15 Top-Rated Things to Do in Grapevine, TX
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The city of Grapevine is a historic city located between Dallas and Fort Worth that takes great pride in preserving its Texas heritage. Grapevine is a walkable and welcoming city, with many things to do, from historical experiences and shopping to outdoor recreation.
The charming Historic Main Street is the heart of Grapevine's authentic living history, with its renovated 19th- and 20th-century buildings that house art galleries, shops, and restaurants.
Grapevine's historic roots come alive six times a day, with the exciting Wild West show that takes place on top of the historic Grapevine Glockenspiel Clocktower. You can follow the Heritage Trail that connects the foundational points of interest of the city, like the 1890s Nash Farm and the Grapevine Vintage Railroad.
Just beyond the historic Main Street District is the Grapevine Mills shopping and entertainment district, with tourist attractions like Legoland and SEA LIFE Grapevine. The edges of Grapevine hold many outdoor activities, like walking trails, water recreation at Lake Grapevine, and golf.
With plenty of free public parking, it is easy to spend time in the historic district. The Grapevine Visitor's Shuttle, which operates between Historic Downtown Grapevine and the Grapevine Mills area, is another convenient way for visitors to get around to the most popular places to visit in the city.
As you plan your trip to this historic city, see our list of the top things to do in Grapevine, Texas.
1. Walk the Historic Main Street District
Grapevine's Historic Main Street District is where you should start your visit to this quaint Texas city. One of the best ways to enjoy it is by taking a leisurely stroll down the sidewalks, where you can appreciate how the renovated historic buildings have been re-purposed into boutique shops while preserving their authentic historic charm.
Grab a bite to eat from small eateries like Tolbert's Chili Parlor, which is a downtown tradition. If you are in Grapevine on a Friday night, take a seat on a bench along Main Street to enjoy the vintage car cruise-in that has become a weekly staple in town.
The newest landmark in the city, the Grapevine Main Station, is where culture and modernization meet, with the town's historic roots depicted in statues like the Peace Circle on the plaza and historical markers. Harvest Hall is a European-style food hall with seven unique vendors surrounded by 40-foot ceilings and large murals depicting Grapevine's past.
Go up to the 150-foot-tall Grapevine Main Observation Tower for 360-degree views of the city and the surrounding areas. You can take a guided tower tour of the tower or visit on your own.
2. SEA LIFE Grapevine Aquarium
One of the best Grapevine attractions for families is the SEA LIFE Grapevine Aquarium, where the exhibits are interactive and located on eye level for children. The aquarium is located on two levels and is themed to allow visitors to feel the environment in which various species exist, like the rainforest.
The Stingray Bay area is popular because of its elevated platform and daily feedings, when staff is available to talk about the sea creatures that live in the tank. Other must-see exhibits at the aquarium are the touch pools, ocean tunnel, the moon jellyfish display, and the Candy Cane window, where you can see underwater pumpkin carvings in the fall and a scuba diving Santa during the holidays.
Be sure to stop by the animal rescue area, where you can witness injured sea life being rehabilitated. For an extra special experience, behind-the-scenes tours can be booked for an additional fee.
Address: 3000 Grapevine Mills Parkway Suite. 525, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://www.visitsealife.com/grapevine/
3. Shopping & Entertainment at Grapevine Mills
Shopping in Grapevine takes on the form of "shoppertainment," with the complex of shopping and entertainment options at Grapevine Mills. This is a great destination for families, as it offers something for everyone, young and old.
The shopping mall is an enclosed venue with more than 180 stores, restaurants, a movie theater, and other tourist attractions. Some of the popular stores include Saks OFF 5th, Coach Factory, NIKE Clearance, Under Armour, and Disney Outlet.
The LEGOLAND Discovery Center is one of the top attractions at Grapevine Mills. It is a 35,000-square-foot facility that lets you explore, build, and engage in the world of LEGO, including the Build and Test area, where you can create and run your fast LEGO cars on a track.
Peppa Pig World of Play is another popular family-friendly Grapevine Mills attraction that is an engaging indoor play center for pre-school-aged children.
Address: 3000 Grapevine Mills Pkwy., Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://www.simon.com/mall/grapevine-mills
4. Great Wolf Lodge Waterpark
A popular family attraction in Grapevine is the Great Wolf Lodge Waterpark. The full-service Great Wolf Lodge Grapevine resort offers lodging, attractions, and an expansive indoor waterpark in one place. There are waterpark attractions for all age levels, including a four-story treehouse and waterslides, Coyote Canyon, a 40-foot drop waterslide, and a Cub Paw Pool for toddlers.
Non-water attractions at Great Wolf Lodge include activities like a ropes course; an arcade; a build-a-bear workshop; and a mining space, where kids can look for gemstones. There are seasonal events at the lodge that can round out your stay, including arts and crafts, yoga, and story time.
Address: 100 Great Wolf Drive, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://www.greatwolf.com/grapevine
5. Climb aboard the Grapevine Vintage Railroad
The Grapevine Vintage Railroad is a must-experience in Grapevine. The original depot was built in 1888, when the St. Louis & Southwestern Railroad came to Grapevine operating along the Cotton Belt Route.
The vintage railroad operates 46 weeks out of the year with excursions and special events. There are two types of excursions: a four-hour trip that goes to the Fort Worth Stockyards, and a shorter one-hour trip that is suitable for kids. Climb aboard a restored 1920s day coach and sit in the original seats as you experience what rail travel was like in the early 1900s.
While you wait for the train, walk around the platforms to the Foreman's House, where living history actors are available to share information about the railroad and demonstrate communication tools that were used when the railroad passed through Grapevine.
For convenient access to the Grapevine Vintage Railroad if you are not staying in the area, you can take the TEXRail directly to the depot from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport or from the city of Fort Worth.
Address: 636 S. Main Street, Grapevine, Texas
6. Stroll the Grapevine Botanical Gardens
The Grapevine Botanical Gardens at Heritage Park is a quiet retreat with a symphony of sensory experiences. Walk along the paved pathways that are surrounded by hundreds of varieties of plants and flowers. The water features, koi pond, and sitting benches make this a nice park, where you can spend an hour or stop for a picnic.
The botanical gardens are free to visit and are open year-round. Be sure to see the butterfly sanctuary, or plan your visit to coincide with the annual butterfly release in which more than 1,000 butterflies take flight from the gardens.
Address: 411 Ball Street Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://tools.bgci.org/garden.php?id=4726
7. Rockledge Park at Lake Grapevine
If you want to plan a day of water recreation in Grapevine, then Lake Grapevine is one-stop shopping. The beautiful lake is known for its adventure opportunities, and it is a comfortable place to set up camp for the day.
Lake Grapevine is popular for kayaking, hiking, swimming, fishing, biking, and paddleboarding. Kayaks, stand up paddleboards, paddle boats, and inflatable tubes are available to rent near the park entrance.
There are comfortable spots located all along the shoreline that have individual parking spaces, shade pavilions located on outcroppings over the lake, and several public beaches. The park is open every day from 8am to sunset and requires a day-use fee.
Address: 3600 Pilot Point Road, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: http://rockledgepark.com/
8. Vetro Glassblowing Studio and Gallery
The Vetro Glassblowing Studio and Gallery is sure to catch your eye as you walk by, with its artistic statues on the lawn and the collection of blown-glass creations that are visible through the windows. Stop into the gallery and working art studio to see live glassblowing demonstrations and learn about the artists who design and make these creations.
Whether you just want to browse and shop in the gallery or take a glassblowing class from a professional artist while you are in town, a visit to Vetro is memorable and a fun way to learn about this unique art form in Grapevine's historic district.
Address: 701 South Main Street, #103 Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://vetroartglass.com/
9. Take in a Show at the Palace Arts Center
Located along Main Street, the Palace Arts Center is one of the best places to visit for some evening entertainment while enjoying the retro environment. The Palace Arts Center is comprised of the historic Palace Theatre and the Lancaster Theatre. Both venues host events throughout the year and hold a special place in Grapevine's history.
The Palace Theatre was built in 1940 and restored to its original glory and now shows movies, and hosts performing arts, as well as music and other events. The Lancaster Theatre, once the Buckner Cash Grocery Store in the 1930s, is now a venue for dinner shows and a community activity center for events throughout the year.
Address: 300 S. Main Street, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://www.grapevinetexasusa.com/palace-theatre/
10. Learn about 1800s Farm Life at Nash Farm
An experience that should top your list while in Grapevine is a visit to Nash Farm, where the working-farm life of the late 1800s still takes place today. Don't be fooled by the residential neighborhood that you drive through to get to Nash Farm, as you will quickly see that the sheep, chickens, and likely the scent of fresh-baked cookies in the woodburning stove are authentic.
The five-acre farm is what remains from the original 500 acres that sat on this land in 1890. This preserved piece of Grapevine's agrarian past operates the same way it did in the late 19th century, just on a smaller scale.
Visitors can take a step back in time and interact with living history interpreters to find out about livestock, vegetable gardening, crops, and farm life. You can take a guided or self-guided tour through the original farmhouse and grounds.
One of the best times to visit Nash Farm is during a public event, when you can participate in various aspects of prairie life, like learning how to make homemade chicken noodle soup, knitting, and sheep shearing. The Nash Farm is free to visit.
Address: 626 Ball Street, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: https://www.grapevinetexasusa.com/nash-farm/
11. The Glockenspiel Clocktower
There are many great free attractions in Grapevine, but one of the most exciting activities happens 75 feet in the air on the Glockenspiel Clocktower. The clocktower sits on top of the Cotton Belt Hotel on Main Street, and it is where two historic mechanical characters, Nat and Willy, have an old-fashioned western shootout six times a day.
The nine-foot-tall characters play out a scene portraying train robbers, and emerge from the Glockenspiel Clocktower at 10am, noon, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm, and 8pm. The 127-foot-tall clocktower presides over Main Street with a golden nine-foot weathervane. Be advised that in inclement weather, Nat and Willy may not make an appearance.
12. Golfing around Grapevine
While Grapevine is not known as a golfing destination per se, it is home to several great courses, including the Cowboys Golf Club, the only NFL-themed golf course in the world. The Cowboys Golf Club has a championship golf course and is open to the public seven days a week. Stone markers around the course showcase the Dallas Cowboys' rich sporting history.
The 18-hole golf course is designed with elevation changes, water features, and is surrounded by dense forests. Inside the clubhouse, you can see cases of Cowboys memorabilia, like Super Bowl rings and trophies. The all-inclusive resort gives guests access to golf carts, snacks, and practice balls. The golf club has a practice facility, restaurant, and pro shop.
Another golf course near Grapevine is the Bear Creek Golf Club, which features two 18-hole courses designed by Ted Robinson. The courses have deep bunkers, mature oak trees, and multiple water features. The clubhouse has dining and a golf pro shop.
The Grapevine Golf Course is another option that has 27 holes to play on a challenging course that has been around since 1979. Golf lessons and clinics are available at the facility.
13. Oak Grove Park
If some time outdoors is calling to you, the expansive Oak Grove Park is where you can find a facility or environment to fit every activity. The park has walking and biking trails, picnic tables, baseball and soccer complexes, and a boat launch at Scott's Landing Marina.
The 40-acre park is one of the largest in the area, with ponds, play areas for children, and plenty of green space to enjoy a great day outside. The park sits on the south side of Lake Grapevine, so there is easy access to the water, or you can just enjoy it as a backdrop for a game of sand volleyball or fishing. You can also take a scenic drive along Oak Grove Loop, the main road through the park.
Address: 2520 Oak Grove Loop South, Grapevine, Texas
Official site: http://www.lake-grapevine.com/oak-grove-park/
14. Settlement to City Museums
A great historical complex just a short walk away from Main Street is the Settlement to City Museums. It is a collection of museums that showcase the foundation of Grapevine's history. The Donald Schoolhouse shows how education in the area evolved from a log cabin in 1900 to modern-day schools.
The Keeling House Museum is located in an 1888 home with artifacts and information on how Grapevine transformed from its pioneer beginnings into a modern city. The Grapevine Cotton Ginners Museum is a structure in the complex that chronicles the city's cotton production history.
Address: 206 W. Hudgins Street, Grapevine, Texas
15. Grapevine Trail System
Grapevine has a growing network of walking, biking, and paddling trails in town. There are 23 designated recreation trails of varying lengths and skill levels that connect neighborhoods and parks. The more than 67 miles of trails offer paved, natural surfaces or are nature hiking trails through the woods. There are several paddling trails, ranging from two to three miles that are scenic, with easy access to the water.
The grapevine trail system is user-friendly. Trails can be selected by the preference of surface, type of use, distance, loop or one-way, and by features like exercise stations and restroom availability. Some of the most popular trails in Grapevine are the Oak Grove Trail, Horseshoe Trails, and Parr Park Trail.
Official site: https://gograpevine.com/trails/
Where to Stay in Grapevine for Sightseeing
Grapevine has a great variety of lodging, from luxury lodging in historic downtown to resorts and mainstream hotels.
Luxury Hotels and Resorts:
- Some of the most luxurious lodging in Grapevine is at Hotel Vin Autograph Collection in the historic downtown. The pet-friendly boutique hotel is in the Grapevine Main Station, and features luxury amenities and contemporary upscale rooms.
- The Gaylord Texan Resort is a full-service resort located on Lake Grapevine, with multiple pools and indoor gardens, and is located close to shopping at Grapevine Mills.
- Many of the mid-range hotels, like the Courtyard Dallas DFW Airport North/Grapevine and the Hilton Garden Inn DFW North Grapevine, are conveniently located close to the Dallas Fort Worth Airport and are still close to Grapevine.
- If you want to stay within walking distance to Grapevine Mills, Hyatt Place Dallas/Grapevine is an option, with a free breakfast.
- You can find a number of nice budget hotels around Grapevine, including Super 8 by Wyndham Grapevine/DFW Airport Northwest, which has free breakfast and free shuttle service to DFW Airport, Grapevine Mills, and historic downtown.