Waco offers enough to keep visitors busy for days! Explore Cameron Park Zoo, shop downtown where you’ll find Magnolia Market, stroll through cultural and historic districts, and learn about the local history at museums. Waco is just waiting to be experienced, and it’s an easy road trip from Frisco, Texas. We combined all of our favorite Waco experiences in one place to create a Waco bucket list. Make sure these wonderful options make their way to the top of your list for an unforgettable trip to Waco.
Waco Bucket List
The popular TV stars, Chip and Joanna Gaines, own several businesses in Waco including the Magnolia Market at the Silos, Magnolia Table, Magnolia Press, Silos Baking Co., The Little Shop on Bosque, and Magnolia Realty.
When you visit the Silos, you can find some of the great decorative items featured on the show and you might just catch a glimpse of Chip and Joanna.
In addition to the Magnolia Market, you can play games on the lawn, grab a bite to eat in the food truck park, have a tasty cupcake at Silos Baking Co., or take a stroll through the garden and shop at Magnolia Seed & Supply.
The Market itself is staged and set up with one goal in mind: to inspire you to own the space you’re in.
Dr Pepper Museum & Free Enterprise Institute
The Dr Pepper Museum & Free Enterprise Institute is a place that serves up history, nostalgia, and Waco’s favorite authentic soda fountain drinks.
Here, you can enjoy a cold Dr Pepper float on a hot summer day in the ambiance of a classic 1950’s soda fountain.
Besides an operational fountain, the Dr Pepper Museum also recreates the soda fountain where Dr. Charles Alderton first mixed the flavors that make up Dr Pepper. In this exhibit, an animatronic, life-size Dr. Alderton tells the story of his invention.
The next exhibit showcases the original Dr Pepper bottling company, including the well from which they drew their artesian spring water, as well as a multitude of historic soft drink bottles and manufacturing equipment, and an interactive study of the pressure in a soft drink bottle.
The second floor of the Dr Pepper Museum shows the evolution of soft drink advertising over the years, and the third floor houses the Soft Drink Hall of Fame and Free Enterprise Institute.
Additionally, there is a gift store that carries mementos for all Dr Pepper lovers.
Mayborn Museum Complex
Located on the Baylor University campus, the Mayborn Museum Complex features a natural science and cultural history museum focusing on Central Texas with walk-in dioramas including one on the Waco Mammoth Site, and exploration stations for geology, paleontology, archaeology, and natural history.
In addition to the natural history exhibits, there are seventeen themed discovery rooms which encourage hands-on learning for all ages as well as a Historic Village. The nine wood frame buildings that comprise the village, provide a glimpse into the past, bringing to life a community in the 1890s.
Cameron Park Zoo
Cameron Park Zoo celebrates the spirit of wild animals with its free-form surroundings. The lush grasses and natural shelters provided for the animals create an at-home feel for species from around the globe.
At Cameron Park Zoo, visitors will see tortoises from the Galapagos Islands, acrobatic otters, and a lion named Kai just to name a few.
The Herpetarium takes you into a world of waterfalls, crocodiles, spiders, and plants. Oh my!
The Brazos River Country exhibit follows the footsteps of early Spanish explorers who searched for the seven cities of gold along the Brazos River – featuring the flora and fauna from the Gulf of Mexico to the Caprock Regions of West Texas.
At the Asian Forest expansion, you’ll journey through the Sumatran tiger habitat and make your way to the orangutans. You might even see a baby orangutan along the way.
There’s even a playground area where you can let your kids cool off in the splash area.
Texas Ranger Hall of Fame & Museum
Founded in 1968, the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame & Museum is the official hall of fame, museum, and archives for the Texas Rangers, the oldest law enforcement agency in the United States and a symbol of the American West. The museum also is the headquarters for Ranger Company F.
Blue Hills Ranch
Blue Hills Ranch is located in the heart of central Texas, 15 minutes outside Waco. The venue was named after the 150 acres of beautiful rolling hills covered in bluebonnets, but it made our Texas bucket list because of the unbelieve wildlife encounters including dining with giraffes, swimming with otters, feeding kangaroos, and coming face-to-face with zebras and other wildlife.
Aloft Waco Baylor
Complete your Waco bucket list with a stay at Aloft Waco Baylor.
Waco’s newest hotel combines the personality and style of a boutique hotel with the quality of a Marriott. Take a dip in their heated pool or enjoy music and you gather around the WXYZ bar. You’ll need a good night’s rest after crossing off all your Waco bucket list items.