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Educational activities

Educational activities

Our most recommended Houston Educational activities

Houston: Space Center Houston Admission Ticket

1. Houston: Space Center Houston Admission Ticket

Explore Space Center Houston with its 400 space artifacts as well as permanent and traveling exhibits. Discover attractions and theaters related to the exciting future and remarkable past of America’s human space-flight program, all for one admission price. See the world’s largest collection of moon rocks and lunar samples for public view. Go behind-the-scenes to see NASA Johnson Space Center (based on availability). Learn about the world-renowned home of NASA Mission Control, International Space Station Mission Control, and astronaut training. Experience the newest permanent exhibit, the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, displayed outside the center. Walk around and underneath the first-stage booster spanning more than 156 feet long. See the only Falcon 9 on public display outside of SpaceX’s headquarters which is the same type of rocket that launched NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft on May 30 for the Demo-2 mission. It marked the first time since 2011 that astronauts have launched from American soil.

Houston: Museum of Natural Science General Admission Ticket

2. Houston: Museum of Natural Science General Admission Ticket

Immerse yourself in the fascinating world of natural science with an entrance ticket to the Houston Museum of Natural Sciences, one of the United States most-visited museums. See spectacular mineral specimens, dinosaur skeletons, space-station models, and much more. Gaze at dozens of prehistoric beasts in the Morian Hall of Paleontology brought to life in lively displays that animate their struggle to survive. See a blue topaz crystal of more than 2,000 carats in the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals. Celebrate the diversity of America’s indigenous peoples in the John P. McGovern Hall of the Americas. Come face to face with wildlife ecology at the Frensley Graham Hall of African Wildlife, or learn about shell science and the study of mollusks at the Strake Hall of Malacology.

Houston: Downtown Aquarium All Day Pass

3. Houston: Downtown Aquarium All Day Pass

Step inside a six-acre entertainment complex that houses a 500,000-gallon aquatic wonderland and is home to over 300 aquatic species from around the globe. Take advantage of an all-day adventure pass that includes entry to the Aquarium Adventure Exhibit, Stingray Reef, and unlimited amusement rides. Marvel at the different fish and other types of marine life as you make your way through 8 different areas including the Louisiana swamp, an underwater shipwreck, tropical rainforest, a sunken temple, an offshore rig in the Gulf of Mexico, the education room, and the maharaja’s temple. Get up close and personal with the fascinating creatures of Stingray Reef, where you can touch and feed live stingrays. You can also enjoy unlimited rides that include the Aqua Wheel, Shark Voyage Train, Lighthouse Dive, Diving Bell Ferris Wheel, Aquatic Carousel, and Frog Hopper.

Houston Museum of Natural Sciences: Planetarium Ticket

4. Houston Museum of Natural Sciences: Planetarium Ticket

Immerse yourself in the vastness of space at the Burke Baker Planetarium in the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Enjoy the upgraded planetarium which features the world's leading digital planetarium software and projection system. Let this digital projection system allow you to step off world and into the wider universe. Explore planets and asteroid fields. See projections of planets, stars, and entire galaxies. Expand your knowledge of the universe with different dome shows like "Lamps of Atlantis", "Are We Really Alone?", "Black Holes", "Starry Night Express", "Dark Side of the Moon", and "Passport to the Universe." The last show of the day is at 5 PM.

Houston: City Tour and NASA Space Center Admission Ticket

5. Houston: City Tour and NASA Space Center Admission Ticket

Explore the wonders of space travel on an unforgettable tour that includes a mini-city tour around Houston and roundtrip transportation to the NASA/Johnson Space Center.  Enjoy interactive exhibits and activities, touch a moon rock, take a tram ride to the NASA control center and see the shuttle replica at the Independence Plaza. Begin your day of space exploration on land as you are taken a short city sightseeing tour around Houston where you can see some of its most important landmarks.  Afterward, drive 25 miles from the center of Houston to the Space Center Houston and experience America’s adventures in space first-hand. Space Center Houston is the visitor center for NASA's Johnson Space Center. It is a separate facility that features activities and exhibits designed jointly by NASA and Disney Imagineering. Get a chance to ride the half-hour tram tour that goes to the gigantic International Space Station Assembly Building and to the NASA control center. Both kids and adults will enjoy the interactive displays. Don’t miss the Starship Gallery Artifact Museum, where you can touch a moon rock or try out the simulator that lets you land the lunar orbiter.

Houston: Radiant Nature Holiday Lights Experience Tickets

6. Houston: Radiant Nature Holiday Lights Experience Tickets

Discover Radiant Nature, an unforgettable adventure for the entire family you should not miss. Wander through pathways that will glow with the radiant brilliance of more than 50 large-scale Chinese lantern installations -- in three themed zones, including an interactive area with illuminated swings, whimsical seesaws, a digital kaleidoscope you can step inside, and other immersive, Instagram-worthy features. See a majestic 200-foot-long dragon, a soaring 12-foot-tall peacock with a fan that gracefully unfurls, and much more. Celebrate the beauty of nature and the uniqueness of Asian culture during the traditional fall and winter western holiday season through to Lunar New Year and the Chinese Lantern Festival. Visitors can also shop a festive marketplace selling Chinese handicrafts and purchase seasonal and ethnic food and beverages as well. Parking is not included in this ticket and will need to be purchased separately from the Houston Botanic Garden. Onsite Parking is First Come, First Served and costs $10 per car. Attendants will help direct you to a spot. Otherwise, using a rideshare will be encouraged to arrive/leave the Botanic Garden.

Houston CityPASS®: Save 49% at 5 Top Attractions

7. Houston CityPASS®: Save 49% at 5 Top Attractions

Make use of your Houston CityPASS® on your next trip to Houston. See the wonders of space, amazing animals, fascinating science, world-class art, and more with Houston CityPASS® tickets. CityPASS® tickets offer convenient instant delivery and are valid for 9 consecutive days, allowing ample time to experience each attraction. Save 49% on prepaid admission to 5 must-see attractions: • Space Center Houston – General admission, including Independence Plaza and the NASA tram tour Plus get admission to 4 more attractions of your choice: • Downtown Aquarium – General admission to the Aquarium Adventure Exhibit; rides and games not included • Houston Museum of Natural Science – General admission • Houston Zoo – General admission; not valid for Zoo Lights • Kemah Boardwalk All-Day Ride Pass – All-Day Ride Pass; Stingray, Boardwalk Beast, and Iron Eagle not included • Children’s Museum of Houston – General admission. To enter the museum, your group must be accompanied by a child • Museum of Fine Arts, Houston – General admission to permanent collections and non-ticketed special exhibitions

Houston: Guided City Tour by an Open-Top Panoramic Bus

8. Houston: Guided City Tour by an Open-Top Panoramic Bus

See the historical highlights and cultural delights of Houston on this panoramic bus tour. Enjoy unobstructed views from your seat and listen to informative commentary from your guide. Cruise past important landmarks like the historic City Hall, Market Square, Heritage Society, and Graffiti Park. Start your sightseeing tour at a cowboy-themed Visitors Center with Texan heritage artifacts and photo opportunities. Sit at the coffee shop or shop for souvenirs before boarding the bus. Head to the Toyota Center, home of the professional NBA basketball team the Houston Rockets. See the beautiful urban park of Discovery Green located in the heart of the Convention Center area. Next up is Houston Graffiti Park filled with vibrant street art and wall murals. See the latest street mural exhibition organized by Street Art for Mankind non-profit.  Discover Minute Maid Park, the home of the 2022 World Series champions, the Houston Astros. Move to Market Square Park in the city's Downtown Historic District to see the Old Union train station building. Finally, admire the last original buildings of the Downtown's Main Street Square. Marvel at the Art Deco architecture of the Houston City Hall building in front of Hermann Square. See the slow-moving Buffalo Bayou River, where in 1836 John and Augustus Allen founded Houston. Next, continue to Tranquility Park which was built to commemorate the Apollo 11 moon landing in July 1969. Spot the Downtown Aquarium, the Sam Houston Park dedicated to the buildings and culture of the city's past, and the Heritage Society museum and park.

Houston Museum of Natural Science: Cockrell Butterfly Center

9. Houston Museum of Natural Science: Cockrell Butterfly Center

Visit the Cockrell Butterfly Center at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Walk through a living butterfly habitat, admire spectacular live and preserved specimens of some of the world’s largest and weirdest arthropods, and enjoy interactive games and quizzes. Upon arrival, enter a three-story glass structure built around a 50-foot (15-meter) waterfall. Once inside, discover a simulated tropical rainforest filled with exotic plants and hundreds of live butterflies imported from butterfly farms around the world. Marvel as these delicate creatures flutter through the vegetation, stop to sip nectar or fruit juices, and occasionally alight on lucky visitors. Feel the enchantment continue with astounding living insects, mounted specimens, larger-than-life models, and interactive games. Search for camouflaged creatures, meet a cricket weatherman, learn how insects are used to solve crimes, watch leaf cutter ants at work, see giant wasp nests, get a close-up look of some of Houston’s largest cockroaches, and more. Tucked underneath the waterfall and behind the cenote pool, discover how insects are particularly important to humans. Listen to interviews with real-life entomologists and take a peek into an entomologist’s lab, where you can look up close at insect specimens. The last entry of the day is at 5:30 PM.

Houston: Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern Ticket

10. Houston: Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern Ticket

Discover the secrets of one of Houston's most iconic and historical landmarks on a guided, walking tour. Hear about the origins of the Buffalo Bayou Park Cistern and admire the subterranean architecture as you experience a highly unusual space with vast columns and a 17-second echo. Check in at the Visitor Center of Buffalo Bayou Park, Houston's oasis of green in the middle of the city. Meet your guide at the entrance of the cistern, and discover how the structure was built in 1926 as the city's original drinking water reservoir. You'll be led into the cavernous cistern that has been repurposed as a subterranean public space. Marvel at an interior the size of 1.5 football fields and which, at one time, held 15 million gallons of drinking water. Unleash your inner child and play in the space. Trying calling out to hear the 17-second echo as the sound of your voice bounces off the walls and ceilings. Admire the architecture of monolithic concrete columns.

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What people are saying about Houston

Overall rating

3.8 / 5

based on 64 reviews

Five retirees, 3 men and 2 women, spent almost 7 hours at Space Center Houston, planning only to spend about 4 hours. Even the senior who had been there before encountered new and interesting information. One of our group knew very little about the program before Apollo 13 and wants to read and learn more. We recommend that as soon as you arrive, you arrange for the tours by tram, since they fill up, and once you have established the times of the tours you can fill the rest of the time exploring the Space Center. Personally, although I enjoyed the tours, if I had time constraints and could only spend 4 hours at NASA, I would skip the tours - but skipping the tours means not seeing the control room used during space missions and seeing a Saturn rocket up close. But the Space Center's videos and exhibits are interesting and can easily fill 4 hours.

Of course very crowded on a Saturday, but definitely worth the money. Whether with or without children, there is a lot to discover and explore. Very, very interestingly done, various exhibitions. There were also real NASA employees on site who could be interviewed,

We really enjoyed the new exhibits at the space center. A little disappointed the tram wasn’t running to see remote parts of the space center.

Fantastic place to visit. I recommend this as a place for everyone to come when in Houston.

Wonderful visit!!! Excellent memories of space travel and learned so much!!