There are plenty of options for road trips and even day trips from Dallas. Scenic drives in any direction from Dallas reveal museums, parks, wild animals, shopping, quaint town squares and more. We’ve picked five day trips to destinations that can be reached in two hours or less, giving you most of the day to enjoy your drive as well as the destination.
North Texas Horse Country
Take a trip to Texas’ ranching past. Just under a one-hour drive northwest of Dallas is Denton, Texas, and North Texas Horse Country. With more than 300 horse farms, you can drive through gorgeous countryside full of pristine pastures and, naturally, horses! For more Texas countryside adventure, you can also check out our Dallas to San Antonio road trip guide. For a closer look, many of the working horse farms also welcome visitors. Or get even closer with a horseback ride! Along the way, a stop in Denton offers quaint historical walks as well as some lovely antique shops for those who need some shopping therapy.
Waco offers unique and fun museums for the entire family. Drive about an hour and a half south of Dallas for a truly Texan historical and cultural experience. For more traditional museum visits, there’s the Martin Museum of Art and the Mayborn Museum Complex at Baylor University. Then learn the colorful history of the Texas Rangers at the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame & Museum. Or discover if you’re a Pepper at the Dr. Pepper Museum & Free Enterprise Institute, where you can even make your own soda.
Dinosaur Valley State Park
Drive an hour and a half back to prehistoric times at Dinosaur Valley State Park. The two life-sized dinosaurs are not a gimmick to attract visitors. These are replicas of the animals that lived in these parts millions of years ago. They left their marks so today you can follow dinosaur tracks in and around the Paluxy River. From there you can continue on a hiking or biking excursion along 20 miles of trails or stay on the river for some swimming, kayaking or fishing. If a day isn’t enough, there are plenty of campsites so that you can sleep where dinosaurs roamed.
If you are looking for more historic and active outdoor experiences from Dallas, an epic 1000 mile road trip from Dallas to Colorado may be the one for you.
Just an hour and a half west of Dallas is the quaint historic town of Granbury. It’s full of picturesque charm, like the Historic Granbury Square around the Hood County Courthouse and Museum. Each side of the square is bustling with local businesses as well as boutiques and local restaurants that can offer more than a day’s entertainment. And for a touch of nature, you can head to Granbury City Beach Park for a picnic or a dip in the Brazos River.
Texas State Railroad
Go back to the era of train travel by driving to the Texas State Railroad Palestine Depot. Head south for just under two hours to Palestine and hop aboard a locomotive toward Rusk. The journey is about four hours, but you get to experience transportation from a bygone time. The train is outfitted with vintage 1920s decorations, complete with a dining car and beverage service. Every seat has views of Piney Woods State Park that you may miss speeding by in a car. You might even spot a black bear.
SIXT Rent a car in Dallas
SIXT has convenient locations across Dallas including at the airport and downtown. Choose a convertible for a full view of North Texas Horse Country. Or take the whole family along for the drive in a premium SUV.