Vacation & Travel Ideas for Families in Texas
“Everything is bigger in Texas.”
True that! My family has lived in Plano, TX for 10 years now and people we meet on travels often ask what’s there to do in Texas, where should they go and which cities are our favorites.
There are so many places to visit in Texas. That’s why this Texas Travel Guide really helps families find ideas for things to do in Texas. Also, they will add… “It’s BIG in Texas, right?”
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It’s become so common to hear these questions especially as the Texas economy is growing so fast, a lot of people are moving here, and it is looking like Texas is well-positioned for a better future.
The population has grown tremendously in the past years, and we can see it even on our Plano Moms page in which almost every week new, and some soon to be, residents are asking for suggestions and recommendations.
Plano Moms would like to share with you our Texas Travel Guide which we thought would help you plan your holiday getaway (or familiarization trip) if you are up to exploring the Lone Star State.
There are a lot of the areas that are worth exploring, but here are 10 places to start:
Are you looking for something different?
Then Marfa is the perfect place for you. In the past years, this small city has been favorites to many A-listers and celebrities. You may wonder why and so here is the answer. Well-known as an art hub, Marfa, is the home to the famous Chinati Foundation/La Fundación Chinati contemporary art museum, where art installations are scattered all over this desert town, including the famous Prada Marfa. When artist Donald Judd created this “museum”, he definitely put Marfa on the art-world map.
This place is cool, Boho, beautiful, unique and mystical.
If you dared to drive the 8.5 hours from the DFW area, then we suggest you might as well visit the Big Bend National Park, which is about another 1.5 hrs away.
We recommend you consider purchasing a Tadi Brothers Driving Safety Camera before your journey to provide essential cameras to protect your family.
Big Bend National Park
Nothing fits the bill of “everything is bigger in Texas” more than the Big Bend National Park and boy, it’s big and then some!
This park is a national treasure hidden in the southwest corner of Texas which offers visitors such beautiful scenic vistas, lots of hiking trail options, and the Rio Grande River for all sort of water activities like float trips, kayaking, canoeing, etc.
For more Parks to visit, we have 32 great ideas for you!
Moreover, your night will never be the same again; the park has some of the darkest night sky which is perfect for stargazing. Although this park is tucked in the far most southwest corner of Texas and quite challenging to get to but it is going to be worth your travel time.
Palo Duro Canyon State Park
“Palo Duro Canyon has been described as a 100-mile smile across the Texas Panhandle”. It is the 2nd largest canyon in America and one of America’s most magnificent scenic attractions, located just 30 minutes from downtown Amarillo.
Outdoor enthusiasts should make a way to Palo Duro Canyon State Park. Its stunning trails through million-year-old caprock formations is one of the most beautiful places you see in all of Texas.
Start planning a family weekend of hiking, horseback riding, biking, camping or some relaxing.
There are so much to love about Austin, the capital of Texas! It is not just voted Texan’s most favorite city but for the second year in a row, it has been named the best place to live in the United States, according to U.S. News and World Report.
There are so many things to do in this city for the whole family.
Whether you are into a good nightlife scene; or think yourself an outdoor enthusiast, a fan of arts or architecture, or if you are a foodie; Austin has something for you. We have some great deals for fun Tours to book ahead and save money!
Visit… it is wonderful!
Ok, not everything is big in Texas ….Founded in 1832, Bastrop is known as the most historic small town in Texas, in which the earliest known origins were as a meeting ground for the Native American Indians.
Its natural beauty will draw you close to this town, and a walk through the historic downtown is like stepping back in time. According to Bastrop Economic Development Corporation (EDC), the number of buildings listed in the National Register of Historic Places has earned Bastrop the title “Most Historic Small Town in Texas.”
The Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort is just a few miles away which makes it a perfect place to stay while in the area. However, there are other hotels, vacation rentals and Bed & Breakfast places available in the area.
A must-visit city in Texas, I should say! Located in the heart of Texas Hill Country, Fredericksburg is a charming small city that will make you wonder if you are still in Texas. Its German heritage is reflected today in its food, some architecture, and traditions.
The vineyards and wineries are abundant in the Texas Hill Country, each of them offers different unique flavors – from sweet whites to deep reds.
Also, the trip is not complete without checking out the 100+ boutiques and art galleries lining in its historic Main Street and beyond. For the history buffs, visit the National Museum of the Pacific War where you can learn more about the war and Fleet Admiral Nimitz, who was from the area.
Close by, you should check out Schlitterbahn, the world’s biggest Waterpark (with various locations around Texas)
Heading to Central and South Texas?
Save money on access to all these venues with a Pogo Pass
San Antonio is known to most people as the home of the Alamo, the River Walk and the San Antonio River. You can explore the rich history of this city from the earliest Spanish explorations to Mexican rule and the Texas Republic.
Moreover, you will be delighted of the Riverwalk, what a fun place to dine, shop and to just have a good time. This place is sure what makes San Antonio so unique!
If you are looking for some delicious Tex-Mex food, then you are in for a treat because as what many say, San Antonio takes Tex-Mex so seriously.
Try out some Tex-Mex street food at the nearby La Gloria in which was apparently created to celebrate the rich and delicious street foods from interior Mexico.
It specializes in tacos al pastor, ceviches, and tlayudas, a sort of open-faced taco covered with refried beans, meat, cheese, and more. La Gloria means “the heavens” and they do wish that you experience heaven on earth through their food. Come and take, errr, get it.
Corpus Christi, located on the Gulf of Mexico, is a beautiful beach destination which is a short drive from the DFW area. The Padre Island National Seashore is home to migratory birds and endangered Kemp’s ridley sea turtles.
It is the largest undeveloped barrier island in the world; the Seashore is more than 130,000 acres of dunes, grasslands, and beaches. So, if you wanted to get back into nature, this place is waiting for you.
South Padre Island
Are you missing the island life?
Just right off the southern tip of Texas, on the Gulf of Mexico, is a beautiful tropical paradise, South Padre Island! There is something magical about being by the beach, walking onto the soft white sand, smell the gentle ocean breeze, hear the sound of waves and watching a beautiful sunset. It is pure bliss!
We have 45 Lakes and Beaches you can drive to from DFW ideas for you!
A trip to Paris, TX is an easy day trip from DFW area. Go and see the 65-foot-tall Eiffel Tower replica topped with a big cowboy hat, it is one of those instagrammable places, so you got to have that perfect shot.
You can also walk around the Historic Downtown Paris and the town square where you see the Culbertson Fountain and take a tour of the historic Sam Bell Maxey House.
Closer to home also, we have ideas for you to explore Fort Worth or in Dallas itself, great places to check out including the Sixth Floor Museum and Dealey Plaza. There are so many great ideas for Texas Travel