Downtown & Uptown Waco

  • Central Library   2 blocks – 18th and Austin
  • Austin Avenue (Shopping, restaurants, Hippodrome theater for stage shows) .3 to 1.4 miles     Recommendations:  Stone Hearth Indian Café, Portofino’s (Italian), Luna Juice, Dichotomy Coffee.
  • The Clothesline    .3 miles     Resale clothing store operated by Mission Waco Mission World, a local Christian non-profit.  Amazing prices!   1817 Franklin Avenue
  • Pinewood Coffee Bar  .4 miles     It’s been a favorite since it opened a few years ago and was recognized as one of the top coffee places in U.S.  2223 Austin Ave.
  • Harvest on 25th .6 miles   Lots of good reviews for this restaurant from people looking for gluten free, dairy free, seasonal produce.  112 N. 25th St.
  • Sul Ross Park - 1301 Barnard (walking path, skateboard park, playground, pavilion, basketball, tennis)  .6 mil
  • Sul Ross Senior Adult Center - corner of N. 15th & Waco Drive.  For years they have offered live band dancing clubs on Tuesday and Thursday nights, $6/person -- visitors welcome.
  • Splendid Oaks Chocolates and Ice Cream and Milk Bottle Cookies .8 mile.  Corner of 11th & Franklin Ave.  Both stores are above average in deliciousness!
  • Farmer's Market  1 mile.   Washington Ave between 5th & 6th Streets
  • Sergio's Food Truck   1 mile. Great burritos.  They are usually set up at the Farmer’s Market on Saturdays, and on some other days you can find them in the parking lot near 5th & Austin.
  • Magnolia Markets, Magnolia Press Coffee and The Findery  1.4 miles     Webster and 6th-8th Streets
  • Union Hall  1.1 miles.  20+ food vendors in indoor venue; seating throughout food hall.  Franklin and 8th Streets.
  • Suspension Bridge, Indian Springs Park, food trailer court, Ninfa's (Mexican), Spice Village, Bangkok Royal (Thai - everything is good!), Mamaka Bowls (Delicious smoothies and bowls!  Be sure to get one with homemade granola on it.), Diamond Back’s (steaks, American Bistro), Olive Branch, Clay Pot (Vietnamese), Fabled (independent book store and coffee/café) - 1.5 miles      Franklin Avenue from 5th to University Parks Drive. 
  • Dr. Pepper Museum   1.4 miles.    5th & Mary Ave. 
  • Waco Convention Center    1.6 miles      Washington Ave and University Park Drive
  • Waco Tourist Information Center and Texas Ranger Hall of Fame   2.4 miles    University Parks Drive and I-35 North
  • Bicycle World, Rush Cycle, Indoor Putt-Putt, J-Petal (Thai) and other restaurants – University Parks Drive and Mary Ave.   1.7 miles

Near Northside Neighborhood / Brook Oaks Neighborhood / Sanger-Heights Neighborhood  1 mile

  • World Cup Cafe and Fair Trade Market - 1321 N. 15th Street.   Kitchen open Mon-Fri 7am-2pm, Sat 8am-2pm (breakfast menu only all day).   Fair Trade Market and coffee bar open same hours, plus Mon-Fri 2pm-5pm.   World Cup Cafe and Fair Trade Market are part of Mission Waco Mission World, a local Christian faith-based nonprofit, and contribute to the redevelopment of the Near Northside neighborhood.    Great breakfast, weekday lunch plate specials, burgers/sandwiches/wraps, chicken salad, lentil wrap chef salad.  Try the Breakfast Bowl in the morning, or World Cup Burger and sweet potato fries for lunch.  Fair Trade Market offers beautiful and varied gifts from around the world – all created by people who are being empowered out of cycles of poverty.
  • D's Mediterranean Grill - 1503 Colcord.   Homemade Lebanese and Greek food and amazing chicken tenders (fried or grilled), kabobs (beef tenderloin, lamb, chicken), wraps (gyro, chicken, falafel), hummus, tabouli, Greek salad, and more -- some of the best food in town!   Cooked to order, so either call ahead for to-go or allow time to visit while your delicious meal is prepared.  Try the fried green beans.
  • Jubilee Food Market, 1505 N. 15th St.   Mon-Sat 8am-8pm, Sun 11am-6pm.  Local grocery store funded and supported by our Waco community to address lack of produce and affordable in a "food desert".  Open to the public.   When you shop at the store you help support good food for the whole neighborhood.  No tobacco, no alcohol sold at the store.  Also features some products from local vendors who regularly go to the Downtown Farmer’s Market.  Operated by Mission Waco Mission World. Some of the produce is grown next door at Urban REAP (Renewable Energy and Agriculture Project).  Urban REAP also sells seasonal plants for your garden like flowers, tomatoes, peppers, herbs, as well as high grade compost created on site with an impressive composting machine that eats 170 lbs of food waste a day.
  • Baked Bliss Baking Company - 1114 N. 15th Street.   Our favorite local commercial bakery has their own food truck -- so stop by to have some pastries, crustless quiche, kolaches, lunch box specials, cookies/cupcakes, coffee or tea on their deck or get some to go.  All delicious!   They also take pre-orders if you have a special event.  Their custom cakes are the best around.  Gluten-free products available.  Closed Sunday/Monday.
  • Harp Design Company - 808 N. 15th Street.   .9 mile
  • El Charro Tapatio  - N. 17th & Waco Drive.  .4 mile     Authentic Mexican food.   Seating indoors or on the covered patio. 
  • Helados La Azteca #2  - Local ice cream shop with homemade popsicles, scoop ice cream, horchata and many other fresh fruit juice drinks, mangonado, etc.  (better prices than many other ice cream and popsicle places in town).  Typical flavors but also lots of unique flavors representing the Mexican heritage of the owners.  1500 Colcord Ave.  Corner of Colcord and N. 15th – across from D’s Mediterranean and World Cup Café.  Open 7 days a week – usually open til 10 or so at night.  Lalo’s Mexican Coffee Shop also open some hours.
  • Seley Park - Corner of N. 18th & Bosque Blvd.  .9 mile    Walking path, basketball, playground, gazebo, outdoor fitness equipment.

Baylor University   

  • Bookstore   2.1 miles    5th Street by the Bear Pit and Bill Daniel Student Center
  • McLane Stadium   2.5 miles     Great place for a walk when no events are there.  Good lighting at night, by the river, and beautiful sunset views of the new I-35 bridges.  Take a look at Touchdown Alley section and you can run out on the astroturf from the old Floyd Casey Stadium.    MLK Drive and I-35 North
  • Mayborn Museum   2.7 miles    Discovery Center for kids, museum, outdoor historic village, gift shop.    University Parks Drive – between Dutton Ave and Bagby
  • Athletic Venues including Ferrell Center (basketball, volleyball, acrobatics), and also stadiums for Baylor baseball, softball, tennis, and soccer    3.1 miles       LaSalle and University Parks Drive


Cameron Park

  • Zoo  2.3 miles    Cameron Park Zoo was recently recognized as one of the 50 best zoos in the United States.  Entrances are off of N. 4th Street or University Parks Drive.
  • Redwood Shelter, Pecan Bottoms, Disc Golf  2.9 miles.   There are about 20 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails in Cameron Park.  Let us know if you want suggestions of trail routes to match your desired pace/fitness level.     University Parks Drive and Herring Avenue.
  • Brazos Park East   3.7 miles.  Beautiful view of Cameron Park cliffs. Disc golf. Boat ramps.
  • Zoo Sculpture Art walk – Lots of interesting animal art sculptures along 1 mile of University Park Drive, from Washington Ave to the Zoo entrance.

North Waco and Lake Shore Drive Areas

West Waco

  • Guess Family Barbecue  1 mile. Their slogan is “old school Texas barbecue – the kind Jesus ate!”.  Featured in Texas Monthly.  Started as a food truck downtown.  Moved to new place Fall 2019.  2803 Franklin Ave.
  • Las Trancas Food Truck    - N. 25th & Waco Drive.  Good tacos, tortas, burritos.  Some covered seating by food truck.
  • Helados La Azteca   1.4 miles.   Original location of local ice cream shop with popsicles, horchata and other fruit juice drinks, etc.  (better prices than some other popsicle places in town).  Inside seating area.    Next to the casket store in the shopping center on Franklin Ave and 38th Street.   Also there’s a new 3rd location at 1412 N. Valley Mills Dr.
  • Mac House   1.4 miles.  Same owners as The Cheddar Box food truck at Magnolia Silos.  Drive through and small covered seating area outside. 3428 Franklin Ave.
  • Taqueria El Mexicano #9   3.4 miles.  Great local Mexican food – they have the delicious “authentic” Mexican (and also some tex-mex if you must have it).  Homemade flour tortillas.  1420 N. Valley Mills Drive.
  • Baris  3 miles.  Wonderful Italian food, pizza, rolls, etc.  904 N. Valley Mills Drive
  • Extraco Events Center  3.3 miles    On Bosque Blvd, between New Road and Lake Air Drive.  The big arena hosts rodeos, concerts and other major events.  The BASE is the new exhibit event center.   The venue also has buildings for horse and livestock shows.
  • Waco ISD Stadium  3.6 miles    Bagby and New Road
  • Nightlight Donuts and Coffee   4 miles.  New York style croissant donuts.  The classic glazed should definitely be on your list, and check out the seasonal options.  Waco Drive and Hwy 6.
  • Common Grounds and Slow-Rise Pizza.  5 miles.  Try the Choco Haze mocha.  Pizza sold by slice or pie.   Indoor and outdoor seating options.  7608 Woodway Drive.
  • Richland Mall  3.6 miles    Dillards, Dick’s Sporting Goods, etc.  Waco Drive and Hwy 6

East Waco 

  • Revival Eastside Eatery  2.2 miles   Texas-sourced and house-made salads, sandwiches, and burgers.  704 Elm Ave.
  • Texas State Technical College   8.7 miles
  • World Hunger Relief Inc.  8.9 miles     A Christian non-profit working farm that trains people in sustainable agriculture.  Watch for announcements about "farm days" and other events.  Also look for them at the weekly downtown farmer's market.   Spring Lake road off of Hwy 77-Business.

South Waco

  • Health Camp    2.3 miles.   Get the Super Burger (like a homemade "Big Mac").  Shakes. It's been around for generations of Wacoans and visitors to enjoy.   Nothing on the menu is healthy - - the name probably came from the early days when dairy (milkshakes) was promoted as part of a healthy diet.  On “The Circle” by Magnolia Table.
  • George’s Restaurant   1.3 miles.   American food.  Try the Crazy Wings appetizer – chicken and jalapeno cheese wrapped with bacon.  1925 Speight.
  • Cajun Craft    1.1 miles.   Good Cajun food.  Corner of Clay and S. 11th.
  • Tejun The Texas Cajun    4.5 miles.  Good Cajun food.  711 N. Robinson Drive, Robinson TX
  • Oakwood Cemetary  2.8 miles.  Beautiful old trees and lots of Waco and Texas history.  2124 S. 5th Street.
  • Top Golf, Cinemark Theaters, etc.    4 miles.   Located along I-35 access road between the New Road and Hwy 6 exits.   Next to Central Texas Market Place.
  • Central Texas Market Place  4.6 miles     I-35 South and Hwy 6.  Big box retailers, restaurants, etc.

Day Trips

  • Gatesville   38 miles (with McGregor and Crawford on the way).   Gatesville has a beautiful historic court house, and the delightful Coryell County Museum featuring an extensive spur collection and lots of other interesting items from this rural Texas community.   Stop for some great barbecue at J&M's Hill Country BBQ or Bare Bones, or Mexican food at El Tapitio's.   There's also a drive-in movie theater.  
  • Clifton   35 miles
  • Salado   50 miles
  • Glen Rose    70 miles
  • Fort Worth    90 miles
  • Dallas   97 miles
  • Austin    101 miles

Ways to Connect with Waco community during your visit

  • Waco Walks - monthly casual walks around Waco, usually accompanied by historical narrative provided by walk organizer.  Check facebook page or website for upcoming walks.
  • Waco Striders Running Club - weekly group run details, plus list of local 5Ks and other races
  • Waco Bicycle Club - weekly group ride details.
  • Critical Mass Waco -- on the last Friday evening of the month, groups of bike riders gather in cities across the world for a Critical Mass ride.  Waco's group meets at the intersection of 3rd St and Austin Ave by the City Hall fountain.  The ride usually lasts about an hour and is a casual pace so that you can have conversations with fellow riders.  Bring your own bike, water and helmet.
  • Act Locally Waco - non-profit website with lots and lots of info on upcoming activities and non-profits in Waco area.  NEW - one of the ways that ALW raises funds is through donations for a very informative history tour of Waco.   Visit their website to see when the next one is scheduled.
  • Learn about Other Side of Waco (reservations required)
  • Playground tour of Waco:  Cameron Park has 3 playgrounds (Pecan Bottoms, Cameron Park Clubhouse, Northern Gateway), Bledsoe-Miller Recreation Center, Mountainview Elementary (park behind it) are just a few.
  • Live Music Calendar for Central Texas