By Buddy Blouin

You’ll find over 686,000 lane miles throughout the Lone Star State, more than any other in the entire country. A Texas road trip isn’t just a grand adventure, it’s a right of passage. If you’re stationed at Fort Cavazos, Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA), Naval Air Station Corpus Christi, or any other military installation defending our nation, check out these great ideas to plan your ultimate road trip in Texas.

1. Catch Gulf Coast Vibes

Arguably the most underrated Texas road trip available, if you haven’t discovered the wonders of the Gulf Coast, now’s the perfect time to get acquainted.

The 367 miles of shoreline the Lone Star State has to offer is one of the more unique road trips Texas has to offer.

There are plenty of historical sites and entertaining attractions in Galveston, and if you must, Houston is just a short detour northwest.

However, the Gulf Coast is much more than just Moody Gardens and the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier, you will also get to know the beauty of the marshlands found along State Highway 35.

This provides you with plenty of stopping points on the beachside, fishing towns where fresh seafood and coastal recreation await.

Watch the Colorado River meet the Gulf in Matagorda, go fishing in Rockport, and relax while watching the surf in Port Aransas and South Padre Island.

2. Journey to Big Bend National Park

You can go there and back, make a loop, or add Big Bend National Park as a part of a larger trip. Either way, you’re going to have a great time.

The only reason all Texas road trips is because of how massive the state is.

You really can’t go wrong with a trip to Big Bend if you’re looking to get in some recreation, reconnect with nature, or simply get away from it all, or all of the above.

Hiking and birdwatching are huge draws to the region but simply driving through the Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive is a beautiful experience in its own right.

On the way there or on your trip back, you’ll also find attractions in Marfa, Texas, offering photo opportunities and if you’re chosen, maybe just maybe an out-of-this-world experience.

3. Head Out to Hill Country

Anytime you’re planning a road trip to Texas, you’ll want to remember the central part of the state filled with hidden gems and eclectic towns: Hill Country.

You’ll find a variety of cultures making up the region, including strong German influences in the wine-loving city of Fredericksburg.

The city is known for its many wine and beer tours along with taking in hikes at Enchanted Rock.

Hill Country also offers plenty of recreation along Lake Travis, which has just about anything you can think of.

There are several places to shop, listen to live music, zipline, golf, and dine, such as The Oasis on Lake Travis, all right on the water. This creates stunning views while offering something for everyone.

If you’re looking to get away from the hustle and bustle, Bandera, Texas, which has earned the nickname of the Cowboy Capital of the World, offers many trails throughout the Hill Country State Natural Area.

4. Amarillo By Morning

Bring your appetite and love for Americana to Amarillo where your Texas road trip can include riding on the infamous Route 66, taking on the 72 oz steak challenge at Big Texan Steak Ranch, and more.

You’ll find many museums in the region and other notable attractions, such as Cadillac Ranch, that provide a bit of an eclectic touch to the state’s panhandle.

If you want to see the Old West with modern amenities, taking this northern trek is a must-do for anyone looking to explore.

5. Let Your Tastebuds Be Your GPS

You have plenty of approaches for taking road trips in Texas, but the tastiest is by exploring the many BBQ joints found throughout the state.

Everyone is going to have their opinion on the best ‘que and there are several mom-and-pop shops you can find along the way. You can even use the great Texas BBQ map to plan your destinations.

However, to help you get started finding the perfect low, slow, delectable smokey meats matched with mouthwatering sides, here are a few popular options you’ll find in Texas:

  • Blood Bros. BBQ (Bellaire)
  • Brotherton’s Black Iron Barbecue (Pflugerville)
  • CorkScrew BBQ (Spring)
  • Franklin Barbecue (Austin)
  • Pinkerton's Barbecue (San Antonio)
  • Hutchins BBQ (McKinney)
  • Triple J's Smokehouse (Houston)
  • Wagon Wheel BBQ (Ozona)

Wherever you find yourself along your Texas road trip, you’ll be sure to have a full heart and belly every mile of the way.




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