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In The Age Of Coronavirus, Take A Virtual Tour Of Texas

David J. Phillip
Associated Press
The Texas flag flies in the middle of a field of bluebonnets near Navasota, Texas.

Most everyone is stuck indoors and going stir-crazy — there are only so many shows to binge, board games to play and recipes to test. Fortunately, you can take a tour of Texas’ most notable landmarks from your couch.

Here’s a list of sites you can admire from the safety and comfort of your home: 

The Alamo 

One of the top tourist destinations in Texas, the Alamo is one of the state’s most important pieces of history. First built by Spanish settlers in 1718, the fort became the spot where the Battle of the Alamo was fought. During Texas’ war of independence from Mexico, Texas forces fought off Mexican troops for 13 days and became a symbol of resistance with the rallying cry “Remember the Alamo!” 

Explore the grounds of the Alamo with a 360° virtual tour here

Texas Bluebonnets  

Fields of purple-colored blossoms are soon to bloom this Spring. The “bluebonnet belt” will peak this season in parts of Central, North and East Texas at the end of March to mid to late April. 

Big Bend

The national park in West Texas has become a popular vacation destination over the years with an average of 400,000 visitors a year. The vast spread of land includes the Chisos Mountain Range and a large section of the Chihuahuan Desert. 

Take a look at Emory Peak or Chisos Basin with a 360° tour here


If you ever wanted to be an astronaut, now might be a time to play out your childhood fantasy. This virtual reality field trip looks inside a full-scale mockup of the space shuttle orbiter, which includes a payload bay, lighting and closed-circuit TV. Built at the Johnson Space Center in the 1970s, it was the oldest mockup in the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility. 

Take a virtual walk around the shuttle fuselage trainer here

San Antonio Riverwalk

The 15-mile-long walkway is just below street level, offering a host of shops and restaurants. Visitors can stroll down the walkway, take a boat tour on the river or relax and enjoy the view. While the actual riverwalk is deserted now, you can enjoy the normal hustle and bustle of the area on the virtual tour here

The Texas State Capitol Building

The towering three-story building in the middle of downtown Austin is notable for its ornate design. The capitol sits on top of 22 acres of land, housing the offices and chambers of the Texas Legislature and the governor. 

Palo Duro Canyon

The state park in Amarillo is home to the second largest canyon in the U.S. The canyon is 800 feet deep, covers 30,000 acres of trails and includes 15,000 acres of trails. Visitors can go ziplining, hiking or mountain biking in the sprawling park. 

Walk down one of the park’s trails here

Magnolia Market

The HGTV series “Fixer Upper” with Joanna and Chip Gaines put Waco on the map as many flocked to their brick-and-mortar design store, Magnolia Market at the Silos. Walk through the latest in home decor as Joanna Gaines herself shows you how she put together the fall 2019 “wholeness” theme in her store. 

South Padre Island

The sunny beaches of Padre Island are a popular destination for people on spring break. Though many families and college students had to forego their annual trip to the beach this year, there is still a way to appreciate the ocean view with more than 30 minutes of drone footage. 

Elizabeth Myong is KERA’s Arts Collaborative Reporter. She came to KERA from New York, where she worked as a CNBC fellow covering breaking news and politics. Before that, she freelanced as a features reporter for the Houston Chronicle and a modern arts reporter for Houstonia Magazine.