Blake Walsh

17 Best Things to Do in Brenham, TX

  • Published 2021/09/24

Brenham is a city in Washington County, in the eastern-central portion of Texas State.

Many people have heard of Brenham, Texas, as the “heart of the bluebonnet area” in the center of Texas.

Visiting throughout different times of the year may reveal different colors of wildflowers, especially the state flower of Texas, the bluebonnet.

In addition to providing free maps, the local chamber of commerce also sponsors the Bluebonnet Trails, which help tourists get an up-close view of the city’s beautiful bluebonnets and historic landmarks and attractions.

Washington County, where Brenham is located, is dubbed “Birthplace of Texas.”

Meanwhile, in the mid-nineteenth century, a large population of German immigrants came to Brenham following revolutions in the German states in 1848.

To celebrate their culture, the immigrants started the German festival known as Maifest, which is still widely celebrated each May in Brenham, Texas.

What activities can you do in this city?

Here are the 15 best things to do in Brenham:

Visit Brenham Fire Museum

Outside View of  Brenham Fire Museum

Alizada Studios /

Learning about Brenham Fire Department’s history is one of the many interesting things you will experience when visiting the museum.

Here, you may see various vintage fire engines that have been used to keep the town safe from fire.

The museum features a historical horse-drawn steamer in front of the museum, which is located in a glass-enclosed structure.

The same building also houses the 1923 American LaFrance Type 38 Samanthe, owned by the Brenham Fire Department.

It is one of just three known remaining of this kind.

Only 34 of this type of fire engine had been manufactured between the early 1900s and the 1930s.

If you want to see the exhibits up close, book an appointment ahead of time.

Watch Local Performances at Unity Theatre

Unity Theatre, the sole professional theatre in Washington County, is located in Brenham, Texas.

In a restored warehouse in downtown Brenham, the 125-seat intimate theatre stages a broad selection of musical events and plays performances all year long.

They perform classics, such as To Kill a Mockingbird, A Christmas Story, and more shows.

Aside from that, this is a fantastic place to have seated meals and dance parties, too.

Its package offer includes a whole range of facilities, including a library, atrium, concession bar, kitchen, lobby, studio, and theater.

Staff meetings and gatherings with 50 to 150 attendees work best with its spaces.

Wine Tasting at Windy Winery

Focusing on Texas wines, Windy Winery produces wines that are made from grapes grown in the Lone Star State.

The vineyard is situated just northeast of Brenham.

Its signature wines bear the names of its Brenham heritage, such as Brenham Blush, Brazos Red, and Lady Lavender.

Also, if you love wine and dogs, the winery has two guard dogs trained to keep pests and other critters out of the vineyard.

While generally well-behaved among strangers, these canines are less sociable when they’re with other dogs.

So please refrain from bringing your fur babies to the winery.

You may purchase wine, participate in wine talks, and purchase souvenirs from the winery’s tasting room and gift store.

Stroll Along the Main Street

Main Street in Brenham

Tobyc75, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Brenham Downtown Historic District is a national landmark.

Many notable structures and distinctive architectural elements may be found in this region.

While Brenham’s historical buildings include such notable examples as the Bassett and Bassett Banking House, the Washington County Courthouse, and the Brenham Opera House, many notable structures have recently been built as well.

Main Street in Brenham

Reading Associate 17, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A self-guided tour of the facilities is available with downloadable maps.

On Alamo Street, you will find more of the city’s history.

Here, you’ll find cafés, diners, and restaurants in plenty.

The landscaped alleys of these two adjoining streets provide for attractive plantings, water features, and decorative lighting.

Explore the Antique Rose Emporium

Are you an anthophile, someone who loves flowers?

Antique Rose Emporium in Brenham is full of things that would make your heart flutter.

This stunning eight-acre rose garden nursery has been running for almost 30 years.

It has a wide selection of roses, including the well-loved Peggy Martin Rose, with several other plants, such as miniature succulents, wildflowers, bulbs, and even garden supplies.

Go check out its gift shop to discover wonderful items and garden decors.

Whether it’s for your loved ones or your own garden, don’t forget to take home a plant or two!

Meet Wooly Friends at Peeka Ranch Alpacas

If you have kids with you, it pays to bring them somewhere where they can see and interact with animals they don’t see every day, such as alpacas.

The Peeka Ranch lies 15 miles west of Brenham’s downtown and 55 miles northwest of Houston.

Alpacas are hot and gentle creatures, so your kids will enjoy watching, petting, and feeding them.

Its gift shop is jam-packed with Alpaca-related products.

Many types of materials may be found here, including wool items, plush animals, yarn, and clothes.

Make sure to call beforehand so owners can prepare the animals for your arrival.

Check Out the Historic Underground Cistern at Toubin Park

View of Toubin Park

Alizada Studios /

Toubin Park, located directly in the heart of Downtown Brenham, serves as a nice window into life in the 1800s in Brenham.

One of the most notable features of the park is the underground cistern, which dates back to the state’s first days of public service.

You’ll find information on how the residents used the cisterns as well as a history of Brenham during and after the Civil War while exploring the several displays around the park.

Here, you will also discover how to gather rainwater for your different household uses.

Buy Local Produce and Drink Beer at Home Sweet Farm Market

The ultimate blend of fresh farm produce, artisan beer, and live music exists at Home Sweet Farm in Brenham!

Also on tap, you’ll find craft beers and ciders as well as award-winning wines.

This is one of the city’s most prestigious live music venues.

Additionally, food trucks frequently park outside of the eatery, and the establishment is also child-friendly during the day.

Its beer hall and garden are a huge hit with families since they included picnic tables and kid-friendly games.

Discover Local Works at Downtown Art Gallery

Brenham’s Historic Downtown is home to the Downtown Art Gallery.

This displays the works of local artists, including their paintings, sculptures, jewelry, and other creations.

The exhibit showcases 14 talented artists from many disciplines, from photography to sculpture.

Every work of art in the gallery is for sale.

Out front on Julia St. or behind the gallery in the parking lot on Mariners Way, parking is available.

Drive Around the City to Spot Bluebonnets

A Horse in a Field of Bluebonnets in Brenham

RaulCano /

In Brenham, bluebonnets thrive in the surrounding fields and even on the side of the road.

Here, you will encounter different depictions of the state flower in various art forms, such as murals and souvenirs.

In addition, you can also spot other wildflowers, such as purple coneflower and Indian paintbrushes.

So, make sure to bring a camera!

A Field of Bluebonnets in Brenham

JB Manning /

April is the height of the bluebonnet season, with sightings from mid-March through the end of May.

Also in April, the city celebrated the Bluebonnet Festival in Chappell Hill, sometimes called the Official Bluebonnet Festival of Texas.

It features live music, history tours, many different stalls, and delicious festival cuisine.

Be sure to pick up some handcrafted bluebonnet-themed presents while you’re here.

Harvest Lavender at Chappell Hill Lavender Farm

This famous lavender farm lies on the north side of Brenham.

Here, you can cut harvest your own lavender when they are in full bloom.

April through June are the best months to drop by the farm for sweet lavender blossoms.

Meanwhile, you can harvest the Provence lavender variety from August till October.

However, the property is open all year.

Even if you’re pressed for time, you can set up a picnic and immerse yourself in the calm ambiance and magnificent views.

It also features a delightful gift store that showcases handcrafted products from the farm and the surrounding community.

If in season, you can even bring home different fruits.

Wander Around the Giddings Stone Mansion

This mansion-turned-museum is Brenham’s oldest surviving home.

The mansion is immense and gorgeous, and everything in it is finely decorated.

The Giddings Stone Mansion in Brenham is one of the historic landmarks recognized by the state.

Here, you will notice Greek and neoclassical features, which were common architectural styles in the early 19th century.

It placed emphasis on symmetrical balance and harmony highlighted with a classic Greek Revival design.

The Doric columns and expansive verandas create the overall exterior design of the mansion.

The mansion has 11 rooms and two galleries filling the entirety of the house.

Drop by Yellow Fever Cemetery

Yellow Fever Cemetery is also known as The Masonic Cemetery or the Wilderness Cemetery.

During the latter half of 1867, the yellow fever epidemic raced across the town, resulting in the death of many Brenham residents.

Those who died rest in this cemetery.

Graves of at least 122 people can be found at the cemetery located on the grounds of the monument.

Many of the graves are no longer identifiable, having lost their tombstones.

The cemetery lies in a residential neighborhood near Brenham High School in the northwest part of the city.

Taste the Ice Cream of Blue Bell Creameries

Outside Blue Bell Creameries

Nina Alizada /

To find more about the history of the famous creamery, visit its Visitor Center and take the self-guided excursion and find out how ice cream is made.

For only $1, you can get one scoop of its tasty ice cream, so why not get two?

Visitors are welcome at the creamery, which was founded in 1907.

Additionally, there is a store on-site where you may purchase souvenirs.

Outside Blue Bell Creameries

NTL Photography /

There are several other points of interest in the vicinity as well.

After grabbing your dessert, head outside to get a snapshot of the Blue Bell Bus and the famous sculpture of a girl herding a cow.

Take note, however, that Blue Bell Creameries is only open on weekdays.

Try Brazos Valley Brewery’s Craft Beers

The Brazos Valley Brewing Company is a family-owned small brewery based in Texas.

This restaurant is just a block away from Downtown and is a fantastic spot to visit when in town.

Here you may taste their most popular beers and their seasonal brews.

Their varied culinary selections, 24 taps, and smoked meats make it an interesting place to go.

Families, dogs, and children all feel at home in this brewery, which has a covered terrace and a playground for youngsters.

In addition, they have live music on occasion and crawfish throughout the year.

With a pleasant staff and good-tasting beer, it’s worth a stop or two!

Tour the Ross Carroll Bennett House

Established in 1898, Ross Carroll Bennett House is part of the Downtown Brenham Historic District as well as a Registered Texas Historical Landmark.

Authentic and period antique items and furniture are on display at the residence.

Guests may also request a tour of the property.

The home is also accessible for overnight stays.

In addition to the two formal dining rooms and two huge parlors, there are two private salons where visitors can get together and make memories.

A luxurious honeymoon suite serves as the appropriate setting for the bride and groom and for their family and special guests.

Learn Brenham’s History at Brenham Heritage Museum

Outside Brenham Heritage Museum

Jim Evans, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Brenham Heritage Museum focuses on the area’s rich history and culture.

The county’s history spans 10,000 years, with examples including the Paleolithic period and the Information Age.

Exhibits cover a diversity of traditions, works of art, and the Civil War.

This museum also houses cameras, Wedgewood, militaria, and many other interesting items.

The tour is free of charge for children and students.

As of this writing, Brenham Heritage Museum is undergoing renovation, but you may explore this historical site once refurbishing is completed.

Final Thoughts

As a tourist to Brenham, you will enjoy learning about real Texas history and experience the city’s downtown, which provides shopping opportunities, wonderful food, and delicious desserts.

Not to mention its splendid landscapes and the lush environment!

Try the activities on our list and make your visit to this lovely city a day to remember.

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