7 Incredible Hidden Gems In Texas To Visit In 2024

7 Incredible Hidden Gems In Texas To Visit In 2024

Texas is one of the most attractive states for tourism in the U.S. And we’re not surprised. It has a rich historical and cultural heritage and is home to many urban hubs, such as Houston, Austin, and Dallas. It also boasts incredible nature and cuisine. And is renowned for exceptional hospitality as well as friendly locals.

For that reason, it can get pretty busy – and nobody wants to spend their vacation in crowds or queues. If you’re looking for somewhere off the beaten path, you came to the right place. In this article, you will find the 7 incredible hidden gems in Texas to visit in 2024.

Stonehenge II, Ingram

You’ve surely heard of Stonehenge. But have you heard of the Texan Stonehenge? This replica of the iconic stone formation sits near San Antonio and was built as an art project, and it shows how the English Stonehenge might have looked without erosion and weather impact. 

It’s owned and managed by Hill Country Arts Foundation and hosts numerous events, such as workshops and theatre plays, all year round. You will also find Easter Island moai heads nearby. Come check it out if you’re driving to or from San Antonio. At the parking lot, you can grab a coffee to refuel.

Hamilton Pool, Dripping Springs

The summer is just approaching but you’re already getting too warm? There is no better way to cool down than in a natural pool with emerald-green water. Hamilton Pool Preserve is a historic swimming hole located just outside of Austin. It features a 50-foot waterfall and is also home to various native bird species, fish, and plants.

Note that you have to make a reservation if you want to visit Hamilton Pool. Also, better check upfront if swimming is allowed on the day of your visit as it changes based on current conditions.

Terlingua Ghostown

Set between Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch National Park, Terlingua is one of Texas’ most known ghost towns. It was a mining town at the turn of the twentieth century. But once the mine went dry, everybody left. 

Today, you can roam around its abandoned streets (if we can call it that way). It has a truly unique vibe and will make you feel like you’re starring in a Western movie.

If you’re scared to run into an actual ghost at Terlingua, don’t be. You’re likely to encounter other visitors and even have a drink with them at the salon-like Starlight Theatre. You can also visit an art gallery, or buy souvenirs at The Terlingua Trading Company gift shop.

The Blue Lagoon, Huntsville

This hidden gem is located just a short drive north of Huntsville. The name says it all – it’s a crystal-clean lagoon whose color might remind you of the Caribbean Sea. It’s perfect to cool off on a hot day or to just chill at its shores by the trees. 

As it‘s owned by a scuba diving school, you have to pay a fee to enter it. However, you will be rewarded with a clean environment as well as fewer people, unlike at similar natural swimming pools. What’s more, from Houston, you’ll reach it within an hour, which makes it a fantastic place for a one-day trip to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

Boca Chica Beach

boca chica

Texas also has beautiful beaches. And in the southernmost point of the state, there is one that many seem to forget – Boca Chica Beach. It’s spacious, clean, and usually not busy. It’s also home to the SpaceX rocket which you can come see from up close. Walking to the beach’s end, you can even glimpse Mexico and the Rio Grande.

The only thing that this beach lacks is modern facilities. So bring your food, drinks, as well as sunscreen. You can park at the beach – we recommend driving a 4×4 so you don’t get stuck in the sand.

San José Island

If the beach is your thing, we’ve got another tip for you. Not far from Corpus Christi, there is San José Island. It boasts over 21 miles of sand and is home to various fish and bird species. You can also find many unique seashells there, such as shark eyes, sand dollars, or angel wings.

To get there, you need to take a quick ferry ride from Port Aransas. Then, you can start enjoying all the island has to offer, including birding, fishing, and beachcombing. And you can finish your day at Port Aransas with a nice dinner and a bit of shopping.

Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo

Love art? In that case, you definitely shouldn’t miss Cadillac Ranch. This art installation includes a line of Cadillacs buried nose-first in the ground and, according to its author, it’s a monument to the famed American dream. We will leave the rest to your imagination.

The best part? It’s free and although the Cadillacs are colorful enough already, you can unleash your inner artist and spray them to your likes. As it’s set along Interstate 40, it makes a great stop if you’re on a road trip.