None of us has a travel crystal ball, so we don’t know when it’ll be safe to take getaways without giving much thought to our health. But a national travel magazine has just proclaimed what residents of Fort Worth know to be true — that the city will be a pretty great place to visit in 2021.
Travel + Leisure magazine on December 18 released its annual, unranked list of the 50 best U.S. places to visit in the coming year. Fort Worth is the only major Texas city to make the list.
"In honor of our revived appreciation for the discoveries to be made in our own backyards, this year’s list features 50 dynamic, of-the-moment destinations — all right here in the United States," the magazine says.
Although Fort Worth appears as No. 15, the list is presented alphabetically and not by ranking, they emphasize.
Travel + Leisure unpacks an array of reasons for visitors to hang their hats in Cowtown. Among them, the publication cites the historic Fort Worth Stockyards, which “captures the celebrated legacy of Texas’ bustling livestock industry with rodeos, a history museum, and the world’s only twice-daily cattle drive.”
It also gives a nod to the recently renovated Amon Carter Museum of American Art, the nonprofit Art Tooth gallery, and the Blackland Distillery lounge and tasting room (named Bar of the Year in CultureMap's prestigious 2020 Tastemaker Awards).
When it comes to resting at night after an eventful day in Fort Worth, Travel + Leisure recommends two soon-to-open accommodations: Hotel Drover, a Marriott Autograph Collection property opening in early 2021 in the Stockyards’ Mule Alley; and Hotel Dryce, a boutique hotel coming to the Cultural District from local entrepreneur and Magnolia Network star Jonathan Morris.
"A walloping dose of Texas heritage — with some luxe, modern updates — is drawing visitors to hit the city where the West begins," the magazine says.
Travel + Leisure’s only other Texas pick for 2021 seems slightly more obvious yet no less desirable: the Texas Hill Country.
A favorite getaway for Fort Worth travelers, the 31,000-square-mile region that's west of Austin and north of San Antonio is about a three-hour drive out of the DFW Metroplex. Well-known Hill Country communities include Fredericksburg, Kerrville, Johnson City, Dripping Springs, Wimberley, Driftwood, Horseshoe Bay, Marble Falls, New Braunfels, and Canyon Lake.
Travel + Leisure praises the Hill Country for “an inimitable charm that those outside of the state just seem to be catching onto.”
In its profile of the Hill Country, the magazine concentrates on a pocket of the sprawling region southwest of Austin. Travel + Leisure toasts Fall Creek Vineyards and the Duchman Family Winery, both in Driftwood, and the Dripping Springs Distillery District, including Treaty Oak Distilling and Deep Eddy Vodka.
As for where to kick up your feet in the Hill Country, Travel + Leisure highlights the rustic-chic Getaway cabins in Wimberley and the luxurious 289-acre Camp Lucy resort and event venue in Dripping Springs.
Where are the absolute best places to visit out of state next year? Fort Worth and the Hill Country keep good company with the likes of: Alaska's Coast; Astoria, Oregon; The Berkshires; Big Sky, Montana; Birmingham, Alabama; The Black Hills of South Dakota; Buffalo, New York; Burlington, Vermont; Cape May, New Jersey; and The Catskills. The full list can be found here.