~ Around Houston: A quick visit to Waco, TX!!

Hi Guys!

Howdy?!

So way back in 2018, just randomly, the hubby and I with LilMissK in tow, took a road trip to Waco, TX! If you’ve been following me for a while, you know how much we love to travel, but this road trip was also actually for me to “finally” visit The Silos and Magnolia Market to experience all things Magnolia, as all the bloggers I follow always keep talking about it and I had seen/bought many quite things from the Magnolia line at Target and it was finally time we visited 🙂

We made it a quick one day trip and drove back the same day, but I’d suggest you stay over one night to enjoy it in a little bit more relaxed fashion.

So without further ado, I’ll dive right it.

How far is Waco from Houston: 3.5 hours! It is situated along the Brazos River and I-35, halfway between Dallas and Austin.

Where to stay: Many of the usual hotels are very conveniently located in downtown, close to all the action. And then you do have the options of Air B&B or B&Bs in general.

Things to see and do:

It’s a small town and there isn’t much to do, which makes it the perfect spot for a quick dat trip! But if you do end up staying the night, you could enjoy the brunch spots and the bakery more along with getting to spend more time at the Silos which has so much to offer anyways!

Here are some highlights:

– Mammoth National Monument

Can you believe this?! YES! In our own very Texas!! Standing as tall as 14 feet and weighing 20,000 pounds, Columbian mammoths roamed across what is present-day Texas thousands of years ago. Today, the fossil specimens represent the nation’s first and only recorded evidence of a nursery herd of ice age Columbian mammoths. And today, you can visit the museum to know more!

– The Magnolia Market at the Silos

This was my single.main.reason.to.plan.this.roadtrip!!

Why you ask – well coz these beauties, the Silos are something else!

A little bit of history lesson for you: Quoting directly from the Country Living website: Chip and Joanna Gaines‘s store in Waco, Texas, Fans of HGTV’s Fixer Upper know that the couple undertook their biggest rehab project ever when they acquired a sprawling downtown Waco property that includes two huge grain silos and a 20,000-square-foot barn. Since its grand opening in 2015, the complex has quickly become more than a store—it’s a major destination, where thousands flock every week. Here’s what you need to know about visiting the silos.

In my opinion, pictures can’t quite do Magnolia Market justice, because it’s so large—it covers two-and-a-half acres—so you really have to wander around quite a bit to take in the various parts of the property and appreciate all it has to offer.

They are open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The market—as well as the Gaineses’ restaurant, Magnolia Table—is closed on Sundays. Next to the silos is a large green field where kids and parents can toss a football, play cornhole, or have a potato sack race. Beyond that is an area with picnic tables and a half-dozen food trucks and a little garden. Don’t forget to visit Magnolia Seed + Supply!!

The anniversary of the store’s opening is celebrated every year in a festival called #Silobration, complete with a vendor fair, actually I wasn’t aware of this, and it turned out that the weekend we had planned to visit, was the Silobration!! As we walked through a few local shops near the Silos – a lot of the shopping opportunities presented themselves – basically best for rustic/vintage home decor and country vibe goods.

– Shopping at Spice Village, which is a collection of pop-up type shops offering everything you can imagine – clothes, accessories, trinkets, candles, and more. It’s fun to walk through!

– Waco Suspension Bridge

The historic Suspension Bridge was completed in 1870 and remains a legendary icon of downtown Waco. For years, the bridge served as a Chisholm Trail crossing, and at the time of its completion, it was the longest single-span suspension bridge west of the Mississippi. The bridge was built with cable supplied by the John Roebling Co., who built the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City. Cool right!! The bridge is flanked by two great Waco parks — Indian Spring Park on the west side, and Martin Luther King, Jr. park on the east side. The bridge is the centerpiece of many community festivals and events, and serves as a great venue for parties and special events. It was fun and very easy to walk with a toddler!

– Dr. Pepper Museum

The small three-story museum building next to the original bottling plant houses old Dr. Pepper artifacts and some interactive exhibits. The Liquid Lab Demo is a fun 20-minute demonstration, but the best part of the entire experience is the ice cream. The Soda Shop serves fountain drinks, floats, and ice cream.

We didn’t get time to check these out, but it’s on my list for the next time we are in that area: Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum, Mayborn Museum Complex, Cameron Park Zoo.

Where to eat:

Obviously we didn’t eat at all of these, LOL!! We mainly ate at and around the Silos. A little here and a little there to be able to taste it all…

But many fun options are available, with numerous food trucks around the Silos.

Some other, more fancy options are:

– MOROSO – delicious, wood fired pizza

– Brunch at Magnolia Table – Arrive early, but it’s WORTH THE WAIT!

– Twisted Root Burger Co. – cool vibe and great burger/sandwich options.

– Wine/drinks at Z’s at the Curry – great place to grab a drink and chat or play cards with your adult friends!

– Another great options for breakfast would be The Olive Branch

– And lastly, but definitely not the least: Cupcakes from Silos Baking Co. – very good! I can’t choose one, they were all delicious!

So, plan a trip soon, what are you waiting for?!

Maybe it’s time to go back for another day trip… Hmmm… Gotta go plan one now! Bye!!

Until next time, stay wanderlust stuck!!

~ Around Houston: Galveston!!

With the holidays gone, and the next break in sight being in May, small getaways become even more important, to maintain the sanity between work and life otherwise. We are very fond of short getaways as it makes keeping a balance easier – a quick break can rejuvenate and refresh the body and mind making it relaxed.

I’ve shared many gems around Houston (listing them at the end of this post for your ready reference) but if you really want to just stay local – here’s my take on things to see and do in Galveston!

I’m sharing 2 hotels we love and 1 I stayed in when I was attending a conference, but as far as restaurants are concerned, since the sea food scene is what’s big in Galveston and we aren’t sea-food folks, I don’t have recommendation for you! We either eat at the hotel restaurant, order pizza or grab fast food.

Where to Stay:

– Hotel Galvez: We love this one because it’s right infront (well diagonally!) of the Pleasure Pier and Murdoch’s! Their pool and hot tub area is self sufficient and relaxing. This hotel is an antient beauty and even has a haunted history!

– San Luis Resort: We recently discovered this one and wow, was it amazing or what! I think this is the one we’ll choose over Hotel Galvez just coz of the amazing pool side and if y’all know us, you know we are water babies and suckers for a good pool. What’s even better is that their pool is heated for all year round fun! Win-win!

– Moody Gardens Hotel: This one is not on the island, but next to the Moody Gardens and Schlitterbahn Waterpark and a short drive from the beach! So if your kids enjoy Moody Gardens or are interested in either Palm Beach (a tiny water park in the Moody Grdens complex) or enjoy Schlitterbahn, this could be a good choice.

Things to see & do:

– Moody Gardens

– Schlitterbahn Waterpark

– Rainforest Cafe & Ride

– Pleasure Pier

Has something for everyone! Rides, food, concerts: you name it!

– The Strand

This is the histotic part of the island and also the cruise hub, so expect some touristy crowds when the ships are docked. This area is lined with cutesy boutiques and antique stores to shop at!

– Offshore Drilling Museum

– Historic Tours

Galveston is very rich in history and it’s refecled in the mansions that line it’s streets. If you want to take a tour, make sure you start early in the morning since most of them close later in the afternoon. The Moody Mansion and Bishop’s Palace aren’t to be missed.

– Beaches:

There are quite a few beaches along the way, and most of them now even have porta-potties (for a quick bathroom break or for changing clothes) and are clean and well maintined, my main issue is the water! Gulf of Mexico isn’t clean, thanks to all the oil rigs and tankers that are always in close proximity.

If you are willing to drive a little bit, or for that matter even hop on a free ferry to Port Bolivar, you’ll be gifted with nicer beaches, waters and all – like the Crystal beach or on the other side, about an hour’s drive away is Surf’s Side Beach! In Galveston, the 2 most famous ones are: Stewart Beach or Galveston Beach, even though anywhere along the seawall is a good idea!

– Wall Murals:

Galveston has a big wall mural scene going and its pretty neat, if I do say so myself… We haven’t seen them all but I have a list of them all, and that’s what I am sharing with y’all today!

– Greetings From Galveston, Saengerfest Park, 23rd and The Strand
This colorful mural was completed by longtime Galveston artist Gabriel Prusmack, and commissioned by the Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau.

– Sea Turtle, Menard Park, 28th & Seawall Blvd.
This one’s cute since it depicts each of the five species of sea turtles that visit the Gulf of Mexico – the green sea turtle, the loggerhead, the hawksbill, the leatherback and Kemp’s ridley.

– The Kindness Project, 22nd & Postoffice
A team of Galveston artists have spent months completing this whimsical mural in historic downtown Galveston. The central character is the Be Kind bee, spreading the idea of kindness for locals and visitors alike. So cute right!!

– See-Wall Mural, the world’s largest and longest mural along Seawall Boulevard
The 2.4-mile mural depict marine life, birds and images of Galveston attractions, sums up Galveston for you!

– Galveston Ice, 21st & Harborside
Another cute one – this mural features penguins and polar bears. It’s located on the west wall of the Galveston Ice and Cold Storage Building.

If you are looking for more, this is a good place to start.

Let me know if you are making a trip to Galveston, I’d love to hear what did!!

Until next time, stay relaxed!!

Here are the other road trip (within Texas) destinations I’ve talked about in the past:

~ Around Houston: South Padre Island…

~ Around Houston: Austin!!

~ Around Houston: San Antonio!!

~ Around Houston: Fredericksburg!!

And I am working on some more destinations (like Waco and Fort Worth) around Houston, so stay tuned for those!