If you are wondering “What are the best fun things to do in the Woodlands near Houston?” we have you covered!
As the school year draws to an end and the temperature soars, make the most of sunny Summer days with a family trip to The Woodland, located just north of Houston. Kayak on a scenic lake, head bang at a night concert, enjoy glittering firework shows or just simply stroll around the lush pine forests and scenic parks…the possibilities are endless at The Woodlands–creating the perfect Instagram-worthy getaway for nature lovers, shoppers and foodies.
6 Fun Things to Do in Woodlands near Houston
1. KAYAK IN LAKE WOODLANDS
Beat the summer heat at Lake Woodland by renting a swan boat, water bike, tandem pedal kayak or elliptical stand-up paddle board from the Riva Row Boat House or Lakes Edge Boat House. Paddle along as herons, egrets, ducks wade along the banks. A 35-foot-long serpent statue will greet you at the lake’s southern edge. The Riva Row Boat House and Lakes Edge Boat House often host fun events like SUP yoga, sunrise kayaking, and kayak bird-watching. Both boathouses are open year-round with seasonal hours.
Note: Dogs are allowed to ride in the kayaks for no extra fee; however, they are not allowed on the SUPs or swan boats. Check rental costs and reservation details here.
2. EXPLORE THE GREAT OUTDOORS
Make your way through winding trails flanked by rows of towering pine trees at the The George Mitchell Nature Preserve. The five-miles trail comes alive with the sound swaying trees and chirping birds. Among the preserve’s pathway is the twisting, single track Flintridge Bike Trail.
Also, say hello to fishes at The Koi Pond in the Woodlands Waterway. Be sure to grab something delicious from the waterside restaurants. The Woodlands Town Center Trolley ferries visitors for free to The Waterway and many of The Woodlands’ top spots. If you prefer sweating it out, one can bike or jog on more than 160 miles of trails, then soak up the sun at Northshore Park, which hosts free concerts on Sunday evenings.
3. ENJOY THE LARGE PUBLIC ART PIECES – ONE OF OUR TOP PICKS FOR THINGS TO DO IN THE WOODLANDS NEAR HOUSTON
The Woodlands boast of many larger-than-life art pieces. Some can be viewed from the roadway making them unique roadside attractions. This is one of our top picks for things to do in the Woodlands near Houston.
The Dreamer, tucked away in the village of Panther Creek, is a 17 feet long sculpture of a barefoot man resting by artist David Phelps.
THE MILLENNIUM SCULPTURE
The Millennium Sculpture by Bruce White, located behind The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion and along The Woodlands Waterway, is the tallest sculpture in The Woodlands. Millennium stands at 32 feet high and includes internal lighting which glows at night
RISE OF THE MIDGARD SERPENT
Rise of the Midgard Serpent by Marc Rosenthal near Southshore is the longest art piece in The Woodlands and the only sculpture located in water. The serpent sits six feet high, 1 foot wide, and is 35 feet long. The Serpent is best viewed from the water, rent a kayak for a close look and a photo-worthy moment.
LARGE NATURAL FORM II
Large Natural Form II by Richard Hunt is located along Research Forest Drive. This corten steel sculpture weighs a whopping 2,500 pounds.
ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS
On the Shoulders of Giants sits along the roadside at the intersection of Research Forest Drive and Grogan’s Mill Road. This sculpture by Robert Cook stands at 15 feet high and is 5 feet wide, weighing 1,300 pounds.
THE WATCH OWL
The Watch Owl by Mark Bradford is located on the campus of The Woodlands Township’s Parks, Recreation & Environmental Services Office. Made of welded corten steel, the sculpture keeps its watchful eyes at 23 feet high.
For complete details on the public art pieces in the Woodlands, check out this post.
4. FOURTH OF JULY FESTIVITIES IN THE WOODLANDS
FOURTH OF JULY PARADE, July 3, starting 9 a.m.
Celebrate Independence Day in true patriotic style! Festivities begin with the South County Fourth of July Parade. The 1.3-mile parade will make its way around The Woodlands via Market Street and by Town Green Park. The yearly event features marching bands, fire engines, clowns, floats and more.
STAR SPANGLED SALUTE, July 3
The Star Spangled Salute performance at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion will feature symphony music. Pavilion tents will light up in iconic red, white and blue hues for the celebration.
RED, HOT & BLUE FESTIVAL, July 4, from 6:00-10:00 p.m.
The annual Red, Hot & Blue Festival promises some great food, live entertainment, family fun and multiple fireworks shows in and around town. The 18-minute fireworks show, the largest in the Houston area, will take place at approximately 9:30 p.m.
View the complete lineup of events at each location here.
5. THE CYNTHIA WOODS MITCHELL PAVILION-OUTDOOR AMPHITHEATRE
Enjoy electrifying live music performances under the starry sky at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, named as one of the “Top 10 Outdoor Amphitheaters in the World,” as per Pollstar magazine. Catch performances by the Houston Symphony, Houston Ballet, Houston Grand Opera and Texas Music Festival Orchestra. Check full list of upcoming performances here.
6. EVENING STROLL ON MARKET STREET – FUN THINGS TO DO IN WOODLANDS NEAR HOUSTON
Treat the shopaholic in you at Market Street or The Woodlands Mall. Browse through old-fashioned stores, as well as upscale shops such as Madewell, Sur La Table and Lululemo. Don’t forget to swing by Crú Food & Wine Ba for a glass of wine or satisfy your appetite with mouthwatering barbecue, jambalaya and other Cajun and Creole fare. Afterwards you can take your date to Cinemark to catch the latest Hollywood blockbuster or perhaps visit the bustling Market Street’s Central Park. One of our top picks for fun things to do in the Woodlands, near Houston.
All images courtesy: The Woodlands, Texas
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