Image via Flickr by Broken Piggy Bank
Dallas, Texas, where everything is bigger, is a fun getaway full of cowboy hats, Tex-Mex cuisine, and avid football fans. But what Dallas tourists don’t realize is that there is much more to Texas in the smaller cities, such as Laredo, Corpus Christi, and Fredericksburg. These charming areas, where tourists can find the true heart of Texas, are not to be missed.
Nature lovers will jump at the chance to explore Laredo’s trails, which offer native plants and local species of birds for their viewing pleasure. To get to Laredo from Dallas, of course you can fly, but the best way is the scenic route. To enjoy the view and avoid getting stuck behind the wheel, travelers can organize a coach bus trip via Busbud, which will make few stops and provide several departure times throughout the day. Busbud can also help travelers who only speak Spanish thanks to its work with Turimex Internacional, a Mexican-based bus operator.
Laredo is also known for its amazing Mexican cuisine as well as for offering a smorgasbord of seafood from the Gulf of Mexico. From La Roca Seafood to Pollo Palenque, foodies will have their fill with all of Laredo’s specialties. Shopping is also big in Laredo, with the best found on San Bernardo Avenue, where many stores specialize in Mexican goods.
A gorgeous beach town far out of Dallas’s reach, Corpus Christi is all about white sand and warm waters. Besides lying on a beach towel, visitors will find many more activities on shore, including swimming with manta rays, horseback riding, and watching baby sea turtles ride the waves into the gulf during Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle Release.
During the summer, foodies will enjoy A La Mano, where Corpus Christi’s Downtown Seawall hosts nine food trucks catering various specialties from the area. The city also hosts an outdoor movie once a month during the summer at the Water Gardens, where attendees will find even more food trucks and drinks.
A hidden gem that’s growing thanks to recent influxes of tourists, Fredericksburg is home to many festivals, antique shops, museums, and art galleries. It’s the perfect town to get lost in for a long weekend. From the Crawfish Festival in May to Night in Old Fredericksburg in July, tourists will rarely find a weekend that’s not full of fun events. Wine lovers will enjoy visits to the surrounding wineries, and those seeking food can indulge in local luxury chocolates, area cheeses, and high-quality meats at gourmet markets.
Fredericksburg is also known for its famous scenic drives through neighboring towns and remote areas, where tourists can enjoy nature hikes and picnics. One of the most interesting destinations in the area is the bat cave in Old Tunnel State Park — particularly at night, when 3 million bats fly out of the abandoned railroad tunnel in an aerial stampede.
A visit to Dallas is an experience, but roadtripping via bus to enjoy Texas’s beautiful countryside on the way to surrounding towns is a real adventure!