To be honest, you guys, if I could step through a portal and enter a fantasy realm from one of my favorite movies … I’d do it! 😉 This is why I love going to the Texas Renaissance Festival every year. A visit to Ren Fest has you feeling completely transported to another time and place, where flower crowns are the rage and mead is available on every corner. It’s a place where everyone says “My Lord & My Lady” as if you were just hanging out at a tavern in Westeros. Today I’m sharing a peek into our yearly visit to the Texas Renaissance Festival & chatting about my favorite things to do & see when we visit!
Each year, we pick one of the themed weekends and my younger brother Tom flies down from Tennessee for the festival. Heroes & Villians was a new theme added just this year and we were so excited to be able to partake in the merriment.
Upon walking into the festival grounds, a band was playing the sounds of Star Wars to greet us. The new Heroes & Villians theme allows festival-goers to incorporate so many more of their favorite fantasy movies & stories into their day. You’ll definitely still spot your 15th-century costume-clad attendees, but you’re also more likely to see Darth Vader, Captain Hook & the entire Justice League of America amongst them.
A Visit to the “Shoppes”
One of my favorite things about Texas Ren Fest is waltzing in and out of all of the little shops scattered throughout the grounds. Vendors from all across the country post up for nine weekends in a row, selling unique trinkets you wouldn’t find anywhere else.
I’m thinking Annie desperately needs this dress for next year!
From fairy ears (& wings), to princess dresses, medieval style swords, Celtic rings & colorful gemstones, there is something in the shoppes of the Renaissance Festival for everyone!
I particularly loved the Claddagh rings and I am still kind of mad at myself for not getting one! Claddagh rings are traditional Irish rings that represent love, loyalty & friendship. Depending on the way you wear them, and the hand you put them on, it conveys to the word your current relationship status. I would wear mine on the left hand, with the heart pointed towards the wrist to show I was married. Not that the wedding ring I currently have doesn’t give it away or anything. 😉
A+ People Watching
The Renaissance Festival also has some of the BEST people watching you will ever see! Mostly because a vast majority of festival-goers are dressed to the nines in exquisite costumes that blow what you typically see on Halloween out of the water. In my opinion, the people watching is half the fun!
It’s Fun for Foodies Too!
Like most festivals, Texas Renaissance Festival offers a number of different foodie varieties of “XYZ on a stick.” Chocolate covered Cheesecake on a stick? Check! (It’s honestly the most amazing thing I’ve ever eaten in my life.) There are also quite a few different restaurants to choose from too! We had lunch at Arborhaus Family Bier Garten where we were serenaded by traditional German music under the trees. Lunch was rubens, bratwurst & sauerkraut!
Can I please go back in time so I can eat this chocoloate covered cheesecake once more!?
Making Time for Music
Another thing you don’t want to miss is all of the different live music. We love love love seeing the band Tartanic play their bagpipes and drums each year. They’ve been playing on the same little stage year after year for as long as we’ve been going. Nothing beats bagpipes & a glass of cider under the pine tress at Ren Fest!
Annie quite enjoyed the tunes herself too!! And honestly, bringing a baby with us to Renaissance Fest this year was as easy as pie! We just made sure to pack snacks, waters & bring along our BOB jogging stroller. It made strolling around the grassy terrain a breeze.
A musical group we always like to hear year after year is these two brothers who go by the Iron Hill Vagabonds. They play right outside of a little bar. So you can either sip on your morning coffee or your afternoon “ale” to their traditional Irish tunes!
Getting Lost & Exploring
You really never know what is going to be around the next corner at Tex Ren Fest. We stumbled upon a moving fountain (that sprayed nosy kiddos!), a man yelling all sorts of insults at a crowd that was fighting back with tomatoes, an archery range, a llama just wandering about, and even a costume contest with almost every hero & villain you’ve ever heard of joining in on the fun.
Shop the Look
While it’s almost impossible to fit everything the Texas Renaissance Festival has to offer in one day, we certainly tried. I think next year I’m going to plan on going to more than just one weekend. Annie will be a bit older too and that in and of itself will be more fun! Have you ever been to the Tex Ren Fest before? If so, what are your favorite parts of the festival!?