A weekend from Dallas is as easy as a road trip to these destinations

Dallas is a great base for a weekend getaway, and these Texas destinations are only a short drive for a relaxing vacation.

Weeks of work are notorious for creating daydreams of getaways. Lazy Sundays go by faster than expected, and by Monday morning people are already planning elaborate trips to keep them away from the unfortunate obligations of adulthood. The modern metropolis of Dallas is full of things to do for entertainment, but even life in a big city can start to get repetitive after someone has visited their hangout for the twentieth time this year.

Sometimes all a person needs to recharge is a quick weekend somewhere that offers something a little different than what they’re used to at home. Dallas residents can breathe a sigh of relief as this list covers all the bases, with a few road trip destinations for nature lovers, small town lovers, and city dwellers.

ten Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about seven hours and forty-five minutes

The long drive from Dallas to the Guadalupe Mountains is a perfect way to absorb the therapeutic effects of the open road. Once travelers arrive, they will have ample room to stretch their legs. Numerous trails take hikers through canyons, to mountain tops, and through salt basin dunes. It’s the perfect escape for campers wanting to dust their tents and unplug in a secluded location. There are also a few Airbnbs nearby if travelers prefer a hot shower after a long, rough day.

9 Fredericksburg, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about four hours and fifteen minutes

Fredericksburg offers the best opportunity for people looking for a little friendly human interaction in a small town. This is a particularly great place for couples who want a bit of romance, as Fredericksburg is known for its fine cuisine and vineyards. There are several accommodation options to suit all kinds of travel budgets, all with high ratings from previous customers. Visitors can spend the whole day browsing the charming boutiques filled with local craftsmanship or soaking up the area’s German history at the Pioneer Museum.

Related: These Texas Hill Country Chalets Combine Majestic Views With Rustic Charm

8 Austin, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about three and a half hours

Austin is the place to go for people who appreciate a laid-back city experience. Outdoor activities abound at Zilker Park, a large recreation area with hiking and biking trails. In a city known for its love of music, patrons can bet they’ll hear musicians performing in the streets, live music from the various restaurants, and concerts spread across many venues. The progressive city in the south also has an affinity for art, so even walking the sidewalks is a pleasant experience. Colorful murals decorate the buildings and several museums exhibit art in all its forms.

7 Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico

  • Travel time from Dallas: About half past seven

What better way to escape all of this than to literally go underground? Located in the Chihuahuan Desert, Carlsbad Caverns National Park has over 100 caves. The cave of the same name is the largest of all, and tourists head to the park for an unforgettable underground experience. The stalactites cling like ice cubes to the cave ceiling and glow in the dimly lit large room.

Above ground, trails crisscross the desert landscape, offering glimpses of hundreds of plant and animal species. Primitive camping is available with a permit in the backcountry, allowing restless city dwellers to see the night sky light up like never before at home.

6 Branson, Missouri

  • Travel time from Dallas: about half past seven

Due to its drastically different atmosphere, it may seem like Branson is millions of miles from Dallas. The journey takes less than a traditional working day, and the small town offers attractions that appeal to all manner of travelers. Branson sits in the heart of the scenic Ozarks, which means a nature getaway is only a short drive away. The historic downtown area offers an abundance of live entertainment to suit diverse tastes and guests of all ages. Wherever a person chooses to go, they are sure to encounter Ozark Mountain hospitality, which might cause them to consider a more permanent arrangement.

5 Tulsa, Oklahoma

  • Travel time from Dallas: about four and a half hours

Known for its unique art deco architecture, Tulsa is arguably Oklahoma’s coolest place. The city experienced a construction boom in the 20th century which allowed an array of eye-catching buildings to breathe new life into the city. The Blue Dome Entertainment District contains nine full blocks of restaurants, shops, bars, and nightlife spots guaranteed to make the spirits forget Monday. Guests can spend half a day wandering around prestigious museums and the other half indulging in some hard-earned luxury therapy in Utica Square, Tulsa’s upscale shopping district.

Related: Is There Something To Do In Oklahoma? For starters, these attractions are worth a visit

4 Colorado Bend State Park, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about three and a half hours

Located in Hill Country, Colorado Bend State Park offers lush natural scenery perfect for weekend meditation. The 70-foot-high, spring-fed Gorman Falls spills over a rock formation dotted with flora, so green guests will wonder if they’re still in Texas. Guests can cool off in one of the spring-fed swimming holes after hiking a trail or two for a rejuvenating hike through the forest. To immerse themselves in the intimate experience with nature, visitors can choose from an abundance of Airbnb cabins at different prices, equipped with everything a person needs to stay comfortable.

3 Lockhart, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about three and a half hours

Sometimes all a person wants to do is eat, and there are plenty of options to fill the stomachs of visitors to Lockhart, considered by many to be the barbecue capital of Texas. Some of the oldest barbecue restaurants still exist in the small town, serving a variety of smoked meats, comforting sides, and delicious desserts. Weekends can get moving at Lockhart State Park, lose track of time at the Southwest Museum of Clocks and Watches, or walk around town to admire 19th-century architecture.

2 New Orleans, Louisiana

  • Travel time from Dallas: about half past seven

While it’s easy to get lost in New Orleans for an entire week, a few days is more than enough to get a taste of all that The Big Easy has to offer. Flower boxes adorn the windows of the historic French Quarter, and knowledgeable guides are ready to take guests on tours that showcase the city’s best architecture. Guests can enjoy a cup of chicory roasted coffee and a donut at the famous Café Du Monde, soak up the soothing sounds of jazz at the Maison Bourbon Jazz Club and savor Creole cuisine at Muriel’s.

1 Caddo Lake State Park, Texas

  • Travel time from Dallas: about two and a half hours

Kayaking down the winding passages of Lake Caddo is like choosing your own adventure novel. Draped in raw Spanish moss, the bald cypress trees rise out of the swamp and demand admiration. Alligators loom in the murky water, and hundreds of species of birds fly from branch to branch, singing in the crisp Texas air. There are over 40 campsites for those who wish to pitch a tent and several screened shelters and historic cabins for guests who prefer to listen to the sounds of the marshes from the safety of a walled enclosure.

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