From Texas to Beyond

Local, Near and Far: Our journey of exploring the world.

Category: Around Texas (page 1 of 3)

Natural Bridge Caverns

Between San Antonio and New Braunfels is a large cave system, Natural Bridge Caverns.   My parents, David, and I visited on a day trip from Gonzales, TX.  We had ventured there after the big rains this last spring.  Since the caves are part of our precious aquifer system (where we get most of our drinking water in Central Texas) the caves were unusually full of water.  No one could escape being dripped on!  Some of the normal trails were closed because they were under water, but that meant we got to see the caves through less traveled trails.  It was awesome!!

Natural Bridge Caverns - View of the Hall of the Mountain King From Above

View of the Hall of the Mountain King From Above

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Gristmill River Restaurant and Bar

The Gristmill - Inside the Old Cotton Gin 1

Inside the Old Cotton Gin

One of the best destinations in our great state of Texas is a small town outside of New Braunfels named Gruene.  In the old world (Germany), it would be pronounced differently, but in Texas it is pronounced green, like the color.  This delightful little town must be experienced.  But the great news is that no matter what floats your boat, lifts your skirt, or shines your shoes, you can always find a fun activity in Gruene.  Antique shopping, arts and crafts, old fashioned candy stores, wine tasting, tubing down the Guadalupe River, sleeping the morning away at a bed and breakfast, catching a concert, or boot scootin’ the night away, Gruene has you covered.  But you can’t do all these activities without some energy and grub from the iconic Gristmill River Restaurant and Bar, located under the water tower in the heart of Gruene, next to the iconic Gruene Hall.

The Gristmill - Baby Back Ribs with Gristmill Fries & Baked Potato Salad

Baby Back Ribs with Gristmill Fries & Baked Potato Salad

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Hiking at Palmetto State Park

Central Texas is filled with countless little-known gems. Palmetto State Park is one of these places.

On a recent trip to Rebekah’s parent’s house, the excellent weather called us outside, as it often does. Instead of spending time at our go-to outdoor venue, the family pecan farm, we ventured out. Her parents had recently visited Palmetto State Park, the setting for a church picnic. Even living only a few miles away, this had been their first visit to this little-known park.

When they recommended we hike at Palmetto for the afternoon, I was excited to visit a new state park, grabbing my camera on the way out the door.

Palmetto State Park - View of the San Marcos River

View of the San Marcos River

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Deep Ellum Brewing Company

During our time in Deep Ellum, one of the main attractions I was looking forward to was Deep Ellum Brewing Company. During my time away from the DFW area, I heard many good things about this brewery. It had become popular for many reasons: they are in the trendy Deep Ellum area, they serve craft beer, and they have been around for a little while; but most of all, I’d heard how good their beer was. So, I knew this is where I wanted to go.deep ellum brewery logo

Deep Ellum Brewing is a wonderful brewery that proudly celebrates the Deep Ellum neighborhood. They are not without their controversy over their popular Dallas Blonde beer and the logo, but this brewery has grown to be one of the biggest and most well respected in North Texas.

After we enjoyed some amazing BBQ at Pecan Lodge, we headed over to the brewery to see what all the fuss is about. Here is what we found:deep ellum brewery rubric

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In Case You Missed It…Denton, TX

Every couple weeks we’ll be collecting links from past posts grouped together by location; we thought it handy to have everything in one convenient location as you plan your upcoming travels. We just finished a couple different series featuring Denton, TX, so here’s your recap:

Denton County Courthouse and SquareA Day Trip to Denton Overview: With so many options, a day trip to Denton from the DFW area is a perfect way to spend a day.



Hiking at Ray Roberts Lake State Park: One of Texas Monthly’s 30 best hikes in Texas, we celebrated Valentine’s Day with a hike on the Greenbelt Corridor Trail at Ray Roberts Lake State Park.

Hiking the Greenbelt at Ray Roberts

Hiking the Greenbelt at Ray Roberts

An Evening at the Denton Square: Rebekah and I celebrated Valentine’s Day under the festive white lights of the Denton Square while enjoying the atmosphere, food, ice cream and shops.

J&J's Pizza 3J&J’s Pizza on the Square: If you’re on the Denton County Courthouse Square, you must stop at J&J’s Pizza and enjoy their delicious homemade sauce and sausage.


Beth Marie’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream: For a refreshing homemade treat, stop by Beth Marie’s Ice Cream on the Denton County Courthouse Square. It is sure to please!Beth Marie's Ice Cream 8 - Raspberry Truffle


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