The 20 Best Texas Road Trips You Need to Take Before You Die

Obviously there's plenty to see across the great state of Texas. No matter what direction you go in, you're bound to find something quirky or that takes your breath away. We picked 20 spots for you to check out before you die (though there's plenty more – you've got time). Heck, make this your bucket list for the year. Start planning your next adventure.
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Port Isabel Lighthouse
421 E. Queen Isabel Blvd. in Lighthouse Square, Port Isabel, South Padre Island, (956) 943-2262, tpwd.texas.gov
Take a break from binge drinking at South Padre and pay a quick visit to Port Isabel. Of the 16 lighthouses originally built on the Texas coast, Port Isabel is the one you can still visit today. Climb 50 feet above ground and snap some photos from the top of this charming lighthouse. PS – you can even exchange your wedding vows here.
Photo via Instagram / texashighways
Port Isabel Lighthouse
421 E. Queen Isabel Blvd. in Lighthouse Square, Port Isabel, South Padre Island, (956) 943-2262, tpwd.texas.gov
Take a break from binge drinking at South Padre and pay a quick visit to Port Isabel. Of the 16 lighthouses originally built on the Texas coast, Port Isabel is the one you can still visit today. Climb 50 feet above ground and snap some photos from the top of this charming lighthouse. PS – you can even exchange your wedding vows here.
Photo via Instagram / texashighways
The Museum of Fine Arts Houston
1001 Bissonnet St, Houston, mfah.org
Whether you need a new art scene to explore or just want a reason to spend some time in H-Town, here you go. This museum offers a number of installations and exhibitions that takes multiple cultures into consideration. Oh, and the aesthetic here is gorgeous. See for yourself.
Photo via Instagram / kurrently.kendall
The Museum of Fine Arts Houston
1001 Bissonnet St, Houston, mfah.org
Whether you need a new art scene to explore or just want a reason to spend some time in H-Town, here you go. This museum offers a number of installations and exhibitions that takes multiple cultures into consideration. Oh, and the aesthetic here is gorgeous. See for yourself.
Photo via Instagram / kurrently.kendall
Dinosaur Valley State Park
1629 Park Rd 59, Glen Rose, (254) 897-4588, tpwd.texas.gov
You’ll be able to do all the normal stuff a Texas state park offers, but also – wait for it – check out some very-real dinosaur tracks. While the tracks aren’t always visible (depedent on wet conditons, weather), the bed of the Paluxy River hold tracks left in the mud by dinosaurs (it was probably at the end of the ocean at the time).
Photo via Instagram / ellenlouisecox
Dinosaur Valley State Park
1629 Park Rd 59, Glen Rose, (254) 897-4588, tpwd.texas.gov
You’ll be able to do all the normal stuff a Texas state park offers, but also – wait for it – check out some very-real dinosaur tracks. While the tracks aren’t always visible (depedent on wet conditons, weather), the bed of the Paluxy River hold tracks left in the mud by dinosaurs (it was probably at the end of the ocean at the time).
Photo via Instagram / ellenlouisecox
Caddo Lake State Park
245 Park Rd 2, Karnack, (903) 679-3351, tpwd.texas.gov
Spend some time exploring the bayous, sloughs and ponds at Caddo Lake and make your way through the thick moss of cypress trees. Hike, paddle, fish, there’s plenty to do here. Just beware of alligators!
Photo via Instagram / ripaboo
Caddo Lake State Park
245 Park Rd 2, Karnack, (903) 679-3351, tpwd.texas.gov
Spend some time exploring the bayous, sloughs and ponds at Caddo Lake and make your way through the thick moss of cypress trees. Hike, paddle, fish, there’s plenty to do here. Just beware of alligators!
Photo via Instagram / ripaboo
Lubbock Lake Historic Landmark
2401 Landmark Dr, Lubbock, (806) 742-1116
Home to a pretty important archaelogical site, Lubbock Lake is preserved and protected by the state and federal agencies. Why? There’s evidence of ancient people and animals once living here – as far back as 12,000 years ago. Pretty cool! Monument your visit by snapping goofy pics with the giant elephant outside the museum.
Photo via Instagram / tom_athy
Lubbock Lake Historic Landmark
2401 Landmark Dr, Lubbock, (806) 742-1116
Home to a pretty important archaelogical site, Lubbock Lake is preserved and protected by the state and federal agencies. Why? There’s evidence of ancient people and animals once living here – as far back as 12,000 years ago. Pretty cool! Monument your visit by snapping goofy pics with the giant elephant outside the museum.
Photo via Instagram / tom_athy
Hippie Hollow
7000 Comanche Trail, Austin, (512) 854-7275, traviscountytx.gov
Head up to Austin and let your hippie self let loose. Leave the kids at grandma’s house and hit up this nude beach, just don’t be cochino. At the advice of the hollow’s website, “Remember that nudity is acceptable, lewd behavior is not.”
Photo via Instagram / themusicinyourhead
Hippie Hollow
7000 Comanche Trail, Austin, (512) 854-7275, traviscountytx.gov
Head up to Austin and let your hippie self let loose. Leave the kids at grandma’s house and hit up this nude beach, just don’t be cochino. At the advice of the hollow’s website, “Remember that nudity is acceptable, lewd behavior is not.”
Photo via Instagram / themusicinyourhead
Blaffer Art Museum
4173 Elgin St, Houston, (713) 743-9521, blafferartmuseum.org
Part of the University of Houston, Blaffer brings Texans contemporary art through exhibitions, publications and public programs that are all free and open to the public. Plus, the art here is phenomenal.
Photo via Instagram / joofie
Blaffer Art Museum
4173 Elgin St, Houston, (713) 743-9521, blafferartmuseum.org
Part of the University of Houston, Blaffer brings Texans contemporary art through exhibitions, publications and public programs that are all free and open to the public. Plus, the art here is phenomenal.
Photo via Instagram / joofie
Tiger Creek Wildlife Refuge
17552 FM 14, Tyler, (903) 858-1008
Love cats? You’ll find some big ones here at the 150-acre refuge. Home to more than 40 rescued tigers and other wild cats that have been abused, neglected or displaced, Tiger Creek lets you learn more about these majestic animals up close – safely, of course.
Photo via Instagram / tiger_creek
Tiger Creek Wildlife Refuge
17552 FM 14, Tyler, (903) 858-1008
Love cats? You’ll find some big ones here at the 150-acre refuge. Home to more than 40 rescued tigers and other wild cats that have been abused, neglected or displaced, Tiger Creek lets you learn more about these majestic animals up close – safely, of course.
Photo via Instagram / tiger_creek
Texas State Bison Herd
850 Caprock Canyon Park Road, Quitaque, (806) 455-1492, tpwd.texas.gov
Get in touch with the American West and visit the American buffalo, aka the bison. At Caprock Canyon State Park, you’ll find a herd of bison that roams free. Be sure to take plenty of pictures.
Photo via Instagram / jankaye
Texas State Bison Herd
850 Caprock Canyon Park Road, Quitaque, (806) 455-1492, tpwd.texas.gov
Get in touch with the American West and visit the American buffalo, aka the bison. At Caprock Canyon State Park, you’ll find a herd of bison that roams free. Be sure to take plenty of pictures.
Photo via Instagram / jankaye
Big Thicket National Preserve
FM 420, Kountze, (409) 951-6800
We’ve all been to Garner, Lost Maples and Enchanted Rock since they’re so close to San Antonio, but treat you and the fam (or crew) out to Kountze to take in Big Thicket National Preserve. Here you’ll be able to hike and paddle, and there’s special activities just for the kids.
Photo via Instagram / hayley___lou
Big Thicket National Preserve
FM 420, Kountze, (409) 951-6800
We’ve all been to Garner, Lost Maples and Enchanted Rock since they’re so close to San Antonio, but treat you and the fam (or crew) out to Kountze to take in Big Thicket National Preserve. Here you’ll be able to hike and paddle, and there’s special activities just for the kids.
Photo via Instagram / hayley___lou