Johnson City, TX

This hill country town may be small, but it boasts some of the biggest personalities in Texas.  While it wasn’t named after him, this community was the home the Lyndon B. Johnson, the 36th President of the United States of America.

To learn about his roots, visit the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park and start in town at LBJ’s Boyhood home.  Then follow Highway 290 West and visit the Texas White House.  You can tour the ranch and the beautiful house that LBJ called home when not in Washington.  Don’t miss the Texas State Park which is also on the site.

All this travel will certainly make you hungry, so head into town and grub at Ronnie’s Bar-B-Q.  Once a convenience store, the BBQ slowly took over everything else.  And today you’ll find it packed with locals looking for some of Ronnie’s legendary “Q”.  I also highly recommend Pecan Street Brewing.  This brewpub has amazing craft beer on tap along with delicious menu items like brick oven pizza and my favorite – Pecan Street Pecan Sweet Chicken, which is a fried chicken breast topped with honey butter and pecans!  It is killer!

Of course, don’t forget to pick up a stick of jerky at Whittington’s Beef Jerky which has been making jerky for 50 years!  It is some of the best in Texas.

If you are looking to head outdoors, go to Pedernales Falls State Park and take in the natural beauty of the hill country.  But if you’d prefer to enjoy nature from the comfort of your air-conditioned vehicle, head to the Benini Sculpture Ranch and take a driving tour of incredible (and strange) sculptures along a 1-mile trail.