They say everything’s bigger in Texas, right?
Well, if you’re talking about opportunities for some breathtaking sightseeing and outdoor adventures, Texas certainly doesn’t disappoint.
For those looking for the ultimate Lone Star experience, you need to trek through as much of the state as you possibly can.
And beyond the likes of Austin, Houston or Dollar, El Paso is somewhere the definitely deserves your attention if you’re adventure-minded. Although it may seem like a “quieter” city on the surface, this under-the-radar status works in the favor of out-of-towners and road-trippers. Plus, it’s perhaps the most quintessentially “Texas” of any of the cities noted above.
Perhaps Outdoorsy says it best in terms of what El Paso has to offer: “desolate landscapes, tall cactuses, and inhabited by independent-minded residents.”
Sounds nice, right?
But how can you ensure that you see El Paso right? What spots deserve your attention if you’re only around for a day trip? Below we’ve broken down five things to do and see in The Sun City that’ll feed your sense of adventure without fail!
Franklin Mountains State Park
Located in the desert mountains near the city proper, Franklin Mountain State Park offers everything a nature lover could ask for and more.
With over 100 miles of trail, bikers and hikers alike can work up a sweat: meanwhile, rock climbing in McKelligon Canyon and Sneed’s Cory is always an option for thrill-seekers. Camping at Franklin Mountains State Park includes both primitive tent camping and RVs alike.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Again, you probably don’t think “mountains” when you think “Texas,” right? Representing the state’s highest peaks, these canyons represent flora and fauna that can’t be found anywhere else in the state. If you’re looking for traditional Texas photo op, this is the place to find it.
Chamizal National Memorial
Located at the Texas-Mexico border, this historic site commemorates a century-long border dispute between the United States and Mexico. A perfect place to both take a stroll or jog and take in a bit of history, too.
Living up to its namesake and representing one of the best scenic views in El Paso, Scenic Drive is a must-see that doesn’t even require you to get out of your car. Offering a breathtaking view of the city below, you can also see the Rio Grande and the southern border as an added bonus. There are pull-over sites aplenty if you want to get out and take a picture, too.
The El Paso Mission Trail
Comprising of the Ysleta Mission, Socorro Mission and San Elizario Presidio Chapel, this trail takes you through historic El Paso to see firsthand some of the state’s most fabled religious sites. If you want to mix your vacation with a bit of education and culture, this is the place to do it.
Between its one-of-a-kind scenery and unique proximity to other travel destinations in the Southwest, there’s no reason not to check out these spots if you’re passing through El Paso. And hey, if you miss out on any of these the first time around, it’s all the more reason to come back!