Exploring the Wonders of Big Bend National Park: A Journey from Austin

Our journey to Big Bend National Park began with a 7-hour drive from Austin. If you include stops along the way, you can expect to add an extra 1-2 hours to your travel time. We recommend taking the route through Fredricksburg and then onto I-10.

Accommodation Recommendations:

Alpine - Ideal for Larger Groups (1-hour drive from the park entrance):We were part of a large group, so we decided to stay in Alpine, which is about an hour's drive from the entrance to the park. It offered us the space and comfort we needed. Lot of food options compared to other places closer to the park.

Terlingua - Perfect for Smaller Groups (Close to the Park, Camping Options):For smaller groups or those seeking proximity to the park, Terlingua is an excellent choice. They have great camping options. However, be aware that food choices are limited in this area, so it's a good idea to stock up before reaching there.

Park Activities:

Lost Mine Trail - A Breathtaking Adventure (3 hours round trip, moderate hike, 1000 ft elevation):One of the must-try hikes in the park is the Lost Mine Trail. The view from the top is absolutely breathtaking. It's a moderate hike with a 1000-foot elevation gain and takes about 3 hours round trip.

Window View - A Quick and Scenic Stroll (0.4 miles round trip, approximately 30 minutes):If you're looking for a shorter adventure, the Window View trail is a great choice. It's a quick 0.4-mile round trip that takes about 30 minutes.

Planning Your Visit:

Duration of Your Stay:To truly experience the wonders of Big Bend National Park, we recommend staying near the park for at least 2-3 days. Given the long drive from Austin, you may lose two days on the road. It's worth the extra time to explore all that this incredible park has to offer.

Things I Wanted to Do:

Hot Springs Historic Trail:While we didn't get a chance to experience it, the Hot Springs Historic Trail is on my list for the next visit. It's known for its relaxing hot springs and the fascinating history that surrounds them.

Santa Elena Canyon Trail:Santa Elena Canyon is another attraction we hoped to explore but couldn't on this trip. It's famous for its towering canyon walls and serene Rio Grande river. Definitely, a must-visit for nature enthusiasts.

Guided Tour at McDonald Observatory:If you're into stargazing, consider taking a guided tour at McDonald Observatory. Unfortunately, we didn't have the time this trip, but it's a great opportunity to explore the wonders of the night sky.

Resources to Plan Your Trip:

  • Include a section providing useful resources for planning the trip. You can insert a hyperlink to the National Park Service website.

National Park Service - Big Bend National Park Day Hikes

McDonald Observatory

Show Comments