You know what they say “Everything is Bigger In Texas” and that seems to ring true when it comes to exciting places to visit. From bold outdoor spaces to unique and quirky indoor places the state seems to span all interests making hard to determine just what happens to be the best of the best of the Lone Star State.
With the assistance of an online poll for my followers, however I was able to narrow down the vast options that the 268 thousand square mile state has to offer and compiled a list of the best of the best in the great state of Texas for those wanting to explore on a day-cation or a vacation.
1 - BIG BEND NATIONAL PARK -
For the outdoor adventure seekers, Big Bend goes without question as the best outdoor adventure space in the state. Offering river trips, hiking, birding, fishing, horseback riding, stargazing and so many more ranger led activities this park will take you breath away as you arrive. The park’s towering mountains and low laying desert areas will take you back to a time long passed as they tell the story of dinosaurs through fossils and walk you though the history of Texas through their interactive exhibits.
2 - FLOAT -
Summer in Texas can get more than a little hot to say the least. You will find that as the temperatures continue to rise that the rivers start to sing their welcoming song. From late spring to late summer rivers like the Guadalupe and Brazos become the hot spot to cool off. Campground and cabins open up and river rafts seem to take over small riverfront towns and the late teens to early 40s crowd set up shop for a grand ol’ party that doesn’t seem to stop.
3 - HAMILTON POOL-
Speaking of heat, Hamilton Pool is one of the bluest places you can check out in the state. While it does require reservations to enter you won’t want to miss this popular stop in Dripping Springs. Featuring a 50 foot waterfall which you can walk behind, large swimming area and shade from the summer heat, this spot has become one of the most notorious summer spots for a day-cation.
4 - JACOBS WELL -
Wimberly is one of those places that you can go to check out something a bit unique in Jacobs Well. With the largest underwater cave system known in the state this place is one for experienced divers to thrive. But what about the average person like you and me? Well its another fun summer site for hitting the water! Cliff jumping is available into a deep water natural pool, waters run cooler (68 degrees year round) and outdoor activities such as hiking and biking are everywhere.
5 - REMEMBER THE ALAMO -
It is no surprise that Texas is proud of its rich history, in fact one of the most traveled sites in the state has roots in just that, the Alamo. Located in San Antonio along with several historic missions the once fort which helped blaze a trail for Texas Independence now is one of the most instagramed landmarks you will find in Texas, boy how times have changed!! Tours of the facility are held daily as well as historic ceremonies which are held here during various times of the year.
6 - LUCKENBACK -
You don’t have to be a country music fan to know about Luckenback and its interesting history, but it might help a little. Some of country musics rebels Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson put this spot on the map and ever since it has been a booming stop for musicians and their writ of passage of performing on the small stages in its bounds. In fact, you can stop in here at just about any time and catch an act from someone who has more musical talent in their pinkies than most of us do in our entire body.
7 - HOUSTON WE HAVE A PROBLEM -
As a kid a lot of people dream of what it would be like to go to Space Camp or fly in a space ship, well Houston has made the idea of this a bit more real with their Space Center Houston and museum. Offering programs for the entire family, site tours and special events with real astronauts you will get a first hand look at what it would be like to live those dreams.
8 - THIRD COAST -
You always hear people talk about being on the East or West Coast, but Texas is home of the Third Coast and there are beaches which span for miles to prove it. I suggest a trip to Padre Island National Seashore where you can enjoy 60 miles of unimproved coastline and get the real beach experience with family. Or for those which want to be a bit less removed from civilization check out South Padre Island where hotels and shops line the boardwalks and create a fun and festive environment for just about every member of the family.
9 - KEEP AUSTIN WIERD -
From Bat Caves to 6th Street there are to many things in the capital city to even begin to explain. You can travel the numerous trails and outdoor spaces, roam though museums such as Museum of Weird or Elisabet New Museum, or check out some of the strange art which seems to be nestled around every corner. This place is WEIRD but we love every minute of it!!
10 - FORT WORTH STOCKYARDS -
No list of Texas could be complete without a Guinness World Record and that belongs to Fort Worth and the World’s Largest Honky Tonk, Billy Bobs. But beyond the bar rests daily cattle drives, some of the best bbq in the state and a wood panel maze which will leave your family smiling all day. Fort Worth allows you to step back into history and live the life of a cowboy for the day with history mingling with modern day, country music, shops and so much more! Make this one a day-cation or a vacation there is plenty to see and do.
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