It may take a while to get there, but great places are worth the effort, and Fort Davis is a great place. You’d be amazed at all this small, mountain, desert town has to offer.


Davis Mountains State Park

To see the natural side of this rugged frontier, head to Davis Mountains State Park and hike or bike to a summit that gives you a view of town, Fort Davis and the surrounding mountains. Don’t miss the Indian Lodge, built by the CCC in the 1930s!


Fort Davis National Historic Site

Start off by learning about the town’s namesake fort at the Fort Davis National Historic Site where you’ll learn about how the U.S. Army tamed the wild Texas frontier and opened it up for settlement. You can also dive into the history of the American “Buffalo Soldier.”

Rattlers and Reptiles

As you are looking to learn a bit around town, head to the “largest rattlesnake exhibit on the planet” at Rattler’s and Reptiles boasting 19 species of rattlesnakes as well as tarantulas and other crawly bugs.  Eeeek!  If you are looking for a less scaly way to pass the time, visit Mr. Ron Cox of the Davis Mountain Broom Shop and watch him make an old-fashioned broom the old fashioned way.

McDonald Observatory

No trip to Fort Davis would be complete without a trip to the University of Texas McDonald Observatory, one of the premiere observatories in the world that couldn’t be more visitor friendly. Due to the almost non-existent light pollution in the mountains, the telescopes here have one of the clearest views of the stars and planets on earth. Don’t miss a daytime tour or star party — just make sure you have advanced reservations.


Stone Village Market

As you head into town for some food, I recommend a fresh-sliced sandwich at Stone Village Market. It’s a small convenience store packed with organic goods that is basically like a miniature Whole Foods in the desert.

Fort Davis Drug Store

Hop up to the bar at Fort Davis Drug Store for a greasy burger and creamy milkshake in the same soda fountain that folks have been indulging at since 1913. And if you happen to eat a little too much and need to take a nap, it’s also a hotel.

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Fort Davis, TX