Driving toward the Davis Mountains from Fort Davis. (Photo: realworldracingphotog via Flickr)

You’ve heard that everything’s bigger in Texas—and if you attempt to drive across it you’ll know that’s God’s honest truth—but it goes beyond that: personalities, ten-gallon hats, and belt-buckles are bigger. Longhorns, rattlesnakes, and juicy steaks: all bigger. Hearts are bigger too, as is the hospitality. The terrain is diverse with its piney woods of East Texas, West Texas cattle ranches and canyons, the hill country outside or Austin, and fields of bluebonnets and wildflowers lining the highways in between. Houston and Dallas are always in competition—with each other—and with everybody else; they’re hard to beat when it comes to fine dining, great shopping, art museums and attractions. Alternative Austin, Cowtown in Fort Worth to the River Walk in San Antonio each have their own unique charm and are not to be missed. Whether in the big city or some one-horse town, once you find yourself in Texas, you’ll just might find you want to stay while.