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Trip to Texas in 2016
Old 09-20-2015, 10:45 AM   #1
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Trip to Texas in 2016

DW and I are planning a trip to Texas next year. We are planning to drive from North Carolina with stops in Georgia and New Orleans. We would like suggestions as to where we should go. I don't relish the thought of spending a hot summer driving in Texas so we expect that either spring or fall would be better.


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Old 09-20-2015, 11:21 AM   #2
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It is a big state and you don't mention what activities you would enjoy.

Personally, I love Big Bend National park, but it is in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 09-20-2015, 11:42 AM   #3
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I love Big Bend National park, but it is in the middle of nowhere.
"Middle of nowhere"? But, but...it's relatively close to Langtry.
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Old 09-20-2015, 11:52 AM   #4
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DW is interested in seeing the "sights". I am looking forward to seeing the Riverwalk in Austin, seeing the ports and the historical roots of the state. We enjoy museums and parks, and are not afraid of hiking.


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Old 09-20-2015, 12:18 PM   #5
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Isn't riverwalk in San Antonio - or do both cities have a riverwalk.
I enjoyed the Alamo tour on my one trip to Texas.

I am not an expert on anything Texan... but I'm sure others will chime in. It's a HUGE state - it would be hard to combine a visit to El Paso and a visit to Houston in the same week.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:18 PM   #6
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I am not familiar with an Austin river walk, but the San Antonio river walk has been around for a long time, worth seeing, good mexican food, and the Alamo is right there.

Problem with seeing Texas is size! it will take all day to get from Beaumont to El Paso, and the two are like being in different countries. Beaumont is old south and El Paso old west.

Given what you have said, I would pick San Antonio. You can't get anymore Texas history than the Alamo. I would also look at the hill country to the west and north.
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:21 PM   #7
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DW is interested in seeing the "sights". I am looking forward to seeing the Riverwalk in Austin, seeing the ports and the historical roots of the state. We enjoy museums and parks, and are not afraid of hiking.


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San Antonio has a nice Riverwalk. I wasn't aware Austin had one, so if it does, I just learned something new. 😀 You can see the Alamo, too, of course, in San Antone.

Fredericksburg is a pretty town to visit. It's not too far from Austin for a nice day trip.

Don't forget Luling and/or Lockhart for BBQ. My mouth is watering just thinking of that.

Some kinfolk from CA visited Houston and enjoyed the Space Center there. My dad also always took us out to the battleship Texas in dry dock near the San Jacinto battlefield and monument. It is a ship that served in WWI and WWII, if I recall rightly, and it was interesting for me to see the kind of ship my dad served on.


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Old 09-20-2015, 12:25 PM   #8
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Oops, not Austin for the Riverwalk. Shows how little I know about the state!


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Old 09-20-2015, 12:28 PM   #9
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DW and I are planning a trip to Texas next year. We are planning to drive from North Carolina with stops in Georgia and New Orleans. We would like suggestions as to where we should go. I don't relish the thought of spending a hot summer driving in Texas so we expect that either spring or fall would be better.


Have the day you deserve, and let Karma sort it out.
Texas is a great road trip opportunity, one that I hope to take in the next couple of years. We planned one 2 years ago but had to cancel at the last minute due to family issues. Here's that thread, many good suggestions Possible Houston Road Trip A few members even offered to get together (and I never thanked them for that ).
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Old 09-20-2015, 12:34 PM   #10
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Austin Town Lake SUP. Just came back.

There is a new board walk on the Lake, too.
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Old 09-20-2015, 03:58 PM   #11
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All of the major Texas cities have a distinct personality, and there is plenty to see in any of them to keep you busy for a week or more. And there is just about any type of countryside you might like - pine forests, lakes, rolling hills, desert, sand dunes, mountains, rivers, beach...you get the picture. So I concur with the advice above to decide what you are most interested in seeing and plan the trip around that.

Also, although the Riverwalk is in San Antonio, there actually is a project underway to create a similar area in Austin. It's been talked about for a decade, work started 4 years ago, and no one knows when it will be finished. https://www.wallercreek.org
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Old 09-20-2015, 04:02 PM   #12
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DW is interested in seeing the "sights". I am looking forward to seeing the Riverwalk in Austin, seeing the ports and the historical roots of the state. We enjoy museums and parks, and are not afraid of hiking.


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San Antonio.

The best time to visit the Texas hill country (both Austin and San Antonio are at the eastern else of it) is in the Spring when the wild flowers blanket the country side. End of March/early April. It's supposed to be a wet winter, so it might be a good spring for wildflowers.
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Old 09-20-2015, 06:01 PM   #13
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Another area in the Hill Country is Lost Maples State Park. Goof for a fall visit.

Lost Maples State Natural Area — Texas Parks & Wildlife Department
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Old 09-20-2015, 07:25 PM   #14
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A few sites with some great road trips in Texas.

Texas Bucket List – Texas Bucket List

The Daytripper | with Chet Garner

Texas Country Reporter
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Old 09-20-2015, 08:28 PM   #15
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Bunch of thumbs up for the SA River Walk.
I'd recommend you pick a hotel on or very near the river. I say this for a couple of reasons. You will avoid traffic hassles and you can walk to almost everything worth seeing, and that is a lot. If you can schedule your stop for a week day you'll find far fewer of those pesky tourists. Nothing quite like a long walk along the river when it is cool and not crowded.
Another stop that hasn't been mentioned is Gruene (Green)Texas. If you take the back roads getting there you will love the scenery. To me, the highlight of Gruene is the Grist Mill Restaurant. Fantastic chow with some really neat places to sit outside above the river.
Hopefully those Texas spiders, snakes and scorpions will not bother you..
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Old 09-20-2015, 09:42 PM   #16
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I have lived in both Austin and San Antonio years ago. The River Walk in SA is great for an afternoon or evening stroll and there are some good Mexican restaurants. Nearby El Mercado is also good for a few hours of exploring followed by a good meal. There is often Mexican polka dancing in the square there on weekend and festival nights. The Alamo is also right in the same area by the River walk and it is interesting to see, though I understand it has become much more commercial than it was thirty years ago. +1 on going in the spring as the Hill Country is gorgeous at that time. Lots of cool riverbeds with limestone slides and great swimming holes if you do some research. Hamilton pool just outside of Austin is a must see in my book. Try the Dabbs Railroad hotel in Llano. This was just a glimmer when I lived in the area but I know it's a cool building and a pretty spot and I've heard it is reasonably priced and welcoming now. Austin does have a bike trail along the river and Barton Creek is a cool park with the town swimming hole. Enchanted Rock is another great natural wonder midway between Austin and San Antonio. LBJ ranch is interesting. And of course lots of great music and fabulous food in Austin. People are super friendly in Texas and you may get invited to a barbecue while standing in line at the grocery store or while pumping gas. Enjoy your trip! I can't wait until I have the time to go back and make the rounds!
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Old 09-21-2015, 05:33 AM   #17
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I lived in the Hill Country for 6.5 years, and there aren't many places prettier or more comfortable weather-wise for about 6 weeks in, say, late March and April. Highs will usually be in the 70s (and low 80s toward the end of that period), the wildflowers are in bloom all over the place. Of course if you drive around on weekends you'll be contending with a massive amount of bikers on the road as well.
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Old 09-21-2015, 06:57 AM   #18
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Thanks for the ideas! We are visiting my DM this week (and a football game in Ann Arbor on Saturday!), and we will be planning the trip. I guess that taking the trip in the spring is the consensus. Are there any events that we shouldn't miss in the spring? I am looking forward to seeing the wildflowers and SA.

Three years ago we were passing through Kansas City, and asked where to go for the best BBQ for lunch. Three locals debated for a few minutes and settled on a place in Amarillo! I am drooling at the thought of the great beef BBQ in Texas as well as the other great eats.


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Old 09-21-2015, 07:11 AM   #19
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+1 on the Grist Mill restaurant. Great food and even better atmosphere. Also, if you go to Gruene, don't miss Gruene Hall, a great place to take in some live Texas-style country music.


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Old 09-21-2015, 07:59 AM   #20
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I am not familiar with an Austin river walk, but the San Antonio river walk has been around for a long time, worth seeing, good mexican food, and the Alamo is right there.

Problem with seeing Texas is size! it will take all day to get from Beaumont to El Paso, and the two are like being in different countries. Beaumont is old south and El Paso old west.

Given what you have said, I would pick San Antonio. You can't get anymore Texas history than the Alamo. I would also look at the hill country to the west and north.
+1. Do San Antonio and get a good idea of Texas culture and history. And it's an easy drive to Austin if you have the time.

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