Everything in Texas is getting even bigger. According to a recent Census Bureau report, 4 of the 5 fastest growing cities in the United States are in the state of Texas. Between 2015 and 2016, Conroe, the #1 fastest growing city in the United States, grew at a rate of 7.8%, 11 times faster than the national growth rate. Meanwhile, Frisco grew at a rate of 6.2%, McKinney grew by 5.9%, and Georgetown by 5.5%.
So what about these cities in the Lone Star state is attracting so many newcomers? Practically speaking, the growing job markets in the tech, manufacturing and finance industries. But it’s the craft breweries, outdoor recreation, kid-friendly attractions and cultural activities boosting the quality of life and helping to fuel the growth of these cities.
Besides, there’s more to Texas than just honky-tonks, cowboys and rodeos, like the attractions we’ve rounded up below.
B-52 Brewing | Conroe
B-52 Brewing – Conroe — Photo courtesy of B-52 Brewing
Since 2014, brothers Brent and Chad Daniel have been brewing craft beer favorites like the Payload Pilsner, the Wingman wheat IPA and a crowd-pleasing breakfast stout. Although they are only open Friday through Sunday, beer-lovers fill up their growlers with their week’s ration of craft beer all for a very fair price.
Erwin Park Hike & Bike Trail | McKinney
Mountain biking in Erwin Park —
McKinney might be the 3rd fastest growing city in the United States, but there’s still a lot of room to roam. Escape the daily grind of city life in McKinney by taking a hike or a bike through Erwin Park. This park is 212 acres of mountain bike trails, playgrounds, and areas for camping and fishing. Not to mention, there are nice spots for a picnic.
Inner Space Cavern | Georgetown
We’ve heard of underground cities, but underneath the ground of Georgetown is an underground scene that’s been hidden for over 10,000 years! The Inner Space Cavern is one of the best preserved caves in the state of Texas, and will excite explorers and geology nerds of all ages.
National Videogame Museum | Frisco
It’s only been open for one year, but the National Video Game Museum in Frisco, Texas is a favorite for gamers of all ages. The interactive exhibit walks visitors through the history of video games, arcade game pixel art, the evolution of the home console and even displays a rare collection of video game artifacts.
Texas Sculpture Garden | Frisco
The Texas Sculpture Garden is where art meets the outdoors. With 40 sculptures by 41 Texan artists, this is the largest collection of contemporary Texas sculpture art made available to the public. It’s perfect for Frisco dwellers looking for inspiration, or those looking for the perfect Instagrammable moment.
Mitas Hill Vineyard | McKinney
You might not think Texas would be considered “wine country,” but grapes love the dry heat of Central Texas. Since 1999, the Mitas family has channeled their passion into making 15,000+ gallons of handcrafted wine annually.
Blue Hole | Georgetown
One of Texas’ favorite pastimes is visiting the ol’ swimming hole. And the Blue Hole in Georgetown is one of the nicest natural lagoons in the Austin area. Take a stroll along the limestone bluffs, enjoy a meal along the banks and then cool off by taking a swim in the wading areas.
7 Acre Wood | Conroe
7 Acre Wood — Photo courtesy of 7 Acre Wood
For young families settling down in Conroe, the fastest growing city in the United States, the 7 Acre Wood is every childhood attraction in one. Petting zoo? Yes. Pony rides? They’ve got them. Mini-golf? You betcha. Zip-line? Yes, they even have a zip-line.
Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary | McKinney
Photo courtesy of Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary
In McKinney, the great outdoors is never far away. The mission of the Heard Natural Science Museum & Wildlife Sanctuary is to bring nature and people together, and they do so through programs that allow visitors to interact with their surroundings.
Artisans Connect Gallery | Georgetown
Local art is celebrated at the Artisans Connect Gallery in Georgetown. Serving as a marketplace, the Artisans Connect Gallery helps artists who work in all mediums connect with local art lovers who want to buy original pieces. It’s a community that supports the local arts movement, which is growing in Georgetown and all over Texas.