We started discussing our list for this month’s cover feature on “Small Towns To Visit Now” more than a year ago. Even so, we were still debating final picks up until a few weeks before press time. With more than 3,000 cities and towns to choose from, we tapped writers across the state to help us curate a list that would represent the best of small-town Texas in all its charm and diversity.

What’s your favorite small town to visit? Email us your pick at [email protected]

Our aim was not to present a definitive ranking of best small towns (that would take us years to agree on) but a collection of under-the-radar places that are forging new identities through revitalization, reinvention, or recovery from big setbacks. We wanted our list to inspire discovery, so we skipped the small towns that already have well-established claims to fame—Lockhart for barbecue, Round Top for antiques, Fredericksburg for wine and peaches, Bandera for cowboy culture. For the purposes of the story, we defined small towns as those with populations under 20,000—big enough to offer plenty of diversions for travelers but small enough to provide the quiet and serenity that make small town retreats so appealing.

As with any list of this sort, part of the fun is debating it. We welcome your thoughts on your favorite small towns that didn’t make our compilation. Let us know about the small towns you love the most at [email protected], and we may feature your letter in an upcoming issue. Then pull out a map and discover a new Texas small town to fall in love with.

From the August 2019 issue
The June 2024 cover of Texas Highways: Treasures from the Coast

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