Marfa, Texas: A Must-Do Itinerary For A Weekend Escape

The closest city to Marfa is El Paso, a 3 hour drive through Texas farmlands

A trip to Marfa, Texas can be daunting.  First, there is the logistics of getting there (with El Paso as the closest airport, then a 3 hour drive!).  And let’s not forget how difficult it is to find a hotel (luckily the tiny town of Alpine, just 30 minutes East typically has more availability).  But then there is the actual planning part!  Below you’ll find an itinerary if you just have 2 days in Marfa.  I recommend spending most of your time in Marfa on the first day, then exploring further afield to Big Bend National Park on day 2.  It’s a fantastic combo of art, food and activity.  It’s a lot to fit in, but you definitely won’t be bored!

Day 1 (Friday):
City: Travel day
Hotel: Holland Hotel in Alpine, Texas (in Marfa, I’d recommend the Hotel Paisano or St. George, book early!)

Arrive in El Paso, Texas; Pick up rental car (great deals on car as low as $20 a day)

3-hour drive to Marfa, Texas (or Alpine, Texas where we stayed since there were no more rooms in Marfa

Holland Hotel in Alpine (3 nights – roughly $150 per night and includes a $50 dining credit that we didn’t use)

On the flight to El Paso and getting ready for our trip to Marfa

On the flight to El Paso and getting ready for our trip to Marfa

Tippy toeing around the hotel in Alpine, Texas - a late arrival around 3 AM!

Tippy toeing around the hotel in Alpine, Texas – a late arrival around 3 AM!

Day 2 (Saturday):
City: All day in Marfa, Texas
Hotel: Holland Hotel in Alpine Texas

It will likely be a late night on Friday, so we really appreciated a late start

11:30 take a 2-hour walking tour at The Chianti Foundation – it’s incredible and what put Marfa on the map (a must!)

Checking out the massive cultures at the Chianti Foundation

Checking out the massive cultures at the Chianti Foundation

2 PM Lunch at the Food Shark Truck (we tried eating here, but they ran out of food.  Something that is totally common for Marfa).  If this is the case, I’d recommend going to Buns and Roses or anywhere besides Boys2Men Taco truck, which we found to be way overpriced.  It’s an experience, but one we would not necessarily recommend.

3-4 PM You could visit the coffee shop, Do Your Thing (open until 4 PM); afterward take in some art galleries like Marfa Ballroom or shopping at Tienda M or the Marfa Book Company (open until 8 PM)

Late afternoon, head over to the Hotel Paisano to see some of the Giant memorabilia or lounge around the comfy hotel bar full of couches (or around the grand fountain in the courtyard)

8 PM (or whenever it’s around sunset), head out to the Marfa Lights Viewing Platform.  This is the best time to see the sunset and best chance to see the Marfa lights.
Snack: Museum/Late Night Grilled Cheese Parlor (9:30 pm-12:30)

It took about 45 minutes to get 1 grilled cheese, but at least it tasted good

It took about 45 minutes to get 1 grilled cheese, but at least it tasted good

People are transfixed by the trippy restaurant Late Night Grilled Cheese Parlor

People are transfixed by the trippy restaurant Late Night Grilled Cheese Parlor

Day 3 (Sunday)
Activity: Road trip to Big Bend National Park/Marfa
Hotel: Holland Hotel in Alpine Texas

9 AM drive towards Big Bend National Park

10 AM Stop in Marathon, Texas to see the Gage Hotel (basically the main draw in town)
– A few good art galleries and coffee shops are within walking distance of the Gage Hotel in Marathon
– The French Co Grocer (while not particularly French) has some delicious chocolate chip cookies and open very late (for the return drive back)

Historic Gage Hotel in Marathon

Historic Gage Hotel in Marathon

11 AM Arrive at the Big Bend National Park main gate (stop by the visitors center just inside)

12 PM Arrive at main hike, the Lost Mine Trail (4.6 miles out and back)

At the very top of the trail - we made it!

At the very top of the trail – we made it!

3 PM Explore more, then drive back towards Marfa

6 PM Dinner reservations at Cochineal (best meal in town)

9 PM Wrap dinner, you’re in for a long haul here

9:30 PM Movie nearby hotel in Alpine at the Ranga Theater

The date pudding with caramelized rum sauce

The date pudding with caramelized rum sauce at Cochineal in Marfa – top notch

 

Day 4 (Monday)

8 AM depart hotel in Alpine

8:30 AM Coffee stop at Buns N’ Roses in Marfa

9:15 AM Check out the Prada Marfa store for the last minute photo opps

10:15 AM Quick stop in Van Horn, Texas at Margie’s Bakery (the burritos and cookies are amazing and just a few bucks each.  Incredible.)

We loved this tiny spot along the way to Marfa -- Margie's Bakery and so cheap

We loved this tiny spot along the way to Marfa — Margie’s Bakery and so cheap

A burrito ranges from $1.05 to $3.50 at Margie's Bakery, just 1 hour along the way from Marfa to El Paso

A burrito ranges from $1.05 to $3.50 at Margie’s Bakery, just 1 hour along the way from Marfa to El Paso

12:15 PM Arrive back in El Paso, Fly home.  You made it!

Marfa Shop

Summary
Marfa, Texas: A Must-Do Itinerary For A Weekend Escape
Article Name
Marfa, Texas: A Must-Do Itinerary For A Weekend Escape
Description
A trip to Marfa, Texas can be daunting. First, there is the logistics of getting there (with El Paso as the closest airport, then a 3 hour drive!). And let's not forget how difficult it is to find a hotel (luckily the tiny town of Alpine, just 30 minutes East typically has more availability). But then there is the actual planning part! Below you'll find an itinerary if you just have 2 days in Marfa. I recommend spending most of your time in Marfa on the first day, then exploring further afield to Big Bend National Park on day 2. It's a fantastic combo of art, food and activity. It's a lot to fit in, but you definitely won't be bored!

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