Tax season isn’t always the kindest on the wallet, so we’ve rounded up the best free attractions in Beaumont that won’t break the bank. And we think the price is right – completely gratis. If you’re looking for even more things to do and places to get cultured, we also have a number of cheap attractions with Neches Riverboat Rides, entrance to the Spindletop Museum, McFaddin-Ward House tours, Colorado Canyon, Urban Air, and Gator Country all $20 or less. So, go on, splurge.
1. Get Artsy
The Art Museum of Southeast Texas (AMSET) is always free. Home to 1,000 permanent works and a rotating collection of new artists, their current exhibit is a mixed media piece called Big Time Dreaming in the Age of Uncertainty, which is as whimsical as it is thought-provoking.
2. Snap a Selfie at the World’s Largest Working Fire Hydrant
The Fire Museum of Texas is the hottest spot in town – literally. Home to an extensive collection of vintage fire prevention devices and gadgets from ladders to trucks, kids (and kids at heart) will love putting on the uniform, sitting behind the wheel, and channeling their inner heroes.
3. Make it a Mural Crawl
Fireflies, mermaids, and Frida, oh my! Beaumont is home to a number of colorful works by local street artists like Ines Alvidres(who did the pieces at Tacos La Bamba and Crazy Cajun) and Kimberly Brown (geometric backdrop and Frida). Many are on Calder or Fannin so it’s pretty easy to hit them all in one day.
4. Bird’s the Word
As birding grows in popularity, Cattail Marsh is undoubtedly the best spot to waste away the day. The recently revamped boardwalk and scenic wetlands are home to over 250 species of birds and aquatic mammals and a prime space to gator spot, picnic, or simply get back to nature.
5. Stop and Smell the Roses
Both local botanic gardens are currently free. On 252 acres in the heart of Orange, Shangri-La was revamped post-hurricane and looks better than ever with beautifully landscaped Japanese Gardens. Beaumont Botanic Gardens in Tyrell Park is another popular spot to relax with a greenhouse, conservatory, and koi pond.
6. Kick it the Big Thicket
Nature is our favorite free attraction and the Big Thicket has plenty of space to roam. Home to nine different ecosystems, explore everything from pine forests to cypress-lined bayous. There are 40-miles of hiking trails, canoeing, and kayaking in the area.
7. Peruse the Farmer’s Market
Did you know you could shop local every Saturday morning February through December? Stock up on produce, baked goods, and beef and mingle with the community as you break bread and listen to live entertainment.
8. Have a Little Faith
The Faith Trail is a diverse collection of places to worship in and around Southeast Texas. Beautiful both inside and out, St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica is a masterfully constructed ornate treasure. Temple Emanuel’s copper dome and First United Methodist Church’s stained-glass windows are also must-see marvels. Whether you’re religious or not, they’re worth exploring for the architecture alone.
9. Pay Homage to the Local Heroes
The Clifton Steamboat Museum is aneclectic personal collection of local artifacts documenting Beaumont’s military history and other gems. From Native American art to WWII memorabilia, it’s a treasure hunt just to see what you’ll uncover.
10. Channel Your Inner Inventor
A tiny one-room museum hidden in plain sight, the Edison Museum is dedicated solely to Thomas Alva Edison and his inventions through interactive, hands-on science exhibits.
11. Learn about the Area’s Settlers
In neighboring Nederland, the Dutch Windmill Museum is an exact replica of the windmills you’d find in the Netherlands. Walk inside the quirky structure and peruse memorabilia and trinkets documenting the area’s turn of the century immigrant settlers from wooden shoes and tulips to Olympic gold medals.