Things to Do in Austin: The Nature and Science Center

2389 Stratford Dr, Austin, TX 78746

(512) 974-3888

If you’ve come to town to get the full Texas experience, and you’re hoping to add to your itinerary, we know just the place for you. The Nature and Science Center is located smack downtown off of Barton Springs Rd and makes for a great add on to your Texas trip.

Children and adults alike will love all there is to do at the Nature and Science Center. Start off by planning your visit to coincide with the trading hours, in which children can bring a variety of nature findings to trade in for points. Rocks, shells, fossils, bug and bones can all be traded in at the counter for points, which children can use to “purchase” goodies such as jewelry made of like items, wall hangings, polished stones and interesting bones.

There is a rotating exhibit inside, making for a great stop for locals as well. Every few months the exhibit keeps you engaged with new curiosities. The “Naturalist Workshop” allows kiddos to bring in up to five items at a time to trade. Pro Tip: If your children are engaged, ask questions and make good eye contact, they can earn even more points. It’s a great opportunity for them to practice good listening skills. Because the folks at the trade center are so friendly (we highly recommend visiting Charlie on Fridays), even individuals with socio-emotional challenges can take time to practice these invaluable skills.

The Naturalist Workshop’s Trade Counter is staffed to accommodate trades Wednesday throughFriday, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Check their website for updates.

The Dino Dig Pit is a fabulous find. Read: Huge sand lot with buried treasures! You can kill at least an hour hanging out in the shade while your littles play archeologist extraordinaire. Huge dinosaur fossils await their digging hands.

A beautiful walkway meanders around the Nature and Science Center, with a gurgling creek and large pond to enjoy. Children wade about in the waters, so bring a change of clothes if you are ok with your son or daughter coming back soaking wet!

Animal exhibits have both English and Spanish plaques. Make time to visit with the critters both large and small.

We love Austin, and all the amazing things to do in this city. Have a favorite place you recommend? Let us know! We love to Keep Austin Learning, and share all the amazing places to go and sites to see. Happy Texas Travels, y’all!

Austin Nature and Science Center Direct Link

Plan your visit

The Austin Nature and Science Center is convenient to Barton Springs and Zilker Park.

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