Outside The Park


Terlingua Ghost Town

  • Starlight Theatre – a real early 1900’s theater from the mining town turned into a fun eclectic restaurants. Part of its famous porch where all the locals like to hang out and have a beer.
  • Terlingua cemetary
  • Tin Bits Ranch – lodging that looks like an old west town. I love this place. Book in advance.
  • Desperate to find a place to stay because everywhere is booked up? Longhorn Ranch Motel usually has some space. Not much, but affordable and they make breakfast.
Tin Bits Ranch lodging out side of Terlingua Texas near Big Bend National Park
Starlight Theatre or Theater in Terlingua Texas



Made popular by its famous “Marfa Lights” phenomenon, Marfa is a really cool, quaint, eclectic, artsy, in the middle-of-nowhere town. The Chinati Foundation offers paid tours, but also has an interesting concrete display that goes on and on for free. Heading off west a little further past Valentine, Texas, you can visit Prada Marfa. An art piece that intriguingly brings high-fashion sheik to the rugged west Texas desert. I love it. You can also visit some good restaurants and other galleries while in town. The Marfa Lights viewing area is towards the east, closer to Alpine.

Chinati Foundation Concrete features in Marfa Texas


The Gage Hotel in Marathon Texas

Marathon, Texas

Marathon, north of Big Bend National Park, is a great place to stay near the park. The historic and luxury Gage Hotel offers elegantly decorated and themed rooms, a spa, fine dining, a very nice bar for drinks and an appetizer and many more amenities and scenery. I could stay here for a week on its own and be perfectly happy. Marathon is a cozy town with a local coffee shop and a cute little grocery store where you can stock up on last minute items needed for the park.

The French Grocer in Marathon Texas

Fort Davis

Fort Davis, Texas

Fort Davis hosts the Fort Davis mountains, and I guess as close as you can get to a “mountain town” in Texas. It does have somewhat of a Colorado feel to its small downtown area, nice place to stop for an ice cream at one of the local shops. Here, you can also visit the National Historical Site and learn about the Buffalo Soldiers.  There is a state park just miles away, but the big attraction for me was the McDonald Observatory high up in the mountains.

Fort Davis Mountains with a glimpse of one of the domes at McDonald Observatory


The Gage Hotel in Marathon Texas

Alpine, Texas

I love Alpine. I seriously want to move here. Home of Sol Ross, I think I would have had a better chance at college here. Not only was my dad offered a football scholarship here, the are feels like home to me. Maybe it’s the native american heritage, but this whole area calls to me. It feels like home. The town is artistic and known for its murals through-out. There are plenty of places to lodge while you are on holiday to visit Big Bend and then area. This town has everything a person like me needs.  Blue Water, a natural food store (no good website, hit me up if you are from there), a neat little movie theater, awesome coffee store, the sites, altitude (I saw snow here), and college chicks. What else is needed?

Alpine Texas Murals