Spring Break is almost upon us and now is a great time to start thinking about the perfect places to take a road trip within reach of Austin.  Road trips help save money, allow for flexibility and sometimes you discover hidden gems along the way. Let’s take a look at a few quick Road Trips Within Reach–they are all within 3-hours or less away from Austin.


Cost: $50 – $75 for a tank of gas.

See: Check out the Dallas Zoo, located just 3 minutes south of downtown Dallas.  Established in 1888, it is the oldest and largest zoological park in Texas and is managed by the non-profit Dallas Zoological Society. Their current feature is Destination: Dinosaurs Presented by Reliant! Walk through one of the country’s largest immersive dinosaur exhibits – with more than 100 dinosaurs, activity stations, fossil dig boxes, photo ops, and more. For more kid-friendly ideas in Dallas-check this out!

Stay:  Connected to the Dallas Convention Center via sky bridge, Omni Dallas Hotel is the perfect destination to gather or get away near downtown restaurants, shops and the popular Dallas Arts District.  With a rooftop pool, luxury spa, comfortable rooms, and a large selection of restaurants in and nearby—the downtown Dallas Omni makes a great choice for a place to stay during your road trip!

Eat:  Magic Time Machine.  It’s not just a restaurant, it’s an adventure!  There’s something for everyone on the menu and fun for the whole family.

Hidden Gem: Bishop Arts District Murals.  If you’re looking for some cool Instagrammable moments, a drive over to the Bishop Arts District is a must!


Cost: $50 – $75 for a tank of gas.

See: At the Space Center Houston, there’s space for everyone!  There are both permanent and traveling exhibits and you can immerse yourself in the past, present and future of space exploration.

Stay: Four Seasons Houston has cabana suites, executive suites and even penthouse suites.  It’s a sweet treat to stay after a road trip from Austin.  They are equipped with all the luxe you expect in a top-notch premier hotel in the heart of Houston.  

Eat: d’Alba Garden Oaks, a craft kitchen with great cocktails —- and playground for kids.  Truly a family friendly place to be.  

Hidden Gem: Not really hidden, but you might not have known that the Houston Museum District boasts 19 museums, galleries, and cultural centers.  Worth a visit and you can spend several days exploring this area.

San Antonio

Cost: $40 – $55 for a tank of gas.

See: The San Antonio River Walk is the #1 ranked tourist attraction it the state of Texas. Very similar to the canals of Venice, the Riverwalk strongly defines the city, with 15 miles of scenic views, restaurants, museums and theaters, centuries-old historic sites and modern green spaces.  Everything you need in a road trip destination is all bundle up in one place.

Stay:  Flying L Ranch Resort just a short drive from San Antonio in Bandera — the ranch has wagon rides, campfire smore’s nights and horses on the property. 

Eat: Iron Cactus Mexican Restaurant has a menu full of bold flavors. It’s deliciously Mexican and authentically local. 

Hidden Gem: The largest Virgin Mary Mosaic in the world.  The 40-foot-tall votive candle is the largest of its kind and has an external flame.


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