A gleaming copper dome, a soaring rotunda, and a 35-foot-tall bronze star out front set the tone for this museum, devoted to Texas boosterism; it’s as bold as the state itself, and loads of fun. The story of Texas is told through special exhibits that explore everything from rodeo to roller derby, with related live demonstrations. The eclectic collection of artifacts on permanent display includes ornate Spanish colonial stirrups, a skull cast of a giant prehistoric crocodile, and the Goddess of Liberty, who once stood atop the State Capitol. The museum offers a number of kid-friendly interactive exhibits, and it’s home to the largest IMAX screen in the state; the films shown on it have nothing to do with Texas, but proceeds go to the museum’s upkeep. In contrast, films at the Texas Spirit Theater are often state related; during the day, you can see the multi-sensory “Star of Destiny,” where the story of Texas comes replete with surround-sound storms, rumbling seats, and misting rain. At night, the film series includes one called B Movies and Bad History. The Story of Texas Cafe emphasizes Southwestern comfort food—chili con queso, chopped BBQ brisket sandwiches, say—with locally sourced ingredients.
The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum
Just northwest of downtown and on the southwest edge of the UT campus, 1800 N. Congress Ave., Austin, TX
Our Rating Neighborhood Central Austin/West Campus Hours Mon–Sat 9am–6pm, Sun noon–6pm. Phone or check website for additional IMAX evening hours. Closed Jan 1, Easter, Thanksgiving, and Dec 24–25. Transportation Bus: UT Shuttle Phone 512/936-8746 Prices Exhibit areas: $13 adults; $11 seniors (65+), military, college students; $9 children 4–17; free for children 3 and under. IMAX Theater (documentaries): $9 adults; $8 seniors, military, college students; $7 children. IMAX Theater (feature films): $14 adults; $12 seniors, military, college students; $11 children. Texas Spirit Theater: $6 adults; $5 seniors, military, college students; $5 children. Combination tickets available Web site The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.