4 Breathtaking Scenic Drives in Texas
Texas is a famously massive state — and with so much land, you’re bound to find some unforgettable scenery. Here’s a look at three scenic routes to consider if you’d like to experience the natural beauty of the Lone Star State.
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Willow City Loop
If you’re looking to enjoy the natural beauty of Texas Hill Country, check out the Willow City Loop. It’s particularly gorgeous during the springtime, thanks to the landscape coming alive with swathes of red, yellow, white, and purple wildflowers. It also boasts a number of hills and creeks to traverse. To access this 13-mile scenic route, head north from Fredericksburg on State Route 16 until you reach Willow City. Then, follow Ranch Road 1323 east for about three miles and take a left onto the Willow City Loop.
Need some quiet time to reflect? Take a drive on the Lonesome Highway, which takes you through the soaring cliffs of the Guadalupe Mountains. Just make sure you’ve got plenty of gasoline and a backup plan in case you break down — there’s nary a trace of civilization to be found along this scenic road, hence its nickname. If you’d like to take the drive, follow the stretch of Highway 180 that runs between Carlsbad and El Paso.
This 200-mile loop takes you past the Palo Duro Canyon. Although it’s not the Grand Canyon, Palo Duro Canyon holds the honor of being the second-largest canyon in the country. This massive canyon is 120 miles long, and you’ll have plenty of opportunities to admire its natural beauty as you cruise along Highway 207. If you’d like to check it out, head over to the stretch of Highway 207 that runs between Silverton and Claude.
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If you’re yearning to see true desert beauty, look no further than FM 170. This stretch of highway is sometimes known as the River Road since it parallels the Rio Grande. In addition to the river, you may be able to spot prickly pears and a wealth of other cacti in bloom, as well as Big Bend Bluebonnets, which reach nearly a foot high. To experience this scenic landscape, ride FM 170 between Study Butte and Presidio.
These are just a few of the Lone Star State’s many breathtaking routes. Which are your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!
Kimiko Kidd is a native Daytonian. She graduated from Wright State University with degrees in environmental science and sociology. She loves her trusty old Honda Civic, but dreams of owning a 1974 Ford Falcon XB with a custom paint job and a vintage Kawasaki Z1000. In her free time, Kimiko can be found watercolor-painting, baking muffins, collecting rocks, playing old-school Nintendo games, writing her novel, sewing stuffed animals, and cosplaying as her favorite Mad Max characters. See more articles by Kimiko.