Kick Off the Summer Season With a Splash and Enjoy a Texas Aquatic Adventure

May 16, 2013, 10:10 ET from Texas Tourism

AUSTIN, Texas, May 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- As summertime approaches and the family travel season heats up, Texas Tourism invites visitors to cool down at some of the state's premier water attractions. Texas' summer options range from thrilling waterparks to sandy beaches and lazy rivers, providing endless opportunities to chill out during the hot summer months.

"With plenty of water activities available across the state, Texas offers a variety of exciting options for travelers looking to cool down and enjoy some summer fun," Texas Tourism Director Brad Smyth said. "Whether you're looking to book a fun family vacation or a trip with friends, Texas is the perfect summer destination that offers something for every summer traveler."

Travelers to San Antonio can "hang ten" without leaving the hotel on the Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa's epic FlowRider® wave machine, the newest addition to the resort's sprawling five-acre water park, and one of only three such attractions in the U.S. The FlowRider simulates a "barrel-less" wave, featuring a sloped surface that pumps 40,000 gallons of water at a rate of about 18,000 gallons per minute. Just across the highway, travelers can enjoy SeaWorld San Antonio's newest waterpark attraction, Aquatica, which blends unique animal experiences with high-speed thrills and sandy beaches. Guests of all ages can enjoy a rare up-close-and-personal encounter with the park's signature animal, the stingray. Thrill-seekers can also take advantage of the park's rides including "Journey to Atlantis" and "Rio Loco," in addition to water slides, rivers, lagoons and more than 42,000 square feet of sandy beach area.

In Arlington, travelers looking for over-the-top thrills can visit Six Flags Hurricane Harbor, which features six water attractions and 18 slides on-site for maximum family fun in the sun. Currently open for the 2013 season, in early summer the park will introduce two new slides, including the heart pounding Typhoon Twister and Tsunami Surge.

Adventurous travelers have the opportunity to hang out with some Texas dolphins in Ingleside, near Port Aransas.  At Dolphin Connection guests can meet and interact with wild dolphins in their natural Gulf habitat, providing an intimate look at dolphins in the wild.

With three locations across the Lone Star State, no Texas summer is complete without a trip to Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts. In South Padre Island, Schlitterbahn offers 25-acres of aquatic adventure, including 11 world-class attractions, 13 exciting water slides and a 221-room resort hotel. In Galveston, Schlitterbahn's 26-acre oasis features more than 33 thrilling attractions, including two uphill water coasters and the Boogie Bahn surf ride. The flagship waterpark in New Braunfels feature 40 attractions on more than 70 acres, in addition to resort accommodations. Guests can pack a family picnic from home, and parking at all Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts is free of charge, making the parks an affordable family getaway.

Outdoor enthusiasts can take advantage of the state's prime coastal location, with more than 600 miles of sparkling coastline and warm waters. Visitors can catch waves, enjoy warm gulf breezes, surf, parasail and kiteboard.

Texas is also home to more than 34 paddling trails that accommodate every skill level, from a calming, scenic escape or a test of paddling prowess on exhilarating rapids. Kayakers and canoers can hit one of the three paddling trails in Galveston Island State Park, which is home to bayous, marshes and interconnected tidal pools. Those looking to stay closer to the city can enjoy inland trails, such as Lady Bird Lake Paddling Trail in downtown Austin, which features paths ranging from three to 11 miles long. The Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife can provide information, maps and directions to the many exciting paddling trail locations and routes across the Lone Star State.

If relaxation is on the agenda, visitors can enjoy the cool waters of the 15 major natural rivers in the state, including the Comal, Guadalupe, Frio and San Marcos Rivers. Or visitors can take a dip in one of Texas' many swimming holes, letting their cares drift away with a local favorite pastime, inner tubing, at Barton Springs in Austin, Krause Springs in Spicewood and San Solomon Spring in Balmorhea State Park. With their clear, cool natural waters, these spring-fed pools are the perfect way to recharge after a warm summer day.

For more on all there is to see and experience in Texas, visit and find us on Twitter (@texastourism), Facebook and Pinterest.

About Tourism in Texas

Travelers in Texas enhance state and local economies as evidenced by preliminary estimates of $65 billion in direct travel spending in 2012 and more than 220 million domestic visitors at Texas destinations last year.  Travel and tourism directly supported 560,000 Texan jobs and generated $4.4 billion in state and local taxes.

SOURCE Texas Tourism