27 Free Things To Do Indoors in Houston: Indoor Places To Play On Cold and Rainy Days

Art Car Museum is a fun, free indoor activity. Photo courtesy of the Art Car Museum
Art Car Museum is a fun, free indoor activity. Photo courtesy of the Art Car Museum
1/7/24 - By Carrie Taylor

Looking for free indoor playgrounds and other free things to do? We have a list of the best free indoor places to play in Houston.

Whether you're a stay-at-home parent just trying to find something to do during the day or a mom wanting to spice things up on the weekend–but without spending a bunch of cash–this post is for you. Especially when the weather isn't exactly welcoming, free things to do indoors in Houston are the way to go.

For even more ideas, check out our Indoor Fun Guide for Houston Families.


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Free Indoor Things To Do In Houston: Indoor Mall Playgrounds

1. Frolic's Castle in Memorial City Mall

Frolic’s Castle is the world’s largest indoor soft play area in a shopping center. It is also fully ADA-accessible and boasts a three-level, medieval castle with a drawbridge and catapult surrounded by an enchanted forest.

2. The Little Galleria at The Galleria

The Little Galleria is a 2,000-square-foot miniature mall made of foam slides and lots of climbing structures that's located on Level 2 at the Galleria

3. Children’s Play Area at First Colony Mall

The Children’s Play area is filled with soft play structures and is located near the JCPenney Court. 

RELATEDFree Things To Do with Houston Kids Guide

Check out the play area at the Woodlands Mall for some free indoor fun. Photo courtesy of the mall. 

4. Children’s Play Area at The Woodlands Mall

The play area at The Woodlands Mall in front of JCPenney boasts a forest-themed wonderland for kids under 42 inches to explore.

5. Disney Junior Play Zone at Katy Mills Mall

Play with your favorite Disney Junior friends through interactive digital displays, climbable play sets, and a variety of games and activities. Disney Junior Play Zone also includes comfortable seating, charging stations, and stroller parking.

Free Indoor Things To Do In Houston: Indoor Public and Church Playgrounds

6. Gallery Furniture

The North Freeway location has an indoor playground and exotic birds around the store. 

7. Living Spaces

The Living Spaces furniture store in Katy boasts a large indoor play structure, coloring area, video games, and a room playing kid movies.

8. Sugar Creek Baptist Church

Sugar Creek has indoor playscapes at both the Sugar Land and Richmond/Rosenberg campuses for the enjoyment of children up to grade 5. Playscapes feature tubes, tunnels, slides, and over 30 different play elements.

9. Christ the King Presbyterian Church

Christ the King Presbyterian Church has a free indoor and outdoor playground with a 2-story slide and climbable area.

10. The Woodlands Church

Toddlers can play in their very own section at The Woodlands Church, and kids ages 5-12 can explore a multi-level structure with a 22-foot corkscrew slide.

11. Memorial Drive United Methodist Church

Kids ages 2-10 years can play for free at the Memorial Drive United Methodist Church West Campus indoor playground. 

12. Memorial Church of Christ

A multi-level free indoor playground is at Memorial Church of Christ for preschool and elementary-aged children, along with a small area with padded obstacles for babies to explore.

13. Second Baptist Church

Second Baptist Church Woodway campus has a play area called Second City for children under 48" tall. The soft play area is open to the public with reservations and each play time allowed is 45 minutes.

14. The Woodlands Methodist Church

Kids ages 3-9 can run and play at an animal-themed indoor playground at The Woodlands Methodist Church called Safari Stop. Safari Stop is located at the north end of the main building.

15. Houston First Baptist Church

Children ages 2-10 are welcome to enjoy the free indoor playground and game room at First Baptist Church.

16. First Methodist Houston

First Methodist Houston’s Main Street Indoor Park at the downtown location is for children 5 and under with an adult supervisor.

Free Indoor Things To Do In Houston: Indoor Nature Centers

17. Nature Discovery Center

Themed specimens and displays are changed out monthly in the large and small Discovery Rooms at the Nature Discovery Center. Skins, skeletons, and more are all touchable and accessible to kids and their caregivers. Live animals are also on display. 

17. Houston Arboretum

Get to know the Arboretum’s many habitats in the Discovery Room. Explore life in a Wetland, search for Woodland creatures, crawl through the Prairie underground, see who calls the Savanna home, and follow the Bayou as it meanders along the floor.

18. Sea Center Texas

Sea Center Texas is a marine aquarium, fish hatchery, and education center located on 75 acres in Lake Jackson, Texas.

19. Spring Creek Greenway Nature Centers

 The center has more than 60 species of wildlife on exhibit and regularly hosts animal lessons and story time.

Free Indoor Things To Do In Houston: Indoor Museums

20. Houston Center for Contemporary Craft

The Center’s major emphasis is on objects of art made primarily from craft materials: clay, fiber, glass, metal, wood, or found/recycled materials, and features a rotation of artist exhibitions. Every month, adults and children of all ages can enjoy Hands-On Houston, a free, first-Saturday craft-making activity led by local guilds and artists. 

21. Art Car Museum

The Art Car Museum is a private institution dedicated to contemporary art. It is an exhibition forum for local, national, and international artists with an emphasis on art cars. Admission is free but reservations are required. 

22. Pearl Fincher Museum of Fine Arts

The Pearl is a non-collecting fine art museum located in Spring, borrowing from public and private collections. The museum complements its exhibitions with an active schedule of programs and services, including those for children.

23. Houston Police Department Museum

Visit the Houston Police Department's downtown headquarters to see the Houston Police Museum. You'll find old and new uniforms, memorabilia, and a memorial wall. 

24. Project Row Houses

Project Row Houses is a highly acclaimed art and cultural community center consisting of renovated shotgun-style homes. The houses are dedicated to art, photography, and literary projects that are installed on a rotating 6-month basis. Each house is transformed by an artist in ways that speak to the history and cultural issues relevant to the African-American community. 

RELATEDBest Museums in Houston for Kids and Families

Admission is always free to the Menil Collection. Photo courtesy of the Menil Collection

24. The Menil Collection

The Menil Collection is a museum and neighborhood of art spanning 30 acres in the heart of Houston, Texas. Making art accessible is vital to Menil’s mission; no admission is charged and public programs are free.

25. Contemporary Arts Museum Houston

Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (CAMH) is a non-collecting institution dedicated to presenting the best and most exciting international, national, and regional art of our time. CAMH’s Open Studio sessions every first Saturday of the month feature drop-in, hands-on activities that draw inspiration from the exhibitions on view and are suitable for all ages. 

26. Lawndale Art Center

Lawndale is a multidisciplinary contemporary art center that engages Houston communities with exhibitions and programs that explore the aesthetic, critical, and social issues of our time.

27. Free Museum Hours at Houston’s Big Museums

Most of Houston’s major museums offer free admission hours on Thursday.