Alpine, Fort Davis and Marfa are the county seats for Brewster, Jeff Davis and Presidio Counties respectively. Besides beautiful county courthouses each town offers unique local attractions and plenty of charm. The drive between each town offer scenic views for miles and makes a perfect day trip to take in one or two sites in each town and return to Alpine for an evening of fun!
- Start your day off right with breakfast at Magoo’s Place or Judy’s Bread and Breakfast and go wherever your heart takes you!
- Historic Walking and Windshield Touring
- Mural Tour
- Museum of the Big Bend
- Hancock Hill (the Desk) Hike
- Wassermann’s Wranch
Alpine to Fort Davis- 27 miles north on Hwy 118
Along the way…
- Mitre Peak- Home to the summer Girl Scout camp since 1947 you can learn more about Mitre Peak here.
- Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center and Botanical Garden is located about 20 miles north of Alpine, CDRI is pet friendly and home to about 6 miles of hiking trails, an 18 acre botanical garden with a native cactus greenhouse-museum, a bird blind, nature exhibits, a gift shop and sweeping views of the Davis Plateau. See their website for hours.
Fort Davis Attractions
- Jeff Davis County Courthouse, built from pink rhyolite tuft rock, this Classical Revival style of architecture was commissioned in 1910 to replace the original adobe structure
- Fort Davis Historic Site – A frontier military post, the Fort is open for tours 7 days a week from 8-5
- Davis Mountains State Park a beautiful and historic park with hiking, camping and a lodge.
- Indian Lodge at Davis Mountains State Park Started by the CCC in the mid-1930’s and finished by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department this historic and charming lodge and the Black Bear Restaurant are located in Davis Mountain State Park. The 90-year-old lodge and restaurant are undergoing renovations and will reopen in 2024.
- McDonald Observatory – 25 minutes north of Fort Davis is the largest telescope in North America. Daytime tours and evening event schedules may vary. This world famous observatory is accessible to the public Tuesday – Saturday 12-5 pm, and is closed on Sunday and Monday. Check-in is required at the Frank N. Bash Visitor Center.
- For more scenic mountain views continue north along on Hwy 118 from the observatory and take in the 75 miles scenic loop that offers spectacular views of the Davis Mountains.
- Great food can be had at local Fort Davis favorites: Lupita’s Place, Cueva de Leon, Poco Mexico, Munchies Salvadoreños lunch truck, Stone Village Market, Mary Lou’s Restaurant, The Mountain View Cafe, and Blue Mountain Bar and Grill!
Fort Davis to Marfa 21 miles, south on Hwy 17
Along the way…
- You will see Village Farm’s greenhouses of hydroponic tomatoes.
- If you want to get off the main road you can visit Chateau Wright Winery and Alta Marfa Winery. Chateau Wright offers a tasting room and a food truck- see website for hours.
- Hotel Paisano designed by famed architect Henry Trost of El Paso, was home to cast and crew while filming the movie “Giant” in 1955. Visitors can enjoy movie memorabilia in the “Giant” room where “Giant” plays continuously.
- Chinati Foundation is an internationally renown contemporary art museum featuring the works of Donald Judd.
- Marfa and Presidio County Museum considers all the historical aspects of Marfa and the surrounding area starting at geologic formation and throughout all the human occupations that have called the area home.
- Art put Marfa on the map. Click here for a listing of all the galleries.
Marfa to Alpine – head east on Hwy 90 for 26 miles
Along the way…
- Interested in mysterious lights? Around dusk or after dark you can stop at TxDot’s Marfa Lights Viewing Area located 9 miles east of Marfa on Hwy 90 – watch for signs along the highway. The famous Marfa Lights have been seen since at least the 1800’s and there is still no explanation of what they are or where they come from. It is a great spot for stargazing even if you don’t get to see the mysterious Marfa Lights.
Back to Alpine
Designated as a Music Friendly City you can find live music and entertainment for everyone nearly every night of the week! Click here to go to the events page to see where to catch a show!