WEST TEXAS REGION
It's a magical land... full of mystery and myth, a lonely stretch of nowhere that is both majestic and inspiring. Far West Texas offers an escape from the modern world - a place to roam endlessly with your thoughts and the wide open spaces; an area rich in history both modern and ancient; the last real frontier in the Lone Star State, and perfect for those wanting to get away from it all.
The Great Big Bend region and Big Bend National Park have been described as one of the most remote spots remaining in North America, and a place where you can stretch more than just your legs if you want to find an area that allows for plenty of room and very little competition for the best nesting spot for your RV or tent.
Once a remote and seemingly inhospitable area reached only by miles of dirt roads, Big Bend has become one of the most popular vacation destinations in the state of Texas visited by an average of 300,000 visitors each year. Scenic vistas, diverse wildlife, historic sites, and border culture rank among the features visitors enjoy in Big Bend.
McDonald Observatory is located in the Davis Mountains of West Texas, 450 miles west of its research and administrative home at The University of Texas at Austin, under some of the darkest skies in the continental United States.
The observatory offers a wide range of state-of-the-art instrumentation for imaging and spectroscopy in the optical and infrared, available to the research community. The observatory is a perfect retreat for a day or an outing, and nearby historic Fort Davis is step back in time. Visit this mountainous region and disover the solitude and beauty of the far west stretches of the Lone Star State.
Further west on Interstate 10 and you'll discover the historic cityof El Paso and the Franklin Mountains thathave kept watch over the Rio Grande Valley for tens of thousands of year. There is plenty to see and do in the City of El Paso. Experience walking tours of Downtown to get a taste of Old West history that spans 400 years, shopping, outdoor concerts at the Chamizal National Memorial, museums of every kind, the Zoo, and nature hikes through four Texas State Parks.
A short drive away is the New Mexico state line and not far beyond great tourist destinations like Ruidosa, Roswell, White Sands, and Carlsbad Caverns.
Palo Duro Canyon, just south of Amarillo, offers another rugged backcountry experience in the wild West Texas cloudscape, and many choose the park surrounding the natural monument as a place to spend their vacations long and short.
Other prominent communities in West Texas include Odessa-Midland, San Angelo, Sanderson, Alpine, Marfa, Abilene, Pecos, and Lubbock. While agriculture leads the way to the regional economy, the area has quickly been growing in popularity as a travel and wintering destination.
Whether you're traveling the remote and mystical Big Bend region or plan on staying in El Paso with its easy access to Mexico, West Texas offers many ideal attractions suited to visitors and winter residents.
Explore West Texas and the great Big Bend region using the resources below, and get in touch with great destinations and a truly magnificent region of the state.