Beyond Abilene’s city limits, small towns in the Big Country can have a lot to offer. And since you may not have time to do a weekend trip to a metro area, why not consider a day trip to a nearby town? Albany, Texas is a 36-minute drive away, and features entertainment, shopping, and restaurants for a family getaway or girls weekend. Follow our schedule for the perfect Day Trip to Albany.
When you arrive, head straight to the Old Jail Art Center to start exploring 17,000-square feet of public art displays. The museum is on the property of Shackelford County’s first permanent jail. But today, instead of housing inmates, it houses art. This summer’s exhibit features objects from ancient Central and South America. The museum is open from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. After touring the inside, check out the sculptures in the outdoor exhibits, as well. You can also shop at the museum’s gift shop. 201 S. 2nd St, Albany, TX 76430 | 325-762-2269
After the museum, head to Main Street for Vintage Vanilla & Erline’s Specialty Shop. This old-fashioned soda shop has a drug store in the back and offers vintage items or food including sandwiches, candy, coffee and more.
At this point, you’ve probably worked up enough of an appetite to head to lunch at the Icehouse Restaurant. It’s actually located in what used to be a functional icehouse that served ice boxes. One Albany family repurposed the building and created a restaurant over 27 years ago. Order Tex-mex or mesquite grilled items between 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. or 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. 200 S 2nd St, Albany, TX 76430 | 325-762-3287
After lunch, it’s time for more shopping at Blanton Caldwell back on Main Street. The store is half a block long and features items for men, women, and children. The store’s shining glory is its kitchen inventory, giving local brides a great local registry option. 117 S Main Street Albany, Texas 76430 325-762-2370
Continue your shopping on Main Street at Nostalgia, an antique and décor store. Here you can find original antiques, or refurbished items like tables, chests, armoires and more. 124 S. Main St, Albany, Texas 76430 | 325-762-8008
Once you’ve had your fill of shopping, head to the corner of Main and South First Street to the Bank Park. Here you can relax for a few minutes or check out the moving monument to the Georgia Volunteers who gave their lives in the Texas Revolution against Mexico.
It wouldn’t be a complete trip to Albany without dinner at the Beehive Albany. The older sister to the Beehive Restaurant and Saloon in Abilene, this location features the same iconic steaks and Texas menu. Enjoy a relaxed, sit-down dinner at this classic steakhouse. 517 US-180, Albany, TX 76430 | 325-762-3034
The must-see event in Albany is the Fort Griffin Fandangle – a show featuring over 250 performers who bring the wild west to life. The show runs during the last two weekends in June and tickets cost $15. Presented on the Prairie Theatre, it features real horse-drawn wagons as it tells the story of the frontier. This is a fun show for the whole family and a true West Texas experience. Make sure you wear comfortable walking shoes since the show is outdoors. 1490 FM 1084, Albany, TX 76430 | 325-762-3838 firstname.lastname@example.org | fortgriffinfandangle.org
If you’re visiting any other time of year, close out the evening at the historic Aztec Theatre, built in 1927 and restored to serve as a venue for concerts and more. Time your trip right, and you could see a concert at the venue! Check the Facebook page “Aztec Theater – Albany TX” to find the next live event. 141 S. Main St., Albany, TX 76430
By Haley Laurence