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You can even join a ghost tour and see it in a spookier light. Along the way, stop off at the Alamo Plaza to learn about the history of the mission and the part this fort played in the Texas Revolution. See all TripAdvisor rentals in San Antonio. This genteel Gulf town makes a great base for several reasons—in addition to the top-rated rental homes available.

Lessons learned close to home: The Santa Fe, TX shooting

Anglers can make their way straight to Rockport Beach to fish for flounder and speckled trout from its many fishing piers. The 19 th -century Fulton Mansion is a feast for the eyes for architecture fans, with its eye-catching Victorian flourishes. In the fall, bird enthusiasts can catch a glimpse of the rare whooping crane at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, along with hundreds of other bird species throughout the year. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Rockport. Setting foot in Luckenbach is like stepping back in time. Its historic general store has stood here since and is something of a treasure trove for souvenir hunters.

Johnson State Park. At the farmstead, staff in period garb go about their chores as if it were , giving visitors a flavor of life here in times gone by. The surrounding state park is gorgeous in spring, covered with bright wildflowers, and home to buffalo, longhorn cattle, and white-tailed deer.

While it may not be your first thought, Luckenbach certainly deserves credit as one of the best Texas vacation spots. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Luckenbach. Plan a Texas getaway to Marfa for its rural Western landscapes, its minimalist art, and its quirky eateries. The once-desolate town is now one of the coolest, most unique places in all of America.

Also make time to see the mysterious Marfa lights. These unexplained red, blue, or white illuminations appear in the night sky—see them from the viewing station just outside the town. Marfa has achieved a near mythical status as a must-see drive-through town. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Marfa.

Wimberley has a creative edge, which you can discover at the Art on 12 Gallery, a large space dedicated to displaying the work of local artists. You can swim in the spring, follow the nature trails, and learn more at the nature center, which offers educational displays. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Wimberley. This is wine country too, so reserve your place on an unforgettable winery tour and tasting. The Pioneer Museum gives a great insight into local history, complete with costumed guides to show you around.

Though just 10 square miles, Fredericksburg packs a big punch, making it one of the best Texas vacation spots with great rental options to boot. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Fredericksburg. Cultural points of interest range from the Blanton Museum of Art to the eccentric Cathedral of Junk which has to be seen to be believed. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Austin. It boasts the family-friendly Schlitterbahn Waterpark , with its slides, chutes, and pools of spring-fed water to splash in. For old-fashioned fun, catch a movie at the Stars and Stripes Drive-In, or enjoy drinks with a live performance at Gruene Hall, an dance hall still hung with original 30s and 40s signage.

See all TripAdvisor rentals in New Braunfels. From the moment we arrived on the property we were in love with the place.

Food and drink

After all that, all you need is a peaceful rental cabin to crash in. See all TripAdvisor rentals in Spicewood. It had everything we needed plus it was the perfect location!!! Here's the lineup for a mini-trip. The finds in and around town will keep you filled up. Right in Gainesville, Sarah's on the Square claims a plum corner spot facing the courthouse. Inside, the exposed brick walls and antique furnishings provide warmth, as does the friendly staff. California St.

Across the square, the Fried Pie Co. Main St. Just 7 miles due west of downtown, Dieter Brothers Restaurant is the go-to spot at least twice a week for our Gainesville friends. And no wonder: the barbecue plates wow with mounds of pork ribs, German sausage, hot links and brisket with colossal onion rings and superb German potato salad East U.

Neighborhood Fishin' - Texas Parks & Wildlife Department

Wine tasting is hitting its stride in the area, too, with a mini-boom in Red River Valley vineyards. The deck provides degree views of the chinquapin oak-covered landscape, a perfect place to sip varietals crafted by sommelier-turned-winemaker Willem Johnson. Our favorites include the estate viognier, among whites, and the Hoof und Hund, a full-bodied red blending Lenoir and grenache grapes, perfect for pairing with brisket, venison and rib-eyes County Road , Muenster. The historic buildings lining the Cooke Courthouse square house boutiques for exploring.

Commerce St. Next to Sarah's on the Square, The B Hive is the place to find peasant blouses, jewelry, tabletop goodies and bath and bed details, along with two lazy shop cats W. A few doors down, Muse stocks a wide variety of Big Green Egg accessories, plus lots of kitchen and bar tools, as well as nice bottles of wine E. A window to Cooke County's past, the Morton Museum offers a look at the circus that once made Gainesville famous, and there's a cool little gift shop on-site, too S.

Come Home to Newport on the Lake

Dixon St. Tables and shelves in a corner of the tasting room are laden with wine accessories and gifts for entertaining. And if you're stopping in Lindsay to eat at Dieter Brothers, set aside an extra half-hour to look inside the nearby Saint Peter's Catholic Church for a visual feast. Recently restored, the interior offers exquisitely hand-painted altars, ceilings and walls, showcasing exquisite artistry the German culture brought to Texas Main St.

Table for two with a view 4rwines 4rranchvineyardsandwinery muenstertx.

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Just opened this spring, a new bed-and-breakfast option in Gainesville offers such privacy and comfort that you will wish you'd booked it for a week instead of a weekend. Named Melody Lane , which happens to be the address, the three-bedroom home sits in a pretty neighborhood about 3 minutes from the downtown square. The recently remodeled house offers a gleaming new kitchen and lots of space for reading and visiting.