20 Dallas/Fort Worth Staycation Ideas

While I love to travel, there are times when I just want to plant my seat right here, and stay home! With 1.3 million people in Dallas, and another 850,000 people living in Fort Worth- the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex is diverse and vast. Here are some great places to take your family.

Do you love animals? Then you must visit:

The Fort Worth Zoo– is rated among the top 10 Zoos in the nation. Over the past few years new exhibits have been added, keeping it current and interesting. I love the African Safari exhibit. If you catch it at the right time, you can feed the giraffes. Even better- the Fort Worth Zoo is open year round, even on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. The animals have to eat, right?

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center– Instead of walking thru a zoo, how about taking a safari drive thru one ? The wildlife center spans 1,800 acres with more than 1,100 animals representing 50-plus species. Enjoy giraffes. ostriches, cheetahs, and more from the comfort of your vehicle. You can feed some animals, and there is even a children’s animal center where kids can get more familiar with the animals.

The Dallas World Aquarium– in my opinion, the Dallas World Aquarium really is an indoor zoo. The upper floors house a rain-forest, complete with lemurs and a sloth. Down below you’ll discover huge tanks filled with sharks and a manatee! It’s a sight to see that’s worth every penny. Save a few dollars by packing a light lunch.

Sea Life Aquarium– has a completely different look, feel, and layout from the Dallas World Aquarium. It’s very interactive, fun, and surprisingly large. We’ve visited a number of times and really enjoyed everything the aquarium has to offer. Grab your tickets online for great deals.

The Mainstay Farm– quint and charming, the Main Stay Farm offers hay rides, sheep races, mazes, slides, petting zoos, face painting, farm animals, and lots of photo opportunities. This is the place to go with a big group of friends to really enjoy the fun. Everything is outdoors, so place close attention to the weather.

If Museums are your thing, Dallas Fort Worth has 10 museums!

The best one, in my opinion, is The Dallas Perot Museum– is 4 floors of wonderful. Dinosaurs, The human body, gem stones, interactive electronics, earthquakes, and more! Our family has been members of the Perot Museum for the past 8 years, and we’ve visited many times each year. Our visit never become old or boring. It’s a place the whole family, all ages, will enjoy.

Next, is the Fort Worth Science and History Museum. It’s extremely family friendly, offering lots of play areas for the kids, easy parking, and the best IMAX Theatre in Fort Worth. Any movie seen at the Omni Theatre, located inside the museum, is a treat for everyone of all ages!

Indoor Fun

Great Wolf Lodge is a super fun place to take the family. Water slides, lounge areas, and more- it’s always 84 degrees inside so there is no need to pack a sweater. They have over 8 different rooms, designed with the family in mind. Look for deals on Groupon.com to save on your visit to Great Wolf Lodge. If can’t stay overnight, consider buying a day pass to enjoy the waterpark.

ifly Skydiving is an expensive, yet delightfully fun way to spend an afternoon. The instructors will help you enter the tunnel for takeoff and are with you every step of the way you master the dream of flying. Children can start flying from age 3+. It’s super fun!! Again, look for deals on Groupon.

Altitude Trampoline Park– don’t let the kids bounce off the wall home. Take them to an indoor trampoline park and let them bounce there. With over 30,000 square feet of indoor trampolines and other amenities it’s an easy $14 for fun.

Pinstripes– an offers an door patio, bowling lanes, bocce courts and an Italian-American bistro. Instead of the huge bowling alleys that many of us are used to- this location is sophisticated and streamlined. Don’t hesitate to take the kids. They can bowl at the same lane or the one next two you very easily. Best of all, Pinstripes is located at the Shops at Clearfork.  You can roam the area afterwards for light shopping, ice cream, and macaroons.

Parks & Gardens

Oh my gosh, this category was so hard! DFW has many great parks at all price ranges. So I’ve narrowed it down to four of my favorites:

Dallas Arboretum– is a 66 acre perfectly manicured garden in east Dallas. It offers year round color, cute cottages for tea and coffee, and picture perfect lake view, and concerts. Best of all, it features a children’s garden inside of it. The Rory Meyer’s Children’s Adventure Garden offers tree houses, bridges, interactive exhibits, mazes, and more. Education and science is the focus with many things for kids to see and do! Take your camera and snap tons of picture so of the kids. It’s my favorite garden in DFW.

Fort Worth Dream Park – is FREE!!! It’s nestled against the Trinity River, and is an all-inclusive, fully accessible playground; a place where able bodied children and children with disabilities, could play side-by-side.  Best of all, it’s huge with lots to do. Your kids won’t want to leave.

Fort Worth Botanical Gardens– are peaceful and relaxing. It’s the perfect sport for a classic picnic. Hands down, the Japanese Gardens located inside of the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens, is one of the loveliest places in DFW. There is an annual fall festival that’s wonderful. You won’t even feel like you’re in Fort Worth anymore. However, it ranks third on my list because it does not have a children’s playground. Still, don’t miss these gardens!

If Roller Coasters are your thing, visit Six Flags Over Texas. I like to go in the Fall because they offer hot chocolate, apple cider, and candy apples. It’s the best time of year to visit Six Flags because it’s not one million degrees outside. I hate standing in line to ride a roller coaster during our triple digit summers.

Date Night Ideas

Dinner and a movie is always fun, but line up a baby sitter and give these DFW destinations a try:

Escape The Room– Escape the Room is an incredibly immersive, challenging, and exciting experience in which you must use your wits and problem-solving expertise to unveil the clues and escape before time (60 minutes) runs out. There are 4 escape rooms in Dallas and 6 escape rooms in Fort Worth are unique with their own clues and storyline. The experience is specifically tailored for your party with multiple stages to clear to progress.

Top Golf– Channel your inner Tiger Woods during your date for a round of golf. Eat, drink, and even take lessons at Top Golf. It’s a cool way to catch up with friends. Are you on a budget? Visit on Tuesdays for Half Price. or go in the morning (Monday-Friday) before noon to enjoy $15 unlimited play time.

Bishop Arts District– Jason and I love to hang out in Bishop Arts on a lazy afternoon. The hip Bishop Arts District is known for its diverse nightlife, chic independent fashion stores and colorful street art. Dining choices range from Texas-style BBQ to Vietnamese pho, while relaxed bars pour everything from cocktails to house-brewed cider.  We recommend we have pie at Emporium Pies, coffee or tea at The Wild Detectives,

West 7th Street & Crockett Row– just outside of the cultural district in Fort Worth, you’ll find many places to just hang out for the night. We recommend eating at Fireside Pies, El Bolero Cocina Mexicana, or Fort Worth Food Hall. Then venture over to America Gardens. – a full service bar and restaurant that focuses on the beautiful outdoors in a nestled park setting. America Gardens is West 7th’s largest patio with over 10,000 square feet of serene space. 

I’m a talker, and I promise you I could keep going! However, I promised 20 ideas, not 100 ideas, so I’d better stop here. I hope you find them helpful and come to enjoy Dallas Fort Worth just as much as we have. It’s a great place to live, work, and play. Please feel free to share this blog post with your friends and family. Thanks for stopping by.


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