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Photo: © The Daytripper with Chet Garner

While “Bryan-College Station” rolls off the tongue smoother than the Aggie War Hymn, and is known collectively as “Aggieland,” each city has its own distinctive identity. I set out for a day in Bryan, far from the bustle of College Station’s Texas A&M University.

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In Texas, the mere mention of the word “Shiner” immediately brings to mind thoughts of a cold longneck and the distinctive brew within. However, before the beer, there was the town, which I set out to explore, beyond the bottle.

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Like most Texans, I’m no stranger to Big “D.”  However, until recently, the “FW” of the DFW Metroplex was an uncharted frontier. So I set out to spend the day in Dallas’ rustic “cow”-nterpart—Fort Worth.

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I set out for a place that is a bit like another continent, a bit like a science-fiction universe, and yet completely Texas. It’s not a town, but a destination north of San Antonio built around adventure and a unique “natural bridge.”

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(Photo courtesy of Daytripper with Chet Garner)

From bluebonnets and Blue Bell to burgers and the Birthplace of Texas, Brenham and surrounding Washington County should be on your A-list of day-trip excursions.

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For Texans, there’s no need to cross the Sabine River into Louisiana to experience Cajun culture at its finest. It is alive and well in the southeast Texas town of Beaumont.

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Chet Garner is the host of The Daytripper travel show on PBS; www.thedaytripper.com. (Photo courtesy The Daytripper with Chet Garner)

Officially, Llano is known as the “Deer Capital of Texas.” But what is a daytripper to do in this Hill Country hideaway when it isn’t deer-hunting season? I set out for the day determined to find out.

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(Photo courtesy of The Daytripper with Chet Garner)

The reasons I love Texas are endless: the state's great outdoors, history, Tex-Mex, sunsets, swimming holes ... the list keeps going. And when I hear of a place where I can experience most of my favorites in a single day, I hit the road––this time to the Hill Country's scenic Canyon Lake.

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(Photo courtesy of The Daytripper with Chet Garner)

It’s Burn-et, Durn-it! Can’t you learn it? So goes the popular saying in the town of Burnet, as natives poke gentle fun at out-of-towners and the dreadfully incorrect pronunciation—“Burr–nette.” But however you say it, this Hill Country burg near the Highland Lakes makes for a great destination.

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(Photo courtesy of The Daytripper with Chet Garner)

It’s official. A while back, the Texas Legislature settled the debate over which town deserves the overall crown for best ’cue: Lockhart (designated “Barbecue Capital of Texas” in 1999). I made a trip to our smoky capital on a meaty mission—to try every barbecue restaurant in town.

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Photo courtesy of The Daytripper with Chet Garner; by Nathan Locklear

Unless you’re from Waco (or are a Baylor Bear), you may not have frequented this Central Texas hub off I-35. I decided to spend a day in Waco and explore beyond the access roads.

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