Best 9 Things To Do In El Paso!

Jan 17, 2024

Last Updated on: Feb 6, 2024

Travel Guides

Visiting El Paso? Curious about the things to do in El Paso?

El Paso, located in the foothills of the stunning Franklin Mountains, is a vibrant and diverse community with a wide range of attractions and year-round fun. El Paso’s attractions include a historic theater, concert venues, Spanish Colonial missions, museums, and beautiful state parks.

Things To Do In El Paso

If you enjoy being outside and want to visit one of Texas’ most interesting cities, you should visit El Paso. Continue reading to get a sense of what Sun City has to offer.

Also, click here to order a free travel guide to help you plan your next vacation. Here are some of the best things to do in El Paso:

El Paso Mission Trail

Explore El Paso’s early history by visiting the El Paso Mission Trail, which includes two 17th-century missions and a chapel built in the late 1800s. The oldest, which is the Ysleta Mission, was built in 1682. It is Texas’ oldest functioning parish. El Paso’s magic charm will sway you into the blue sky of romanticism and inspire you to move to Texas.

Admire the white adobe-walled structures along the trail, then visit museums such as the Tigua Indian Cultural Center and the Los Portales Museum and Information Center. The El Paso Mission Trail, in addition to its attractions, hosts cultural festivals throughout the year.

Ascarate Park

Escape to nature at the 400-acre Ascarate Park, El Paso County’s largest recreational area. Play a round of golf on the 18-hole, par-71 Ascarate Golf Course, explore the 48-acre lake by canoe or pedal boat, or enjoy some of the best fishing in the Southwest. In addition to baseball and soccer fields, the park has basketball, handball, sand volleyball, and tennis courts.

Franklin Mountains

Are you looking for adventurous things to do in El Paso? Here is one exciting option.

The stunning Franklin Mountains frame El Paso, and the state park that encompasses the range is a breathtaking outdoor playground for adventure seekers. Hike and bike more than 100 miles of trails that wind through 27,000 acres of scenic desert terrain.

Or you can go rock climbing at McKelligon Canyon’s designated area. If you want to stay overnight, tent and RV campsites can be reserved. There are plenty of outdoor activities for people of all ages at the nation’s largest urban state park.

Hueco Tanks State Park and Historic Site

Admire the ancient rock paintings left by Native Americans who traversed the West Texas desert in search of rainwater collected in natural rock basins. Hike rugged trails while keeping an eye out for any of the 200 bird species that call the area home.

Explore world-class rock climbing and search for more than 1,000-year-old pictographs. Hueco Tanks State Park and Historic Site is open all year, with extended hours on weekends during the summer. This is one of the best things to do in El Paso for history buffs.

Hueco Tanks is a collection of thousands of year-old rock outcrops. Previous residents had access to food, shelter, and farmland in the area. Today, visitors come to see the images left by previous inhabitants on the rock faces. Among the drawings are animals, masks, handprints, horses, as well as humans.

Aside from viewing the pictographs and petroglyphs, visitors can go hiking, camping, bird watching, as well as rock climbing. However, certain areas of the park are only accessible via guided tour, and self-guided activities (such as hiking) may require reservations.

Also, only 70 people can enter the self-guided portion of the park at one time. To make the most of your time at the site, make your reservations well in advance.

Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Cultural Center

When you visit this museum, you will learn about more than 14,000 years of regional prehistory. The museum’s permanent collection includes ancient and modern artifacts as well as art from Native American cultures in the Southwest and Mexico, such as wood carvings, textiles, as well as pottery.

After touring the museum, hike the nature trails that wind through 15 acres of gardens with 250 different types of native plants, all while enjoying breathtaking views of the Franklin Mountains.

El Paso Zoo

Explore the world’s wildlife at the El Paso Zoo, a sprawling 35-acre green space near Downtown El Paso. The zoo is home to tigers, leopards, lions, giraffes, and other exotic animals from Africa, Asia, as well as the Americas.

See these incredible animals, then visit family-friendly attractions like the African Star Train and the Hunt Family Desert Spring water feature before enjoying a delicious burger at one of the onsite eateries.

Plaza Theatre

At the historic Plaza Theatre, you can see famous musicians, classic films, magic shows, Broadway musicals, and much more. The theatre has been a hub of entertainment in El Paso since it first opened its doors in 1930.

This is probably one of the best things to do in El Paso. It is now one of the city’s top venues as well as the home of the Plaza Classic Film Festival, the world’s largest classic film festival. More information about upcoming shows can be found on the theatre’s website.

United States Border Patrol

This one-of-a-kind museum traces the history of the United States Border Patrol from the Old West to the present. The National Border Patrol Museum displays weapons, paintings, equipment, artifacts, photos, and even vehicles. Admission is free, and guided tours can be scheduled ahead of time.

El Paso Desert Botanical Gardens

The El Paso Desert Botanical Gardens are part of Keystone Heritage Park, which includes an archaeological site with a 4,500-year-old village, one of the oldest in the United States. The park includes wetlands that provide habitat for up to 200 different bird species, as well as a botanical garden that showcases the fauna of the Chihuahuan Desert.

Stop by the El Paso Municipal Rose Garden, an All-American Rose Selection-certified garden, and smell over 1,900 rosebushes. Stroll along the wide, wheelchair-accessible walkways to see more than 500 varieties of roses waterfalls, as well as a plaza area with a Koi pond. This is one of the best things to do in El Paso for people with a deep love of nature.

Wrapping Up

El Paso offers something for everyone, whether your preference is to explore the trails or immerse yourself in history. The El Paso Mission Trail as well as Hueco Tanks State Park & Historic Site, are two locations where you can learn more about the region’s 5,000-year history.

Visit the Centennial Museum or the Magoffin Home State Historic Site to gain a deeper understanding of the area’s past. Franklin Mountains State Park has some of the best trails for when the weather is right for outdoor activities. Enjoy the local arts scene at the Plaza Theatre or the El Paso Museum of Art to cap off your trip.

If you want to know all the cool things to do in El Paso, we hope this article helps. If you have thoughts to share or questions to ask, please leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you!

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Sarmind is a Writer and an aspiring Editor who has experience in various short and long-form niches. Her academic pursuits intensely mold her industry background in content creation. She holds a Master's degree in Literature, and when not writing for professional purposes, she can be found re-reading old classics of Jane Austen and the Brontë sisters. She is super fond of cats and enjoys hours of doom-scrolling through memes on social media while cuddled up with a cup of desi chai. She likes to think she is an intellectual badass (colloquial: nerdy bore), and now all she needs is a sewing kit to complete the look!

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