While Houston is amazing with its laid-back yet cosmopolitan vibe, getting away once in a while makes you feel so much fresher. Texas has many weekend getaways to offer and what better way for a weekend getaway than a true blue road trip? Don’t just look for places to drive to around Houston when you can plan a longer trip! For those of you wanting a short retreat from everyday life and to unwind and play in the lap of nature, you’re in for a treat for the combination of wetland, bayou, and prairie. The forest ecosystems in the areas around the city have given rise to several protected nature parks which are worth a visit and for those of you who would rather enjoy a culturally oriented trip, there are several small and big cities around Houston that host an array of art, historical and science museums. Rent a camper rental or an amazing RV and map out your route. Check out these road trips from Houston, Texas.
1. Huntsville State Park
Huntsville State Park, which is situated in Walker County, is perfect for outdoorsy travelers. It features gorgeous landscapes surrounded by lush pine trees. Here, you can rent a canoe to explore the lovely lake or even enjoy walking and hiking on the trails on the property. You can also go camping and fishing here. There is a designated area for swimming in case you wish to enjoy a refreshing experience on a sunny day.
Huntsville State Park
Travel time: 1 hour
Travel distance: 65 miles (105 kilometers)
Seguin is a lovely city in Guadalupe County that offers plenty of family-friendly establishments as well as nature-filled destinations. If you are a wine enthusiast, you can definitely have a great time visiting Blue Lotus Winery, where you can sample several local wines as well as meads.
Lake Placid is a wonderful attraction for all sorts of water-related activities, such as swimming, boating, and fishing. There is also an amusement park with a water park, perfect for those traveling with kids.
Travel time: 2 hours 50 minutes
Travel distance: 162 miles (261 kilometers)
3. Sam Houston National Forest
If you are seeking a great road trip destination from Texas, Sam Houston National Forest is less than an hour away and is great for nature enthusiasts. During your visit, you can enjoy hiking through the trails on the premises while admiring the quiet forest views, with Lone Star Hiking Trail being the most popular. If you wish to stay for the night, you can also go camping here. There are canoes and paddleboats available for rent if you wish to explore the lake.
Sam Houston National Forest
Travel time: 1 hour
Travel distance: 58 miles (93 kilometers)
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4. Brenham, Texas
Situated in the southeast Texas, Brenham is a beautiful city worth visiting. To explore the rich past of the city, you can head to Brenham Heritage Museum during your trip. For some unwinding with friends, Home Sweet Farm Market & Biergarten is the place to be, which offers numerous selections of craft beer and local delicacies. Families can check out City of Brenham - Hohlt Park, where there are plenty of sports courts to have some fun with your kids.
Travel time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Travel distance: 76 miles (122 kilometers)
If you’re looking for road trip ideas from Houston, why not head to Denton? Spend the day picnicking, hiking, watching some armadillos or check out the Center for Visual Arts that houses local artist works that are worthy of a major museum, or play a hand at the beautiful Lantana Golf Course. The Dallas Arboretum has been listed among the top arboretums in the world so make sure you don’t miss out on that. In the evening, head over to the courthouse square and just enjoy amidst the bustling crowd.
Travel time: 4 hours
Travel distance: 250 miles (402 kilometers)
Ice storms at Sandia Peak. Photo credit: Sandia Peak Ski & TramwayPosted by Visit Albuquerque on Thursday, 3 December 2015
Planning the perfect driving trip from Houston? With near-perfect weather year-round, this could be your go-to trip in any season. New Mexico’s largest city, Burque, is bike-friendly and is home to some heavenly Mexican food. Drive across the rumble strip on Route 66 at the right speed to hear it play “America the Beautiful”, go fishing at Tingley beach, catch the birds eye view from the Sandia Peak tramway or experience the adrenaline rush at Cliff’s Amusement Park, with the New Mexico rattler which has been named among the top 25 roller coasters in the world.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Travel time: 13 hours
Travel distance: 888 miles (1500 kilometers)
Also See: 32 Best Things do in and around Houston
The weather looks cloudy so check out the changes to our weekend events: Cowboy Coffee is on! Stop in tomorrow morning...Posted by Inks Lake State Park - Texas Parks and Wildlife on Thursday, 6 December 2018
Probably the most overlooked of the attractions near Houston, this place is the ideal space to chill. With perfect weather, it is much quieter and less crowded versus Dripping Springs, Fredericksburg and the likes and is replete with hiking and fishing, kayaking and swimming in the Colorado River. The crystal clear lake, the homey lodges on one side, the breeze off the lake, the sizzling of the skillet at the campsite, a late night swimming opportunity and lots of more fun awaits you at Inks.
Campsites (ranging from basic to 50-amp RV sites) are available and so are nearby lake cabins to rent.
Inks Lake State Park
Travel time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Travel distance: 218 miles (350 kilometers)
Located in the heart of the Hill Country, just outside of Johnson City, Pedernales Falls State Park is one of the best places to drive to from Houston. The park has tons of acres of trees and water with ample opportunities for swimming, fishing, horseback riding, camping, hiking and more. The 5212-acre park (2100 hectare) is known for its spectacular hiking trails and swimming holes. It is also very popular for fishing with carp as large as 15 pounds. The Texas Parks and Wildlife provides an interactive mobile map on tpwd.texas.gov so you can plan your exploration and make sure you make the best of the excursion.
Pedernales Falls State Park
Travel time: 3 hours
Travel distance: 201 miles (323 kilometers)
Winner of the "Photo of the Week" contest! Larry Cominsky took this photo of two does that are looking very curiously at...Posted by Lake Mineral Wells State Park & Trailway - Texas Parks and Wildlife on Saturday, 8 December 2018
Lake Mineral Wells State Park is located along Rock Creek, a large tributary of the Brazos River. You could enjoy some camping, water recreation, hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, and horseback riding here. The trailway provides opportunities for hikers, bicyclists, and equestrians. Located on a railroad bed, the grades are very flat and the curves are very gentle, making it popular for trail users of all ages and abilities.
Lake Mineral Wells State Park
Travel time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Travel distance: 300 miles (482 kilometers)
Nice evening shot by @jontolar #shreveporttimesPosted by The Shreveport Times on Tuesday, 3 June 2014
The history of this place speaks volumes. It was the temporary Confederate capital during the civil war and the birthplace of Elvis and Lead Belley. It features an abundance of street and mountain biking trails and fabulous culinary options. Also, the city is an architectural marvel with several old homes and other buildings dating back as early as the mid-1800s and offering some fine examples of Victorian, Romanesque, Georgian Revival, Art Deco styles.
Travel time: 4 hours
Travel distance: 238 miles (383 kilometers)
Instagrammer pattywagon_ captured this shot of Santa Elena Canyon in Big Bend National Park. 😍Posted by Trips To Discover TX on Saturday, 1 October 2016
Possibly the quietest and least crowded National Park out there, it is the perfect place and is neither underrated nor overrated. With wide open spaces, great scenic drives and gorgeous trails, it is worth the long drive from Houston. The USD 25 per vehicle entry pass gives you seven days in the park. You could choose to camp or stay at the Chisos Mountain Lodge.
Big Bend National Park
Travel time: 8 hours 30 minutes
Travel distance: 603 miles (970 kilometers)
Located at the intersection of Texas, Mexico, and New Mexico, on the edge of the Rio Grande and just across the border from Chihuahua, El Paso is a city with a distinct flavor with the meeting of two different countries, two cultures and is a magnificent desert landscape. It also juxtaposes authentic Mexican culture with a growing hipster scene.
Hiking, rock climbing, camping opportunities in Franklin Mountains State Park, the Hueco Tanks Historic site that offers a geological look back in time, the theatrical performance of Viva El Paso, the Plaza Theatre are some musts when in El Paso. The city is good to visit any time of the year and is sunny more than 300 days per year, even the winters are mild with a temperature around 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Travel time: 10 hours 30 minutes
Travel distance: 740 miles (1190 kilometers)
This city comprises of quirky cocktail lounges, museums, an eclectic food scene, some really good live music at Stockyards and lots more. Also every Friday and Saturday night, year round, they hold a rodeo in an indoor ring in the Stockyards Coliseum. You could also visit the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens, this expansive delight showcases over 2500 plant species spread across 109 acres (44 hectares). The weather at Fort Worth is pretty mild. However, it does get freezing generally in December and January and really hot between July to August so these months could be avoided.
Travel time: 4 hours
Travel distance: 262 miles (421 kilometers)
Take in the gorgeous sunset over the gulf at this beachside park for some sun-n-sand delight and amazing camping experience. This getaway is an idyllic, peaceful island just a ferry ride away from the mainland. The 20-mile (32 kilometers) long paddling trail, deep sea fishing excursions might also interest you. However, do note that it may be pretty hot even at night. The park’s natural scenery includes interesting sand dunes, more than 400 species of birds, the Atlantic green sea turtles and 600 different types of fish roaming the waters of the bay inter alia. The best views of all this and more can be found along the padding trail. Also, there are many activities to take part in, including outdoor favorites like mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and picnicking.
Travel time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Travel distance: 230 miles (370 kilometers)
15. Port Aransas
One of the places to drive from Houston, Port Aransas is a city that boasts a well-known surfing and swimming beach, Port Aransas Beach. If you want to escape the concrete jungle and live the ideal island life for the weekend, key this destination in your GPS! There are plenty of beachfront vacation rentals so you can be up and lounging on the beach in minutes. Travelers who enjoy activities such as fishing, parasailing, and bird watching will love this place. For the best experience, plan your road trip between mid-March and early May as the weather tends to be more pleasant then.
Travel time: 3 hours 40 minutes
Travel distance: 210.5 miles (338.76 kilometers)
The highway beckons
Invite your friends, your family, or your partner and speed away to the weekend getaway of your choice! There are so many city museums and also beautiful small towns nearby that are worth visiting. Check out these best road trips from Houston, Texas, now.
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