It is understandable why so many travelers find the idea of prospect Texas intimidating: it’s big. No, that doesn’t quite cover it: it’s gigantic. It’s larger than France, for example, and is nearly three times as big as the UK. Staggeringly diverse and beautiful, the state offers its visitors a wide selection of thriving cities, small-town charm, and breathtaking nature. But where do you start, since it’s so darn big? Below, we take a look at some of the must-visit destinations in the lone star state, which will ensure that you’re able to get an accurate sense of the place. Get ready for an adventure; it’s going to be some ride.
If there is such a thing as a Texan city that is “Un-Texas,” then Austin is it. Despite being the state capital, this city does things differently. Indeed, the slogan of the town is even “Keep Austin Weird.” Young, vibrant, and home to many tech companies and live music venues, it is an important and arty city home to nearly one million people. You’ll enjoy seeing the city’s attractions, monuments, and parks, but the real pleasure is just being there and soaking up the atmosphere.
The Ultimate Texan City
When it comes to the biggest and most iconic Texan city, there are only two contenders: Houston and Dallas. Both are big, bold, and full of adventure. If you’re a keen shopper, head to Dallas: it is home to more shopping centers per capita than anywhere else in the states (and probably the world). In Houston, you’ll find art, museums, and the NASA Space Center. In both these cities, you’ll also find awesome food and plenty of larger than life characters!
Off the Beaten Track
Texas is famous for its big cities, but it’s in the smaller, off the beaten track areas that most people live, and where the state comes alive. You can visit Amarillo, a real Americana city, where you can do battle with a 72-ounce steak. Or you can check yourself into the Comfort Suites Waco, and visit a few of the state’s best – and unique – museums; the Dr. Pepper Museum and Texas Sports Hall of Fame are both located in Waco. If you’re a wine lover, head to Fredericksburg in Texas Hill Country, where there are around 45 vineyards.
The National Parks
People get so focused on the people and cities of Texas, that they forget that it’s an incredibly beautiful state: one of the most beautiful in the United States, in fact. Here you can explore the awe-inspiring Big Bend National Park (and adjoining Big Bend State Park), and the iconic Guadalupe Mountains national park. There’s also the Palo Duro Canyon state park, which acts as the Texas version of the Grand Canyon. Bring your hiking boots, fill up the car with gas, and you’ll have weeks and weeks of beauty to discover.
Finally, don’t forget to stop by San Antonio, which is visited by some 30 million visitors each year. An ever interesting and picturesque town, it’s worth a visit at one point of the year, but especially during April, when the ten-day ‘Fiesta’ festival is held.