Midland, Texas, has a history rooted in the oil and gas industries, as evidenced by its landscape, but it also has many tourist attractions and things to do, ranging from sports and theater to natural wonders unique to this region. Midland is located in the Permian Basin, halfway between Dallas and El Paso, making it an ideal location for The Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, an important first stop for any visitor to the city of national park.
Things to Do in Midland TX, midland is rich in American history, with attractions such as the Museum of the Southwest and the George W. Bush Childhood Home, where the 43rd President of the United States spent his childhood. Enjoy great sporting events at the Scharbauer Sports Complex, which hosts baseball, football, and soccer games on a regular basis, or attend a concert at the Midland County Horseshoe Arena.
While in Midland, you can visit some of the most unique natural wonders in Texas, such as the Monahans Sandhills State Park, which has 70-foot-high sand dunes, and the Meteor Crater Museum, which is located next to the United States’ second largest meteor crater.
This western Texas city caters to a wide range of interests, so as you plan your trip, take a look at our list of the best things to do in Midland.
15 Best Things to Do in Midland TX Today
1. Petroleum Museum of the Permian Basin
The Petroleum Museum, which has both indoor and outdoor exhibits, is one of the most popular things to do in Midland. The museum’s central theme is the region’s thriving petroleum and gas industry at fort worth. The center explores the history of petroleum in the Permian Basin region and educates visitors on the roles of science, technology, and art in this vital energy sector at dow gardens.
The museum is divided into several sections, including the Mythcrackers Theater, which dispels myths about the petroleum industry, predictions that never came true in the industry, and products such as vintage gas pumps and signage from well-known brands such as Pegasus, a Midland-based company.
The replica 1920s Boom Town, which depicts life in the Permian Basin area during the oil boom, and the outdoor Oil Patch, which features examples of power units, oil rigs, and other equipment used in the oil production industry, are two popular exhibits.
The Mineral Gallery, which houses unique collections from around the world; the Abell Family Gallery, which features artwork by award-winning artist Tom Lovell depicting life and landscapes in the Permian Basin region at midland rockhounds; and the Chaparral Gallery, which houses a collection of 1960s Chaparral race cars.
Midland, Texas is located at 1500 Interstate 20.
2. Wagner Nol Performing Arts Center
Plan a night of entertainment at the Wagner Nol Performing Arts Center by attending a concert or performance. The University of Texas owns the venue, which attracts national acts such as Broadway shows, comedy, rock concerts, and symphony performances at ha.
The center, which is halfway between Midland and Odessa, hosts over 150 live performances each year. It was created to support the arts at all levels, from collegiate to national. It is also intended to encourage people of all income levels to participate in community arts. Before your trip to Midland, check out the Wagner Nol events calendar to purchase midland tx tickets.
1310 North FM 1788, Midland, Texas
3. Meteor Crater Museum in Odessa
The Meteor Crater Museum, located on the western edge of Midland in neighboring Odessa, is one of the most spectacular geological wonders. The grounds of this small museum contain the second largest meteor crater in the United States, after Arizona, and the sixth-largest in the world.
A two-square-mile crater was left by a 1,000-ton meteor that crashed in this area 63,000 years ago. Only in the last few decades has more research been conducted on the site to determine that the meteor exploded before impact, resulting in clusters of meteor chunks that have been discovered during the research. It is estimated that six tons of meteorites were discovered beneath the craters. Some of these fragments can be seen inside the museum at big bend national park.
Outside, a walking path circles two of the five craters, with signage explaining what happened in each location. Anyone interested in geology will enjoy the museum, which also houses a collection of meteorites from around the world.
Odessa, Texas, 5599 Meteor Crater Road
4. I-20 Wildlife Preserve
The I-20 Wildlife Preserve was created to reintroduce people to nature. It is one of Texas’ only urban playas, and it is a nice small preserve to visit to learn about the Permian Basin’s plants and wildlife. This preserve is a 100-acre natural area that has not been disturbed.
The best time to go is in the spring and summer, when native animals can be seen at the lake and in the surrounding forest. Turtles, snakes, and lizards, as well as marsh mammals, live in the habitat. The preserve is an educational stop with a focus on the conservation of West Texas’ natural resources.
Midland, Texas, 2201 S. Midland Drive
5. George W. Bush’s Childhood Residence
When you enter the George W. Bush Childhood Home, you can feel the essence of the American Dream: that you can do and be anything you want in life. America’s 43rd President, George W. Bush, spent his childhood years in Midland in this restored 1950s home.
Tour the home, which is located in a Midland residential neighborhood, to see how the Bush family lived before their public legacy at midland county historical museum. The house also provides insight into post-World War II American life.
Walk in the footsteps of two U.S. Presidents, two First Ladies, and two state Governors. The home is a must-see in the city for those interested in history or politics.
Midland, Texas, 1412 West Ohio Avenue
6. Museum of the Southwest
The Museum of the Southwest’s eye-catching exterior is only a taste of the impressive exhibits housed inside the 1934 Turner Mansion. This is a well-rounded museum with exhibits covering a wide range of topics related to West Texas, including archaeology, art, science, and history.
You can spend several hours at the museum visiting the Marian Blakemore Planetarium, which has daily presentations of fun things, the Turner Memorial Art Gallery, which has rotating exhibits, and the Fredda Turner Durham Children’s Museum, which has interactive exhibits for children.
The Turner Mansion is a National Register of Historic Places listing. Make sure to walk around the outside of the museum to see the sculpture garden, which has 15 beautiful art pieces that you can explore on your own. If you visit during the summer, don’t miss one of the Summer Sunday Lawn Concerts.
Midland, Texas, 1705 W. Missouri Avenue
7. Sports Complex Scharbauer
Sporting events are popular in Midland, both among residents and visitors, and many of them take place at the Scharbauer Sports Complex. Because the complex includes a baseball park, a soccer stadium, and a football stadium, sporting events take place almost all year. A pavilion is also available for concerts and events.
Support the home team by attending a game against the Midland RockHounds, a minor-league team in the Texas League. The Midland-Odessa Sockers FC of the National Premier Soccer League are the local soccer team. On most days, you can find local sports teams practicing on the recreational fields surrounding the complex.
Midland, Texas (5514 Champions Drive)
8. Vietnam Veterans Memorial in the Permian Basin
The Permian Basin Vietnam Veterans Memorial, located near Midland Airport, is a striking visual display. The memorial honors the servicemen and women from the Permian Basin region’s 30 counties in West Texas who gave their lives in Vietnam.
A memorial flame burns in the center of a granite marker on the plaza, commemorating those who died while serving in the Navy, Army, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard.
The memorial’s focal point is the statue of the helicopter and soldiers in the main part of the trampoline park field. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is adjacent to a park, where you can extend your visit by having a picnic or walking the Midland Health and Wellness Loop for a quarter-mile.
Midland, Texas (9900 Wright Drive)
9. Sibley Nature Center
A visit to the Sibley Nature Center in Hogan Park is one way to combine a nature excursion with a historical perspective. The 49-acre area has walking trails, but its main purpose is to educate visitors about the region’s flora, fauna, habitats, and history.
In addition to nature trails, there are interpretive programs and seasonal events, as well as a wildlife viewing garden. This is an excellent location for photographers to capture images of monarch butterflies and native plants such as mesquite and yuccas at New York City.
The Sibley Nature Center Library is a great place to learn about the area’s history, with archived articles and essays about the people and life of West Texas. The center and its grounds are open to the public for free.
1307 E. Wadley Street, Midland, Texas
10. Midland County Horseshoe Arena
The Midland County Horseshoe Arena, a multi-purpose facility that hosts regular events ranging from rodeos and concerts to sporting events, is one of Midland’s largest entertainment venues. The area includes an arena, an amphitheater, and a pavilion.
Livestock and equestrian events, as well as family entertainment shows, are regular features at the Horseshoe. As you plan your trip to Midland, check out the events calendar to see what’s going on at the Horseshoe Arena during your stay.
Midland, Texas (2514 Arena Trail)
11. Midland Community Theatre
The Midland Community Theatre is a cultural jewel in the city. Local actors perform regularly at the theater. Monthly performances range from classics like Cinderella to traditional holiday performances. The mission of the theater is to provide opportunities for people of all ages to participate in performing arts, so this is a good venue to support during your visit.
Midland, Texas (2000 W. Wadley)
12. Midland Army Airfield Museum
Anyone interested in aviation history should prioritize a visit to the Midland Army Airfield Museum. The exhibits, which are housed inside the Commemorative Air Force High Sky Wing hangar, feature many artifacts and military aircraft that have been preserved for public viewing.
The museum experience is similar to walking into a 1940s bombardier training school, and it offers one of the most unique perspectives on aircraft history. There are several exhibits that cover West Texas’ role in WWII.
Aero L-39 Albatros, Cessna O-1A Bird Dog, and North American SNJ/T-6 Texan are among the preserved aircraft on-site. The admission is free, but the hours are limited, so check ahead of time.
Midland, Texas (9600 Wright Drive)
13. Monahans Sandhills State Park
The Monahans Sandhills State Park, where towering sand dunes create a visual diversion from West Texas’ otherwise flat landscape, is a popular day trip from Midland. The state park is about a 45-minute drive from Midland, but it’s worth the trip for a day of playing on the dunes and seeing one of the state’s most spectacular natural wonders.
The Monahans Sandhills State Park is breathtaking, with over 3,800 acres of sand dunes offering only a glimpse of their reach, which stretches 150 miles north and is more than 22 miles wide. The dunes provide critical habitat for plants and wildlife, but many visitors come for the opportunity to sled down them. Some of them can grow to be 70 feet tall. Sleds can be rented from the park office.
Hiking and camping are also popular activities in the park. There are no marked trails, so if you intend to hike, you should be prepared for the journey. Because it is an open and sandy landscape, it is recommended that you bring sunscreen, water, and sunglasses.
Park Rd. 41 in Monahans, Texas
14. Haley Memorial Library and History Center
The Haley Memorial Library and History Center is an educational resource for those interested in Western history. History buffs will enjoy simply walking around the inside and reading the documents pertaining to the southwest pioneer settlement.
Visitors can enjoy one of the center’s many public events held throughout the year, in addition to the research and archive collections. The annual art show and ranch storytelling events, which include cowboy poetry, campfires, and Old West stories, are two of the best times to experience what the center has to offer.
Midland, Texas, 1805 W. Indiana Avenue
15. Chris Kyle Memorial
A moving memorial to Chris Kyle, also known as “The American Sniper,” is a 10-minute drive from central Midland. Chris Kyle is an American hero who was born in Odessa, Texas in 1974 and died in 2013 after serving as a member of the Navy’s elite SEAL Team 3.
Quotes from Chris Kyle are etched into Texas limestone and granite as tributes to his beliefs about service, honor, and the treatment of military veterans. The surroundings are both artistic and symbolic.
President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush donated the four live oak trees that surround the memorial from their Crawford ranch. Every day, at sunrise and sunset, the Texas and US flags flanking the Chris Kyle statue are raised and lowered.
Odessa, Texas: 8050 E Highway 191.
WHERE TO STAY FOR SIGHTSEEING IN THE MIDLAND
Midland has a wide variety of hotels, ranging from suites and extended stays to low-cost options. Here are some of our top suggestions:
- Comfort Suites West Midland, which has free breakfast and suites; Homewood Suites by Hilton Midland, TX, with studios, suites, and complimentary hot breakfast; and Home2 Suites by Hilton Midland, which has suites, free breakfast, and is within walking distance of local restaurants, are all located just off I-20 in Midland.
Hotels on a Budget:
- Midland has a number of high-quality budget hotels, including the Super 8 by Wyndham Midland South, which is near the Midland County Horseshoe Arena, and the Fairfield Inn & Suites Midland, which is near the Midland Park Mall and provides free breakfast.
FAQs about Things to Do in Midland TX
Is it better to live in Midland or Odessa?
Midland ranked first in Best Housing Markets for Growth and Stability in 2021, with a 257 percent increase in home prices since 1996. Odessa ranked fourth, with a 227 percent increase in home prices since 1996. About.
Midland is it a desert?
Midland, Texas has a dry desert climate that is ideal for those who enjoy hot weather and lots of sunshine! Midland has a climate that encourages people to leave their snow jackets at home, with over 266 days of annual sunshine, an average rainfall of 14.9 inches, and an average temperature of 65.45°F.
Is Midland a pleasant place to live?
According to a recent survey, Midland squeaked into the top 100 of Canada’s best communities to live in. Maclean’s magazine conducted a nationwide assessment, ranking 415 communities in a variety of categories and assigning scores based on how each community compares to its peers.
Why is Midland Texas so prosperous?
Midland, population 113,000, is located in the Permian Basin, which produces oil and natural gas. The Permian Basin is the largest area in the United States in terms of proven crude oil reserves, accounting for a quarter of the nation’s supply, and the ninth in terms of proven natural gas reserves.