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Best Things to do with the Family on an El Paso Stay-cation

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Summer is winding down and the window of opportunity to get away with the family for a few days before the next school year is getting smaller. If your budget is tight and you don’t have the luxury of spending a King’s ransom at Disney Land or Fiesta Texas, taking off of work and staying home can still be fun.

Think about it, when you vacation out of town what are the Top 3 touristy things you try to do? You check out the sights, go shopping, and do whatever fun stuff the city has to offer, right? Well, you can do all those things on an El Paso stay-cation too. Here’s a rundown of some of the best ways we locals can find enjoyment in our own backyard:

Spend an afternoon at one of the family fun parks. Like Western Playland,  which features 20 + rides — one of which is its newest roller coaster, the Hurricane. For water rides and slides, there’s Wet n Wild Water World. If its indoor/outdoor fun you have in mind then take the kids to Bobo’s or Adventure Zone. Both have an arcade, miniature golf course and go-karts.

Get close to nature. When’s the last time you visited the El Paso Zoo? Home to 220 species of animals including endangered species, the zoo is a great place to run around and learn about the wild animals you see on TV. The Licon Dairy in San Eli and Cattleman’s Steakhouse in Fabens are also good places to get close to the wildlife. Lincon Dairy’s petting zoo is made up of farm and exotic animals including buffalo and ostrich. Cattleman’s is way more than just one of the best steakhouses in the area, it’s an actual working ranch with breathtaking scenery that includes a lake, a children’s zoo, and a snake pit.

The scenery can’t get much more breathtaking than from high atop the Franklin Mountains. That’s where you’ll find the Wyler Aerial Tramway, and one of the most magnificent views of El Paso. For a truly memorable experience, take the family on a ride on the aerial cable car that soars above the vast canyon.

Spend a day visiting the Museum District. In Downtown alone there’s the Museum of Art, the Museum of History, the Holocaust Museum, and the “living laboratory museum for children of all ages,” El Paso Exploreum.

Kick back for a night or two at a hotel. Two in particular come to mind. The Wyndham Airport Hotel, which features a four-story water slide, kiddy waterfall pool and “the largest hotel swimming pool in El Paso,” and the Doubletree Hotel downtown. The Doubletree actually has a stay-cation package that includes a night of movies, pizza, and pool fun – in a rooftop pool, no less!

So you see, contrary to popular belief, there’s plenty to do in your hometown. I only scratched the surface. The key is to act like a tourist and rediscover – or in some cases, discover – the flavor El Paso has to offer.

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