Nothing beats a good pair of cowboy boots, history and Southern Charm especially if you’re in the Lone Star State! Whether you’re seeking a long stay winter escape, warm weather, breath taking beaches, a getaway with girlfriends or a fun family adventure, Texas has that and so much more!
When planning a vacation I always check out the tourism board website and see what they have to offer. Texas Tourism has an amazing visitor’s guide you can download and start making your Texas bucket list! I have a few things in mind when it comes to travel and Texas so here’s my story:
Ever since I was a little girl I’ve dreamt of going to Texas. I imagined riding horses on a cattle drive, eating out of the back of a chuck wagon and relaxing under the stars after a hard days work. But I didn’t dream of all work and no play! With rodeos, beaches and shopping, the possibilities of a vacation in Texas are endless.
I wouldn’t call myself a history buff but visiting historic sites and learning about the rich heritage and legends makes my heart happy. It feels like I’m right where I’m supposed to be. I knew that when I started planning a trip to Texas that history and adventure would be a large part of that.
To start off a little geography lesson:
Texas is divided into 7 geographic regions with widely different landscapes such as beaches, forest, rolling hills and canyons. It boasts over 600 miles of coastline with some fabulous beaches. If you love outdoor adventures the possibilities are endless with hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, fishing and so much more.
A few spots on my Texas bucket list include:
J. GRIFFIS SMITH/TXDOT
We’ve all seen movies with the infamous Alamo but do we know the real history? For over 400 years the former mission now known as the Alamo has been a pillar in history existing under six flags of independent nations. It has also served as a garrison for five different armies. Dating back to 1699 the Alamo is steeped in heritage and history.
Hidden Cove Park and Marina
Hidden Cove Park boasts over 470 acres of outdoor recreational activities including:
Just to name a few! They are also a full service marina and have many perfect picnic spots and nature watching lookouts. For a small entry fee you can have hours of fun exploring Hidden Cove and all it has to offer or turn it into an overnight adventure and rent a cabin or pitch a tent!
Varner Hogg Plantation State Historic Site
Dating back to the 1830’s the Varner Hogg Plantation is on the top of my Texas bucket list! Whether you like to explore on your own or take a guided tour this historic site is rich in history. Guided tours with a step back in time last about an hour and then you’re free to explore! The plantation grounds are full of areas of interest including:
- Original Outbuildings
- Pecan Orchards
- The Governor’s Bathtub
- Patton’s Cemetery
- Sugarcane Mill Ruins
Self-guided tours are also possible and you will be provided with a map to wander at leisure and maybe even stop for a picnic!
Big Bend Ranch State Park
When it comes to adventure of course I have to put Texas’ biggest state park on my list! With 238 miles of multi-use trails there is so much to explore and do I could spend my whole holiday here with:
- Mountain biking
- Horseback riding
Or explore 70 miles of unmaintained dirt roads in high-clearance four-wheel drive vehicles, now we’re talking excitement! But the adventure doesn’t stop there. You can also camp in the State Park. Don’t forget to stop for a dip at the world’s largest spring-fed swimming pool at Balmorhea State Park on your way in or out!
How did I find all of this out? The tourism board has made planning vacations quick and easy with their personalized passport. Browse their site and take a peek at everything they have to offer from places to stay to ranches and rodeos with everything in between.
Trust me you’ll find something you and your family will LOVE to do! With so many family-friendly activities your next family vacation to Texas will be the perfect getaway.