The Bullock Texas State History Museum invites visitors in to explore the “story of Texas”. That story, as you know, is vast and complex, rich with excitement and adventure. And so it makes sense that this museum itself is such an impressive, grand structure that makes you feel like you’re stepping into a collection of history books. From the 35-foot-tall star sculpture that stands in front of the museum, to the three stories full of artifacts, the Bullock gives children (and adults alike) the urge to go “oooh and ahhh” over this captivating and dramatic look at Texas’s past.
On our recent visit, the first thing that caught the eye of my boys was the elaborate terrazzo floor of the atrium. Colorful stones are artfully arranged in a campfire scene. (Be sure to check out the legend to the floor found on the 3rd floor.)
The Museum includes three floors of exhibits broken up into the three big themes of Land, Identity, and Opportunity. Some of our favorite highlights of The Bullock’s central exhibits were:
- a bronze cannon and the skeleton of a crew member recovered from the 17th century shipwreck, La Belle
- a full-scale windmill
- the Capitol’s original Goddess of Liberty
- a 1941 AT-6A airplane named the “Texan”
- a NASA consule from the Manned Flight Center (the boys loved pushing those buttons)
The Bullock is a “non-collecting institution”, meaning artifacts and objects are there on loan from other museums, libraries, and individuals. They feature hundreds of new artifacts every year.
The Bullock Museum is also home to Austin’s premiere IMAX theatre and currently has 3D movies featuring great white sharks, butterflies, and the Rocky Mountain Express. The Bullock is also home to The Texas Spirit Theatre, which features two films: Wild Texas Weather and Star of Destiny. Please note that all films require additional ticket costs.
The Bullock is open at NO COST on the first Sunday of every month! On these Sundays, families can plan on special activities and crafts, all for free. Check out TEXploration Family Story Time at 2 p.m. on the first Sunday of each month, where 2-5 year olds can enjoy stories, songs, games, and more held on the second floor lobby.
The Bullock Texas State History Museum
1800 N. Congress Avenue
Monday – Saturday 9am-5pm
Free First Sunday:
The Museum provides free admission to the Exhibits on the first Sunday of each month. Regular admission prices still apply to the Texas Spirit Theater and IMAX Theatre.
Regular Museum Admission:
$12 for adults; $10 for college students (with valid ID); $10 for seniors/military (with valid ID); $8 for youth ages 4-17, free for ages 3 and under.
Freelance web producer, Heidi Okla is mom to three boys (ages 3, 5, and 7), and can’t pass up any opportunity for fun family adventures.