Sometimes it’s good to get away—to pack your bags, hop in the car, crank up the radio, and drive. Road trips have healing powers, and sometimes all you need is just a weekend. Whether it’s a spontaneous romantic getaway, a girls weekend with long-lost friends, or a family trip with the kids across the countryside, regardless of where you’re headed, the only thing that typically matters is who you’re with.
For those of you San Antonians craving a weekend getaway, your escape is just a car ride away. Five of the best road trip destinations are all within less than a 6 hour drive from San Antonio. From lively cities in the north to cities along the coast and even south of the border, each of these road trip destinations has something different to offer and a whole lot to explore. So, what are you waiting for? Pack a bag and hit the road!
1. Austin, TX
Approximately 80 miles, drive time: 1 hour, 20 minutes (estimate)
Austin, TX is the closest of our five road trip destinations, which is just a little over an hour’s drive north of San Antonio. The State Capital city is home to over 885,000 people and has been nicknamed the “Live Music Capital of the World.” According to Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau, “First-time visitors might be surprised to find themselves being entertained with live music as they walk through the terminal at Austin’s airport after deplaning. But they shouldn’t be. Live music, and music in many other forms, is everywhere in Austin. Musicians play in everything from grocery stores to city council meetings.”
In addition to live music, Austin is shaped by its dynamic restaurant scene and its unique culture. There are multiple different entertainment districts in Austin, including Downtown, East, Rainey Street, Red River, Sixth Street, and South Congress.
To learn more and plan your road trip to Austin, check out AustinTexas.org/Visit.
2. Corpus Christi
Approximately 150 miles, drive time: 2 hours (estimate)
Point your car southeast and 2 hours later you’ll quickly find yourself along the sands of the Gulf of Mexico in Corpus Christi, TX. Corpus Christi is everything you could imagine from a coastal town, with miles of beaches, countless locations to grab an ice cold drink, and endless shopping opportunities. As the eighth largest city in Texas, Corpus Christi covers 452.2 square miles, of which 124.3 are land and 327.9 are water. It is also broken down into separate areas that provide different experiences and places to explore. If you can squeeze it all into one weekend, try to explore each area of Corpus Christi: North Beach, Bayfront/Downtown, Northwest, Central, Southside, Padre Island, Mustang Island, Port Aransas, and North Bay.
Corpus Christi also happens to be the home of the official state aquarium of Texas, the largest Barrier Island in the nation (Padre Island), one of the largest and oldest working cattle and horse ranches in the world (King Ranch), and much more.
If you’re ready to explore this beach town, check out Visit Corpus Christi.
3. Houston, TX
Approximately 200 miles, drive time: 3 hours (estimate)
The 2017 Super Bowl host city also happens to be a close road trip destination for San Antonians. Around a 3 hour drive from San Antonio, Houston is known as America’s fourth largest city and cosmopolitan destination. Houston has been included on Travel+Leisure’s “America’s Favorite cities” list, as well as Hotwire.com’s index of the most affordable U.S. vacation spots. According to Visit Houston, “With more than 2.2 million residents, the city attracts visitors and transplants with a wonderful mix of world-class arts, booming business, pro sports and award-winning cuisine.”
Like Corpus Christi, Houston also rests right along the Gulf Coast, which makes it a hotbed for watersports and adventure enthusiasts. The city has 52,912 acres of total park space, with 23.6 acres per 1,000 residents, beating the the national average of 13.7 acres per 1,000 residents.
Find out more at Visit Houston to plan your road trip.
4. Dallas, TX
Approximately 275 miles, drive time: 5 hours (estimate)
Everyone knows that everything’s bigger in Texas, and you can’t get much bigger than our fourth road trip destination: Dallas, TX. The city’s motto is “Big Things Happen Here,” and the numbers say it all: over 12,000 places to eat, 4.6 people to meet, and more than 77,000 places to stay on any budget. And when it comes to sports, Dallas is a sport’s fans paradise. Five professional sports teams call Dallas their home, including the Dallas Cowboys (NFL); Dallas Stars (NHL); Dallas Mavericks (NBA); Dallas Wings (WNBA); FC Dallas (MLS) and the Texas Rangers (MLB), plus NASCAR and Indy racing. The area is also home to more than 200 golf courses.
The Dallas Arts District is also the largest urban arts district in the U.S., while the city as a whole is known for being the largest metropolitan area in the nation not on a navigable body of water.
If you’re searching for a big adventure, Dallas is your ideal weekend destination. Learn more at Visit Dallas.
5. Monterrey, Mexico
Approximately 300 miles, drive time: 5 hours, 30 minutes (estimate)
Last on our list brings us to a town that’s south of the border: Monterrey, Mexico. Say ‘Adios,’ to the good ‘ole US of A, and ‘Hola, Mexico!” Close to the border of Texas and just under a 6 hour drive from San Antonio, Monterrey has a lot to offer in terms of entertainment and culture. There are more than 100 hotels and close to 12,000 rooms in the city, and plenty of shopping locations.
According to Visit Mexico, Monterrey has “earned a renown worldwide reputation for a variety of reasons, principally for its business climate, strong entrepreneurial culture, prestigious institutions of higher education and a world-class health sector with leading medical centers.”
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