Texas – Kemah Boardwalk
In between Houston and Galveston is a tiny town bursting with entertainment options. Overlooking Galveston Bay, Kemah Boardwalk is a 42-acre entertainment and dining complex. What I really like about Kemah Boardwalk is that it is set up in a way that you can stay only a few hours or an entire weekend. There is no admission fee to the boardwalk; you pay individually for your food and entertainment selections.
Our stay was a relatively short one; we went there for dinner and evening entertainment in between longer stops in Houston and Galveston. There are lots of restaurants to choose from. We chose to dine in the kid-friendly Aquarium restaurant. This is a restaurant and an attraction rolled into one. In the center of the restaurant is a 50,000 gallon aquarium. When you are dining with small children, you know that often the most difficult part is keeping your kids occupied between when you order and when the food arrives. That’s not difficult in this restaurant. My kids loved watching the fish and eels.
The Aquarium has a typical kid’s menu and lots of seafood and other options for the adults. Aquarium also has exhibits and tours, including Stingray Reef, where you can touch and feed live stingrays ($5.99 per person). You do not need to eat in the restaurant in order to visit the stingray exhibit.
After dinner, we explored the boardwalk and rode some rides. You can either pay separately for each ride (most are $3.50 or $4) or buy an all-day ride pass for unlimited rides ($16.99 – under 48″, $19.99 – over 48″). There are thirteen rides to choose from. My older two, Corinne and Connor, enjoyed the Aviator. The Aviator is also pictured at the top of the post and in my header.
Camille was too little for the big rides at that time, so she rode the Red Baron.
Kemah Boardwalk also has classic rides like a carousel, ferris wheel, and train, plus a wooden roller coaster. Not included in the all-day ride pass is a high speed boat ride ($15 for adults, $12 for kids). And, as you would expect, there are midway games and an arcade. Free attractions include a playground and a dancing water fountain. Be sure to pack a swimsuit. Swimsuits are required in the dancing fountains. There are events, live music, and specials all through the year; check their website for details.