There’s a place in Austin where nature is a hands-on experience. Where kids are not only allowed to touch stuff, they’re encouraged. And best of all, it’s free!
Where things that crawl, swim, walk and fly are celebrated and racks of antlers, bins of bones, a table of fur pelts and a bowl of snake skins are at your fingertips.
Where real snakes rule and rubber snakes drool, a wacky lizard hangs upside down near his own personal heat lamp, and a fat bobcat poses for pictures.
And then there are the live birds of prey, a coyote, a few foxes and a skunk in rehab. There’s also a dinosaur pit where you can dig for replica fossils, a lake surrounded by wildflowers, and 14 foot tile mosaic lizard that climbs a wall.
The Austin Nature and Science Center is located on the western edge of Zilker Park, which has a wide range of outdoor activities, as well. If you have children, you need to add this to your list of “go to” places in Austin. Pack a picnic, hit a playground, and explore the Science Center all within the boundaries of Zilker Park. It’s cheap, it’s fun, and it’s a great way to spend an afternoon with your kids. They’ll have so much fun, they won’t even know they’re learning.