As one of the largest states, Texas is also home to some to some of the nation’s largest cities. Dallas and Houston may boast some of the state’s biggest attractions, but you can find all kinds of possibilities across this vast state, from the San Antonio River Walk to The Alamo, the larger than life natural beauty of Big Bend National Park to the historic Fort Worth Stockyards.
The Lone Star State is massive, from the flat plains of the Texas Panhandle to the sandy beaches of South Padre Island. The immense state is rich with history and a varied landscape, with plenty of small towns sprinkled in along the way.
Whether you’re in search of quick weekend getaway from one of its larger cities, or you’re visiting Texas from somewhere else, here’s our short list of Texas small towns you don’t want to miss:
The tiny town of Jefferson is a good place to step back into history. While Jefferson itself may not be large, the town is home to more than 70 historic landmarks. Closer to Shreveport, this eastern Texas town offers some quaint restaurants, antique shops and even its own general store.
If you’re big on adventures, consider making a weekend trip to Canyon. Found just south of Amarillo in the Panhandle, Canyon is home to a couple of museums, plus its less than 15 miles from the awe-inspiring landscape of Palo Duro Canyon. Formed millions of years ago by water and wind erosion, the canyon features miles upon miles of biking and hiking trails, horseback riding and other outdoor adventures.
Right off I-35 in between Waco and Austin emerges the charming artistry of Salado. The town may be small in size, but it’s a favorite of tourists, thanks to its eclectic and colorful shops selling everything from artwork to souvenirs. Learn to create your own artwork, sample some local cuisine or pay a visit to the rustic taproom of Salado’s own Barrow Brewing Company.
Port Isabel, TX
For an entirely different kind of weekend, head to extreme southern Texas and Port Isabel. The town’s historic lighthouse is open daily for self-guided tours, plus you can stop in the visitor’s center in the Keeper’s Cottage in Downtown Port Isabel. You don’t even have to walk far to sample some of the local shops, restaurants and galleries. You can also catch a charter fishing tour, head to one of the local museums, or hit the sand and water at one of the local beaches during your visit to picturesque Port Isabel.