Fort Worth - Where the West Begins!
Fort Worth is the Texas city famous for its unmistakable combination of “Cowboys and Culture.” Now the 20th largest city in America, Fort Worth is home to beautifully preserved Western heritage, world-class museums and an exciting downtown district. Take a tour of Fort Worth, including Sundance Square in downtown Fort Worth, the Cultural District and the Stockyards National Historic District.
Relive the 1980s TV series "Dallas" as you explore the homestead of the Ewing Family.
Visit the legendary Southfork Ranch, you will tour the Ewing Mansion and have lunch on the grounds. On the drive back to Fort Worth stop by the Mustangs of Las Colinas sculpture, nine larger-than-life bronze mustangs galloping across a granite stream. Created by African wildlife artist Robert Glen, Mustangs are the largest equestrian sculpture in the world. For dinner, dine at the Reata Restaurant in Sundance Square, downtown Fort Worth, for some legendary Western cuisine (Reata is the name of the ranch featured in the movie “Giant”).
Experience the history and lifestyle of the cowboys and drovers of the late 1800s to present.
Visit the Stockyards National Historic District, where the Fort Worth CVB will welcome you with a “Happy Trails Greeting” and give each person a souvenir bandana featuring the history of Fort Worth. Then take in the full “Stockyards Experience,” including a walking or step-on tour of the Stockyards, an educational and fun program with the Fort Worth Herd Drovers, and a visit to the Texas Cowboy Museum and Hall of Fame. See the daily cattle-drive at 11:30 a.m. and enjoy lunch and shopping at one of the many restaurants and unique western shops in the Stockyards. In the afternoon, visit the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame and the Amon Carter Museum.
Return to your hotel, relax and get ready for dinner at the Stockyards, followed by entertainment at Billy Bob’s Texas, the largest honky tonk in the world, or visit the White Elephant Saloon. Championship rodeos are available on Friday and Saturday nights at Cowtown Coliseum.
Time to start your hands-on cowboy experience!
Travel to Wildcatter Ranch in Graham, 90 minutes west of Fort Worth, in the beautiful North Texas Hill Country. On route to the ranch, visit Weatherford’s Chandor Gardens and pass by the house where Larry Hagman (TV Series “Dallas”) and his mom, famous Broadway star Mary Martin lived. Arrive in Graham, check into the Best Western Hotel or stay at the Wildcatter Ranch and Resort . Dine that evening at the Dinner Bell at Wildcatter Ranch.
Continue with the hands-on cowboy experience...
Morning activities at the Wildcatter include horse demonstrations, hay wagon rides, horse shoes and lasso games. Horseback riding also is available. A Dutch oven lunch at the Wildcatter will give diners a great cooking demonstration along with a good meal. Visit “America’s Largest Downtown Square” in Graham, ideal for walking and shopping. Tour nearby Fort Belknap. Return to the Ranch for a chuck-wagon dinner followed by S’mores and relaxation.
Experience Abilene and the Texas Frontier
Depart Graham for Albany, to tour Fort Griffin and the Old Jail Art Center. Then continue the scenic drive to Abilene, a progressive city of 116,000 with a wealth of cultural and entertainment attractions. Three private universities call Abilene home, as does Dyess Air Force Base. The downtown area is celebrating a renaissance - with a steady growth of shopping, dining and attractions. But Abilene hasn’t lost its frontier soul. Thanks to modern technology, it’s possible to relive those early days. Frontier Texas! allows visitors to meet – at least figuratively – some of the real people who live and died on the Texas frontier between 1780 and 1880. Unlike a regular museum, Frontier Texas! uses first-person narratives rather than collections of artifacts to tell the story of the western Texas frontier, along with lights, cameras, action and big-screen special effects.
Enjoy lunch at a variety of choices downtown. Within easy walking distance you’ll find the Paramount Theatre and The Grace Museum. The beautifully restored 1909 Grace Hotel now houses three museums: a History Museum, Children’s Museum, and Art Museum, which proudly rotates world-class exhibits. Grace Notes, an interactive sculpture created by artist and musician Edward Weiss, is a life-size artwork of colors, shapes and sounds designed for noise, fun and plenty of hands-on play. The Mallouf Boot Shop is a permanent exhibit that highlights the unique craft of custom cowboy boots. This shop features original equipment, handmade tools, many types of leather, the shop's original cash register and Mallouf boots.
The National Center for Children's Illustrated Literature, a one-of-a-kind in the nation, features original art created for children's books by some of the country’s most renowned illustrators. Just a block away, visit the 12th Armored Division Memorial Museum, which houses the division’s historical collection, serves as a teaching museum and provides educational programs.
After checking into your hotel, travel 10 miles south to Taylor County History Center. The Village preserves the heritage of the Texas Frontier by telling the story of the last 50 years of frontier life as the area slowly became “civilized.” The Village is a collection of 21 vintage buildings from the founding of this area and contains premier collections of artifacts, weapons and historic maps. It also houses the bookstore for the Texas State House Press. The Perini Ranch Steakhouse is a great stop for lunch or dinner in Buffalo Gap, or return to Abilene for your choice of great steaks, barbecue or lighter fare. Overnight in Abilene.
Visit Texas premier ghost town and downtown Dallas
Return to the Dallas/Fort Worth area and stop by Thurber, Texas' Premier Ghost Town. A company-owned town, founded and controlled from around 1888 through the 1930s by Texas and Pacific Coal Co. Visit the W. K. Gordon Center for Industrial History of Texas and explore the birth and death of a company town. Continue to downtown Dallas to Pioneer Plaza, view the herd sculpture, the world’s largest bronze monument of longhorns and cowboys. Also visit the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza and enjoy an evening in the West End, Dallas’ true historical district, full of entertainment and dining options. Overnight in Dallas.
*Suggested Tour Accommodations:
Click here for a list of Abilene accommodations or contact Bailey Ferguson ~ 800-727-7704