What might surprise you about the Lone Star state?

Texas might surprise agents: from "diverse and innovative" cities with quirky accommodation and experiences to one "very hip" city making its mark, Travel Texas' UK and Ireland account director, Jane Dawkins, breaks it all down for agents, from seasoned Stateside sellers to newcomers.

Where's hot?

While the state averages highs of 33°C in June, where's hot at the moment for UK guests visiting Texas?

"Major gateway cities such as Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin and Houston continue to attract UK travellers due to their diverse, innovative offerings ranging from quirky boutique hotels to thriving cultural scenes, rich histories and an abundance of sporting attractions.

"Austin, known as the ‘Live Music Capital’ of the World', is particularly popular. The city hosts major events such as South by Southwest, which combines music with film and the Austin City Limits Music Festival, drawing in crowds from around the globe."

On the road again

"The U.S. road trip remains a favourite for travellers, and Texas is perfect for exploring the open road. The Central Triangle, covering Austin, San Antonio, Bandera and Fredericksburg, is a popular route. Dallas, Fort Worth and Grapevine can be easily covered over a short visit due to their close proximity, and the Houston and Coastal route is a great way to experience a vibrant city and beautiful beaches in one trip.

"Road trips allow travellers to discover hidden gems, such as Big Bend National Park in Southwest Texas, which offers scenic drives, hiking and river trips through limestone canyons and horse riding with overnight stays in rural gems such as Chisos Mountains Lodge, nestled within the park's Chisos Basin at 5,4000 feet elevation, historic Gage Hotel in Marathon or quirky El Cosmico in Marfa, which will be home to the world’s first 3D printed hotel next year.

"Route 66, celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2026, runs through Amerillo, a history-rich area located where the southern plains meet the desert - blending old and new Texas traditions. Texas’ western heritage and cowboy culture are also popular among UK travellers."

Hidden surprises

"Texas is the second largest state in the USA after Alaska and is twice the size of France, so it’s no surprise that it’s brimming with hidden gems and fantastic attractions.

"Agents might be surprised to learn that Texas is considered ‘very hip’, Austin in particular. Crowned the ‘Live Music Capital of the World, Austin boasts great nightlife, a vibrant culinary scene which includes iconic Texas BBQ and quirky boutiques.

"Contrary to popular belief, Texas is not all arid desert. The state is incredibly green with rolling hills and meadows blanketed in the spectacular Texas Bluebonnet during the spring. Additionally, Texas has over 350 miles of coastline, making it a perfect destination for seafood lovers and those who want to try their hand at diving or fishing.

"Texas has a long history of wine-making, with more than 400 wineries, Texas now is the fifth largest wine-producing state."

Bringing Texas to the trade

"Travel Texas remains highly active in the market, with several exciting initiatives and events planned throughout the year. One of the highlights is the upcoming sales mission, which is part of a series of planned activities to engage with the trade community.

“In partnership with Brand USA, Travel Texas featured at the Cambridge Club Festival on 8th and 9th June, sponsoring a smokin’ Texas BBQ located in the festival's VIP tent.

"On 21st June, agents are invited to a Texas music evening at 'The Lower Third' on Denmark Street and we invite all interested agents to contact us directly via TravelTexas@hillsbalfour.com if they're keen to hear more.

"For those looking to deepen their knowledge, Travel Texas offers online training via Brand USA’s ‘USA Discovery Program’ platform, providing comprehensive insights into Texas as a travel destination.

"Travel Texas is also launching its ‘Texas Frontiers’ campaign next month, which will showcase the diverse attractions and unique experiences Texas has to offer. This will run right through to September."