Things to do in Bastrop, TX with kids for fun and memories.
All Texas families know that when they take a road trip, there’s a lot of Texas to cover before you get out of the state. That’s one of the reasons we find Texas to travel with our kids so attractive. We can always find a fun new place to discover in the Lone Star State that will fit into our budget. We decided these things to do in Bastrop, TX, with kids was worth a shot.
This post was part of a sponsored project which included lodging, food & beverage, and compensation for the trip. The opinions reflected are honest and based upon the individual blogger’s experience.
Things To Do In Bastrop, TX With Kids
I don’t know why it’s taken us so long to put Bastrop on our radar. We’ve searched for fun destinations within a two-hour drive from our home near San Antonio, and Bastrop has never come up as an option. We love a good weekend trip destination, and Bastrop does not have more than enough fun for a weekend plus some more. I’m excited to share what I found in Bastrop, Texas, and I hope it inspires you to plan your trip this summer.
Things To Do In Bastrop, TX
No matter what your family enjoys doing when you travel with kids to Bastrop, Texas, none of you will get bored!
Where Is Bastrop Texas, Anyway?
The city of Bastrop is along the Colorado River, about 30 miles southeast of Austin. Its population is approximately 8,000, and it is part of the Austin metro area, although it doesn’t have an “Austin vibe” whatsoever. If you’re minutes versus miles person, like me, Bastrop is about an hour and a half from San Antonio, about two hours from Houston and three hours and change from Dallas.
Bastrop Visitors Center
I’m a firm believer that every traveler who lands in a new city, big or small, needs to make their first stop at the visitor’s center, even if it’s just for a few minutes. There’s valuable information available there.
In every visitor’s center, you’ll find someone who knows and loves the city, amenities such as restrooms and a gift shop, and more. The Bastrop Visitor’s Center has an entire wall of brochures with info on things to do around the area, as well as a gift shop that sells local souvenirs and other merchandise.
What’s cool and unique about this visitor’s center is that it also houses a small museum. Included are the history of Bastrop and the surrounding area and an exhibit solely dedicated to the fires of 2011. You get a sense of where you’re at by visiting this small but respectable museum. Admission is $5 for adults. Going through and reading all the plaques takes less than an hour, and your ticket is good for re-reentry if you want to return that same day.
There’s also a free kids’ activity at the visitor’s center. There’s a lot of street art in Bastrop, including many frogs. The visitor’s center has prepared a kid’s scavenger hunt where your kids find all the frogs and record their locations. Turn your completed scavenger hunt in for a prize.
Shopping In Bastrop Historic District
Bastrop has a plethora of cute and quaint shops in their historic district, which is very walkable. It’s easy to get lost in selecting antiques, jewelry, and unique gifts, and it’s easy to get lost in the shops. Whether you’re looking for something for your home to remember your time in Bastrop or a “just because” splurge of jewelry or clothing, I’m confident you’ll find it in Bastrop. And, if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, that’s OK. It will probably find you.
Be aware that many shops and other businesses are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. Early in the week is an excellent, un-busy time to visit and explore, but if you’re a hardcore shopper or window shopper, you’re probably going to want to go Wednesday through Saturday.
Lost Pines Art Bazaar
It’s hard not to have a favorite, and mine was the Lost Pines Art Bazaar on Chestnut Street. They have an eclectic selection of home goods, cookbooks, Persian rugs, handbags, jewelry, and outstanding stock of unique greeting cards.
Some unique things here are so captivating, and it’s almost worth a return trip back for me to buy gifts. I wasn’t in shopping mode on my recent visit, but I would drive an hour and a half to this store to shop. It’s light and airy and spacious, and I pretty much wanted all the things in here.
Bastrop River Company
This river company is not a “mariachi and margarita” kind of riverwalk like you’ll find in San Antonio. It’s more of a hike/bike/walk/stroll/jog kind of trail that you can enjoy with your family or all by yourself. The river scenery is lush and beautiful, you’ll have a great view of the historic suspension bridge, and if you want to take the adventure up a notch, you can rent a paddleboard, canoe, or kayak and explore via water. Check out the Bastrop River Company’s website for more info on rentals.
Visit Bastrop State Park
Bastrop State Park has over seven miles of hiking trails, campsites, and cabins if you want to overnight it. I remember visiting Bastrop State Park when I was a girl, and the two paths I hiked during my recent visit brought back some great memories.
The trails at Bastrop State Park are generally pretty easy to navigate. If you’re visiting from out of state, know that Texas is warm and sunny most of the year, so make sure you take water with you and have that sunscreen.
Bastrop State Park is a great place to hike and unplug. Even though the park is very near “civilization,” it’s still very refreshing to get out and walk the trails and appreciate nature and resilience in the case of this terrain. For more info about Bastrop State Park, visit their website.
Zip Lost Pines In Bastrop
If ziplining over the top of the pines sounds like your thing, make sure you reserve a tour at Zip Lost Pines. They offer three different tours – a six-line, a three-line, and a night zip tour. It’s a pricey activity, but a six-line tour lasts two-and-a-half to three hours, so that’s half the day’s activities knocked out. We’re on the thrill-seeking side, so we’d pay that and call it our extensive activity for the trip. However, one of our kids is still under the minimum weight requirement for participating.
Zip Lost Pines overlooks McKinney Roughs Nature Park, which offers such activities as hiking and equestrian trails, UTV tours, picnicking spots, and more.
Things To Do In Bastrop Must Include A Visit To Lake Bastrop
If you’ve read this far, then you know Bastrop isn’t short on outdoor fun. If you like camping, fishing, and nature, not and not necessarily in that order, you’ll want to check out Lake Bastrop. Lake Bastrop North Shore Park is a great place to fish. It has bass, crappie, perch, and catfish. You can fish from the pier or a boat, and on-site boat rentals are available.
If fishing and boating isn’t your thing, Lake Bastrop North also has a day-use area where you can swim, play volleyball or have a picnic. They offer various campsites if you want to stay overnight, including five Airstream campers available to rent for the night. These are so adorable that I might decide I like camping to stay in one of these.
Lake Bastrop South Shore Park offers similar amenities. There’s fishing and camping available, but if you want the Airstream like me, you’ll have to go to North Shore Park. South Shore Park offers camping sites and cabins and includes a mini-golf course.
As you can see, there are many things to do in Bastrop, TX, with kids. Be sure to see Jill’s second article titled Places To Stay And Eat In Bastrop, TX.