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Top 10 Places to Visit in Texas

Big Bend National Park
Photograph Flickr by @Michael, via Wikimedia Commons

#1 Big Bend National Park

Big Bend National Park located in West Texas protects is a desert national park. It features desert, canyons, mountain range, and river. The Rio Grande river passing from the park serves as an international boundary between Mexico and the United States. The park is known for Chisos Mountains range that is the only mountain range in the United States fully contained within a national park. The 7,825 ft Emory Peak is the highest point of Chisos Mountain range located within Big Bend National Park. Park activities include hiking, mountain biking, camping, backpacking. horseback riding, bird watching, wildlifeviewing, stargazing, and scenic drives. Rio Grande river offers recreation activities such as raft, canoe, and kayak. Things to see include Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive, Chisos Basin, Santa Elena Canyon, and Rio Grande Village. Best hiking trails for a closer look at Big Bend's mountain landscapes include Window Trail, Lost Mine Trail, trails to Boot Canyon, Emory Peak and the South Rim.

San Antonio
Photograph by Bigroger27509, via Wikimedia Commons

#2 San Antonio

San Antonio, the 2nd largest city of Texas is known for it's rich history. The City of San Antonio is one of the oldest Spanish settlements in Texas. The city is also known for it's important role in Battle of the Alamo and Texas independence. San Antonio is one of the most visited city of Texas. The city has five 18th century Spanish missions including The Alamo, and San Antonio Missions National Historical Park preserving four Spanish frontier missions. These missions are: Mission Concepcion, Mission San Jose, Mission San Juan, and Mission Espada. Downtown San Antonio is also popular in tourist for famous structures, attractions, and the River Walk. The city is home to many top amusement parks including Six Flags Fiesta Texas, Morgan's Wonderland, and SeaWorld.

Photograph by Michael Barera, via Wikimedia Commons

#3 Austin

Austin, the capital city of Texas is known for live music venues, scenic outdoor places, and museums. Austin is the popular tourist attraction of Texas Hill Country. The city is home to numerous lakes and rivers offering water recreation such as Lady Bird Lake, Lake Travis, Barton Springs Pool, McKinney Falls, and Colorado River. Downtown Austin is home to top attractions including Texas Capitol, Bob Bullock Museum, and Zilker Metropolitan Park. The city is known for hosting and celebrating many annual cultural events such as Austin Reggae Festival, Austin Pride Festival & Parade, Kite Festival, and Texas Craft Brewers Festival. Best Museums in Austin include Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, Thinkery, The Blanton Museum of Art, and Umlauf Sculpture Garden & Museum.

South Padre Island
Photograph by Shannon247, via Wikimedia Commons

#4 South Padre Island

South Padre Island located on the coastal tip of Texas is a popular family vacation destination. The island is also popular in students for spring break fun. South Padre Island offer many water sport recreation activities. Things to do on South Padre Island include kiteboarding, dolphin watches, horseback riding on the beach, and birdwatching. Other attractions on South Padre Island are Island Adventure Park and Schlitterbahn Waterpark. With warm temperatures all year long, South Padre Island attracts family and students throughout year.

Photograph by Another Believer, via Wikimedia Commons

#5 Houston

Located in Southeast Texas near Gulf of Mexico, Houston is the 4th populous city of United States. Greater Houston metropolitan area is known for many top attractions including Sugar Land, The Woodlands, and Galveston. The Houston Theater District located in Downtown Houston is home to nine performing arts center. Downtown Houston is home to two major league sports venues: Minute Maid Park and Toyota center. The city of Houston is known for it's Museum District and outdoor recreation. Houston museum district has 19 museums including The Houston Museum of Natural Science, The Children's Museum, The Health Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts. Other tourist attractions and family fun places to visit include Downtown Aquarium, Hermann Park, Houston Zoo, Space Center Houston, Discovery Green, and Memorial Park.
THINGS TO DO Houston Hotels

Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Photograph by CarlCarlsonIV, via Wikimedia Commons

#6 Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Guadalupe Mountains National Park located east of El Paso is known for Guadalupe Peak, the highest point in Texas at 8,751 feet. The national park features over 80 miles of hiking trails. The trail to the summit of Guadalupe Peak is 8.5 mile round trip hike and it takes from six to eight hours round trip for average hiker. Other popular places to see include McKittrick Canyon, Frijole Ranch, Salt Basin Dunes, Dog Canyon, and Williams Ranch. Things to do include hiking, camping, bird watching, stargazing, and wildlife viewing. The park includes two campgrounds: Pine Springs at the base of the mountain and Dog Canyon located on the north side of the park. Pine Springs Visitor Center is the park's main visitor center and open daily. McKittrick Canyon Visitor Center is located at the mouth of McKittrick Canyon.

Photograph by Matthew T Rader, via Wikimedia Commons

#7 Galveston

Galveston is a popular coastal city of Southeast Texas. The island is known for it's sandy beaches and historically significant collections of 19th-century buildings. Galveston is home to over 60 historical structures and many Victorian era buildings such as The Bishop's Palace, Grand 1894 Opera House, and Moody Mansion. The city's major tourist attractions include Historic Pleasure Pier, Schlitterbahn Waterpark, and Moody Garden. Best beaches in Galveston are Stewart Beach, East Beach, and area along Galveston Island State Park. Best museums to see in Galveston include The Bryan Museum, Texas Seaport Museum, Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig & Museum and Galveston Railroad Museum.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park
Photograph by Sefor4, via Wikimedia Commons

#8 Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Known as "The Grand Canyon of Texas", Palo Duro Canyon is the second largest canyon in the United States. It is located in the Texas Panhandle near Amarillo. The 120 miles long canyon is known for multicolored layers of rock and steep mesa walls. The canyon is 800 feet deep with up to 1,000 ft in some locations. The state park features 30 miles of hiking trails. Lighthouse Rock formation is the main attraction of the park. The 3-mile long Lighthouse Trail is a popular trail that leads to the Lighthouse. Park activities include hiking, biking, horseback riding, and camping. Best trails to do in Palo Duro Canyon State Park include The Lighthouse Trail, The CCC Trail, and Rock Garden Trail.

Photograph by Lombana, via Wikimedia Commons

#9 Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg located in the Texas Hill Country is known for unique antique shops, wineries, live music, and scenic drives. The historical small town is known as the home of Texas German. Located just hour drive from both Austin and San Antonio makes it popular destination of the Hill Country. Fredericksburg is home to many popular attractions including National Museum of the Pacific War, Grape Creek Vineyards, Pioneer Museum, and Enchanted Rock State Natural Area.

Franklin Mountains State Park
Photograph by Larry D. Moore, via Wikimedia Commons

#10 Franklin Mountains State Park

Franklin Mountains State Park located 15 minutes from El Paso is part of the Chihuahuan Desert. The 27,000 acres park offers over 100 miles of hiking trail. Franklin Mountains are 23 miles long and stretch from El Paso into New Mexico. Highest peak is North Franklin Mountain at 7,192 feet. Rock Climbing is permitted at the designated area in McKelligon Canyon. The state park offers many recreation activities including hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, camping, and picnicking.

Texas Places to Visit by Interest

  1. Texas Amusement Parks
  2. Texas Aquariums
  3. Texas Austin Area State Parks
  4. Texas Caverns
  5. Texas Houston Area State Parks
  6. Texas Water Parks

Top 10 Best Cities to Visit in Texas

  1. San Antonio
  2. Austin
  3. Houston
  4. Dallas
  5. Galveston
  6. Fredericksburg
  7. Corpus Christi
  8. El Paso
  9. Fort Worth
  10. Amarillo

Best State Parks to Visit in Texas