Blake Walsh

20 Best Things to Do in Palestine, TX

  • Published 2021/10/08

In what seems like every corner of the world, people are looking for things to do in Palestine.

Palestine, Texas, is a small town known for its dogwood blooming season and various historical sites.

Here, you won’t run out of things to do and places to visit.

Want to try what Palestine has to offer?

Here are the 20 best things to do in Palestine, Texas:

Visit the Texas State Railroad

View of Texas State Railroad

Cade Restivo /

The Texas State Railroad features an impressive collection of passenger and freight stations open throughout its network of tracks.

The railroad also boasts strong and friendly public programming on many of its train platforms.

View of Texas State Railroad

Someone who likes train writing, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

There are opportunities for silent auctions, photo galleries, and other storytelling activities at each station on the system.

Many of these activities are organized by local chapters of the Texas Railroaders Association.

Palestine rail depot

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Revisiting History at Palestine Public Library

The Palestine Public Library features a fine collection of civil and historical documents and periodicals on various subjects dealing with the history of Palestine, Israel, the Holy Land, and their neighbors throughout history.

You can visit the library during a visit to Houston or order by mail for your convenience.

Stay at Redlands Hotel

View of Redlands Hotel

LMPark Photos /

Finally, having a great time exploring and experiencing the city, you can now take some rest at one of the most historical hotels in the area.

One of the most renowned Redland’s hotels is located where there are so many Redlands hotels that cater to various interests and needs.

Among them, there is the Redlands Hotel in Palestine, Texas, which has been constructed to provide a unique experience while at the same time allowing tourists to enjoy their stay.

View of Redlands Hotel

Tony Greene, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This Redlands hotel in Palestine, Texas, has four rooms.

They are all very well equipped with comfortable mattresses and air conditioning units so that one can enjoy a long and peaceful slumber and have a nice relaxing bath after spending a long day touring the beautiful Redlands area.

The Redlands Hotel in Palestine, Texas, is an ideal place for strolling through the small town of Redlands with its many shops and restaurants.

Strolling through the streets of Redlands along with groups of friends is an excellent way of enjoying Redlands sights and sounds and at the same time having fun.

Get Lost in the Steven Bennett Park

Steven Bennett Park is a great place for a family outing.

When you visit the park, there are numerous activities for you to enjoy.

For the adults, you can go on a nature walk and hike along the beach while the kids can play in the sandpit.

You will find many picnic tables and grills for you to cook your own food at.

You can relax on one of the many benches at the beach or take advantage of the fitness facilities.

This Park has many different activities for everyone, including quiet play, fitness activities, fun runs, nature walks, athletic fields for the children, swimming, beach day trips, and many other exciting activities.

Have Fun in the Upper City Lake

View of Upper City Lake

Kasey Englehart /

The Upper City Lake in Palestine, Texas, is a popular destination for visitors and residents alike.

One of the best features of this reservoir is that it is surrounded by nature.

A beautiful lake and surrounding fauna and scenery are what make Upper City Lake in Palestine such a unique place to visit, especially for a peaceful vacation!

View of Upper City Lake

Kasey Englehart /

If you have never visited this area before then, you will want to research it before booking a trip to this amazing lake.

To make your vacation even more affordable, you can take advantage of the seasonal sale at the end of summer, which offers up to 80% off retail prices on select items, including dining reservations, room reservations, and cruises.

Play at Palestine Bowling Center

Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned bowler, there’s a lot you can do at the Palestine Bowling Center in Palestine, Texas.

You have plenty of lanes to challenge yourself on, great food and beverage selection, a variety of activities, and friendly locals.

If you’ve never been to Palestine before, here are some things you should know before your first trip.

Roaming Around Historic Bowers Mansion

View of the Historic Bowers Mansion

Jpo tx113, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Bowers Mansion is one of the most beautiful homes located in Palestine, Texas.

Built in the late 1800s by banker John Bowers, the mansion is considered the site of one of the most important courts in America, the US Supreme Court.

For this reason, the place is also known as the “pocket empire” of American history and even into the future. You can have a luxurious trip along with your family, friends or even celebrate your weddings during the special events organized by the estate.

Strolling Around the Texas Art Depot

The Texas Art Gallery is situated in Palestine, a small village on the coast of the Red Sea.

This gallery houses more than one hundred paintings and one hundred pieces of sculpture by local artists, all displayed in a courtyard surrounded by tall, lush trees.

If you do visit, there is no way that you can forget the beauty of this small gallery situated just beside the tranquil blue sea, with its rich selection of paintings and sculptures.


Wander Around Old Town

View of Old Town

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you live in Irvin or Clay County, you can drive about 3 hours north to Austin and then take a bus ride one hundred to the old town of Palestine.

You’ll be amazed at how much has changed since your last visit. Once a small farming community, Palestine is now a bustling town with restaurants, hotels, and art galleries.

Street view of Old Town, Palestine

Roberto Galan /

In fact, if you haven’t been to the area, you really should make it a priority to go.

It’s very spiritual.

View of Old Town

Renelibrary, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Walk Around Davey Dogwood Park

You can also do things in Texas while you’re in Palestinians, such as dogwood trees in Dog Wood Park.

The dogwood trees in Texas are indigenous to the state, so you know they’re the real stuff.

They grow in Texas all year round and can be found all over.

Davey Dogwood Park is a great place to stroll, jog, bike, play Frisbee, or just relax and take in the greenery.

The perfect place to spend a Sunday morning, the park has easy access to many great spots.

A paved trail leads visitors through wooded areas to stay calm and take in the scenery, while a walking path takes them through beautiful gardens.

Stopping by at the Texas Jailhouse

View of Historic Texas Jail House

Michael Barera, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A visit to the Historic Texas Jail House is one of the most popular activities in Anderson County, Texas, right here in the Houston Metroplex.

The new Texas Jail House (aka Historic Anderson County Jail) was designed to be an elegant, modern, and fun event space that preserves and shares the rich history of Texas prisons.

The new structure is located at 704 Avenue A, Palestine, Texas, and will be replacing the historic older 1800’s old jail building.

A visit to the Texas Jail is an educational experience that gives visitors a real sense of the jail population which consisted of men who were locked up for a crime, many of whom were also incarcerated on death row.

Many former prisoners and their families also frequent the Historic Jail House.

The Texas Jail House and its many activities are also the reason why the city of Houston now has two museums that showcase the history of the city.

These museums will definitely provide an extraordinary glimpse into the exciting history of Texas prisons and their many captivating attractions.

Go to the Famous Texas Vineyard & Smokehaus

If you love Texas wines, then you will want to visit the Texas Vineyard & Smokehaus in Palestine, Texas.

This historic winery tour and wine tasting event are sure to satisfy even the most discriminating palates.

The tour’s primary focus is to introduce visitors to Texas wine, particularly Texas red wines, while allowing them to sample the wines from various grape varieties grown in the state.

There are also activities for adults who love to enjoy the rich flavors of Texas barbecue along with the more delicate vintages of Texas wine.

Taking a Glance at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church

View of Sacred Heart Catholic Church

LMPark Photos /

Sacred Heart Church is located at 5500 North Queen Street in Palestine, Texas.

It was originally built by the noted Texas architect Nicholas J. Clayton back in 1890 for the centennial of the establishment of the Holy Trinity Protestant Church.

Constructed with brick, it stands on its own block between two major streets. The building is constructed largely of aroid rock and stone.

The church’s structure consists of three parts: the northeast corner has the Great Temple Mount to be seen in the background, and in front of this is the sanctuary or lectern.

View of Sacred Heart Catholic Church

Donna Chance Hall /

A special feature of Sacred Heart Church is its beautiful stained-glass windows.

These windows have inspired many artisans to create beautiful stained-glass artwork that all visitors can see.

Some of the designs have been known to include beautiful depictions of the cross and Jesus.

The church is also decorated with many angel statues and crosses that bring to life the history of Christ and Christianity in Texas.

Have a Slice of Pies and Other Freshly Baked Products at Oxbow Bakery & Antiques

You will find that the Oxbow Bakery in Palestine, Texas is one of the best bakers in the San Antonio area.

The family has grown many of their products to keep up with the demand for all types of bakery products.

They strive to provide the very best at a reasonable price, knowing that their customers will appreciate it.

They also want to be a destination for people who want to eat and relax while enjoying their new baked goods.

Take a Sightseeing Tour at Wolf Creek Lake

Wolf Creek Lake in Palestine, Texas, is one of the best places for a peaceful vacation.

It is a small gem tucked away in an old-growth forest.

There are miles of clean white sand beaches here in this little slice of paradise.

View of Wolf Creek Lake

Kasey Englehart /

The lake itself is gorgeous and has over three thousand acres of lakes, waters, and land.

One can enjoy hiking, canoeing, swimming, and fishing on this lake. The best time to visit Wolf Creek Lake in Palestine, Texas, is in May, June, or July, when the water is clear and warm.

Scenic view of Wolf Creek Lake

Kasey Englehart /

Whether you are going on a one-day trip, two days, or a month-long vacation, this place offers something for everyone.

The beauty of this lake makes it one of the perfect spots to take a fishing trip with family or friends.

Visit Howard House Museum

George Howard built the home in 1851, and the Howard Family owned it until 1961.

It is a superb example of James Bunda’s Greek Revival building style.

The initial three rooms, each with a fireplace and an exit, were constructed in 1848.

Facade of Howard House Museum

Renelibrary, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The rest of the house and the kitchen were eventually added, and the porch was covered.

You can find various period furniture at the museum.

It is a Texas Historic Landmark registered and included on the National Register of Historic Places.

By arrangement, it is accessible for special events and visits.

Admire Artwork during the Art Tracks and Sculpture Tour

The Palestine, Texas community’s yearly sculpture tour is a more modestly recognized, locally based attraction.

The Palestine Main Street Department, Palestine Tomorrow, and the Texas Area Fund Foundation’s subfund created the area’s Art Tracks and Sculpture Tour in 2013.

They sought to enhance public recreation areas and artistic venues so that local artists would have a place to flourish and be acknowledged.

This local sculpture display features some of the most genuine and well-conceived works by professional and amateur artists and sculptors and is a must-see while in Palestine.

Sphericle Embodiment, Voodoo Jet, and Heptagon are just a few of the themes represented by the metal and brass artworks scattered across the open area for visitors to admire and capture on camera.

Sample Wine at Sabor a Pasion Estate & Vineyard

Restaurant Chef Webster was born in England and lived in New Zealand.

He was formally trained at the New Zealand Culinary Institute and interned with some of the best chefs in the region.

Since its foundation in 2004, he has worked alone to turn Sabor a Pasion into dining, bed & breakfast, entertainment venue, wedding location, catering business, and vineyard.

The Sabor a Pasion Vineyard, planted in 2011, has 740 Blanc Du Bois and Lomanto vines.

Dry white wine Blanc Du Bois has citrus flavors, mostly grapefruit, and finishes with honey and lemon flavors.

The Lomanto grape is a French-American combination that produces dry, full-bodied, dark purple, fruit-forward red wines with flavors of rich, juicy cherries and blackberries.

Their vineyard functions as the setting for several special occasions at Sabor a Pasion and their grapes are planted to support the output of other Texas wineries.

Participate in the 1836 Chuckwagon Races

The 1836 Chuckwagon Races is held each year at the Diamond B Ranch in Neches, Texas, as part of the festivities honoring Texas’ independence.

Wagon races in various classes, a game race in cowboy fashion, pasture roping, barrel competitions, and mounted shooting contests are all available.

The Monday before the races, the gates are available for camping.

People are urged to arrive early, take their horses, mules, and carts, and partake in the numerous events planned.

Participate in Dutch oven cooking lessons, dog shows, foot care clinics, horse auctions, barn parties, singing, live music, cowboy church, and many more activities.

Every day of the week, they provide workshops, clinics, trail trips, and other events.

View the Structure of Anderson County Courthouse

Exterior view of Anderson County Courthouse

Roberto Galan /

In Palestine, Anderson County, Texas, there is a historic courthouse called the Anderson County Courthouse.

The Beaux-Arts structure was constructed on Palestine’s tallest peak.

The building was created by Austin designers Charles Henry Page and Louis Charles Page.

War memorial at Anderson County Courthouse

Roberto Galan /

The present Anderson County Courthouse is the fourth building to act as the county’s administrative center.

The courthouse has a bi-axial Beaux-Arts design with a rotunda topped by an interior art glass dome and an exterior dome topped by Lady Justice.

The three-story structure has a raised basement completed in terra cotta, rock, and brick.

On each of the four levels, projecting porticos have pediments and six ionic columns.

Final Thoughts

What a great place to visit, what a spectacular sight to see!

It is easy to visit all these things in just one day if you plan it right.

If you’re looking for a holiday here, a vacation here, there’s so much to do!

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