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The Lone Star state is the second largest in the United States. With a wealth of culture, and natural attractions this a place to be treasured. It is hard to narrow the choices down to 10 of our favorite, but we think you’ll enjoy the list we’ve created.
Since it would be impossible to include all of the amazing wonders that Texas has to offer, we chose a variety of attractions based on their natural beauty, accessibility, and overall “wow” factor. You may have a few favorite spots of your own, but here are a few of ours!
Be sure to check out some of these places if you haven’t already, because sometimes it can be fun to play tourist in our own home-state. Happy adventuring!
Famous for its three wondrous glass pyramids, the Moody Gardens and Aquarium is one of Galveston’s most important attractions. The most popular pyramid is the Aquarium, one of the largest in Texas and home to more marine life than you can imagine! The Rainforest Pyramid is home to free-roaming monkeys, sloths, and an abundance of birds. Lastly, the Discovery Pyramid has tons of hands-on science exhibits, perfect for young learners! There is also a water park, Palm Beach on the grounds filled with aquatic fun!
The USS Lexington is one of the largest surviving vessels to have served in WWII. This aircraft carrier is just a couple minutes walk from the center of Corpus Christi, and now serves as navel museum. Visitors get a first-hand look at vintage aircraft, and a chance to visit the bridge and crew quarters. If you’re feeling really adventurous, opt for the 4-hour Hard Hat tour that takes you into the very depths of the ship. Note: Not for the faint of heart of claustrophobic. Small spaces below!
Just a short drive south of Corpus Christi, Padre Island stretches 70 miles end-to-end. It also happens to be the longest undeveloped barrier island! With more than 130,000 acres of beach, dunes, and grassland habitats this island is home to migratory birds and rare sea turtles. If you are looking for a beach getaway, Padre Island is just for you!
Big Bend National Park is one of the most popular wilderness areas in Texas, located in the southwestern part of the state on the frontier of Mexico. Guess where it gets it’s name? It is responsible for the “great bend” in the Rio Grande! The park itself is so large its made up of three different zones: the valley of the Rio Grande, the desolate landscape of the Chihuahuan Desert, and the Chisos Mountains. The park is home to more than 400 species of birds, including golden eagles and roadrunners, along with more than 1,100 species of plants.
On the outskirts of San Antonio, The Alamo is one of the most important sites in America. It pays such a huge role in our history! Established in 1781, it became famous decades later during the Texan War of Independence, after a small force barricaded inside the fort up against an overwhelming Mexican army. “Remember the Alamo!”
This National Park is home to some of the very best desert scenery in the United States. Guadalupe Mountains National Park is approximately 100 miles west of El Paso, and is home to some of the best wildlife out there, including golden eagles. El Capitan and Guadalupe Peak ( highest elevation in Texas) is a great spot to take in all the natural beauty this state has to offer. If you’re looking for a good hike or bike ride, this is your spot!
The exciting River Walk runs through the heart of San Antonio. With an abundance of shopping, dining, hotels, and tourist attractions it is no wonder this place is a hot spot for visitors! The walk was built below street level, providing a long pedestrian walkway that hugs the San Antonio river. Day and night, this spot is popular among tourist and locals alike!
The Natural Bridge Caverns are simply stunning. Part of the vast underground network consisting of more than 10,000 different formations. It is the largest cave network in the U.S. that is accessible to the public, and also provides themed tours, treetop climbing adventures across ropeways, platforms, and zip lines. This attraction is for the real adventurer. So grab your flashlight and get ready!
Founded in 1866, The Stockyards Historic District is Fort Worth’s biggest attraction. The area took its name from the cattle industry, which is why you’ll frequently see cattle making their way down the roads. These historic stockyards have been transformed into an amazing place to spend time. With rodeos, concerts, and western-themed shopping – this attraction is nothing short of fun!
The Texas State Capitol was built in 1888 and happens to be considered one of the finest state legislatures in the U.S. Right in the heart of Austin’s downtown area, this historic landmark isn’t just for school field trips. Located on 22-acres, this 308 feet tall landmark is a must-see. With guided tours available throughout the interior of the building, we recommend this attraction to brush up on your Texas history! It is truly a place of historical significance, and should be treated as such.