1. Connect With Nature At Lake Bryan
Top 30+ Things To Do In Bryan, Texas
Born of converging cultures and built on deep Texas roots, Bryan is a community filled with authentic stories, people, and places – our legends.
Take time to discover our legends and create some incredible memories as you explore all the wonderful activities Bryan, Texas has to offer. We’ve put together a list of over 30 must-do activities for your Bryan Bucket List.
Don't just dip in a toe! Jump right in at Lake Bryan, an outdoor recreation oasis in the heart of the Brazos Valley. The lake presents plenty of opportunities to immerse yourself in nature and escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Lake Bryan is home to more than 20 miles of hiking, biking, and running trails, swimming areas, and campgrounds, with largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, and redfish stocked by Texas Parks & Wildlife ready to test the lines of anglers of all ages. Kayaks and paddle boards are also available to rent for on-water adventures.
2. Dine Under A Full Moon At Ronin
Recently named one of the 11 Most Idyllic Restaurants On Farms For The Ultimate Farm-To-Table Experience by OpenTable, Ronin Farm & Restaurant preserves the culinary traditions of Texas by sharing sustainable foods and exceptional experience with the community.
During one of Ronin's Full Moon Dinners you will enjoy a guided-tour of the farm, followed by a 9 course tasting menu in the forest, complete with intermezzo and dessert. Showcasing ingredients produced on the farm, the meal is prepared in a professional kitchen converted from an old barn on the property. Round off the night with a walk down a candle-lit path to the herb garden for dessert, set underneath the full moon and the stars. Make your reservations for Ronin's Full Moon Dinners here.
3. Experience A First Friday In Downtown Bryan
Enjoy live music, art and an array of shopping and dining options in Historic Downtown Bryan on the First Friday of each month. This is a free, family-friendly event that typically features live performances throughout Downtown, as well as unique experiences hosted by various Downtown businesses. You can expect to find members of the Brazos Valley Farmers’ Market selling their goods on Main Street, as well as shops and restaurants open extra late into the evening.
4. Pick, Stomp & Sip At Messina Hof Winery & Resort
Messina Hof Winery & Resort planted its roots here in Bryan, Texas back in 1977 – at what is now their Estate Vineyard. Today, Messina Hof's Bonarrigo family are known affectionately as the First Family of Texas Wine. Over the years, Messina Hof has earned the title "Most Awarded Winery In Texas."
Family owned and operated, Messina Hof has been producing top-rated Texas wines for more than 40 years. They offer wine tastings, winery tours, and special events throughout the year. In the springtime experience their Wine & Roses Festival and Spring Wine Release, in the summer months of July & August pick & stomp fresh grapes at their Harvest Festival, and in the fall give a cheers at their Winter Wine Premiere and themed Murder Mystery Dinners!
Plus, one of the best parts about Messina Hof is the lush vineyard growing right on property that makes the best backdrop for all your Instagram-worthy photo-ops.
5. Book A Relaxing Getaway Or Staycation At A Local Hotel In Bryan, Texas
Experience true Texas charm in Bryan, Texas. Unwind at a historic and serene bed and breakfast only miles from Downtown Bryan, or stay at The Stella Hotel, the #6 Hotel In Texas — as voted by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler in 2022 — or hang your hat at a tried-and-true hotel brand you know and love. Wherever you stay, you’re sure to be greeted with a friendly smile & a charming “Howdy!” while you’re here in Aggieland.
Ready to plan your trip to Bryan? Book your getaway now!
8. Shop Local At Farmers' Markets & More
Pet-friendly and year-round, The Brazos Valley Farmers’ Market supports our region’s farms by connecting consumers directly to local food producers. The Brazos Valley Farmers’ Market is open every Saturday from 8:00AM-12:00PM and located at 500 North Main Street in Historic Downtown Bryan. The market features more than 50 vendors, and is your go-to spot for locally-grown foods! You can learn more about the Brazos Valley Farmers’ Market and their vendors here.
Held seasonally at Lake Walk in the spring and fall, The Local is a weekly, outdoor market featuring artisans, farmers, producers, and crafters from across the Brazos Valley. From fresh foods including bread and honey, to homemade soaps and handcrafted jewelry, The Local features a variety of vendors week to week. Stay tuned to thelocalbcs.com as their schedule is released for 2022, or follow them on Instagram for updates all year long!
A Bryan-College Station tradition since 1974, The Farm Patch is an open-air market, open daily, offering unique fruit and vegetable stands that included all types of food products, flowers, and bedding plants. It has become widely known and recognized for its quality, freshness, fair pricing, and overall “Old Market” appeal. Plus, during the cooler seasons you'll find fall festivities including a pumpkin patch, winter holiday fruit baskets, and fresh cut Christmas trees! Click here to see what's new at The Farm Patch.
9. Share A Cup Of Real Friendly Coffee Inside A Legendary Home At Polite Coffee
One of Bryan’s legendary historical figures, Edwin Kyle — the namesake of Kyle Field — was a fixture at Texas A&M University and in the Bryan Community for nearly 50 years. His historical home, The Kyle House, lives on as a legend reborn and is now the home to Polite Coffee Roasters, connecting history with modern day business in Downtown Bryan. Open seven days a week, Polite Coffee Roasters offers a full service coffee shop, roasting operation, seasonal menus, and education on the production of coffee. In addition to enjoying a hot cup upon your visit, be sure to commemorate your Bryan visit by taking home a bag (or several) of Polite Coffee’s signature roasts.
10. Gather The Squad For A Decadent Brunch
In Bryan, we love brunch - That's why we offer dozens of brunch-tastic eateries with tasty bites and drink specials.
If you're looking for an artsy spot with fresh ingredients and seasonal treats The Village Café does not disappoint. Known for their handcrafted pizzas, RX Pizza & Bar also serves a drool-worthy brunch complete with "Sunrise Tots" and carafes of mimosas! Another fast, casual restaurant in Downtown, serving "Share-Mosas" and delicious, diner-style dishes with names like "The Morning After" and "The Night Before" is 3rd On Main Kitchen.
Offering the best bagels and pastrami in town, Zeitman's Grocery Store & Deli is Downtown Bryan's newest deli and grocery store with Jewish roots. Where southern hospitality meets authentic Texas cuisine, Campfire Restaurant inside The Stella Hotel serves brunch, dinner, and drinks that are worth waking up for.
11. Bite Into The Best Burgers In Bryan
Burgers are no joke in Bryan, and we've got some of the best in the state. We're talking greasy, cheesy, beefy goodness. Top Of The Hill specializes in old-fashioned, greasy burgers with fresh cut vegetables & hand-pressed patties.
In Historic Downtown Bryan Margie's Bar & Grill serves up smaller two-ounce Opersteny Burgers and their larger one-pound Margie's Burgers with names like "Big Texas" and "Bilbo Burger." Known for their "Yuppy Fries dipped in their "Monkey Sauce," The Proudest Monkey, grills a variety of delicious burgers like the "Willie Norries" and the "Fire House." An Aggie favorite - Chicken Oil Company (temporarily closed but set to reopen in early 2023) offers a menu offering a wide selection, including burgers, salads, chicken fried steaks and their famous Tijuana Fries. Bottom line - you can't go wrong with a burger in Bryan.
12. Taste Some Of The Best Tacos In Texas On The Bryan Taco Trail
Embark on a culinary journey with the Bryan Taco Trail to discover more than 40 of the best taco spots in Aggieland. From the trendy birria at Don Chente to the traditional pastor straight off the trompo at Taqueria Poblana, or even a Cubano taco complete with pulled pork & pickles at Proudest Monkey, there are so many incredible tacos to try. Whether you prefer to stick with the more traditional taqueria offerings, or like to venture out into the more unique fusion options… It’s all on the table here in Bryan!
Simply sign up for your digital passport & check in at participating restaurants to start earning points which can be redeemed for exclusive prizes! Get started on your Bryan Taco Trail adventure today.
7. Explore Bryan As A Culture-Rich Foodie Destination
Beyond world-renowned barbecue joints like All The King's Men and top-notch taquerias worthy of a road trip on their own, there are plenty of mouthwatering restaurants to indulge in here in Bryan, Texas, making our historic town a must-visit for foodies.
You won’t have to wander far or look hard for world-class cuisine at Christopher's World Grille. Hand-tossed, brick oven pizza prepared at RX Pizza. Farm-to-table fare at Ronin Farm & Restaurant. All-American menus with Tex-Mex flair at Campfire. Treasured Tex-Mex favorites at El Charro. Creamy pastas and garlic bread knots at Amico Nave Ristorante. Authentic soul food & barbecue at Lamar & Niki's. Cajun poboys, crawfish, gumbo, and more at The Remnant of Nawlins. World-class sushi made with seafood flown in from Japan at Kanji Sushi. We promise - it's all delicious.
13. Learn About Local Black History At The Brazos Valley African American Museum
The history of African Americans in the Brazos Valley represents a compelling story of struggle and triumph by our neighbors, friends, and ancestors. This story is told with particular vigor and enthusiasm at the Brazos Valley African American Museum, located in Bryan, where an impressive collection of archives and artifacts explore the African American experience.
Conceived by Bryan school teacher Mell Pruitt, the museum has grown from Pruitt’s personal archive of African American history in the Brazos Valley to a detailed collection that encompasses both ancient and modern history, housed in a modern museum built on the site of one of the first all-Black schools in the region. Today, the museum’s collection includes interesting art and artifacts from Africa, exhibits on the Civil War and Civil Rights and a gallery of artworks by contemporary Black artists.
14. Connect With The Past At the Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History
The Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History features a rich variety of exhibits exploring the natural world and the history and culture of the Brazos Valley. Alongside these displays visitors can enjoy special exhibits, which include traveling exhibits or in-house exclusive exhibits on a diverse range of topics.
The permanent exhibits at The Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History represent the natural history of the area dating back to the Ice Age, as well as Texas and local history, including Native American history and artifacts from the earliest days of Bryan.
15. Create, Play, And Innovate At The Children's Museum Of The Brazos Valley
The Children’s Museum of the Brazos Valley in Bryan, Texas, provides a child-centered, hands-on interactive environment for learning and discovery. With growing programs like Once Upon A Story, a hands-on Innovation Station, and seasonal events, like the Daddy-Daughter Dance and holiday events, this museum is a great spot for everyone in the family to enjoy!
16. See The Serengeti of The South At Aggieland Safari
Go WILD at the Serengeti of the South! Home to giraffes, hippos, monkeys and over 100 other animal species, Aggieland Safari was born from a love of animal stewardship and dedication to conservation. Children and adults of all ages will love the beautiful and spacious Adventure Zoo, Drive-Thru Safari, and Wildlife Recreation Center. Aggieland Safari offers the perfect outing for families, field trips, small groups, and large groups alike. Buy your tickets to the safari here.
17. Enjoy Brews & Bites At Local Craft Breweries
The craft beer scene is taking off in Historic Downtown Bryan! At the North end of Main Street in downtown is Blackwater Draw Brewing Co. Featuring rotating and seasonal craft beers on tap and delicious brewpub bites, served out of their Blackwater Bites Food Truck, this brewery has become a local staple in the Brazos Valley. Stop by for a flight or a pint, live music, and don't miss out on ordering a basket of their parmesan truffle fries!
Just a mile South on Bryan Avenue is KinderHill Brew Lab. Focused on traditional and unique small batch beers, this biergarten located serves up delicious quality beers, cocktails, and more! With rotating food trucks and ample picnic table seating underneath sprawling shade trees, this spot is not to be missed.
18. Shop To Your Heart's Content In Historic Downtown Bryan
Modern, yet eclectic home decor at Old Bryan Marketplace, imported antiques and more at Sparrow Lane, original works of art at The Frame Gallery, cheeky-themed gifts at Savage Diva, hand-blown garden ornaments at Brazos Glassworks… You'll find all this and more among the locally owned retail shops in Historic Downtown Bryan. Visit today to find hand-made and custom-curated items you can’t find anywhere else.
19. Take A Relaxing Stroll At Lake Walk
As a premier innovation, business, and lifestyle hub of Texas, Lake Walk will engage your senses and replenish your soul. Lake Walk is also home to POV Coffee, Campfire Restaurant, Hershel's Bar, the Children's Museum of the Brazos Valley, The Stella Hotel, and more - all overlooking beautiful Lake Atlas. With an emphasis on wellness and an appreciation of your healthy lifestyle, Lake Walk is the perfect place to begin and end your day. Learn more about their event calendar, free fitness programs, and various other offerings here.
20. Revel In Bryan's Live Music Scene
Whether it's an upbeat, Zydeco band playing for a packed house at The Palace Theater, a folk band grooving at The Grand Stafford Theater, a Southern rock tribute band jamming at 3rd Floor Cantina, or the Brazos Valley Symphony performing an intimate concert under the stars at Lake Walk, there is almost always live music to be found in Bryan.
If you can't already hear live music on the streets of Historic Downtown Bryan, be sure to slip into the several bars & pubs that host karaoke, vinyl pop-up nights, burlesque shows, open mic nights, and more. Either way it's safe to say that in Bryan, you and your friends can easily play your itinerary in Bryan by ear!
22. Encounter Bryan's Eclectic Art Scene
From murals in Historic Downtown Bryan, to sculptures and statues scattered on the street's of Bryan, to local artists and their artwork featured in art fairs, markets, and festivals, Bryan has an art scene that is bursting at the seams.
First Fridays every month features Art 979 Art Loop, rotating art shows, and live music in various restaurants, shops, and along the sidewalks of downtown. The Downtown Street & Art Fair each spring features artists and artisans from across the region selling their handmade creations. There is also live music, art demonstrations and street performers for your entertainment.
If we're not viewing art, we're making art! Degallery showcases rotating exhibits of art from around the world including landscape pieces, handmade jewelry, pottery and more. They also offer art classes for you to create your own masterpiece, no worries, they help you every step of the way. Also each month Degallery hosts their First Saturday Art Faire at Degallery's Square. For the kiddos, Purple Art Studio offers classes and camps! Plus, their students' works can often be found at restaurants and galleries throughout Historic Downtown Bryan.
Be sure to also give a round of applause for our local theater troupes, The Theatre Company of Bryan College Station and StageCenter Community Theatre! These local performing theater troupes often have packed seasons of family-friendly plays, musicals, and more. Information on Theater Company of BCS’ current season can be found here and StageCenter Community Theater's upcoming season can be found here.
21. Revel In Movie Theater History During A Showing At The Iconic Queen Theatre
23. Take A Journey Through Time With The Official Self-Guided Bryan History Tour
A fixture along Main Street in Historic Downtown Bryan since 1939 and easily identified by its glowing neon marquee, the legendary Queen Theatre has been recently renovated and restored to its former glory. Cinephiles can visit this historic theater — the first air conditioned movie theater west of the Mississippi River — for movie screenings spanning a wide range of genres, including the latest blockbusters and legends of the silver screen. Not to be missed, The Crown Bar on the third and fourth floors offers lunch and dinner service, as well as evening cocktails perfect for a Hollywood-inspired happy hour.
The City of Bryan recently celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2021 and you're invited to witness the growth and legends of our past at more than 20 historical sites and landmarks throughout the city. As you complete this tour, we encourage you to dive even deeper into our storied past at The Carnegie History Center and discover more legendary stories. After you've had your history lesson, learn about how our community is continuing to evolve and grow as A Legend Reborn.
24. Find Fields Of Texas Wildflowers In The Spring
When it comes to wildflowers, bluebonnet photos are a rite-of-passage here in Texas as the roadsides bloom each spring. Make the trip to Bryan this year to find fields of bluebonnets and other Texas wildflowers painting the landscape! Boonville Heritage Park is always a great spot to find them, but they’ll be just about everywhere at peak bloom (usually sometime in April – we’ll keep ya updated!)
25. Kick Up Some Dirt At The Brazos Valley Fair & Rodeo
Throw on your boots and join the Brazos Valley Fair & Rodeo as they showcase agriculture, education, and the Texas culture for 12th year in 2023. Experience all things tractor pulling, livestock showing, mutton bustin’, barrel racing, live music, fried food, and more! This family friendly rodeo is scheduled for October 13-22, 2023 and we promise it will be a real good time for all!
26. Get Fitted For A Custom Hat At Catalena Hatters
Owned and operated by the Catalena family of Bryan, Texas, Catalena Hatters has been producing custom hats since 1983. At its humble beginnings, Carolyn and Sammy Catalena were always interested in custom hats and wanted to own their own custom hat operation. Today, Catalena Hatters crafts custom hats that are truly one-of-a-kind, and they're one of our Bryan Legends.
Also, right next door to Catalena Hatters is the Texas Rose Boutique, and it's packed with all your urban cowgirl & cowboy necessities!
6. Stand With The 12th Man At A Fightin' Texas Aggie Football Game
Whether you bleed maroon, you’re a fan of the visiting team, or something in between, you’ll find that Aggieland is home to the friendliest sports fans in the country. Getting to the game has never been easier thanks to a free Gameday Shuttle from Historic Downtown Bryan straight to Kyle Field every football game.
Our hotels get pretty busy on Aggie Football weekends, so book your stay early! Looking for more tips and tricks? We’ve compiled an Ultimate Guide To Aggie Football Weekends, complete with tips on where to eat and things to do on gameday.
27. Admire A Sunrise Or Sunset Over The Brazos Valley
While we do pride ourselves in being such a bustling community with so much to immerse oneself in, we also don't want to forget to step back and embrace the peace and quiet of the Brazos Valley. Across Bryan, Texas there are a number of spots to feel the warmth of a rising sun, or take in the colors of a setting sun, including: The Lookout Tower at Lake Walk, Lake Bryan, and at the top level of Roy Kelly Parking Garage in Downtown.
28. Seek Out The Stars Above In The Bryan Night Sky
As you head west of Bryan, toward the Brazos River, the city lights begin to fade & the wide open night sky puts on an incredible show. On particularly dark nights in the summer, you can even see the Milky Way painting the big Texas skies in a dazzling contrast to the miles of farmland covering the landscape. If you’re heading west to go stargazing, please keep in mind that most of the land near the Brazos River is private property. Take care not to trespass, be respectful, and watch for wildlife.
If you're looking to make it a late night of stargazing, Lake Bryan has wonderful camping accommodations. The Lookout Tower at Lake Walk is also neat spot to get a full view of a luminous Brazos Valley. The Brazos Valley Astronomy Club has more information on becoming a member and attending their Star Parties that take place in and around Bryan-College Station as well.
29. Take A Few Swings At BigShots Golf Aggieland
Now open in Bryan's up-and-coming Midtown area, BigShots Golf Aggieland is a two-story entertainment venue with 60 tee boxes featuring golf games for all skill levels. When you're not swinging the golf club, be sure to order from their scratch kitchen serving tasty appetizers, delicious burgers, uniquely crafted cocktails, craft beer, and more. And don't worry, you don't have to know how to play to have fun.
Now, Pack Those Bags & Head To Bryan
We can't wait for you to visit our thriving community! When you're ready, click here to book your stay.
While we do our best to stay in-tune with the community and keep up with all things in Bryan, we may have missed a spot or two. If you believe we left off a Bryan-bucket list-worthy item, kindly send us an email at email@example.com.
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30. Take Part In Seasonal Celebrations, Festivals & Community Events
Home to four seasons of fun, Bryan’s events calendar is jam packed with special events, concerts, performances and community happenings throughout the year. In the spring, shop local markets and don’t miss larger festivals like Fire & Earth Day at the Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History and the Downtown Bryan Street & Art Fair. Dance and sing lakeside in the summer months during Lake Walk’s annual Eats & Beats concert series, or root, root, root for the home team at a Brazos Valley Bombers baseball game.
The Boonville Days: Texas Heritage Festival shares the autumn stage with Halloween-themed Downtown fun and spooky ghost walks. In winter, marvel as our community spreads good tidings and holiday cheer at any number of can’t miss holiday events, including the annual Downtown Bryan Holiday Stroll & Lighted Parade.
31. Exchange Pleasantries & Win Prizes With The "Howdy Challenge"
Did you know that Aggieland is known across the globe as one of the friendliest communities in America? Our community even has an official greeting — ”Howdy!”
We aim to live up to our friendly claim to fame by offering a chance to win a prize as you experience some of the best that Bryan, Texas, has to offer through The Howdy Challenge. Returning August 15-October 15, 2023, this free mobile passport features a curated collection of the area’s top attractions, events and businesses, allowing you the chance to get introduced to (or reacquainted with) our favorite activities. Stay tuned for more details!