With all the holidays packed into the winter months, it’s the perfect season for taking your loved ones for a mini vacation over a long weekend.
Fortunately, Texas is replete with towns that are well worth a visit during the winter season. You don’t have to venture far from your Frisco community to enjoy the attractions and points of interest in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, or if you’re feeling ambitious, you can head to Texas Hill Country or beyond. Whether you’re looking for adventure, romance, Christmas festivities, or family fun, here are 10 vacation destinations within driving distance of Dallas to check out:
1. Galveston Island
While most people associate beach-going with the summer, winter is equally appropriate for a getaway to Galveston Island in the Gulf of Mexico, about 300 miles from Frisco, TX. Known as the “Winter Wonder Island,” Galveston is home to an array of annual holiday festivities featuring holiday food and drinks and special entertainment. New this year, Galveston Railroad Museum will present a Polar Express train ride, with hot cocoa, treats and a reading of the classic children’s book with Santa. You can enjoy the outdoor skating rink and the Festival of Lights at Moody Gardens, which also hosts an annual ice-carving extravaganza featuring about 30 talented international artists. The theme of this year’s Ice Land at Moody Gardens is “Christmas Around the World.”
2. Rough Creek Lodge & Resort
Rough Creek Lodge and Resort, which spans more than 11,000 acres, is an acclaimed weekend getaway near Dallas, TX, for both families and couples. At the resort, you can stay either in a guest room, suite, cabin, or vacation rental home. The property also includes a 40-foot rock-climbing wall, 675-foot zip line, batting cages, biking and hiking trails, and dozens of other activities and amenities. The resort’s on-site restaurant serves up rustic American cuisine that’s skillfully prepared and rich in flavor. If you’re planning a winter getaway, check out the resort’s Christmas at the Ranch package.
For a quiet, relaxing weekend getaway in Texas, head to Fredericksburg, a Bavarian-style town located about 260 miles from Dallas in Texas Hill Country. You can stay at one of the numerous bed-and-breakfasts or other charming accommodations in town and hit up the quaint stores along Main Street for holiday shopping. The town hosts a variety of festivities the four weeks leading up to Christmas, which include a Light the Night Christmas Parade, seasonal entertainment, and German traditions. If you want to enjoy nature while you're in the region, explore the underground rock formations at the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, 17 miles north of Fredericksburg.
4. New Braunfels
If you’re looking for other charming weekend trip in Texas, visit the city of New Braunfels, another historic German town that has preserved its old world heritage. Winter is a good time to visit the area. You can catch the lingering remnants of fall foliage along the Comal River and Guadalupe River, go sightseeing in the Gruene Historic District, or catch a movie at the outdoor Stars & Stripes Drive-in Theater. The Freiheit Village Farmers Market also runs on Wednesdays through mid-December and features not only local produce and artisan crafts, but also prepared food and live entertainment.
5. The Inn at Dos Brisas
For a more luxurious getaway, book a weekend away at the Inn at Dos Brisas, nestled in the eastern foothills of Texas Hill Country. The all-inclusive, 313-acre resort features the breathtaking scenery of a fully-operative organic farm, in addition to the second largest privately owned equestrian center in Texas. However, above all, the inn’s Forbes five-star restaurant provides the property with its reputation as a culinary oasis, where you can dine on delicious organic dishes prepared with ingredients from the resort’s gardens and orchards. During your winter getaway at the Inn at Dos Brisas, you can also participate in wine tasting, a sundown social, and baking and cooking classes.
6. Wichita Falls
Whether you’re in the mood for a day trip from Dallas or a full weekend getaway, Wichita Falls offers plenty of quirky attractions and dining options that make for a fun, family-friendly vacation. Located about two hours northwest of Dallas, Witchita Falls’ claims to fame include the four-story neoclassical Newby-McMahon Building, nicknamed “the world’s littlest skyscraper,” and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum, brimming with memorabilia and exhibits preserving the history and heritage of the sport. Enjoy the crisp, winter air at Lucy Park and the River Bend Nature Center or by roaming the Sculpture Garden at the Kemp Center for the Arts.
7. Gaylord Texan
The Gaylord Texan by Marriott is one of the most popular resorts near Dallas to visit during the winter, and for a good reason. The resort, located an easy 23 miles away in Grapevine, creates an unparalleled Christmas experience from mid-November to early January that encapsulates 2 million twinkle lights, a plethora of holiday décor, a 54-foot Christmas tree, an 8-foot Gingerbread House, and a live ice-carving zone. Even if you’re not in the holiday spirit, you can enjoy the resort’s exquisite grounds, full-service spa, indoor gardens, and 10 restaurants.
8. Bryan and College Station
Rivaling the Gaylord Texan for the biggest, brightest Christmas experience in Texas, College Station and Bryan also go all out for the holidays. In College Station, you’ll find Santa’s Wonderland – more than 37 magical acres of light displays. If you plan your weekend getaway during December’s First Friday, head to downtown Bryan to enjoy live music, art, carriage rides and food trucks. The annual Bryan-College Station Christmas Lighted Parade takes place the second Friday of the month.
9. Sara’s Inn
When it comes to romantic getaways in Texas, Sara’s Inn in Houston can offer all the cozy comfort and privacy you crave. The boutique bed-and-breakfast features a variety of elegant rooms and suites with numerous amenities, including down blankets, luxurious robes, private bathrooms, mini fridge, and flat-screen TV. Complimentary homemade breakfast is served seven days per week in a dining room with five tables. You can also have food delivered to the inn from various nearby restaurants, and downtown Houston is less than 4 miles away.
10. Texas State Railroad: The Polar Express
Take a magical journey aboard the Texas State Railroad’s Polar Express train ride, which departs from the Palestine Depot from mid-November through late December. You’re encouraged to wear your pajamas for the ride, during which chefs serve hot cocoa and cookies as they recite “The Polar Express,” a classic children’s book written by Chris Van Allsburg. If you want to linger in Palestine for a full weekend getaway, consider visiting the Curious Museum, the historic Texas Theatre, or the “Grinch’s Lair” at the Anderson County Jail.
After your winter getaway, make sure you have time for some of these Holiday Events in Frisco.
The Benefits of Texas Living
As a homeowner in Frisco, you are in the perfect location to enjoy the dining, shopping, amenities, and attractions in your own community while having easy access to a variety of unique and interesting day trips and weekend getaways near Dallas and Fort Worth. Cambridge Homes can get you into a personalized home in Frisco that satisfies your everyday needs in one of the best Dallas suburbs while serving as the perfect starting point for exploring Texas this winter.
“10 Winter Getaways Throughout Texas.” The Dallas Observer. Accessed online at https://www.dallasobserver.com/arts/10-best-winter-weekend-getaways-from-dallas-10071809
“20 Best Weekend Getaways from Dallas, Texas.” VacationIdea online magazine. Accessed online at https://vacationidea.com/weekend_getaways/best-from-dallas.html
New Braunfels image by Tomás Del Coro from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)]