From the thrilling rides and the laughter at the midway to the soft serve ice cream, corn dogs, and saltwater taffy, there’s a reason why families flock to beaches boasting wooden planks and non-stop excitement, year after year. Take a stroll through the gallery below to discover our picks for best boardwalks to visit with kids of any age.

Kemah Boardwalk – Kemah, Tx

The Kemah Boardwalk is a seaside destination just 20 miles from downtown Houston featuring 15 boardwalk attractions for thrill-seekers of all ages. The small set will love the Wonder Wheel (a mini-ferris wheel), the double-decker carousel, and the C.P. Huntington Train, while older kids will beg for second rounds on the Boardwalk Bullet; Kemah’s one-of-a-kind wooden coaster, and the Flare, a 75-feet tall, looping, light up coaster. You can browse locally owned stores and businesses in the South End Historic District; the train tables in The Toy Crossing are a huge hit with track-happy tykes. There are street performers, dancing water fountains, an aquarium featuring stingray and rainforest exhibits, the Rock the Dock summer concert series, firework Fridays, and more.

Where to eat: Tiny tourists will enjoy the large fish tanks at The Aquarium, and the icy treats at Sweet Scoops are worth the wait.

Insider Tip: Monday is Kid Crazy Day; there are discounted food and all-day ride pass deals for small visitors.

Online: kemahboardwalk.com

photo: courtesy Landry’s, Inc.

Which boardwalk is your favorite? Share with us in a Comment below. 

—Gabby Cullen