Fort Davis fun and food through the eyes of a local

(((NOTE: AGAIN, I will post pictures as time permits … I’m like so super busy blah blah blah and stuff LOL … feral cats don’t domesticate themselves, you know 😉 HOWEVER, the picture I’m using across the top here is from our first trip to the Davis Mountains State Park… that fateful weekend we decided to move to Dancer, TX Population 81 errrrr I mean Fort Davis, Population About a Thousand 🙂 That storm was a beast to survive in a tent! )))

Whenever out of town friends ask me for advice in planning their Fort Davis trips, I have a pretty standard reply: the Fort, the Observatory, the CDRI, the State Park, Prude Ranch, the Scenic Loop, and be sure to pack an ice chest.

No visit to Fort Davis is complete without a visit to the Fort Davis National Historic Site, where you can tour one of the finest restored forts in our country and hike to breathtaking locations with unbelievable views of this part of Texas, all the way to Mexico.

Star Parties at the McDonald Observatory happen on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday nights, and require reservations. The Visitors Center is open every day except Thanksgiving, and if a night time visit isn’t right for you, the day time tours, Solar Viewing Parties, are just as incredible. Call (877)984-7827 for details.

The Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute and Botanical Garden (CDRI) is a gem for hiking and learning about local flora and fauna. You don’t want to miss it.

The Davis Mountains State Park is wonderful for camping, hiking and they also hold interactive programs with rangers. The Black Bear Restaurant is located within the park, at the Indian Lodge Hotel that was built in the 1930s with the assistance of the Civilian Conservation Corps.

Need to ride horses on your West Texas visit? Check out the Historic Prude Ranch. It’s between the Davis Mountains State Park and the Observatory, on Highway 118. Call (432)426-3201, and visit

Want to take in the vast, rugged beauty of all that is Fort Davis? Stay on Highway 118 and drive the Scenic Loop, about two hours of smooth roads with little to no other traffic. There are quite a few picnic areas strategically placed along the loop, so this is one time when your well-packed ice chest will come in handy.

If you’re arriving in Fort Davis in the evening, there’s a good chance you’ll be hungry, so that ice chest will be even more appreciated. Most eateries in town close by 7:30 p.m., with the exception of the Blue Mountain Bistro at Hotel Limpia, and Cueva de Leon, which are open until about 8 p.m., sometimes a little later, depending on the day.

Black Bear Restaurant at the Indian Lodge Hotel in the Davis Mountains State Park is open Wednesday through Sunday, 7 a.m to 2 p.m. The Sunday buffet changes weekly, and is a real treat.

Blue Mountain Bistro at Hotel Limpia is open from 5-8 p.m. (unless otherwise specified) and has Fort Davis’ only bar in town, as well as a lovely outdoor patio. Reservations are usually required, call (432)426-3244.

The Caboose, located directly across from the National Historic Site, is the place to get your favorite ice cream treats and experience a real train caboose. Open 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. unless otherwise stated on the big sign outside.

Cueva de Leon, good Mexican food and BYOB, is open from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. Located at 611 N. State Street. Credit cards are accepted.

The Fort Davis Drugstore recently added barbecue to their expansive menu that includes a little something for everyone at the old-fashioned soda fountain, fudge factory and gift shop, and is located at 113 N. State Street. Open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Closed on Saturday.

Lupita’s Place is a great little spot for breakfast, and I’ve enjoyed the breakfast burritos numerous times, in addition to other lunch items. Cash only, located at 411 N. State Street.

Mary Lou’s Café is another local favorite, open on Thursday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Sundays, if the sign for “BBQ” is outside, do yourself a favor and stop. Mary Lou’s son Mark’s Sunday barbecue is terrific.

Poco de Mexico Café is open from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and closed on Saturdays. The chile rellenos, chicken fajitas and Scott’s Tacos are some of my personal favorites. Located at 43371 State Hwy. 17.

The Porch, at 100 N. State Street in the Hotel Limpia complex, offers espresso, cappuccino, pastries, panini, salads and soups. Spring break hours are Thursday – Sunday, March 14-17 and 21-24, from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Breakfast buffet is served from 7:30-10 a.m., and lunch is served from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Stone Village Market is my go-to place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. There’s a different special every day, in addition to the regularly offered goodness. For $5.95, each daily special also comes with a fountain drink. Last year, during just one week of Spring Break, Stone Village Market still sold 918 made-to-order sandwiches. That was even with hot dogs, Sunday barbecue and other food items on the menu. They have an exceptional beer and wine selection, and grab-and-go items to fill your ice chest and your growling belly. Did I mention fresh-baked bread and cookies? Located at 509 N. State Street.

Come enjoy everything Fort Davis – the highest town in Texas – has to offer!






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