The Ultimate Roadmap For Your 30 Days in Texas

The Lone Star State is the biggest in the contiguous United States, with an even bigger personality. Texans are proud, (sometimes loud), and among the friendliest people you will ever meet.

30 days may not seem like enough time to visit the second largest state in the union (after Alaska) but if you follow this guide and apply some Texan gumption then it is more than enough time.

Lake Texoma (Days 1 – 7)

Texas may be big, but most of its major cities lie in a narrow corridor from north to south (with the exception of El Paso in the far west), so this is the route that our trip will take. We’ll start in the far north, right on the border with Oklahoma at Lake Texoma.

Attractions

Lake Texoma is one of the largest man made lakes in the country, turning the dry grasslands that surround it into some of the most fertile farming land in the country. The area has two wildlife refuges, two state parks, fifty four USACE-managed parks, twelve marinas, twenty-six resorts, hundreds of campgrounds and a variety of excellent golf courses.” Popular pastimes include, camping, fishing, powerboating, sailing (Lake Texoma has some of the best inland sailing anywhere in the country), water skiing, windsurfing, swimming, and more. Suffice to say there is a lot to do.

Anglers should be aware, however, that you may need to obtain a fishing license from both Texas and Oklahoma to fish in this area.

Where to Stay

Lake Texoma RV Campground is the best choice for RVers looking to enjoy all this area has to offer. Located right on the shores of Lake Texoma, the resort offers RV and open air camping along with all the amenities that you need to make the most of your time in this amazing part of northern Texas.

Lake Whitney (Days 8 – 14)

Just a short drive south from Lake Texoma is the less famous, but equally beautiful Lake Whitney. Whereas Lake Texoma is 223 square miles, Lake Whitney is just 32. Still, people flock from across the state to golf, swim, fish, hunt, powerboat, sail, and relax on Lake Whitney. In 2005 the Texas state legislature even named the area Texas’s “Getaway Capital”. More importantly, it is close to the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington area.

If you love sports, then this is the area for you. Comprised of, well, Dallas, Fort Worth, and Arlington, the area is home to over 7 million people and MLB, NFL, NHL, and MLS teams as well as 4 college football teams.

Then there is the Dallas World Aquarium, the unmistakable Reunion Tower, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Sixth Floor Museum in the book depository building from which Lee Harvey Oswald assassinated President Kennedy, the Dallas Zoo, the botanical gardens, and the Meadows Museum (home to more Spanish art than almost anywhere outside of spain).

Where to Stay

Lake Whitney RV Campground is right on the shores of Lake Whitney, and only a short drive from Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, so whether you want to spend more time on the water, or explore one of the country’s largest metropolitan areas, Lake Whitney RV campground is in the perfect location.

Lake Conroe (Days 15 – 21)

Just over 3 hours south of Lake Whitney is Lake Conroe. Like both Lake Whitney and Lake Texoma, Lake Conroe is a reservoir and while it is smaller than Lake Texoma it is more than double the size of Lake Whitney. Unlike both its northern counterparts however, Lake Conroe is surrounded by the beautiful east Texas landscape full of rich pine wood forests.

Lake Conroe is just an hour north of Houston, making it the perfect distance for a day trip (or two) into the city. Houston is home to just over 2 million people, making it less than ⅓ the size of the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington area, but there is no shortage of things to do and see. The city is home to an MLB, NFL, MLS, and NBA team as well as the Grand Prix of Houston, the Houston Open golf tournament, and the Houston College Classic and Texas Bowl.

Of course we couldn’t mention Houston with out talking about NASA. Houston is home to the Johnson Space Center which has a huge visitors center that really is a must-see. Learn about the illustrious history of the Space Center and the bright future of NASA focusing on future missions to Mars. Show up on a Friday between 11 and 1 and you might even meet an astronaut! There is also the museum district, Zoo, Buffalo Bayou Park, great restaurants, and much, much more.

Where to Stay

Lake Conroe RV Camping Resort is right on the shores of Lake Conroe and includes a boat ramp on site so you can get boating as soon as you arrive! With an expanded marina and new beach, this is the perfect resort to relax and catch some rays. In fact, Lake Conroe RV Camping Resort is all about fun on the water, and if you don’t have a boat you don’t have to miss out on the fun. You can rent jon boats, paddle boats, kayaks or canoes.  

Medina Lake (Days 21 – 25)

At just over 9 square miles Medina Lake is by far the smallest of the lakes that you’ll visit, but it still is great for relaxing. Interestingly the dam which forms the reservoir was privately financed in order to improve irrigation to the surrounding farmland, and at the time was the largest concrete dam in the country. It is now a historical site.

Nearby San Antonio is smaller than Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington and Houston, but it is home to the most iconic location in all of Texas: the Alamo. In the center of the city is the historic battleground where the Republic of Texas defenders fought to the last man against General Santa Anna’s invading army. Although they died and the Alamo was lost, ultimately the Mexican forces were forced out of Texas. Visiting the Alamo is free and will likely be the highlight of your trip

Where to stay

Medina Lake RV Campground is a tranquil escape from the big city life of San Antonio, complete with beautiful lake views, and whitetail deer that roam the grounds. With a junior Olympic sized pool, you’ll be able to sit poolside with a refreshing beverage while enjoying the beautiful scenery and wildlife that this campground is known for.

Harlingen, Texas (Days 26– 30)

Just four hours south of Medina Lake is Harlingen, Texas, a great last-stop for RV’ers who are on route to Mexico. Harlingen is a premium shopping destination and has several epic golf courses and nature hotspots. With year-round tropical weather, visitors can enjoy surfing, horseback riding, and kayaking. Outdoorsman (or woman) will enjoy the plentiful fishing and hunting opportunities.

This area is part of the Rio Grande Valley, which is known to have the best birding opportunities in the country. That’s because the Rio Grande Valley is home to beaches, wetlands and lakes. Be sure to check out the Lower Rio Grand Valley National Wildlife Refuge System, and South Padre Island, where you may be lucky enough to see a sea turtle (or two).

Where to stay

Lakewood RV Resort in Harlingen is minutes from the Padre Island National Seashore, which offers amazing views and glimpses of protected wildlife like the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, and over 380 bird species. The Padre Island National Seashore is a protected park with 70 miles of coastline and dunes, and is one of the few hypersaline lagoons remaining in the world.

Fun-N-Sun RV Resort and Sunshine RV Resort are both right in the heart of the Rio Grande Valley.  With beautiful sandy beaches, these RV resorts live up to their names —you’ll enjoy lots of sunshine here.  

Where to Next?

By following this itinerary you’ll see everything that Texas has to offer, but RVing is all about freedom, so go ahead and create your own path if you choose! Our customer service team is happy to help you build a customized vacation itinerary. Give them a call at 1-877-570-2267 or visit RVonthego.com to plan your own trip.    

 

Meet John from Sunshine RV Resort in Harlingen, Texas

johnvanwyk

Profile:

  • Name: John Van Wyk
  • In position since: 2011
  • Title: Resort Manager
  • Work Location: Sunshine RV Resort
  • Favorite Activities: Fishing and Bird Hunting

1. What does a typical day at Sunshine RV look like? What is your favorite moment?
I usually start out the morning with my “housekeeping” activities and then move on to items that pertain to our residents. I try to get their requests completed first before moving on to my other duties, such as managing our on-site restaurant, coordinating our schedule jpage-encorerv-rgv-sunshineinterior-67-1of special events and working with our internal team here at the RV resort.

My favorite moment of the day comes when I get to interact and visit with our residents just one-on-one. I’m usually focused on what I can do to make their experience even more enjoyable, so it is nice to take a second and catch up with guests.

2. You are working, while people at the park are enjoying their vacation. How do you handle that?
jpage-encorerv-rgv-sunshineinterior-61-1I enjoy seeing people have fun and come up with new ways to enjoy the community, so I never look at it as “working” while others vacation. The guest experience comes first and making sure that everyone is enjoying their stay keeps me busy, so the day goes by pretty fast.

 

3. When people ask you what best experiences are in the surrounding areas, what would you recommend?

There are some excellent golf courses in the area where guests can test their skill. Birding is huge in the Harlingen area, as we are in the middle of the migratory pattern for birds jpage-encorerv-rgv-sunshineinterior-48-1heading south, as well as butterflies. However the must-see destination in the area is definitely South Padre Island, where you get a mix of southwestern culture and beach paradise.  Also, many Winter Texans take day trips to Progreso, Mexico which is about 30 minutes from our property. They go for shopping and the authentic dining experience. I’ve also heard they go for affordable dental care.

4. What’s your favorite Sunshine RV story to tell?
I don’t think I have one particular story that sticks out. I get a lot of pleasure out of helping people get plugged into something that brings them joy. Many times we are dealing with someone that may have recently lost a spouse and after the grieving process, they may need a little encouragement to get out and find fun. They often thank me for helping them through that and that is usually the most rewarding feeling.

jpage-encorerv-rgv-sunshineinterior-82-15. What’s your top accomplishment so far at Sunshine RV?
When I was hired as the Resort Manager two years ago, there were many areas of the operation that needed to be improved including staff morale and resident relations.  I am very proud to say that in the past two years, as a team, we’ve been able to create a positive environment for both the staff and residents.   As far as property improvements, most recently, we completely renovated our indoor pickleball courts which is something I am very proud of. We now have three, indoor, climate-controlled courts that are the envy of many.  

6. If you can describe (in a few words) your RV park to someone who thinks about coming to South Texas, what would they be?

Sunshine RV Resort has approximately 1000 sites.  For those who would prefer to stay in a smaller community, we do have a secluded section of the resort called Lakeside which has approximately 150 sites, with it’s own amenities and a lake!    Our RV site options jpage-encorerv-rgv-sunshineinterior-24-1include standard, premium, pull thru, and lakeside.  We have all the standard amenities you can think of including indoor/outdoor pickleball courts, a woodshop, a dog park, and a fitness center.  In addition, we have two large buildings that accommodate many of our entertainment events and activities.  

7. What brought you to Sunshine RV?
A friend told me about an ad in a newspaper that they were looking for a manager of Lakewood RV Resort, a 300 site community. I was hired and immediately made many improvements, to the point where I was promoted to run Paradise Park RV Resort, a 600 site RV resort. Eventually, I was promoted to manager of Sunshine RV Resort, which is over 1,000 sites and includes an on-site restaurant. You could say hard work brought me to Sunshine RV.

8. A last word for your guests?

While you may come to enjoy the warmth at Sunshine RV Resort, you’ll quickly find that the genuine staff and the kind people who stay at the resort make you want to keep coming back, year after year. At the end of the day, it’s all about the people, the customer experience and having fun!