Road Trippin’ Texas Style
From Dallas to College Station to Austin, One Student’s Adventure.
By Kelsey Reynolds, Southern Methodists University
It’s true that Dallas is an amazing city with plenty to offer but sometimes you just need to get away. Texas is the state with the second largest population; this allows students to have the ability to travel and experience diverse cities all within one state. As a junior at Southern Methodist University I’ve had the privilege of visiting and exploring two major cities besides Dallas.
During my freshman year I embarked on my first Texas adventure and took a road trip over Labor Day weekend to College Station and Austin, TX. Road trips are ideal for college students, it allows you to bond with new friends while driving, cut down costs, and have flexibility with your time and schedule. College station was an alternate universe compared to SMU, it is a large school with a big traditional Texas influence. One of the friends I was on a road trip with had friends attending A&M and we were able to stay with them and get a true Aggie experience. That night we went to one of the fraternities parties that was at a barn! We would never have that type of venue at SMU and we went out in flats another thing that rarely happens at SMU, it was fun to see the contrast in school experiences. The next morning everyone was up bright and early for Aggie game day. The streets were flooded with shades of maroon, jeans and cowboy boots. At SMU, game day attire consists of sundresses and polo’s so we were all in shock at the school spirited game day t-shirts. It was great to see the different expressions of school spirit from school to school. Then we were off to our next destination, University of Texas at Austin.
Austin is such a fun city, it is very different from Dallas and I have fallen in love with both of them. Just from driving into the city, you can tell that the people of Austin are carefree. The atmosphere reminded me a lot of my hometown Park City, UT; there were people outside, street vendors and local artists. We were fortunate to again stay with friends in Austin. The UT Austin campus was also different from SMU and A&M as well, the campus is spread throughout the city and students told us it takes them up to thirty minutes to get to some of their classes.
While in Austin we went to Nocturnal Festival, a three-day concert. We went for two nights and it was such a fun experience. The festival was outside and shows were at night with colored lights strung outside. Austin is known for being a music city and is definitely a must do if you ever visit. One event that is extremely popular for SMU students is ACL or Austin City Limits. It is an eclectic music festival held in early fall and always gets great reviews from students. Other highlights of visiting Austin include boating on Lake Travis or floating the river and 6th street is a must for nightlife.
The cities I have been able to visit outside of Dallas are just two of the numerous destinations in Texas. The Gulf Shores are a popular spot for Spring Breakers, San Antonio is home to the Alamo if you’re interested in history and Houston is a big city with shopping, Tex-Mex and rodeos. Wherever you decide to go, enjoy your trip!