If we forget the shivering polar-bear land of Alaska up north, we’re left with Texas claiming the throne for sheer size. You can bet your bottom dollar that the yee-hawwin, rope-slingin’, cowboy-boot-wearin’ Lone Star State has a personality to match.
There’s so much to see and experience in America’s deep south, where supposedly, everything’s bigger. Unfortunately, our prospective holiday isn’t any bigger, at just ten days, but hey, we’ll make the most of it.
So buckle up, grab your biggest brimmed hat, and let's head down to Texas, a place that is truly beyond compare. Read on to find out the perfect 10-day Texas itinerary.
10 Day 1 - Hello, Houston!
With a population of over two million, Houston earns the title as the biggest city in Texas. Therefore, the odds are that if you’re flying into the Lone Star state, George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston will be the cheapest option.
The first day will be an easy-going one, considering that you’ll want to recover from the journey and recharge your batteries. So, let’s kick off the Texas experience by stretching the legs and enjoying the outdoors in Hermann Park. The 445-acre park, located smack bang in the middle of downtown, offers an outdoor theatre, the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center, the McGovern Centennial Gardens, the Hermann Park Railroad, and the opportunity to paddle boat on the lake (providing it’s warm enough).
9 Day 2 - Houston, we have a space center
Our first day was relatively slow-paced, so now that we’re fully refreshed, it’s time to pick it up a notch. After a true Southern-style breakfast at The Breakfast Klub, head over to the Space Center Houston - the official visitor’s experience for the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston's outskirts.
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Once you’ve satisfied your intergalactic tourist cravings, see if you can catch a ballgame at Minute Maid Park. If there’s nothing on, then the Downtown Aquarium is certainly worth a visit. Aside from the massive underwater displays, it also boasts a Ferris wheel, an aquatic carousel, and the Shark Voyage adventure train.
8 Day 3 - Vroom vroom! Houston to Galveston
We’re waking up in Houston, but after breakfast at the Common Bond Cafe & Bakery we’re getting out of there and starting our on-road journey. Depending on traffic, the drive from Downtown Houston to Galveston Island should take about an hour. Upon arrival, stretch the legs with a walk down Pleasure Pier, which offers plenty of restaurants and a handful of amusement rides.
After lunch, get a refreshing breath of fresh air (especially after Houston) with a wander through the Galveston Island State Park, home to hiking trails and fishing spots. If there’s still time, take a quick dip at one of the island’s beaches before turning in for the evening.
7 Day 4 - Vroom vroom again! Galveston to San Antonio
We’re up bright and early on day four to make the few-hour drive over to San Antonio! Along the way, make a quick stop at The Original Kountry Bakery for a sweet snack, or the City Market in Luling for an authentic Texas-style BBQ. Once you’ve arrived and settled into your San Antonia pad, take a stroll down the famous River Walk before grabbing some Texas quail for dinner (if you’re feeling adventurous) at Bella on the River.
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To finish off the evening, take a Ghost Tour before a quick nightcap at Bar 1919, a dimly lit speakeasy.
6 Day 5 - Theme park time
No time for sleep-ins, because today we’re heading to the hair-raising, adrenaline-pumping Six Flags Fiesta Texas, on the northwestern outskirts of San Antonio. The amusement park, which is part of the Six Flags chain that spans a number of locations across the nation. Fiesta doesn’t feel too overcrowded, there are plenty of food options (although you could bring your own snacks if you want to save a few bucks), the prices are decent, and many rate the park well above the neighboring Sea World. Kids had a great time.
Once you’re all tuckered out, it’s time to head back downtown and try the Mexican dishes at Chisme before calling it a night.
5 Day 6 - Vroom vroom! San Antonio to Austin
We’re leaving San Antonio and heading north, but not before a quick stop at the Alamo in the morning. It might be overrated, but as the epicenter of the city, it’d almost be rude not to at least give it a chance. After you’ve quenched your thirst for local history, it’s time to get back in the car and make the trip up to Austin, which takes about an hour and a half.
Once you’re all set up and checked in to your accommodation, it’s time to leave the bags (and the car) behind and find a local walking tour. There are plenty of Insta-worthy murals dotted through the city just waiting to be found, and the walking guides know exactly where. Finish the day off with some live music, a bite to eat and a drink at one of the many talked-about bars.
4 Day 7 - Gettin' weird in Austin
Start off the day with the most important daily meal in the form of breakfast tacos! Some of the notorious local spots are Torchy's girl, Taco Mex, or Papalote, so take your pick of those or go off-grid and stumble across your own. Afterward, work off the calories with a swim in the beautiful natural swimming grotto, Hamilton Pool.
If the schedule lines up, try to get to a tailgate party before checking out the insanity that is a University of Texas home football game. If not, then check out one of the latest blockbusters at Quentin Tarantino’s favorite movie theatre, the Alamo Drafthouse, or party it up on Sixth Street.
3 Day 8 - Big D, here we come!
Assuming you didn’t get too naughty on Sixth Street last night, we’re waking up bright and early and making the journey further north to Dallas. However, not before a slight detour to the beautiful, natural rock formations of the Longhorn Caverns. After taking an abundance of pictures and making all of our IG followers jealous, we’re back in the car for a few hours until we reach the bustling Big D.
By the time we get to Dallas it’ll likely be hungry-time, so head to the Bishop Arts District, take a stroll on foot, and find some tucker. Veracruz Café is great for Tex-Mex, while Emporium Pies is renowned for its - yep, you guessed it - pies.
2 Day 9 - Gettin' touristy in Fort Worth
We’ll spend the second last day of our Texan journey checking out the Fort Worth, Dallas’ sister city that is an interwoven blend of historic Western (like, yeee-haw Western) with modernity. Take your pick of plenty of activities, including the Fort Worth Zoo or Fort Worth Water Gardens. Once you’ve had your touristy afternoon fix, check out a few stops along the Fort Worth Ale Trail, and knock down one (or two, or seven) locally brewed craft beers.
Grab some late-night grub and Steel City Pops or Velvet Taco before heading back to Dallas to hit the hay.
1 Day 10 - Later gaters, it's been real!
It’s our final day (too bad, so sad), which means that we’ll probably be flying out of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. If you were able to score a late afternoon or evening flight, then lucky you - that means there’s another day left to see the sights.
If the opportunity is there, try to get some tickets to one of Dallas’ sports team’s games - take your pick from the Dallas Cowboys (NFL), Dallas Mavericks (NBA), or Texas Rangers (MLB). Failing that, pop into the gorgeous Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, or head to the top of Reunion Tower for some of the best views of the city.