Arlington is known for our world-class stadiums and super-sized thrills, but did you know we’re full of hidden gems just waiting for a day adventure? Instagram-worthy murals, check. Disc golf, yep. Museums and historic spots – we’ve got that covered, too. We’ve got a whole world of wonderful waiting for you to discover. It’s perfect for a family day out, girls’ trip or a couple’s getaway. Grab your mask and be sure to add these unexpected things to your list!
Check with each venue for hours and availability as things change. Remember to bring your mask and wait 6 feet between others!
1. Get some culture
Stop by the Arlington Museum of Art to see everything from world-renown works by Picasso to uniquely Texan exhibits featuring the world’s biggest mum. Be sure to go upstairs and check out the roof for any bonus exhibits. Pro tip: You can buy your tickets in advance on their website.
2. Take in some outdoor art (and selfies)
Get some steps in and Instagram-worthy shots at one of our gorgeous murals. You can find public art throughout the city (have you seen all 20 Star sculptures?), but most of the murals are in Downtown Arlington. Take a look at the map from Downtown Arlington to plan your walk.
3. Explore historic cemeteries
The area has been around for a while, the Republic of Texas signed it's first peace treaty here in 1843. Take a trip through time and visit cemeteries going back to the 1800s. For some more recent history, you can visit “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott’s gravesite, the final resting place for the legendary lead guitarist for the metal group Pantera.
4. Discover Arlington’s scandalous past
Did you know Arlington was the “Vegas before Vegas”? Yep. Top O’ Hill Terrace was an infamous spot that attracted gamblers as well as visitors who would visit the restaurant and tea garden completely unaware of illicit activities. The spot was popular among the rich and famous, including Frank Sinatra, Bonnie and Clyde and John Wayne. Check out their website for tours and more stories.
5. Tee off
Get some fresh air and try your hand at disc golf at Veterans Park. The park stands in remembrance of citizens of Arlington who served the country and is the only park with a disc golf course. There’s also plenty of playgrounds, hike and bike trails (even an equestrian trail) and gardens to make a full day of it.
6. Paddle the day away
Kayaking, paddle boarding, canoeing… the list goes on! Spend the day out on the water at Lake Arlington. Their paddling trail is open to the public and they have daily and annual lake passes. You can even rent a pontoon boat and be captain for the day.
Image from The Sanford House Inn & Spa Facebook page.
7. Book a bed and breakfast getaway
Treat yourself to the finer things in life with a night (or two!) at the Sanford House Inn & Spa or the Thornton Inn Bed and Breakfast. Unwind in style with upscale dining, spa treatments and wine on the porch. Both spots are minutes away from the Globe Life Field and AT&T Stadium, perfect for relaxing after a game. Insider tip: Plan ahead and catch a show at Arlington Music Hall or a concert under the stars at Levitt Pavilion.
8. Give it the old college try
The University of Texas at Arlington has tons of things for visitors to do. Discover the stars at the planetarium and feel like an astronaut. You can check out their live stream schedule and virtual field trips on their website. Walk through The Gallery at UTA for stunning student artwork in addition to touring exhibits from around the world.
9. Discover more about nature
Explore the outdoors at River Legacy Living Science Center. The center is perfect for nature lovers and family outings with the little ones. Complete with interactive displays and terrariums with native animals, the science center has plenty to discover. Be sure to check out their latest exhibits (The Art and Science of Arachnids will only be here until February 27, 2021!).
Image from Levitt Pavilion Facebook page.
10. Enjoy some live music
From classical sounds to classic rock, we have you covered. Seriously. If your playlist is filled with Beethoven, be sure to add a Symphony Arlington concert to your calendar. You can even watch from home with live stream tickets.
If you’re looking for music from the last century, Arlington Music Hall is your go-to. You can catch tribute acts in rock, pop and country as well as performances by music legends like Willie Nelson, Rick Springfield and Wynonna.
For music on a budget, Levitt Pavilion is a must. Bring a lawn chair and snacks for some music under the stars. From up-and-coming musicians to Grammy Award winners, enjoy a night out at their free outdoor concerts.
11. Find some vintage vibes
We always love a good throwback. Arcades, records, comics – you have your pick in Arlington. Black Dog Retro Arcade has everything from classics to board games and modern consoles. If you want to go all out on retro games, Free Play Arlington has over 130 games and pinball machines. Bonus, both spots have a full menu and bar! Truth Vinyl and Growl Records can help with all your vinyl wants. Check their Facebook pages for any local performances and upcoming events (Growl Records / Truth Vinyl – only available online at this time). Calling all DC and Marvel fans! Wild West Comics and Games is Arlington’s biggest comic book and game store – over 4,000 square feet of comics, graphic novels, board games and more.
12. Get your act together
The lights. The costumes. The drama. Nothing quite compares to live theatre and Theatre Arlington always delivers. They’re even the second oldest theatre in Tarrant County! You can see their upcoming events on their Facebook page.
13. Spend some time with nature
Crystal Canyon Natural Area is said to be a “geologist lover’s paradise” and it’s perfect for anyone who enjoys nature at its finest. Marine shales, siltstones and more natural resources have been found there. Hike and bike in unspoiled nature with few man-made items around!