?   The planning stage of your staycation or any trip can be instrumental in its success and an enjoyable part of the experience itself. You have a world of options…and plenty to consider.   If you’d like personalized help, consider booking an appointment with Enchanted Woods Travel to discuss your travel needs.   If you’ve found this content beneficial please recommend the site to your family and friends. You can follow me on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.