Not quite a city and not quite a town, the Woodlands is a “master-planned community”, in Texas. In the 2000s, it was nearly incorporated as part of Houston, Texas, but successfully resisted. Now, the Woodlands is a growing commercial hub, but also a green sanctuary that gives meaning to its name. Read on to learn about 10 of the many interesting activities, for the whole family, in the Woodlands.
1. Take part in a race
One way for every member of the family to bond, while in the Woodlands, could be to take part in a running or walking event together. The Woodlands hosts a number of activities yearly, with different levels of difficulty. A great option is the GE Run Thru the Woods on Thanksgiving, a 20-year old event, which features one-mile (1.6 km), three-mile (4.8 km), or five-mile (8 km) events. Not only do you get to see the beautiful scenery of the Woodlands up close, but you can also contribute something to the community.
Participants are asked to bring food items with them on the morning of the event, for donation to local food bank. Feel free to also dress as a turkey for this race! Other races catered specially for kids in the Woodlands includes the One for Texas (a simple one-mile / 1.6 km event), the YMCA Kids Triathlon, or the Little Muddy Kid’s Fun Run.
GE Run Thru the Woods
Website: GE Run Thru the Woods
2. Visit a rodeo and livestock show
Be sure to catch cowboys and cowgirls alike, competing in a rodeo which attracts more than 2.5 million people, yearly. Nearby, in Houston, there is also a livestock show, which aims to teach visitors about animals and agricultural practices, through live presentations and displays. To top the festivities off, you can even catch performances from a huge variety of musicians and performers. Headliners for previous rodeos have included the amazing Alicia Keys and Blink 182. This is an attraction you definitely can’t miss!
Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo
Address: NRG Center, 3 NRG Park, Houston, Texas 77054
Website: Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo
3. Learn to play roller hockey
The whole family will have a blast at the Houston Premier Sportsplex. At 170 by 70 feet (51.8 by 21.3 metres) in size, this humongous space will give beginners room to try out the sport recreationally and the more experienced players a chance to advance their skills. If you’re feeling competitive, the centre also features drop-in hockey scrimmages. For those not so interested in roller hockey, the centre also offers soccer, indoor lacrosse, dodge ball, and other sporting activities.
Houston Premier Sportsplex
Address: 221 Barren Springs Drive, Houston, TX 77090
Website: Houston Premier Sportsplex
4. Visit a dog park
Let’s not forget about the families with a furry member of their own. The Woodlands is a relatively dog-friendly city, with five major dog parks. Cattail Park, in particular, is a popular choice for socializing amongst families and their pets. Its range of human-friendly facilities includes a large playground and even two tennis courts.
Meanwhile, canine-friendly Bear Branch Park also features an impressive skate park, with props like rails, ramps, and benches, for you to pull off some crazy tricks. Before making a visit, however, do take note of the various park rules, requiring pets to be vaccinated and to clean up after your pet and so on.
Address: 9323 Cochrans Crossing Dr., The Woodlands, TX 77381
Website: Cattail Park
Bear Branch Park
Address: 5310 Research Forest Dr, The Woodlands, TX 77381
Website: Bear Branch Park
5. Hit the shops at the Woodlands Mall
With around 160 stores to cover at the Woodlands Mall, you’ll be relieved to know that the complex is open from 10 am all the way to 9 pm. The extensive range of fashion outlets, at different price points, includes the Banana Republic, Coach, and Forever 21. Even the younger members of the family will be entertained, with attractions like the Build-A-Bear Workshop, where you can customize your new fuzzy friend, with its own signature scent and outfit. With all the walking to be done, give your feet a rest at Carlo’s Bakery or Starbucks and you will surely be refreshed for another round.
Address: 1201 Lake Woodlands Dr, Suite 700, The Woodlands, TX 77380
Website: Woodlands Mall
6. Take a trolley or cruiser ride
The Woodlands Waterway Trolley! Trolley rides are FREE 7 days a week! Hop aboard to get around The Woodlands Town Center! https://www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/358/Town-Center-TrolleysPosted by The Woodlands Lodge on Friday, 13 January 2017
Temperature is great and it's a beautiful night for a cruise on board with us! Jump on board with us at the woodlands mall ring.Posted by Woodlands Waterway Cruisers on Saturday, 30 July 2016
If you are near the Woodlands Mall, hop aboard the Woodlands Waterway Trolley or the Woodlands Waterway Cruiser, for a fun, free and informative tour. Rides are available from 11 am to 8 pm every day, passing the Woodlands’ key shopping areas, hotels, parks, gardens, and a lake. The route is especially picturesque during the Christmas season.
Woodlands Waterway Trolley
Website: Woodlands Waterway Trolley
7. Feast on a perfectly done steak
If you crave a steak while in the Woodlands, you are in luck! The Woodlands is home to a number of outstanding steakhouses. Fine dining establishments, like Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille and Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse, boast tender and flavourful steaks, with special menus for kids. Robard’s Steakhouse is also highly rated for its prime steaks and happy hour promotions, with discounts on beer, wine, and cocktails.
Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille
Address: 6700 Woodlands Pkwy, The Woodlands, TX 77382
Website: Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille
Kirby's Prime Steakhouse
Address: 1111 Timberloch Pl, The Woodlands, Texas 77380
Website: Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse
Address: 2301 North Millbend Drive, The Woodlands, TX 77380
Website: Robard’s Steakhouse
8. Feed yourself at a farmers market
Feel great feeding yourself at the Woodlands Farmers Market at Grogan’s Mill, while contributing to the community. Part of the profits are returned to the Woodlands’ community, through various charity programs, including a scheme to provide scholarships to residents. Open every Saturday, from 8 am to 12 pm, the Farmers Market is a great option for families to pick up some handicrafts, wholesome, fresh groceries, a hearty brunch, and introduce the kids to the locally-grown produce.
We have to especially highlight the Woodlands Farmers Market vendor Falacos, which has been voted as the “Best Vegan Vegetarian Food Truck of 2017” by Mobile-Cuisine.com.
Woodlands Farmers Market
Address: 7 Switchbud Pl, 77380 The Woodlands, Texas
Facebook: Woodlands Farmers Market
9. Enjoy live music in the park
Northshore Park, in the Woodlands, is famous for its fabulous picnics on Sundays, where you can sit back on a mat or lawn chair and enjoy free live music, under the sun. A whole variety of musical acts means there will be someone for everyone. In fact, there are concerts here featuring music from the 50’s all the way to the 90’s, country, jazz, classic rock and more.
Plenty of activities for kids are also available (and space for them to race around). In fact, a fair is even held at the start of every summer, showcasing the different summer camps which will be available for the year.
Address: 2505 Lake Woodlands Dr., The Woodlands, TX 77381
Website: Northshore Park
10. Cool off at a water park
All I wanted was to go down that slice... but I was to big according to the cute lifeguardPosted by Ard Wolthuis on Friday, 21 July 2017
To combat its hot summers, there are more than ten pools and water parks located across the Woodlands. Some are more intimate and nestled in the pocket of a bigger park, while others form large complexes of their own. Kids will love the Ridgewood Pool at Panther Creek, with its tumbling buckets and huge water sprayers. Don’t miss the Rob Fleming Aquatic Center either, which has an enormous 150-gallon (567.8 litre) dump bucket, for really epic splashing.
For the more adventurous, the pool at Falconwing Park boasts diving boards, while Forestgate Park has a thrilling 103-foot (31.4 metre) slide. Let out your inner Ninja Warrior!
Address: 4192 Interfaith Way, The Woodlands, TX 77381, USA
Website: Ridgewood Pool
Rob Fleming Aquatic Center
Address: 6535 Creekside Forest Dr, The Woodlands, TX 77389, USA
Website: Rob Fleming Aquatic Center
Address: 5610 Rush Haven Dr, The Woodlands, TX 77380, USA
Website: Falconwing Park
Address: 7505 S Forestgate Dr, The Woodlands, TX 77382, USA
Website: Forestgate Park
The Woodlands - An ideal destination for the whole family!
With so many things to do, see, and eat, be sure to make the Woodlands a pit stop, if you happen to be travelling around Texas.
Get Trip101 in your inbox
You can buy and claim online, even after you've left home. Travel insurance from WorldNomads.com is available to people from 140 countries. It’s designed for adventurous travellers with cover for overseas medical, evacuation, baggage and a range of adventure sports and activities.
*5% off when you book with our promo code: TRIP101
*For our Canadian and US travellers, unfortunately due to financial services laws, we cannot provide a discount. This promotional code cannot be used with any other discount offer, including World Nomads Members’ discount for travel insurance policy holders.