Variety on show is mighty lively
A darn sight bigger than a whole heap of countries, Texas is largely diverse: big-city lights to small-town simplicity; sandy beaches to high-country hikes
NOW THAT’S COUNTRY
Country is as much about a way of life as a place. Slowing down, taking the rural, farm-tomarket back roads; steppin’ out in polished boots and starched blue jeans for a Saturday night dance under the stars; doin’ nothing more on a Sunday afternoon than floating down a lazy river . . . Life in the country lopes along. Even if most Texans now live in urban areas, they’re influenced by the state’s agricultural, roping-andriding heritage – and they escape to the country as often as they can.
There’s just something about eating a big pile of brisket off a butcher-paper “plate”. Don’t dare ask for a fork; real ’Q is for fingers only. Great barbecue is not the state’s only fun food. At festivals, rodeos and fairs much of your meal can be served on a stick, from corny dogs to fried PB & J sandwiches. In Austin and other cities the food-truck phenomenon continues. And we haven’t even dug into the ubiquitous Mexican food, Dallas’s fine up-market dining or the foodie-fave restaurants around Houston.
CITIES & TOWNS
Bright lights, big cities? Check, Texas has them. Dallas and Houston both boast rich arts and culture districts to explore by day, as well as active nightlife. If you really want to party, Austin is the place – with endless live-music concerts and an outdoorsy, alternative vibe. San Antonio may seem a bit more sedate, but once evening falls on the Riverwalk there’s a fiesta every night. City life is fun, but don’t stop there. Texas also has countless small towns with brick buildings – lined courthouse squares, landmark cafes and eclectic shops – to explore.
AS BIG AS ALL OUTDOORS
We know you’ve heard, but Texas is big ... really BIG. More than 675,000sq km, in fact. That’s larger than Germany, England, Scotland, Ireland,