Dinosaur Valley State Park
Dinosaur Valley is about 90 minutes southwest of Dallas, just outside the small town of Glen Rose. The park takes its name from a series of fossilized dinosaur prints located near the river, but seeing them is only the first step of a trip to Dinosaur Valley. The park also features 20 miles of trails you can explore on foot or on horseback (horses not included). Glen Rose also hosts Dinosaur World, a destination for kids who think a few fossilized footprints aren’t exciting enough.
Cavanaugh Flight Museum
Located just north of Dallas in Addison, the Cavanaugh Flight Museum boasts 58 restored aircraft from every era between World War I to Vietnam. Most of the planes can still fly, and even better, you can schedule a plane ride in several of the warbirds. This includes the coveted P-51D Mustang. The ticket is fairly expensive, but you can ride in one of the museum’s biplanes for much less.
North Texas Horse Country Tour
North Denton County happens to be the best horse country in North America, and possibly the world. Horse ranchers and breeders in North Texas Horse Country care for just about every major horse breed you can name. Visitors can take a look behind the scenes by going on one of six guided tours, or guide themselves on a driving tour of Denton County. Three ranches also offer horseback rides.
You wouldn’t expect to find authentic Pennsylvania Dutch food and furniture in the heart of Texas, but if you head southeast of Dallas to Kemp, that’s exactly what you’ll find. The homemade sandwiches and baked goods alone are worth the trip, but you can also find spices and other ingredients to take home. If you are into solid pieces of furniture, there is an adjacent furniture store.
Salt Palace Museum
The town of Grand Saline got its name from the massive salt deposit beneath it. The Salt Palace Museum is a building made entirely of pure rock salt blocks. The mine is still in use today, so there aren’t any underground tours. The museum does have a few historical artifacts and an educational video to give you an experience with the mine. Visitors get a pure rock salt crystal as a memento, and a reason to not lick the walls.
From Dallas to Austin or from El Paso to Amarillo, you will find Texas is a massive state with plenty to see and do without ever crossing the state line. No matter which way you go or where you start, you’re sure to find something intriguing that is only a day’s travel away.
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