Waco, Texas; made famous by Chip & Joanna Gaines. Actually, I wouldn't say they just made it famous, they brought the entire city back to life. Everything from delicious food to ample entertainment, if you find yourself in Texas, don't miss Waco.
We spent 2 full days in Waco. We were visiting for a family reunion, but also spent time enjoying as much as we could!
Here are our absolute favorites for Families visiting Waco:
Probably the most well known attraction in Waco. It stays busy, so in our opinion, get there as soon as it opens OR go one hour before they close and wait until right before they close. There are several food trucks on the campus (the Alabama Sweet Tea was DELISH), a large lawn to play/relax, a giant pavilion with welcomed ceiling fans and misters, and there is even a super cute "Seed & Supply" shop for your gardening needs. Let's not forget the big two though: Magnolia Market & the extremely popular Silos Baking Co. You will wait to get into the Baking Co (probably 20-30 minutes), but you won't have to wait to get into the actual Silo area. TIPS: Get there before they open & don't forget to ask for their 10% military discount inside Magnolia Market!
We were told not to miss this museum and I am very glad we didn't. We spent over 3 hours at the Museum, but honestly could have stayed MUCH longer. The Play Waco room (for children under 5) is a room made to look like a small Waco -- you can be a fisherman, veterinarian, grocer, or even a food truck server! Our kids did not want to leave this area. If your kids are older, they will LOVE the Jeanes Discovery Center where they will see dinosaurs, learn about different animals, sounds, lights, and everything that has to do with science. The entire museum is very well done. TIPS: Active Duty Military get in for FREE, Dependants & Retirees get $1 off admission
This museum was less than stellar in my opinion. They did have one interactive floor that teaches kids about health and not drinking too much sugar, but for $8 a person....not worth it in my opinion. HOWEVER, there are two sides to this museum. The other half is FREE and the courtyard is FREE. The kids were WAY more entertained on the FREE side, so I recommend a stop for some cool photos and Dr. Pepper Floats! TIPS: Kids under 4 are FREE & they offer $2.00 off for Military and dependents --- skip the paid side all together and head to the free side -- try to plan your visit around the Liquid Laboratory's demonstrations too!
Please for the love of Waco, do NOT miss eating here. It is exactly what you think it will be; DELICIOUS. We arrived just after 7 am and got on their wait list with a party of 7. We only had to wait maybe 30 minutes before we were seated. All of the waiting is done outside, but in true Chip + Jo fashion, there is an amazing coffee stand outside with a fun area for the kids to play. While we waited we took some photos, let the kids play and sipped some cappuccinos! Once inside, we scarfed down Pancakes, Eggs Benedict, French Toast, and best of all: Ella's Dipping Donuts (HIGHLY Recommend those) TIPS: Get there EARLY & don't miss the Texas Pecan Coffee!
OOOOO get ready to be so full you can barely walk. This place came recommended by a friend who used to live there. I haven't experienced a place like this before. You go up and order everything a la carte at the counter, then grab some paper to eat on (yes, paper) and a seat at a picnic table and CHOW DOWN. Don't even mess around here; get the Spicy Chop and Cream Corn. We ordered several main dishes & the spicy chop was fought over. SO GOOD. Once you're done, clean up after yourself! TIPS: Order the Spice Chop & keep in mind the place shares a parking lot with Magnolia Table, so be warned.
Texas does a lot of food right, but the Mexican food is some of the best. We had a huge party (probably 22 people) and they were able to seat us in a back banquet room. The service was quick and the food was exceptional. I had the Spinach and Cheese Enchiladas and if I ever go back, I will get that again. [drooling] I also had one of their margaritas -- I will also get that again!! The kids shared a kids meal and it was plenty of food. TIP: Get a margarita for sure and the salsa they bring to the table is SPICY --- so if you have kids, keep that in mind.
This little hole in the wall stop on our drive from Dallas to Waco was highly recommended by a friend who is a Fort Worth native. We decided to make it a stop to see what the fuss was about. HOLY MOLY. There is a reason this place has a continual line. They have everything from delicious pastries to homemade bread to the famous kolaches. Do yourself a favor and stop there. It isn't much to look at, but the food is very reasonably priced and good for the soul.
Here are some additional places to visit. (If we go back, we will go to these for sure!)
Like I said, we were visiting for a family reunion, so our touring time was a bit limited. These places were on our list, but we didn't get there. It killed me, but it also gives us a reason to go back!
I keep thinking about Waco. I know we're going to go back. I really loved it. If you have Waco favorites, let us know in the comments so we're sure to not miss anything!
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