Enchant Christmas – The Best New Holiday Experience in DFW

We visited Enchant Christmas this past week and we were absolutely blown away. It was a blast!

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The area was huge – the beloved Christkindyl Market was featured with some really unique vendors.

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They also had more food trucks than I’ve ever seen in one location. Our favorites were Truck to Table – you must try the Brisket Nachos. You will dream about them!

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And my forever favorite is The Butcher’s Son. Their Beef-n’-Cheesy Slider is the stuff of legends.

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As soon as my 3-year-old saw the ice skating ring, she immediately started begging to skate.

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We got dinner and walked around for a bit enjoying the live music.

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But the only thing on my daughter’s mind was skating.

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Of course, as soon as she put on her ice skates, she completely melted down. I knew she was just nervous, so I made her go out and try it anyway (when else is she going to be able to skate outdoors on real ice in the middle of Dallas!?).

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Halfway around the rink, she was giggling and saying it was her FAVORITE thing ever.

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In fact when they were taking off their skates at the end of the night, she told me she was going to be an ice skater in the Olympics.

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After skating, we made our way to the star attraction – the light maze. You can see the shining lights as you walk up to Enchant, so we were very excited to check it out.

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When you walk in, you’re given a card from Santa asking you to help him find the reindeer. It’s a cute activity for the kiddos while the adults just enjoy the beauty of the lights.

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I love that there were different sections of lights. One part featured giant ornaments while another had snowflakes.

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There was a gorgeous hall of hanging lights and a field that looked like ice shards from Elsa’s palace.

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Of course there were also all of the giant reindeer.

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I won’t ruin the surprise, but Santa has a little treat for anyone who successfully finds all his reindeer.

It was an incredible night and we would absolutely visit again. I think Enchant Christmas has just become our family’s new favorite Holiday tradition!

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Enchant Christmas runs through December 31st. Find more details on their website: http://www.enchantchristmas.com

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Enchant Christmas + A Giveaway!

EnchantChristmas-Vancouver 6_PhotoCredit - Dale Klippenstein

Are you ready to be enchanted in DFW this Holiday season!?

Enchant is the world’s largest Christmas Light Maze now touring the U.S. Featuring an outdoor skating pond, Santa’s palace, Texas’ largest Christmas tree, 85 vendor shopping market, food trucks, live entertainment and a VIP area perfect for family outings or a private holiday function. The massive 300,000 square foot event will take place in Arlington at Globe Life Park.

A World of Wonder Awaits with Enchant!

Surrounded by millions of dazzling lights, the memories you make at Enchant will last well beyond the holiday season. Whether you’re navigating through the world’s largest light maze, gliding around the ice-skating pond, waltzing through the Christmas marketplace, or sharing hot cocoa with your loved ones, you’ll find enchantment around every corner.

Find more details on their website: http://www.enchantchristmas.com

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To help your family celebrate the Holiday season, we are giving away a 4 pack of tickets to the VIP premier of Enchant Christmas! Subscribe to our mailing list to enter: http://eepurl.com/bFnSG5

Free Printable: Sprinkle Kindness Like Confetti

August Freebie - Sprinkle Kindness Like Confetti

Did you know that tomorrow is National Warm Chocolate Chip Cookie Day? I have one question…how have I not known about this my entire life!?

Well, I thought today’s free print was especially appropriate because nothing says kindness like a warm chocolate chip cookie. I hope you enjoy this Sprinkle Kindness Like Confetti Free Printable. Please let me know if the comments below if you have any requests for free prints in the future. I’ll do my best to make it happen!

August Freebie - Sprinkle Kindness Like Confetti

Download the Free Printable

Whatever you do with this free print – let me see! Tag @TheDallasMom anywhere on social media and I’ll repost some of the best photos.

Enjoy!The Dallas Mom Signiture

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5 Things to Do in Dallas when the Kids are Out of School

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of School

School’s out for summer! Of course, that means there are about 100 days of summer vacation to fill.

Now, I have no problem letting my kids get bored. Most of their summer days are spent making up things to do on their own. They might build a pirate ship out of sand in the backyard, make a puppet show with scraps of paper, or crate a band out of everything they can get their hands on in my kitchen.

But sometimes the Texas sun has us stuck indoors for days on end and we get a bit of cabin fever. It’s times like these I love living in Dallas because there is no shortage of fabulous things to do. Here are our Top 5 Cabin Fever Remedies.

Top 5 Things to Do in Dallas when the Kids are Out of School

Rosemeade Rainforest Aquatic Complex

There are tons of ways to get wet, but our top pick gives you a lot of bang for your buck! Just north of Dallas proper, you will the Rosemeade Rainforest Aquatic Complex. For less than $10, your kids can spend an entire day at the pool.

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of SchoolI love that there is something for everyone – from the littlest kiddos who can play in the one-foot-deep splash area to the most daring pre-teen who can dive off the diving boards and ride a few waterslides. Moms will love that there’s plenty of shade and a convenient parking lot that isn’t a mile away.

Dallas Zoo

This year for Easter, we chose to forego the plastic baskets full of chocolate and instead get our family season passes to the Dallas Zoo. We couldn’t be happier with our decision. We’ve already been several times this year and on our last visit we got to see a baby tiger, a baby elephant, and the brand new hippo exhibit.

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of SchoolIn addition to the exhibits and programs, they have a great little kids area with a petting zoo and a stream they can splash in.

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of SchoolThe best part? The incredible naps my kids took when we got home!

Mayor’s Summer Reading Program

Learning doesn’t have to stop while the kids are out of school. The Dallas Public Library has a fantastic summer reading program that will draw kids in with prizes and keep them reading all summer long. This summer, kids can earn free books and prizes like tickets to a Mavs game, the Dallas Zoo, or Dallas Children’s Theater.

Coppell Farmer’s Market

Of course, there are dozens of Farmer’s Markets throughout DFW. Some of the best are the Dallas Farmer’s Market and White Rock Lake Market. But we have found a gem in the Coppell Farmer’s Market.

Coppell Farmer's Market - 5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of SchoolWe love it because I can visit the Farmer’s Market then the kids can play on the playground and on the splash pad – it’s a win for everyone!

Perot Museum of Nature and Science

I don’t think I will ever stop singing the Perot Museum’s praises. Filled with hands-on activities and educational experiences, kids of all ages will burn energy and use their brains.

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of SchoolSome of our favorite parts of the museum are the Engineering and Innovation Hall and the Children’s Museum in the basement. If you have littles don’t miss the sand pit outside the Children’s Museum where mini paleontologists can dig for dinosaur bones.

5 Things to Do in Dallas when Kids are Out of School

Those are our family’s Top 5 Things to Do in Dallas when the kids are out of school! Did I miss your favorite? Share it in the comments below!

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Freebie: Stars and Stripes Free Printable

July Freebie - Stars and Stripes - The Dallas Mom

I hope you are having a fabulously HOT week in Dallas! We have been to 3 different pools plus a splash park AND I have our little mini pool set up in the back yard – we are definitely in Texas!

Today, I just wanted to pop in and share a cute Free Printable just in time for the Fourth of July. You can use this printable as a decoration for your backyard BBQ or in your home. You could even give it as a gift with some homemade cookies.

July Freebie - Stars and Stripes - The Dallas Mom

Download the Free Printable

Whatever you do with it – let me see! Tag @TheDallasMom anywhere on social media and I’ll repost some of your best ideas. Let me know what other free printables you’d like to see and I’ll make them happen!

Happy Summer!The Dallas Mom Signiture

20 Places to Watch Live Sports in Dallas-Fort Worth

20+ Places to Watch Live Sports in Dallas | The Dallas Mom

Our family loves watching live sports! It’s the perfect way to get out of the house and do something the whole family can enjoy together. Thankfully in Dallas, there’s no shortage of family-friendly venues to watch live sports. All throughout DFW you’ll find dozens of ways to enjoy sports with the family – here are 20 Great Ways to Watch Live Sports in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.

  1. Frisco RoughRiders – Semi-Professional Baseball20+ Places to Watch Live Sports in Dallas | The Dallas Mom
  2. Dallas Sidekicks – Semi-Professional Soccer
  3. Texas Rangers – Professional Baseball
  4. NASCAR Sprint Cup
  5. Fort Worth Stockyards Rodeo
  6. Lone Star Park at Grand Prairie – Horse Racing
  7. Dallas Cowboys – Professional Football
  8. FC Dallas – Professional Soccer
  9. Allen Americans – Semi-Professional Hockey
  10. Dallas Mavericks – Professional Basketball
  11. Dallas Stars – Professional Hockey
  12. SMU Mustangs20+ Places to Watch Live Sports in Dallas | The Dallas Mom
  13. TCU Horned Frogs
  14. UTA Mavericks
  15. Baylor Bears
  16. Texas A&M Aggies
  17. University of Texas Longhorns
  18. The Cotton Bowl – College Football
  19. Dallas Wings – WNBA Basketball
  20. WOGA Gymnastics Classic – Jr. and Sr. Level Gymnastics Competition

20+ Places to Watch Live Sports in Dallas | The Dallas Mom

Sporting Events are a great way to spend a family night in DFW! Did I miss your favorite sporting venue or event? Share your favorite spot to watch live sports in the comments below.

Want to know more about the best things to do in Dallas for families? Join our mailing list to have the best DFW events, family-friendly activities, and giveaways delivered right to your inbox every month. You can also follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

Exploring the Bishop Arts District: 5 Must-See Shops & Restaurants

Experience the best of the Bishop Arts District in Dallas, TX with these 5 Must-See Spots.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom

If you live in Dallas and you haven’t experienced the Bishop Arts District, you are definitely missing out! It’s full of fabulous restaurants, unique shopping experiences, and pie! What else could you want!? These two blocks tucked in the middle of Oak Cliff are packed with fun finds you won’t find anywhere else.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District

1. Lockhart Smokehouse

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - Lockhart SmokehouseWe actually found Lockhart Smokehouse after watching BBQ Pitmasters on Netflix. Lockhart Smokehouse was the first thing that brought us to the Bishop Arts District and it keeps us coming back because it is all about great Texas BBQ. Unlike BBQ in other parts of the world, Lockhart Smokehouse prides itself on making meat so good that you don’t need any sauce. They feature staples that never change (like brisket, ribs, and pork loin), but the rotate meats like burnt ends (meat candy!), salmon, and beef ribs.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - Lockhart Smokehouse

It might sound odd when talking about a BBQ joint, but when we take out-of-towners to Lockhart Smokehouse, we always make sure they try the bread pudding. Whether it’s s’mores bread pudding, cinnamon roll bread pudding, or whisky bread pudding, you’ll be in for a treat! Check out their Facebook page for their daily offerings.

2. DIRT

DIRT is a flower shop with an edge! Their unique arrangements and eclectic furnishings will inspire you to rethink your garden. You might leave searching for vintage library catalogs and busted pianos to renovate your garden. Their arrangements are unique and some are one-of-a-kind. They say, “It is our mission to use what’s found, what can be saved, re-purposed, and re-imagined before anything else.” Which is exactly what makes DIRT so special.

3. We are 1976

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - We are 1976

We are 1976 is one of my favorite stores in Dallas. They feature lovely cards, prints, and gifts made by local artists and designers.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - We are 1976

My favorite part of this hole-in-the-wall shop is their workshops. Every month, you can learn skills like modern calligraphy, letterpress, and printing business cards. It’s a creative person’s paradise!

4. Dallas Grilled Cheese Co.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - Dallas Grilled Cheese Co.

If your kiddos love grilled cheese, but you’d like something a little more sophisticated, the Dallas Grilled Cheese Co. is the perfect compromise.

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom - Dallas Grilled Cheese Co.

You must check out their specialities like The Favorite (Parmesan-crusted grilled sourdough with American, aged Cheddar and Gruyére cheeses, crumbled bacon, Dijon mustard) and their Spicy Two-Pork & Cheese (Grilled sourdough, honey compound butter, ham, bacon, Swiss, aged Cheddar, spicy jam). Their modern, industrial decor makes this restaurant a must-see spot.

5. Emporium Pies

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - Emporium Pies

If you need some help convincing your kids (or husband) to visit the Bishop Arts District with you, just tell them about Emporium Pies. This little bakery in what looks like an old house at the end of the Bishop Arts District is the perfect way to end an afternoon exploring. The only bad part about visiting Emporium Pies is deciding which pieces of their freshly-made pies to try. (But don’t fret over it too much, because you’ll definitely be back!)

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - Emporium Pies

I always love the Lord of the Pies – an indulgent deep dish apple pie with a cinnamon streusel topping, while my hubby prefers the Snowball – a creamy coconut cream pie in a decadent flaky crust. My daughter is much less picky – she will eat any piece of pie you put in front of her!

5 Must-See Spots in the Bishop Arts District - The Dallas Mom

Whether you visit the Bishop Arts District for date night, a mother-daughter day, or an afternoon with the family, you won’t be disappointed. There are so many places to explore – I didn’t even have room to mention Pier 247, Oak Cliff Bicycle Company, Tillman’s Roadhouse, Hunky’s, and Eno’s Pizza! Did I miss your favorite Bishop Arts District spot? Share it in the comments below!

Want to know more about the best things to do in Dallas for families? Join our mailing list to have the best DFW events, family-friendly activities, and giveaways delivered right to your inbox every month. You can also follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

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Winter at Medieval Times – Special Offer

medieval-times-the-dallas-mom

“Lords and Ladies, we welcome you to Medieval Times!” Huzzah!

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From the moment we stepped over the drawbridge into the castle at Medieval Times Dallas, we were transported to another era.

Medieval Times - The Dallas MomFull of Kings and Queens, Knights and Princesses, this magical castle is the perfect setting for some fabulous family-friendly entertainment.

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When you walk into the castle, your family will receive your seating assignment and get the opportunity to take a picture with a knight. Then you walk into the lobby, where you can purchase a souvenir, belly up to the bar, or take pictures with some of the Knights from the show (or even a falcon!).

Medieval Times - The Dallas Mom

About 20 minutes before showtime, you will be escorted into the arena by color. Once inside the area, you find your seat and your server arrives to give you some instructions for the evening.

Before long, the show begins and servers start bringing out course after course. The horses and falcon show off their tricks during dinner and are truly magnificent. After dinner, the real magic begins. A knight arrives to fight for the Princesses’ hand in marriage spurring on a contest of riding, jousting, and sword fighting.

The whole evening is very fast paced and exciting. It is so high energy and by the time a winner is crowned, you feel like you have been truly transported back to Medieval Times.

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Our family loved this evening of entertainment and fun and we can’t wait to visit Medieval Times Dallas again!

Winter Medieval Times Special Offer

Is your house filled with little Lords and Ladies of the royal court? Do they like to eat with their hands at the dinner table? Medieval Times is the perfect place to take your family back to the Middle Ages for an incredible night of epic battles and delicious food.

The Dallas Mom readers can enjoy a tournament at a special rate this winter season! Now through February 28, 2017, adults are just $36.95 and children (12 and under) are $29.95 with the code MT3629.

Visit this page for more information and to get tickets to the tournament!

Medieval Times - The Dallas Mom

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Family Fun at the State Fair of Texas

 

Family Fun at the State Fair of Texas - Wit & Wander Header

The annual State Fair of Texas is right around the corner and it’s a great time for families, if you know where to look. Upon first glance, the hundreds of vendors and beer tents might not scream “Family Friendly”, but there are dozens of family activities you can only experience at the State Fair. Here are my Top 12 Family Friendly Activities at the State Fair of Texas:

1. Children’s Petting Zoo

State Fair of Texas - Wit & Wander

Our favorite part of the State Fair every year must be the Children’s Petting Zoo. You can pet a giraffe, feed a camel, and watch baby goats and sheep play. One year we actually saw a live birth of a baby sheep! It is definitely one of the best petting zoos I’ve seen – especially with a few more exotic animals like emus, kangaroos, and zebras. Admission into the petting zoo is free, but there is a small cost for food if you’d like to feed the animals.

2. Engaging Shows

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderOne returning show (with a new name) is always a hit with the little ones – ZuZu African Acrobats will be performing daily on the Mattress Firm Stage. You might also want to stick around for the after-dark show, Illumination Sensation. It’s a display of water, lights, dancing, and pyrotechnics right alongside the reflection pool. All new this year on Truck Zone Stage, wood carver Burt Fleming will be turning chunks of wood into works of art.

3. Backyard Circus

In this interactive show, audience members can join the cast! Children will be invited to dress up and join the three ring circus in this fun show just for kids. It’s located at the Colosseum Terrace with shows throughout the afternoon.

4. Big Tex’s Farmyard

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderThis all new area will be packed with interactive exhibits that are as educational as they are fun! Kids can learn how famers produce enough food to feed the world. They will also be able to see live animals like piglets, calves, and hatching chicks. It’s located near the Kids’ Boardwalk and the Wild West Pet Palooza. This fun diversion is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m and is free with State Fair admission.

5. Lone Star Horse Spectacular

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderThis show is all new for 2015, featuring professional horseback riders in a performance that celebrates the history of the Texas State Flag. This show is daily at 3, 4 and 5 p.m. in the Pan Am Arena and is free with State Fair Admission.

6. Little Hands on the Farm

This miniature farm is perfect for little hands to plant seeds, gather eggs, drive a tiny tractor, and and harvest crops. There is even a little general store where kids can purchase a real snack with their earnings from the harvest. This little farm experience is open daily from 10:00am to 7:00pm.

7. Starlight Parade

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderThis parade, which runs nightly at 7:15pm is a spectacle of lights and colorful characters. There are electric floats, giant puppets, and (my favorite) stilt walkers!

8. BMX Show

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderIf you’d like a little more adrenaline in your State Fair experience, you won’t want to miss the BMX Show. A professional stunt riding team flips, spins, and defies gravity on their BMX bikes.

9. Livestock Barns

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderIf your little ones are interested in livestock, this is the place to be! You can walk past hundreds of State Fair animals through several barns. If your kids are a little older, they might enjoy a guided tour by resident student experts who are happy to answer questions.

10. Kid’s Boardwalk

14_SFT_BestShots_253The Kid’s Boardwalk was new last year and features free games and activities for kids. There is a show with Ronald McDonald and a witty Buford Buzzard, and new this year is an interactive magic show and a comical cowboy puppet. There will also be kid-friendy favorites like crafts and face painting.

11. The Greenhouse

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderThe Errol McCoy Greenhouse is a permanent exhibit at Fair Park that features the very cool Texas Garden Railway. During the fair, you can also find gardening demonstrations and giant pumpkin carving.

12. Big Tex

State Fair of Texas - Wit & WanderEvery family needs a picture with this giant cowboy! It’s a certified Texas tradition, y’all!

State Fair of Texas Tips for Families:

  • Look for Discounts – Click Here for a great list of State Fair admission discounts, and Click Here for more info on Thrifty Thursdays.
  • Go during the school day – it will still be busy, but it might not be completely packed!
  • You can bring your own food and soft sided coolers into the State Fair, but you are not allowed to bring in glass containers and alcohol.
  • There are Port-a-Pottys throughout Fair Park, but restrooms with changing tables can be found in each of the EXPO buildings.
  • Strollers are available for rent, but you might as well bring your own. You will definitely want one because Fair Park is huge!

Did I miss your favorite? Share what you love about the Texas State Fair in the comments!

Family Fun at the State Fair of Texas - Wit & Wander

 

Photo Credits: Kevin Brown/State Fair of Texas

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A Mom’s Guide to The Dallas Zoo

A Mom's Guide to The Dallas Zoo | The Dallas Mom

Lions and giraffes and koalas, oh my! The Dallas Zoo is known as one of the best activities for kids in the metroplex. Though our sweet girl slept through most of our trip, we had an amazing day walking around enjoying the animals. One of the best aspects of living in Dallas is the amazing weather in Spring and Fall, so February and March are actually some of the best times to visit the zoo. The crowds were low, but the weather was gorgeous and the animals were very active. Here are a few of my favorite tips for visiting the Dallas Zoo:

Before You Arrive

Save money by packing a cooler. Bring your own snacks and drinks (glass and alcoholic beverages are not permitted) – you can even pack a lunch to save a bit of money. There are some beautiful shaded areas to rest and have a snack. My favorites are ‘Base Camp’ in the Giants of the Savannah, where there is a shaded porch overlooking the elephant enclosure, and an area with picnic tables between the Texas Cats and Wings of Wonder exhibits. If you’d like to eat at one of the zoo’s most unique dining experiences, the Serengeti Grill in the Giants of the Savanna has floor to ceiling windows that allow you to watch the lions while you eat.

Ride the DART to add an adventure. The DART arrives at the gate of the Dallas Zoo and you save money on parking. If you show your ticket stubs on Monday or Tuesday, you save $2 on your zoo admission! It’s a fun addition to any day at the zoo.

Bring a swimsuit. Maybe not for the whole family, but at least for the littlest members! The children’s zoo is very well developed and it sure to captivate children of all ages. This area includes barn animals, underground creatures (featured in a room you have to crawl through!), and a koi pond. Your child’s favorite part will undoubtedly be the water feature. Kids can splash around and let off steam from a long day walking around the zoo, but if you want to stop meltdowns on the way home, it’s best to bring a swimsuit or at least a change of clothes.

When You Arrive

Plan to feed the giraffes. We have been to half a dozen zoos around the country. One of the most unique things about the Photo Jan 31, 12 24 39 PMDallas Zoo (and the exhibit that makes this zoo my favorite) is the giraffes. It only costs $5 to have a unique experience that will not soon be forgotten. For $5, you receive a giant head of lettuce (plenty for the family to share) and you are able to feed and pet the giraffes. They are not shy – they will come right up to the railings and stick their giant tongues out waiting for some food. The keeper will tell you how to feed them and show you how they like to be touched, then get your camera ready! Without traveling to Africa, you will likely never be this close to these beautiful, interesting creatures again.


Don’t miss the reptile house.
Tucked back in the corner of zoo is a building that could easily be looked over. If you pass by this building, you will be missing giant snakes, kimono dragons, and tiny poison dart frogs. The real treat, though, is behind closed doors. As you enter the reptile house, turn right immediately and walk through the door to see the most intriguing animal at the zoo – the albino alligator!

Check trainer encounter times. I love watching the trainers interact with their animals. They are so knowledgeable and able to share really interesting facts. You always get a better view of the animals and you can learn about each of the animals individually. We have seen the lion trainer and the elephant trainer and both were excellent – the last time we went to the zoo, we even heard an elephant trumpet!

What did I miss? Comment below with your favorite part of the Dallas Zoo?

A Mom's Guide to The Dallas Zoo | The Dallas Mom