While we have gone on adventures from coast to coast, and many places in between, we needed to save one just for the Lone Star State.
Though driving across Texas would be a vacation altogether, several of its big-city attractions are just a drive down the interstate away. For some of us, we think of cowboy hats and riding horses when we hear “Texas,” but the country’s second biggest state offers quite an eclectic mix of attractions that make for a quality overnight getaway.
Here are a couple of memorable vacations you can create in the Lone Star State in just 24 hours.
- How to create a memorable vacation in 24 hours – eastern U.S. edition
- How to create a memorable vacation in 24 hours – western U.S. edition
San Antonio to Austin
Fly to: San Antonio, Texas – Arrive by 6 p.m. CT
Activity: Stay at the Hotel Emma
Wake up and leave by 8 a.m. CT
Drive to: Austin, Texas (1 hour, 20 minute drive from San Antonio)
Activity: Take a stroll down South Congress Avenue (SoCo)
Fly out at 6 p.m. CT
Whether you decide to stay or sleep elsewhere, Hotel Emma is certainly a spot worth checking out at the historical Pearl District in San Antonio. Home to the Pearl Brewery until 2001, The Pearl District witnessed a recent revitalization into one of the trendiest spots in San Antonio.
An extension of the famous Riverwalk, Hotel Emma provides visitors with historical decadence through its fine dining, exquisite lounge area, and all-around luxurious setting. A variety of restaurants and shops surround the hotel, giving you everything you need for a fancy, chic overnight stay.
When your alarm clock sounds the following morning, walk over to Local Coffee for fuel on your road trip to Austin, Texas. When you arrive, make your way to one of the vibrant areas of the state capital in South Congress Avenue.
On just one corner of the stretch, you can grab a delicious slice of pizza at Home Slice, followed by dessert at Austin staple, Amy’s Ice Cream. Additionally, SoCo brings everything from live music, art galleries, bookstores, a TOMS shoe and coffee shop, and even a sci-fi/horror house of wax museum.
This adventure will take you to both ends of the spectrum, from feeling like Southern royalty in San Antonio to being the hippest kid in town in Austin.
Dallas to Fort Worth
Fly to: Dallas, Texas – Arrive by 7 p.m. CT
Activity: Dinner and fun in the Bishop Arts District
Wake up and leave by 8 a.m. CT
Drive to: Fort Worth, Texas (35-minute drive from Dallas)
Activity: Visit the Fort Worth Zoo
Fly out at 7 p.m. CT
Just south of the hustle and bustle of downtown Dallas is the fun and trendy area of Bishop Arts District.
Home to over 60 independent boutiques, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, theaters and art galleries, it provides the perfect setting and all you need for a fun night out. However you spend the evening, it is an absolute must to grab a spot in line for a slice of Emporium Pies and one of the best desserts in all of Dallas-Fort Worth.
Once you’re up and at it the next morning, you can make a quick commute over to one of the country’s premiere animal exhibits at the Fort Worth Zoo.
Founded in 1909, the Fort Worth Zoo has expanded and improved throughout its history, creating more exhibits and interactive experiences for visitors. Check out the latest addition to the venue, African Savanna, which sits on 10 acres of existing zoo land. The Savanna features an elevated deck for giraffe feeding as well as a hippo exhibit that includes above- and underwater viewings of the ferocious animal.
In addition to all the animals, the Fort Worth Zoo offers even more attractions, including a 25-foot Tasmanian Tower, and a Hurricane and Tornado Simulator where you can witness up close and personal the power of high-force winds.
By the end, you’ll head home having seen some of the best that DFW has to offer.