June 15, 2023

Summer Adventures on a Shoestring: 2023 Budget-Friendly Destinations

Navigating the current economy can be challenging, but it doesn't mean your Summer 2023 should be void of adventure. We've put together a list of cost-effective and unique vacation destinations. Picture this – enjoying a stellar summer vacation without emptying your savings. Sounds pretty good, right? Buckle up, folks, because we're about to dive in!

Krause Springs- Spicewood, TX

5 hrs 13 mins (346 mi) from Lubbock, TX

If you’re looking for a place to relax, maybe do a little hiking, then Krause Springs is the place for you. Krause Springs is home to beautiful, natural swimming holes as well as an upper natural pool which flows into Lake Travis.

If swimming is not all you are interested in, Krause Springs also includes various hiking trails and campsites for your enjoyment. Krause Springs also provides rental houses (pets welcomed) should you decide to stay close to the springs.

@byanaga krause springs is located in spicewood, tx and open from spring-fall, 9am-8pm daily. tickets are $10 for adults, $6 ($1 increase in 2023). bring a lunch & spend the day relaxing in nature! #krausesprings #austin #texas #naturalsprings #granola ♬ Flowers - Miley Cyrus

Fort Worth Water Gardens- Fort Worth, TX

4 hrs 19 min (315 mi) from Lubbock, TX

While Texas may be thought of as a desert, it doesn’t fail to have beautiful water attractions. Located in downtown Fort Worth are the Fort Worth Water Gardens. In this relaxing urban park, visitors are able to wander through various water exhibits.

The Fort Worth Water Gardens were built in 1974 and were designed by Phillip Johnson. These gardens are open to visitors year round.

Dr. Pepper Museum- Waco, TX

5 hrs 16 mins (350 mi) from Lubbock, TX

Even if Dr. Pepper may not be your favorite drink, the Dr. Pepper Museum is sure to provide captivating displays about the nation’s oldest major soft drink and many other soft drinks. The Dr. Pepper museum, located in Waco, TX, consists of three floors of exhibits (which change regularly) and includes a soda fountain and gift shop.

Upon paying admission, you will be given a free drink to take as you explore a behind-the-scenes look at the history of the American soft drink industry.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park- Eddy County, NM

3 hrs 19 mins (196 mi) from Lubbock, TX

This well known national park is famous for its limestone caves as well as its rock formations and hiking trails. While it may be hot in the summer, the caves are generally around 55 degrees fahrenheit so it's recommended to bring a jacket of some sorts.

Within the caves visitors are able to take a self-guided walk down the paved paths, past various intricate rock formations and other geological sites.

@jeaniemarie.co 📍We’ve been to 35 National Parks & this one was the biggest surprise yet Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico needs to be added to everyone’s bucket list. It has the largest underground cave system in North America and ended up spending 2 hours exploring these caves as they are so beautiful to see in person – these videos don’t do justice. Be sure to enter the cave system through the Natural Entrance at the Bat Flight Amphitheater area. Reservations are required to enter the cave and can not be made at the park, be sure to reserve them ahead of time on recreation dot gov. Have fun & enjoy! . . . #carlsbadcaverns #carlsbadcavernsnationalpark #newmexico #nationalparklife #newmexiconationalparks #NewMexicoTRUE #landofenchantment #onlyinnewmexico #thingstodoinnewmexico #visitnewmexico #newmexicotravel #newmexicobeauty ♬ Golden Hour: Piano Version (Cover) - Andy Morris

Bandelier National Monument- Los Alamos, NM

5 hrs 39 mins (355 mi) from Lubbock, TX

Bandelier National Monument has evidence of people who had lived there for more than 11,000 years. In this 33,000 acre land of canyon and mesa country, visitors are able to explore the dwellings carved into the soft rock cliffs.

Through these excavated archeological sites, visitors are able to see evidence of the Ancestral Pueblo people and their villages.

Myriad Botanical Gardens- Oklahoma City, OK

5 hrs 8 mins (354 mi) from Lubbock, TX

If you’re tired of seeing the blowing dust here in West Texas, then the Myriad Botanical Gardens of Oklahoma City may be for you. These gardens are Oklahoma City’s most beautiful and most vibrant green spaces.

The 15 acre gardens offer visitors a look at various botanical life, all different and beautiful in their unique way. This natural escape is located in downtown Oklahoma City.

Philbrook Museum of Art- Tulsa, OK

6 hrs 35 mins (460 mi) from Lubbock, TX

In an Italian styled villa, this museum has various exhibits from European, American, Asian, Native American, and African artists. The Philbrook Museum of Art was opened in 1939 after being donated by the former resident, Genevieve Phillips, wife of oil pioneer Waiter Phillips.

Along with the charming villa, are lush, green gardens which surround the estate. These gardens are opened to visitors for exploration.

@oogontsovaa I visited @PhilbrookMuseum this Sunday. And honestly it’s the most beautiful place in Oklahoma. The grounds are regal, playful and whimsical and each area is a completely different theme. So much history and beautiful art! Highly recommend, we will be back. #oklahoma #okblogger #okcinfluencer #okcblogger #oldmoneyaesthetic #oldmoney #oldmoneylifestyle #okcool #tulsa #tulsaok #tulsamuseum #philbrookmuseum #okbeautiful #visittulsa #visitok #okart #gardenusa ♬ Reflection of the Sun - Anna Landström & Anna Dager & Hanna Ekström

Science Museum- Oklahoma City, OK

5 hrs 13 mins (361 mi) from Lubbock, TX

While science may not be everyone’s cup of tea, the Science Museum in Oklahoma City is sure to interest and excite visitors of every age with their specialized exhibits and galleries. This museum is home to the Kirkpatrick Planetarium and the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame.

Covering over 390,000 square feet,making it one of the largest science museums in the nation, the Science Museum is a destination for family fun and hands-on science experiences.

Reclaiming Summer - On a Budget

With a sprinkle of planning and these wallet-friendly destinations, Summer 2023 could shape up to be chock-full of adventure, family bonding, and fun! So, gather your tribe and start plotting your route. Here's to a summer packed with family memories that won't drain your bank account!