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Hit the Road: a 90-minute getaway to Waco

Photo of Magnolia Market at the Silos.

Spend a sunny afternoon at Magnolia Market at the Silos. | Photo by @megantiliakos_realtor

Table of Contents

Last month, we kicked off our summer road trip series, Hit the Road, with an outdoor adventure to Glen Rose. If you checked it out, we’d love to hear about it.

This month, we’re continuing the series with a 90-mile trip to Waco for a quick jaunt. From great Gaines-designed getaways to historical sites along the Brazos River, this city offers a little bit of everything — making it the perfect summer vacay.

Before you start packing your bags, here’s everything you need to know about the area + our insider recommendations.

Drive time: ~1.5 hours from downtown
Est. population: 137,780
Avg. high in July: 95°

Photo of museum exhibit.

Take a step back in soda history. | Photo by @drpeppermuseum

🎟️ Things to do

Magnolia Market at the Silos
From furniture to paint to accessories, get lost in the seasonal colors and textures curated by design mogul Joanna Gaines.

Dr Pepper Museum
Travel back through the history of the 23 secret flavors at this 1906 bottling plant.

Armstrong Browning Library & Museum
Calling lit buffs — Walk through the world’s largest collection of works from Victorian poets Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Baylor Bear Habitat
Visit Judge Joy Reynolds (Joy) and Judge Sue Sloan (Lady), the current American black bears at the university’s on-campus habitat.

Balcones Distilling
Take a backstage tour of the award-winning whiskey-making process in this renovated 1923 building in downtown.

The Waco Hippodrome
Catch a live show at the revitalized vaudeville theater.

Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum
Explore this history of the oldest state law enforcement agency in North America.

McLane Stadium
Tour the Baylor Bears’ home base to get jazzed for football season. Grab tickets to upcoming games.

Spice Village
Peruse 60 shops in the historic McLendon Hardware Co. building in downtown.

Photo of a cookie next to a whiskey bottle.

Pair sips and snacks with a Balcones Whiskey Cake Cookie. Photo by @milkbottlecookies

🍔 Grub a bite to eat

Breakfast + Brunch

Milo All Day
Start your day with southern comfort food made from scratch.

The Olive Branch
You know you want a chicken pesto melt on homemade garlic rosemary focaccia with a bellini.

Lunch + Dinner

Vitek’s Market
Wear your stretchy pants for an original Gut Pak: Frito’s corn chips, hand-chopped brisket, sausage, beans, pickles, onions, and jalapeños.

Clay Pot
Switch things up with a grilled pork vermicelli bowl or beef khoai tay.

Snacks + Dessert

Milk Bottle Cookies
These seasonal sweets are two-handers. Just go ahead and splurge on a cookie sampler.

Health Camp
Swing by the old-fashioned burger joint on the circle for a classic banana split or a chocolate malt.


Freight Bar
Kick back with an Oso Coco, a Nesquik based frozen bevvy, at this bar built out of shipping containers.

Common Grounds
Listen to live music while you sip a cup of the Baylor Blend at this student-favorite coffee shop. Pro Tip: Can’t make it down I-35? Stop by the Fort Worth location at 3110 Greene Ave.

Photo of a lakeside cabin.

Sleep in style at a sophisticated cabin. | Photo by @stayatliveoaklake

🏨 Overnight accommodations

If you get a wild hair and decide to turn this quick day trip into an overnighter, here are some spots to stay.

Live Oak Lake, 1445 Spring Lake Rd.
Choose from seven picturesque cabins — that sleep two to four people — for contemporary lodging in a pastoral setting starting at $250 per night.

Magnolia House, 323 S. Madison Ave.
Splurge on this as-seen-on ”Fixer Upper” house for eight guests starting at $795 per night (~20 minutes outside Waco in McGregor).

Midcentury Modern House, Mountain View neighborhood
This four-bedroom, three-bath house is nestled in nature with a large back pergola for about $275 per night.

The Halet House, Brazos neighborhood
This Instagram-worthy house is perfect for design-lovers looking for a three-bedroom, one-bath rental around $300 per night.

Modern Downtown Domicile, Brazos neighborhood
Stay in the hustle and bustle in this chic urban loft with two bedrooms and two baths for $214 per night.

Ready for more of Waco’s weird museums, award-winning restaurants, and green-and-gold Baylor must-dos? Head to the link below for 15 additional activities, restaurants, and accommodations. Plus, stay tuned for the August installment of our Hit the Road series. We’ll be highlighting a road trip for the foodies.

Check out our other Guides
Lend a helping had at the local organizations to volunteer or give back to in Fort Worth.
If you don’t have coffee already in hand, consider this your sign to grab some.
Check out this list of local spots to host your next party, reunion, or reception.
Check out our guide to the many meaningful murals you can find around our city.
Whether you’re looking for your next leisure read, a book for the whole family, or a thrilling fictional novel, we’ve got a list of books written by local authors in Cowtown.
Go bargain hunting with our Fort Worth happy hour guide, which highlights drink specials and food discounts throughout the city.
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