Ready to plan your next spring break destination in Texas? YAY! We love spring in Texas!
We live in central Texas and while we enjoy exploring all year long, when Spring arrives, it is beautiful around here with great weather – the perfect spot for spring break. Every year we consider taking an out of state getaway and end up deciding to stay in Texas for spring break because it is so wonderful here in spring! In the last couple years, we have spent our Texas spring break in Georgetown, Waco, and Hill Country. Next year holds either Big Bend or a beach town – or maybe both?! wink, wink
Texas boasts a long list of spring break destinations that cater to all tastes and interests, whether you crave the sun-drenched beaches of South Padre Island, the vibrant music scene of Austin, or the serene natural beauty Hill Country or Big Bend National Park.
For college students, spring break is often associated with partying and beach fun. Texas is home to several coastal cities that offer a vibrant spring break scene. Families with kids, on the other hand, might be looking for more family-friendly options. Texas has plenty of those too!
Check out our favorite places to spend Spring Break in Texas below! I can’t wait to hear about where you plan to adventure next!
Top Spring Break Destinations in Texas
When it comes to spring break destinations, Texas everything from beach vacations to historical explorations to music festivals to Texas State Parks. Whether you’re a college student looking for fun with friends or a family looking for outdoor activities, Texas has it!
Here are ten most popular spring break destinations in Texas that you won’t want to miss (more details below):
- South Padre Island – beaches + parties
- Corpus Christi – beaches + aquarium
- San Antonio – culture + theme parks + food
- Galveston – beaches + history + boardwalk
- Hill Country – wildflowers + hiking + music
- Dallas – museums + shopping + parks + dinosaurs
- Austin – music + food + outdoors + museums
- New Braunfels – river + hiking + waterpark
- Port Aransas – beaches + golf carts
- Houston – zoo + gardens + parks
- … and more below!
Solar Eclipse in April 2024
I would remiss not to mention that Texas is lucky to be on the 2024 Total Eclipse Path this upcoming April! If you are on Spring Break on April 8th(or even if you aren’t!), you definitely want to check out which towns have the best viewing spots!
The total solar eclipse will pass through central Texas on April 8th with totality views in Dallas, Waco, Austin, Hill Country, and parts of San Antonio.
The next total eclipse is 20 years from now – so don’t miss your chance to this celestial event!
Beach Getaways – Texas Spring Break Ideas
Spring break is the perfect time to take a trip to the beach in Texas! Expect the water to still be cool and it might be windy, but pack your layers, and plan on a good time in the sand and the sun. Here are some of the top beach getaways in Texas:
South Padre Island
South Padre Island is hands down the most popular spring break destination in Texas. The island is known for its white sand beaches and crystal-clear waters, making it a prime spot for sunbathing and swimming. You’ll also find plenty of shopping and dining options.
If you are feeling active, you can also enjoy outdoor activities like jet skiing, parasailing, and fishing. For some time away from the sand, Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark is a hot spot with water slides, a lazy river, and a wave pool.
Along with its white sand and gorgeous water is lively nightlife for those looking for late night fun. College students flock to South Padre Island for a party during the month of March, so families should just be aware of this as things could be a little wild.
A condo rental is recommended for families as many hotels offer spring break food and drink packages that cater to college students. Some condos market themselves directly to families looking for a quieter spot to play in the surf with young ones on a family spring break in Texas.
Corpus Christi + North Padre Island
Corpus Christi is a coastal city that offers a great mix of beach and city activities. The city in located on the main land and has several museums and attractions, including the Texas State Aquarium, USS Lexington Museum on the Bay, and the Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History.
Cross over the causeway onto North Padre Island for some of the best beaches in Texas. We love this area and it is always our top beach recommendation over some of the more crowded beaches! Our most recent visit was last spring and the weather was perfect and the water was so clear! Our children spent hours in the water and loved every minute.
Head to Whitecap Beach for some boogie boarding fun and to Padre Island National Seashore for a quiet walk along Malaquite Beach. Mustang Island State Park is also a gorgeous beach with sand dunes, lovely water, and plenty of space to fly a kite and build a sand castle.
Galveston is one of the best beach towns in Texas with a charming historic area and plenty of activities for visitors.
The city’s Pleasure Pier is a popular spot for thrill-seekers along the boardwalk, with rides like the Iron Shark roller coaster and the Texas Star Flyer. Families can also enjoy a day at the beach, with options like Stewart Beach and East Beach. The water in Galveston is not as clear as other Texas beach towns mentioned here, but the area is so charming that it always makes up for it and we have tons of fun anyway!
Head to the historic Strand District for several shopping and tasty dining spots. Families will love Moody Gardens with its aquarium and interactive rainforest pyramid!
Port Aransas is a popular beach destination located on Mustang Island just north of Corpus Christi. This Texas spring break spot is a popular choice among locals and is accessed via a ferry which starts off the fun right away!
You can enjoy fishing, kayaking, and bird watching is another popular activity here. The beach is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and building sandcastles. There are also several restaurants and shops in the area.
Plenty of hotels and vacation condos are located right on the beach making this a very walkable vacation. Most people choose to rent a golf cart in Port Aransas to zip around town in and to make for easier parking at the beach.
Hill Country Spring Break Destinations in Texas
For those looking for a relaxing and scenic spring break destination, the Texas Hill Country is a must-visit. This region is known for its rugged landscape, natural beauty, and charming small towns that offer a ton of things to do in Hill Country outdoors. Here are some of the top Hill Country towns to consider for your spring break getaway.
The Texas Hill Country is a region of rolling hills and valleys that is home to numerous Texas state parks, nature trails, and scenic drives. We recommend choosing a town or two to book lodging and then making day trips to check out the area on a mini road trip. You can enjoy hiking, picnicking, wildlife watching, and of course seeking out the Texas bluebonnets that bloom each spring!
Concan is home to the gorgeous Frio River which is crystal clear and GORGEOUS. Tubing the Frio River is a popular activity in Hill Country, but Spring Break could be a bit early for that activity. Many outfitters are open year round but you’ll want to double check the water levels for safety and expect the water to be quite chilly.
Nevertheless, this area is beautiful even if you don’t swim! Garner State Park is nearby with plenty of hiking trails, wildflower covered hills, and picnic areas, as well as camping. There are adorable Frio River cabins that are perfect for a family getaway in nature.
New Braunfels is a charming town located in the heart of the Hill Country that offers a mix of cultural attractions and outdoor activities. Explore the town’s historic district, which is home to numerous buildings and landmarks dating back to the 1800s.
The town is also known for its water activities, including tubing and kayaking on the Guadalupe River and Comal River. Families with children may especially enjoy a visit to Schlitterbahn Waterpark, one of the largest waterparks in the country! My kids love it there specifically because there are fun options for my thrill seeking kids as well as those who prefer the calmer rides.
Head to nearby Natural Bridge Caverns, Landa Park Miniature Golf Course, and the historic Gruene district for a fun meal out and some exploring.
Johnson City + Fredericksburg
Johnson City is most well known for its insanely amazing Christmas lights, but it is also gorgeous in the spring too! Those looking for a mix of nature and history will love choosing Johnson City as a base for their spring break in Texas.
Johnson City is home to Lyndon B. Johnson’s childhood home and historic ranch. The Sauer-Beckman Farm serves as a living history museum for fun and interactive look at life in the “old days.” Pedernales Falls is a great spot for hiking and picnicking with your toes in the waterfalls.
We highly recommend the Science Mill for an excellent interactive museum for kids of all ages, but especially big kids. My 10 year-olds loved it when we went this summer – especially when they got to fly like insects wearing a VR set!
Take a scenic drive to Fredericksburg for strawberry picking, the most beautiful Texas bluebonnet fields, wine tasting, Wildseed Farms (the largest working wildflower farm in the country!), and historic museums and buildings teaching about the German heritage of the town.
Not too far from Fredericksburg is Enchanted Rock State Park which is arguably one of the most beautiful state parks in Texas Hill Country. Spring is the perfect time of year to explore the trails winding through the park and to climb the unique pink rocks.
Marble Falls + Burnet
If you are looking for a family-friendly spring break in Texas with plenty to do, Marble Falls is your spot. head to Sweet Berry Farm for strawberry picking, inflatable pillow bouncing, and the cutest goats.
Go hiking in Balcones Nature Preserve and don’ t miss the most beautiful bluebonnet field that you can walk through (photos in them are a Texas tradition!) and the wildlife observation station. The nature trail at the Visitor’s Center is great for even the smallest children.
Head to nearby Burnet for a tour of Longhorn Cavern State Park underground caves and historic ruins and hiking trails.
Inks Lake State Park is great for kayaking, fishing, and camping with a tent or in their Texas lake cabins that have heat and air conditioning. We camped here during Spring Break two years ago and it was wonderfully beautiful and green! Our kids loved the pedal boats and lakeside swings. It is truly one of our favorite things to do in Texas for Spring Break.
Burnet is also the Bluebonnet Capital of Texas and hosts the Bluebonnet Festival each spring. If your dates match up, you won’ t want to miss this!
Some may claim that Georgetown is just north of the Hill Country boundary lines, but we aren’t too strict around here – its too beautiful! This charming town is home to the “Most Beautiful Town Square in Texas.” The historic downtown square in Georgetown is surrounded by tasty eats (Sweet Lemon Kitchen and 600 Degrees Pizzeria are two of our faves!) and cute local shops.
I’m sure you will love Sweet Eats Fruit Farm as much as we do for Spring Break in Texas! It is one of our very favorite things to do in Georgetown. Visit the petting zoo, shoot apple cannons, conquer the ropes course, dig in the treasure mountain, watch he pig races, and get your face painted. Their flower farm is one of the best in Texas and they have strawberry picking too!
Walk the trails at San Gabriel Park and Garey Park and climb the playground at Berry Springs Nature Preserve (tell the donkeys that we say hello!). Inner Space Cavern is a great spot to explore the caves local to the area.
Urban Escapes for Spring Break in Texas
For those looking for a more urban spring break experience, don’t worry, Texas has that too! Here are some of the top cities to explore:
San Antonio is a popular destination for spring breakers, with its rich history, vibrant nightlife, and scenic River Walk. Explore the iconic Alamo and learn about the city’s role in Texas history, or take a stroll along the scenic River Walk and enjoy the many shops, restaurants, and bars that line the river.
For thrill-seekers, Six Flags Fiesta Texas offers a variety of rides and attractions, while the aquarium is a great place to get up close and personal with marine life.
San Antonio is a great destination for families and college students alike. Families can visit the Alamo, the River Walk, and the San Antonio Zoo, while college students and adults can enjoy the nightlife afterward too. San Antonio also offers plenty of outdoor activities, including hiking and biking.
Natural Bridge Caverns is a must-visit attraction for those who love exploring caves. The caverns are located near San Antonio and offer guided tours for visitors. If you are lucky, you might find a concert going on while you are there! You can also enjoy ziplining and gemstone mining which is always a hit with our crew!
San Antonio knows how to have a good time so the odds are good that there will be some kind of festival going on while you there. Be sure to check your dates if you are interested in the Green Dyed River Walk on St. Patrick’s Day or the 11 day Fiesta in mid to late April.
Dallas is another great destination for those looking for an urban escape. Visitors can explore the city’s many museums and cultural attractions, such as the JFK Museum and the Dallas Museum of Art. For those looking for a more active spring break, the city has plenty of parks and outdoor spaces to explore, such as the Katy Trail and White Rock Lake.
Visit the Dallas Zoo, the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, and the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Dallas also offers plenty of outdoor activities, including hiking and biking.
Head to the Fort Worth Stockyards to see the daily longhorn cattle drive, street side western shoot-outs, a maze challenge in the stockyards, and plenty of fun photo opps.
Dinosaur Valley State Park is a unique park that is home to several dinosaur tracks that is just a short drive away. Visitors can hike along the trails and see the tracks up close. The park also offers camping, picnicking, and fishing. There are several different trails to choose from, ranging from easy to challenging.
The Dallas area is filled with some incredible resorts that are super family-friendly. Great Wolf Lodge and Gaylord Texan Resort top the charts with water parks, family activities, on-site restaurants, and seasonal fun.
Austin is known for its vibrant live music scene, and spring break is the perfect time to explore the city’s many music venues and festivals. Explore the Texas State Capitol and take a dip in the refreshing waters (doesn’t refreshing sound better than freezing?!) of Barton Springs Pool.
For those looking for a more active spring break, the city has plenty of outdoor activities to offer, such as kayaking on Lady Bird Lake or hiking in the nearby Hill Country. Explore the gardens at Zilker Park and Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center (a great place for bluebonnets in Austin!).
Families will love the Thinkery Children’s Museum and the playgrounds at Children’s Alliance Gardens. Many restaurants and breweries have outdoor play spaces for the kiddos for some family-friendly dining.
One of the biggest events in Austin is the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, which takes place every March during spring break. The festival is a combination of music, film, and interactive conferences, with hundreds of artists and performers from around the world.
During SXSW, the entire city of Austin transforms into a music venue, with free and ticketed events taking place at various locations throughout the city. Listen to live music, film screenings, and panel discussions.
Houston is a great destination for those looking for a mix of urban and outdoor activities and spring is the perfect weather in Houston. Explore the city’s many museums and cultural attractions, such as the Houston Museum of Natural Science, Houston Zoo, Children’s Museum of Houston, and the AH-MAZING Space Center Houston.
If you prefer outdoor activities, the city has plenty of parks and green spaces to explore, such as Hermann Park and the Buffalo Bayou Park. And for thrill-seekers, the Kemah Boardwalk offers rides and attractions.
March is also RodeoHouston Month in which means plenty of activities for those looking for that cowboy vibe! You’ll find three weeks of all the bull riding, country music, BBQ, livestock shows, parades, and cattle roping you can handle!
This small city in north Central Texas is a hot spot for amazing things to do with kids. Head over to the Waco Mammoth National Monument for some amazing discoveries and then head to the Dr. Pepper Museum for some sweet treats.
The Magnolia Silos are the perfect place to go for a charming wiffleball game, delicious bakery cupcakes, and to pick up some local wildflower seeds for souvenirs (and shh…some super cute backdrops for photos of you or your kids!). No judgement if you bribe them with the cupcakes! 🙂
The Cameron Park Zoo and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame are both fun stops depending on your interests. Stretch your legs on the Waco Suspension Bridge and then satisfy your appetite at Union Hall featuring several different vendors to meet all requests.
And a Bonus Texas Spring Break Idea!
Big Bend National Park
Spring Break in Big Bend requires a bit more work as the closest airport is a few hours away. But Big Bend in the spring is the perfect time to go!
The typically hot desert landscape comes alive with an explosion of colors as wildflowers sprinkle throughout the terrain. The Rio Grande River winds through towering canyons, offering opportunities for river rafting and kayaking. Hiking trails lead to hidden oases, where you can cool off in crystal-clear spring-fed pools like the enchanting Santa Elena Canyon.
As the sun dips below the horizon, the starry night sky becomes perfect for stargazing at the park’s renowned observatory. Whether you’re marveling at the Chisos Mountains, soaking in a hot spring, or savoring a campfire-cooked meal, Big Bend National Park promises an unforgettable spring break adventure filled with natural beauty and adventure!
Family Fun Spring Break Ideas in Texas
Texas is a fantastic destination for families during spring break. There are plenty of family-friendly attractions and activities and sometimes it is fun to plan a whole trip around one exciting place that your children want to visit! Here are some of the top family fun spots in Texas.
Texas State Aquarium
The Texas State Aquarium in Corpus Christi is a must-visit destination for families during spring break. It is home to over 300 species of marine life, including dolphins, sea turtles, and sharks. The aquarium also has a 4D theater and a splash park for kids to enjoy.
Moody Gardens in Galveston is another great destination for families. It is a 242-acre park that includes a rainforest pyramid, an aquarium pyramid, and a discovery pyramid. Visitors can see animals like sloths, monkeys, and birds in the rainforest pyramid, explore the marine life in the aquarium pyramid, and learn about science and technology in the discovery pyramid. The park also has a ropes course, zip line, and a paddlewheel boat.
The Houston Zoo is a popular destination for families during spring break. It is home to over 6,000 animals from 900 species, including elephants, giraffes, and gorillas. See the animals up close, watch them being fed, and even take a behind-the-scenes tour. The zoo also has a splash pad and a playground.
Schlitterbahn Water Park
Schlitterbahn Water Park in New Braunfels is a fun destination for families during spring break. Do note dates, as it opens in April. It is home to over 40 water rides and attractions, including water slides, lazy rivers, and wave pools. This huge water park is split between to locations and requires a shuttle ride between them! Our family especially loved the long tubing adventure that actually dropped us into the river to float outside the park!
FAQs: Spring Break Texas
What are some popular spring break destinations in Texas?
Some popular spring break destinations in Texas include South Padre Island, Galveston Island, Austin, San Antonio, and Big Bend National Park.
What activities can I enjoy at spring break destinations in Texas?
You can enjoy beach parties, water sports, live music, hiking, and cultural attractions for spring break in Texas.
Is South Padre Island a family-friendly spring break destination in Texas?
South Padre Island offers family-friendly activities alongside its vibrant nightlife, making it suitable for all age groups.
Can I camp at Big Bend National Park during Texas spring break?
Yes, camping is available at Big Bend National Park, but be sure to make reservations in advance, as it’s a popular destination.
Are there any music festivals in Austin during spring break?
Yes, Austin hosts several music festivals during spring break, including SXSW (South by Southwest), known for its diverse music lineup.
Are there family-friendly activities in addition to partying in spring break destinations in Texas?
Absolutely! You can explore museums, botanical gardens, and family-friendly events in many Texas spring break destinations.
Is it necessary to book activities and accommodations in advance for spring break in Texas?
It’s advisable to make reservations in advance, especially if you plan to visit popular spring break destinations in Texas, to secure the best options and prices.
Final thoughts about planning a Texas Spring Break
As you set out on your spring break adventure in the beautiful state of Texas, get ready for an adventure! Whether you’re lounging on the sandy shores of South Padre Island, exploring the vibrant culture of Austin, or marveling at the natural wonders of Big Bend National Park, Texas has something amazing for your spring break!
So, pack your bags, bring your sense of adventure, and let the Lone Star State’s warmth, hospitality, and breathtaking landscapes make your spring break truly amazing! Safe travels, and enjoy every moment of your spring break in Texas!