Great Day-Trip Ideas For Out-Of-Towners Visiting Sunny El Paso
If you have friends or family coming into town for an extended period of time, you might be racking your brain trying to figure out what activities you can do together to pass the time. While in El Paso, there are plenty of fun activities you and your family can enjoy, like shopping downtown, heading to one of the many city waterparks or Wet N Wild, an evening at Western Playland, a Chihuahuas or Locomotives game, and so much more. But if you have family in town for an extended period of time, you may need to start looking for activities outside of the El Paso area to keep everyone entertained.
If you're looking for a place to spend an entire day or even half the day exploring, we've got plenty of options for you to enjoy. This list just shows how much amazing things the West Texas and Southern New Mexico have to offer.
Carlsbad Caverns- Just a little over two hours away, Carlsbad Caverns has over 117 caves including the Big Room, which is a massive 4,000 feet long. This is a great place to go exploring and you can walk your way down to see all the sights inside the cavern. But take the elevator back up, it's easier.
Old Mesilla- If you head to Old Mesilla, take the road less traveled, which is Highway 28. Drive down the scenic road, lined with pecan trees, horse ranches, and farms as you head into Mesilla. While there, you can visit some of the local wineries, say hello to the birds and barracudas at La Posta, and grab a refreshing pint at a local brewery. You can also check out some of the artwork and New Mexican jewelry for sale in the historic plaza.
Sitting Bull Falls- This is a great hike for people of all hiking levels located in New Mexico about 3 hours from El Paso. What makes this hike special is the beautiful scenery and the gorgeous waterfall and pools beneath. If it's a hot summer day, you'll find yourself dying to jump in.
White Sands- Located about an hour and a half from El Paso, White Sands is a stunning location for a photo shoot or some fun sand sledding. If it's summertime, plan on going either early in the morning or right at sunset due to the heat. Bring an old snowboard or a sled to enjoy sliding down the glistening white sand dunes.
Dripping Springs- This 3-mile hike is located only an hour from El Paso and if you plan your visit at the right time, you can see the small waterfall.
Elephant Butte- This water wonderland is located only two hours from El Paso and is just the escape you need. You can fish, kayak, boat, and more on this lake and rentals are available in the area.
Ruidoso- A little over two hours away, Ruidoso is the mountain community you can escape to and get out of the desert heat for the day. Plenty of cute shops, delicious local dining, and outdoor activities you can check out like outdoor tubing, ziplining, and an inflatable water park on the lake. Not to mention the Inn of the Mountain Gods casino that you can enjoy.
Cloudcroft- Two hours from El Paso, Cloudcroft is another mountain community you can explore the great outdoors. Plenty of hiking and biking trails, local shops, and more.
Silver City- Another gorgeous mountain area, Silver City has plenty of trails for an outdoor enthusiast to enjoy.
Hueco Tanks- This state park is less than an hour from El Paso and there are plenty of trails of various difficulty levels for you to choose from. You can also enjoy all the activities available in the park including rock climbing, hiking, bird-watching, view pictographs and petroglyphs, and more.
Hot Springs- Head up to Truth or Consequences and relax in the steamy water of the local hot springs. You can rent your own tub or get in the communal tubs and make some new friends on your adventure.
The Pink Store- If you cross the border in Columbus, New Mexico make sure you head to the Pink Store in Palomas. You're in store for some delicious food, refreshing drinks, and a vibrant atmosphere when you head to the Pink Store. Always considered a must-visit in the Borderland, you can't go wrong heading to the Pink Store.
Kentucky Club- The closest day adventure on our list, just head downtown and across the bridge and enter into an entirely different country....Mexico. Enjoy food and drinks at the place where the margarita was born. So why not get a margarita while you're there?