Who is ready to walk where dinosaurs once roamed?!? This small city may be known as the “Dinosaur Capital of Texas,” but there are several other fun and FREE things to do in Glen Rose.
In fact, there are so many things to do in Glen Rose – you will need an entire weekend to explore this charming city. You can go on a Texas safari to see wild animals, hike at a State Park, find dinosaur tracks, sleep in a vintage railroad car, splash at Big Rocks Park, enjoy goat yoga, and more.
Glen Rose is also one of the prettiest small towns in Texas. It is located on the outskirts of the Texas Hill Country with a calming river running through the city, rolling limestone hills, and old stone buildings. Everywhere you look, it’s like a postcard.
It is also only an hour away from Fort Worth and around 1.5 – 2 hrs away from the Dallas metroplex. So you can easily make an epic day trip from Forth Worth or Dallas. Better yet, you can turn it into a fun weekend getaway like we did!
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Fun Things to Do in Glen Rose
Yes, Glen Rose is a family-friendly destination. Yes, Glen Rose is a lovely romantic getaway. Similarly, there are so many fun things to do in Glen Rose as an adult and a child… together! That is one of the greatest charms of the city.
Sleep in a Vintage Santa Fe Rail Car
Full disclaimer – We were invited by Country Woods Inn to experience the Sante Fe Railroad Car. As always, our opinions are non-biased and our own. We want to thank everyone for following and supporting us on all of “Our Sweet Adventures.”
During your full weekend in Glen Rose, you will need a place to stay. Luckily, one of the best things to do in Glen Rose is to stay in a vintage Santa Fe railroad car! Moreover, the vintage Santa Fe railroad car is a unique place to stay in Texas.
The Santa Fe vintage railroad car is spacious yet cozy with an antique China cabinet, Buffalo plaid decor, and train and railroad trinkets to tie the theme together. There are two sets of bunk beds to sleep up to four people, a full kitchen, and a full bathroom.
It is located at Country Woods Inn, an amazing bed and breakfast that offers guests an authentic farm stay along the Paluxy River. In addition to the Santa Fe railroad car, the property also has century-old farmhouses, vintage airstreams, vintage trailers, and a cabin in the woods.
Furthermore, the Country Woods Inn has the cutest red barn with lots of furry animals to feed and pet. There are bunnies, horses, chickens, pigs, goats, sheep, donkeys, and a llama.
It is truly the best place to stay in Glen Rose for a family vacation or a romantic getaway. To book your stay at Country Woods Inn, click here.
Go on a Texas-Style Safari
After our trip to South Africa, we believe in ethical animal experiences. Therefore, I am happy to share that Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is a wonderful way to see wild animals in Texas.
Moreover, a visit to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is one of the most popular and best things to do in Glen Rose. The wildlife center is world-renowned for its research and conservation efforts, which helps bring in thousands of enthusiastic visitors every year.
Guests can enjoy the park on a self-guided tour or guided tour. It takes about 2-hours to drive through the park, and along the way, you will encounter ostrich, emu, blackbuck, wild buck, wildebeest, Southern black and white rhinoceros, zebra, giraffe, cheetah, and much more.
Hike and Find Dinosaur Tracks
Dinosaur Valley State Park is one of the best State Parks in Texas and one of the best things to do in Glen Rose. In addition to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, it is the most popular attraction in the city – and for a good reason.
The State Park might be famous for its 113-million-year-old dinosaur tracks, but there are many other fun things to do. You can swim at Blue Hole, waddle in the Paluxy River, hike 20 miles worth of trails, go camping, and more.
Of course, the dinosaur tracks are the main point of interest. Visitors can walk in the dinosaur’s tracks in the bed of the Paluxy River.
With that said, the water levels of the river fluctuate. Therefore, depending on the time of year, you may have to swim to the tracks or walk through the river. Additionally, there is also a slab of dinosaur tracks at the front of the park for visitors to get the best view and experience.
It comes as no surprise that the dinosaur capital of Texas has one of the best dinosaur theme parks in the country. Dinosaur World is the perfect attraction in Glen Rose for your tiny paleontologist to have the best day ever.
The dinosaur theme park has over 100 life-size dinosaurs (including some animatronic dinosaurs), informative knowledge on the different types of dinosaurs, fossils (both natural and replicas), a dinosaur dig, and a playground. Needless to say, there are plenty of fun things to do at Dinosaur World for kids.
Find Joy with Goat Yoga
What better way to find zen and joy than doing yoga with goats?!? Que the Greatest Of All Time Ranch (GOAT Ranch) wonderful light yoga sessions in a pen of baby goats.
The GOAT Ranch is a working goat ranch that raises Boer and Nigerian dwarf goats and produces sudan and coastal hay. In addition, the GOAT Ranch also offers a few light yoga sessions from April through October for guests to find happiness through goat yoga.
A certified yoga instructor leads the 40-minute goat yoga sessions in a pen full of baby goats. The wonderful thing about goat yoga at GOAT Ranch is that it is a fun experience for all ages and levels.
If goat yoga is not for you, I still encourage you to visit GOAT Ranch and take a tour of the property. The ranch has 850 acres on a beautiful piece of land. The guided tour takes place in an ATV, where you will visit the barn, meet the goats, visit different fields, and, if you are lucky, bottlefeed the goats!
I cannot express enough how exultant it is to interact with the herd of goats. Whether you enjoy a session of goat yoga or take a ranch tour, you are guaranteed to leave the GOAT Ranch HAPPY!
Enjoy a Wine Tasting
Calling all wine enthusiasts, you are in luck because one of the best wineries in Texas has a lovely wine shop in Glen Rose Historic Downtown Square. One of the best things to do in Glen Rose is to enjoy an excellent wine flight from the Bull Lion Ranch Wine Shop.
The Bull Lion Ranch & Vineyard is located in Hico, Texas, and has wine shops in surrounding cities. The vineyard is perfectly located in the Chalk Mountain region, which resembles the Tuscan hills of Italy. Therefore, the wine produced at Bull Lion Ranch & Vineyard has characteristics of the Old World high mineral content soils. Moreover, all of the grapes are produced at the vineyard – nothing is imported!
The winery is well known for its Old World style red wines and has a wide variety of refreshing white wine and sweet wine. The wine shop in Glen Rose has an extensive wine menu for wines by the glass/bottle and four different wine flights.
Guests can choose between all white, all sweet, all red, and the premium all red known as Momma T. If you enjoy red wine, the Momma T flight will be an exceptional experience for you.
My favorite wines: Trebbiano Dolce and Yellow Rose.
Eat Like a Local
When we travel, we always eat like a local. It is truly the best way to discover a city, and Glen Rose is full of delicious local restaurants.
If you can only dine at one restaurant, it has to be at Loco Coyote. People travel near and far to dine at this local favorite restaurant. In fact, the food and overall experience are so amazing at Loco Coyote – it is known for simply being one of the best things to do in Glen Rose.
The Loco Coyote is known for its HUGE portions. It is not uncommon to share an entree between two people and still leave feeling like you are rolling out of the restaurant. The slow-cooked barbecue, chicken fried steak, giant onion rings, and coyote balls are some of the best menu items.
Must order: Coyote Balls (shredded potato, sausage, onion, jalapeños, cheese, and cilantro rolled into a ball and deep-fried).
Other wonderful places to eat in Glen Rose include Sexton Mill, Blackies, and Riverhouse Grill. Sexton Mill combines BBQ and Mexican cuisine into a match made in heaven. Blackies is a fun American cuisine restaurant with a wide variety of menu options such as gourmet hot dogs, nachos, flatbreads, sandwiches, and more. Riverhouse Grill is an amazing fine-dining restaurant inside a historic home.
Eat Delicious Pie!
Who Doesn’t love a good ole fashioned slice of pie? When you are visiting Glen Rose, make sure you do not leave without a sweet taste from Pie Peddlers.
Pie Peddlers is located in the Glen Rose Downtown Historic Square and serves some of the best pie in Texas. Every pie is made by scratch daily with several tasty options to choose from. The menu includes classic pies such as chocolate meringue, apple, pecan, buttermilk, rhubarb, and more.
FREE Things to Do in Glen Rose
Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love the word free? As I have said, there are several fun things to do in Glen Rose, Texas, and many of them are FREE! Let’s check them out!
Splash at Big Rocks Park
Beat the Texas heat by swimming at Big Rocks Park, located on the Paluxy River. Big Rocks Park is one of the best free things to do in Glen Rose by both locals and visitors.
The swimming spot became popular because of the huge rocks along the Paluxy River. Families love to come to this park because children have fun climbing the big rocks and swimming in the shallow areas of the river.
This is a great place to cool off, relax and have fun. Many people will bring floats, wade in the river, swim in the deeper areas, or walk and splash around.
Visitors should be aware to avoid any stagnant water to protect themselves from getting infected by an amoeba.
Explore Historic Downtown
Glen Rose has one of the cutest historic downtown squares in Texas, thanks to the gorgeous limestone Somervell County Courthouse. It is definitely worth your time to enjoy a stroll around the square whether you enjoy history or want to go on a shopping spree.
The Historic Glen Rose Downtown Square is full of boutique shops, antique stores, delicious dining, but it is also historic. The square has 30 buildings on the National Historic Registry, a significant dinosaur track, and a unique museum.
If you love history, you can enjoy a self-guided historical walking tour of the square. If you love to shop, there are several cute boutiques to find the perfect Texas treasures to bring home.
On Saturdays, there is a lovely farmers market near the historic courthouse. Local vendors sell fresh produce, handmade crafts, and more.
Admire Art and Learn the History of Glen Rose
If you love history and art, then you must visit Barnard’s Mill & Art Museum. This museum is one of the best free things to do in the city that is (in my opinion) underrated. I found this museum to be surprisingly delightful, and I hope others will too.
The Barnard’s Mill & Art Museum is rich in history inside and out. The buildings themselves are an intricate part of Glen Rose’s history. Since 1860, the buildings have changed their function and ownership multiple times. It has been a gris mill, cotton mill, clinic, hospital, home, and now an art museum.
A majority of the art is donated from Richard Moore’s exquisite collection. Some of the collection consists of oriental and American Indian art and artifacts. There are several gallery rooms, but my favorite is the room full of Texas bluebonnets, the hill country, and the Western landscape.
The museum is also home to a few local and native Texan artists – you can even purchase their work. Additionally, you can take a guided tour (which is highly recommended) to learn more about the history of the building, the rooms, and the art.
Relax at Heritage Park
Heritage Park is a great place and free thing to do in Glen Rose for a leisurely morning or afternoon. It is located along the Paluxy River and is a local town treasure.
The beautiful park is home to several different historic buildings that have been preserved and donated to the city. You can find an 1800’s log cabin, an 1870’s vintage home, and an old schoolhouse (built in 1901). There is also a lovely small garden and a playground for everyone to enjoy.
Stroll Along the Riverwalk
The Paluxy River flows through Glen Rose and plays a major role in making the city beautiful. It is well-known for its dinosaur tracks at Dinosaur Valley State Park and the riverwalk.
The Paluxy Riverwalk connects Big Rocks Park to Heritage Park with a paved sidewalk and a few charming stonewall arches. It is the perfect place to take a peaceful stroll, fish, or take scenic pictures.
Visit Somervell Museum
The Somervell County Museum is a fun thing to do in Glen Rose for a quick little pop-in. It is located in Glen Rose Historic Downtown Square and has remarkable artifacts such as 2000 B.C. stone artifacts, fossils, a barbed wire collection, WWII bottles, antique household items, an 1800’s dentist chair, and more.
In addition to being known for dinosaurs, Glen Rose is also known as the “Moonshine Capital of Texas.” Therefore, one of the best artifacts at the Somervell County Museum is the moonshine still – which happens to be the last remaining moonshine still from Somervell Country.
Other cool artifacts at Somervell County Museum include the 1901 log cabin US Post Office which is said to be the oldest and smallest US Post Office, and a giant dinosaur track.
Visit the Outlaw Station
As briefly mentioned above, Glen Rose is known as the “Moonshine Capital of Texas,” so of course, the city had a (rumored) speakeasy during the prohibition era. The Outlaw Station was once a gas station-turned speakeasy in the 1920s.
The local legend says that the owner, Ed Young, would sell more moonshine than gasoline. That comes as no surprise! Of course,
Today, the Outlaw Station is a beautiful piece of history and an “Instagram-worthy” attraction because of its stunning petrified wood and colored brick.
As you can see, there are plenty of fun things to do in Glen Rose and so many of them are FREE! Luckily, you can explore and discover it all in one weekend.