What are some of the best things to do in Alpine, Texas?
After all, when you think about the city of Alpine, what normally comes to mind?
Well first off, it’s famously known as the unofficial capital of the Far West Texas.
Alpine is also the county seat of Brewster County, which is surprisingly bigger than Connecticut and three times the size of Delaware.
Sitting on an elevation of about 4,475 ft, you’ll notice that you’ll be able to have many kinds of scenic drives all around the area and even being able to see many different kinds of mountain ranges all along the way. You’ll also notice that the air here is a lot fresher and cleaner than many other places because of just how clean this city takes care of things.
Not only that, but the city of Alpine offers a plethora of things for you to see and do. For instance, you can find all kinds of things like academia, arts, cowboy culture, and beautiful scenic views surrounding the entire area.
But with a population of only around 6,000 people living in this city, many people might think that there isn’t really anything to do here in this city.
But they are so wrong.
Even though the city of Alpine is pretty small, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a ton of fun in a place like this. In fact, you can probably have more fun here than most other big places around the world.
And that’s what I want to show you all with this post.
In this post, we’ll be detailing all the best things to do in Alpine, Texas.
So if you’re ready, lets get started!
- Things To Do In Alpine, Texas
- Museum Of The Big Bend
- Watch A Cowboys Game
- Attend The Big Bend Ranch Rodeo
- Attend Some Cowboy Poetry
- Check Out Some Murals
- Hiking Up Hancock Hill
- Go On A Historic Walking Tour
- Eat Some Cow Dog
- Visit The Last Frontier Museum
- Buy Some Cowboy Gifts At Big Bend Saddlery
- Visit Big Bend National Park
- Visit Fort Davis National Historic Site
- Visit Alpine, Texas
Things To Do In Alpine, Texas
In no particular order, here are all the best things to do in Alpine, Texas.
Museum Of The Big Bend
If you love your history and learning about many kinds of new and interesting things, then one place you have to visit is a place called “Museum Of The Big Bend“.
The Museum Of The Big Bend is a museum that focuses on educating the public by collecting, preserving, exhibiting and interpreting the cultural, historic and natural materials that relate to the prehistory, history and cultural diversity of the Big Bend region of Texas and Mexico.
It is a fantastic place where time bends backwards as you see so many information detailing about the past. For instance, their collections features things like the “Yana & Marty Davis Map Collection”, which is one of the largest and most diversified selections of Texas maps in the state. You can also find collections like the “Retablos Collection”, which features several retablos for you to see and learn.
They also have rotating exhibits that are on display as well and will rotate from time to time to showcase new and interesting things. For instance, one of their most popular exhibits is the one called “Big Bend Legacy”. This exhibit helps introduce visitors to the distinctive natural history, human history and confluence of cultures in the surrounding Big Bend region.
Overall it is a great way to learn about the history and culture of the surrounding area. So if you love your history and love learning all sorts of interesting new things, then this place should definitely be a priority to visit.
Watch A Cowboys Game
What’s a more Texan thing to do than to watch a “Cowboys” game?
And no I don’t mean the Dallas Cowboys. What I mean is actually another type of cowboys, and that is the Alpine Cowboys.
The Alpine Cowboys have actually been a part of the city’s history since way back in 1946 when longtime rancher Herbert Kokernot Jr. built a baseball stadium which is now known as Kokernot Field. He wanted to replicate his field after the one in Chicago and used materials from his ranch to add many personal touches.
Watching the home town team play is one of the most exhilarating things you can see and do here in the city of Alpine because the experience is like none other. You’ll get to sit around hundreds of screaming fans all cheering on the home team as they battle it out and try to get a win.
But that’s not all.
The stadium field is also shared with other teams as well. For instance, it is also the home park for the Sul ross State University Lobos and the Alpine high School Bucks in the Spring.
So no matter when you decide to visit the city of Alpine, one of the most important things you have to do is simply catch one of the many games being played at this field. It’ll be an experience you will never forget.
Attend The Big Bend Ranch Rodeo
Speaking of Texan things to do, one of the most Texan thing you can ever do here in the city of Alpine is to simply go to the rodeo!
And here in this city you can find one of the best rodeos around being the Big Bend Ranch Rodeo.
The Big Bend Ranch Rodeo isn’t your typical rodeo however as these cowboys and cowgirls who competed against each other in the rodeo will also be gathering cattle with each other the very next day when the rodeo ends. They are basically living the working ranch cowboy lifestyle, and helping to preserve the working ranch heritage and passing the tradition along too.
While you are here, you are able to witness a bunch of truly amazing things to see and do. For instance, one of their most famous events is the RHAA Show where you can watch horses compete against each other doing all sorts of things like running to a sudden stop, catching a cow and more.
You’ll also see things like ranch bronc riding, cattle sorting, cattle doctoring, wild cow milking and even calf branding. It’s a whole cowboy experience out here.
Although the only sad thing about this is that the rodeo is only happening during certain times of the year. So you’ll have to plan your trip well in advance with the rodeos schedule if you want a shot at seeing this fantastic event.
Overall the experience is definitely worth making a trip for as you will rarely see anything like this anywhere else.
Attend Some Cowboy Poetry
Now there is poetry, but have you ever heard of something called Cowboy Poetry?
Yes, you heard right! Cowboy Poetry is a specialty of this city and there is a major event that happens each and every year where the best of the best come gathering together to showcase their stuff.
And if you are wondering what cowboy poetry is, it basically is a set of stories told by cowboys in a form of a poem. It’s one of the best things you’ll ever see or hear as many of the stories have a really deep meaning and just listening to them will connect you on a whole different level.
Cowboy Poetry has a long and standing history here in this city which stretched out for about 33 years. However in 2019, that tradition came to a halt as they announced their final poetry event for that year. But there were also many people who didn’t want the tradition to die out, which is why they continued the event under a new name, and that name is the “Lone Star Cowboy Poetry”.
You’ll find that each and every year they’ll bring in many talented people from all around Texas and the country to render out some poems.
It’s one of the best things you can do in the city of Alpine as it is a popular event where many locals and tourists alike will come from all over just to see it. The only downside is that it only happens during a certain time of the year, so you’ll have to plan your schedule accordingly if you want a chance to see it.
Check Out Some Murals
One of the most interesting things you can do around the city of Alpine, is to simply go exploring the city for different types of murals.
After all, the city of Alpine has such stunning landscapes and beautifully vibrant wide-open skies which have long been an inspiration for many artists alike who come here to do some amazing work.
All and throughout the downtown area of Alpine, you can find various murals being painted all over the area. You’ll notice that a lot of these works of art adorn the walls of many of the local businesses around the area. These pieces of art reveal glimpses of local history and folklore, because lets face it, an image is worth a thousand words.
For instance, one of the most famous murals you can find here is a mural called “View of Alpine”, which was painted by Jose Moya Del Pine back in 1940. Or another one that is frequently visited is a mural that depicts a cattle drive that was completed in 2015 and reflects the region’s ranching heritage on the current KishMish Plaza.
In fact, one of the most popular things you’ll find most people doing here in this city is to simply go on an excavation hunt and try to hunt down and see all the fantastic murals this city has to offer. It makes for some great fun as it’ll lead you to many different places and areas where you can learn and see so many interesting things.
Overall going on a hunt to find all the murals is an excellent thing to do. You’ll be able to learn the city inside and out as well as being able to learn about the culture and history of the city too.
Hiking Up Hancock Hill
If you want to see some truly amazing scenic views as well as something really odd and unusual, then you’ll need to go hike up Hancock Hill.
It’s a relatively small hike you can do which should take you about 20 minutes to get to the very top. But once you reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with some of the most beautiful views of the surrounding area.
But want to know what the most unusual part about this hike is?
When you go on this hike and reach the endpoint, you will actually find a desk and a chair that is sitting on the very top waiting for you to arrive. And on the desk there is a notebook where hikers from all around come and sign their names and leaving it here to bask in all its glory.
The story of why you’ll find a desk at the top of the hill is actually quite popular to hear. Basically back in 1981, three students decided to haul a school desk up to the top of the hill above the campus of Sul Ross State University. Nobody else really knows why they did it, but it has since become a time honored tradition for people to hike up and sign their names.
Plus the air at the top of the destination is probably the finest quality air you will have ever breathed.
It’s a truly refreshing experience as you’ll be able to see some really interesting things. From the natural views of the surrounding area to even the desk sitting at the top waiting for you, this is one hike everybody should do.
Go On A Historic Walking Tour
If you love seeing and learning about all kinds of old architectural buildings, then Alpine is definitely the city for you.
Here in this city, you can find that they offer a one of a kind walking tour where you’ll roam around the city at your own leisure and explore all the old and historic buildings in the surrounding area.
There are about 44 different buildings for you to see and each one is vastly different from the next.
For instance, one of the buildings you’ll come across are some buildings which were built before the 1900’s. It has stood longer than any other building in the downtown area and is considered to be one of the oldest buildings in Alpine. Another building youanal might run across is the “Sunshine House”, which is Alpine’s second public school that was built in the year of 1891. This house was purchased by the city and has been used at various times as a hospital, Border Patrol station, a girls dormitory, and even a Senior center.
The tour starts at the Rairoad Depot (Holland Avenue & 5th Street) and finishes across Avenue E from the Brewster County Courthouse.
Overall it is a pretty simple tour that allows you to see some of the most historic places the city of Alpine has to offer. It doesn’t take long also as most of the buildings are right next to each other. So if you have some spare time and want to see some truly unique things, this tour is definitely for you.
Eat Some Cow Dog
Now who doesn’t love trying out new places to get some food?
And here in Alpine, one of the most famous places you can ever visit for some really delicious food, is at a place called “Cow Dog“. Well to be honest, they aren’t really a place as it can change from time to time. But Cow Dog is a food truck that specializes in serving some truly delicious hot dogs for the city of Alpine.
Typically you can always find them hanging around the street of 215 E. Holland, right next to Plaine Coffee.
Their hot dogs come in many different varieties that are all super delicious to eat. For instance, you can either choose a regular hot dog which is just a 100% beef dog on a grilled bun to even specials like “The Mexican”, which consists of a custom pico de gallo, bacon, sharp cheddar cheese, mayo, and ketchup. They’ll also even allow you to make your own custom hot dog with free toppings or premium toppings that cost only a few quarters each.
Cow Dog is an extremely popular place where locals and tourists a like come from all over to get some really delicious hot dogs to eat.
So if you’re ever in the area and are feeling quite hungry, I would highly suggest you to stop by Cow Dog for a bite to eat. It is an experience you will remember forever.
Visit The Last Frontier Museum
Do you like rocks? How about rare crystals and minerals that form straight from the Earth? If so, then you definitely need to head on down to the Last Frontier Museum.
Not only does it have one of the coolest names ever, it is also one of the most interesting museums you can ever visit here in the city of Alpine.
Now it’s definitely not the biggest museum out there, but what it does have is quality and information that will peak your interests. Inside this museum you can find various kinds of information and knowledge about certain rare rocks, how they are used, as well as where you can possibly find them throughout Big Bend of Texas.
Because as you know, the region of the surrounding area encompasses both volcanic and sedimentary areas which makes it one of the best places to find some truly amazing stones and minerals.
The primary collection that you can find here at this museum are agate type minerals. With things like Red Plume Agate, Bouquet Agate, Black Plume Agate, and Pom-Pom Agate are all readily available for you to see. They also have a really special piece of agate called the “Seam Agate” on display that weighs nearly a ton in weight.
You’ll be able to marvel at the beauty of these agate rocks with various kinds of colors, quartz crystals and even fossils for you to enjoy. So put on your learning hat and visit this museum, you will absolutely have a blast learning and seeing all the various kinds of rocks and gems being on display.
Buy Some Cowboy Gifts At Big Bend Saddlery
When visiting some place new, one of the top things most people tend to do is to simply visit a gift shop to buy some gifts and souvenirs to bring back home.
And here in the city of Alpine, Texas, what better store to visit for some gifts than Big Bend Saddlery.
Big Bend Saddlery is a store that sells all things cowboy.
You can find things like cowboy hats, boots, belt buckles, leather goods, saddles, hunting equipment and plenty of other stuff for you to see and buy.
Plus the prices are all pretty reasonable too as they won’t break the bank when you are wanting to buy something.
Also, they aren’t just a store but also a repair shop as well. One of their primary repairs that they do is saddle repair. So if you have a broken saddle or just need a bit of fixing up to do, this place will take great care of you.
So if you are ever visiting the city of Alpine, Texas and want to buy some amazing gifts or souvenirs, definitely stop by Big Bend Saddlery. It’s a place where you can truly feel how its like to be a Texan as well as having that cowboy pride.
Visit Big Bend National Park
Although not really in the city of Alpine, Texas, one of the closest day trips you can do while visiting this city is to simply travel to Big Bend National Park.
Big Bend National Park is only a short drive away and allows you to see some of the most beautiful sights and scenery that the state of Texas has to offer.
The park encompasses an area of over 801,163 acres and is also the largest protected area of Chihuahuan Desert topography and ecology in the United States. Inside this park, you can also find more than 1,200 species of plants, more than 450 species of birds, 56 species of reptiles, and 75 species of mammals.
It is a gemstone of a place to visit as there is simply so many things for you to see and do here.
For instance, some of the things you can do here includes hiking along Santa Elena Canyon for some beautiful scenery, soaking in a natural hot springs on the edge of the Rio Grande, Drive along the Ros Maxwell Scenic Drive, Visit the Mexican Village of Boquillas and more.
Your options are literally endless!
In fact, one of the most popular things to do is to simply set up a camp and camp out during the night and see the stars glistening in the night sky.
Visiting the Big Bend National Park is almost a must do thing if you are ever near the city of Alpine. After all, it is only a short drive away and allows for some of the best views and scenery nature has to offer. This is an experience you definitely do not want to miss out on.
Visit Fort Davis National Historic Site
Another place that isn’t actually in Alpine, Texas but still relatively close is a place called Fort Davis National Historic Site.
It is a short drive away which makes it one of the best day trips you can do if you are visiting the city of Alpine.
Fort Davis National Historic Site is National Historic Site that is famous for being one of the best surviving examples of an Indian Wars’ frontier military post in the Southwest. During the years of 1854 to 1891, Fort Davis was strategically placed to protect emigrants, mail coaches, and freight wagons on the Trans-Pecos portion of the San Antonio-El Paso Road and on the Chihuahua Trail.
Here at this National Site, you can find 24 restored historic buildings and over 100 ruins and foundations. Five of the historic buildings have actually been refurbished to the 1880’s making it simple for visitors to imagine themselves being at the fort during the height of its development.
Plus while you are here, you can also see many kinds of events and demonstrations happening all throughout the year. For instance, you can see an exhibition like the “Living History Small Arms Demo” where you’ll have people dressed up as soldiers shooting away with their guns.
The tours are also very informational as they talk about the history of the area as well as what events and things happened at this specific location.
Overall it is a fantastic place to visit to see some great American history. So if you’re ever in the city of Alpine and want to do a day trip somewhere close, then visiting the Fort Davis National Historic Site would be the perfect decision you’ll ever make.
Visit Alpine, Texas
Overall, the city of Alpine, Texas might not be the biggest city out there. But it does have quite a bit of cool things for you to see and do.
So hopefully this post about the “12 Best Things To Do In Alpine, Texas” was able to help you out in some sort of way. This way if you ever find yourself visiting the city of Alpine, Texas, you will know exactly what things you are able to do for some fun.
Also, if you’re going to be visiting the state of Texas anytime soon, you might like to read up on some of my other Texas posts:
Or you can check out all my blog posts by clicking this link.
Hope you have a safe and fun trip~