Big Bend offers a variety of hiking opportunities, everything from short interpretive walks, to rugged, multi day excursions. Big Bend National Park alone features a system of over 150 miles of improved hiking trails.

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River Trips

Five  spectacular river canyons in Big Bend offer incredible opportunities to kayak, canoe or raft the Rio Grande. The river is not difficult for beginning and intermediate paddlers at normal river flows, and some sections are ideal for novices. Bring your own gear, rent equipment from local outfitters, or take a fully equipped guided trip from two hours to ten days.

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Horseback Riding

There is no better way to see Big Bend than from the back of a horse. Horse rides as short as one hour in length are available right outside Big Bend National Park in Study Butte. For the more adventurous trips from 3 hours to multi-day camping trips are available in Big Bend Ranch State Park.

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Big Bend offers many opportunities for bicycle travel and sport. Scenic paved highways with low traffic are ideal for skinny tire road bikes with lots of gears. The extensive back road system in Big Bend National Park offers   great mountain bike access.

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Motorcycles are very popular in Big Bend. The winding mountain highways, amazing vistas and low traffic are a perfect combination for motorcycles of all descriptions. The extensive back roads in the area offer loads of challenging fun for the dual sport crowd.

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Sight Seeing

There is more to Big Bend than can be seen in a lifetime. Big Bend National Park is the main destination, and together with neighboring Big Bend Ranch State Park, there are a million acres of spectacular vistas, shadowy canyons, and rugged desert mountains that visitors explore by road, river, and trail.

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Professional surveys suggest that the most popular vacation activity is shopping and in Big Bend unique local merchants have made many interesting shopping opportunities available.

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Big Bend National Park is the most bio-diverse park in the entire system. Within its boundaries, one finds more species of butterflies, bats, reptiles, plants, ants and birds. Over 450 avian species either live in Big Bend National Park, or migrate through at some point in the year.

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Air Tours

Retired National Park Ranger and pilot Marcos Paredes has founded Rio Aviation www.rioaviation.com to show folks a bird's eye view of Big Bend. From the air, you  view the unobstructed geology of this amazing region, and can imagine the powerful process that made and continue to shape our planet.   Rio Aviation is licensed to conduct tours over both the Big Bend National Park and Big Bend Ranch State Park.

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There are two golf courses located just outside Big Bend National Park, offering completely different golfing experiences:

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Marathon was established with the coming of the railroad in 1882. However, the establishment of Big Bend National Park made Marathon the closest gateway town to the Park, and a jumping off point for Park visitors.

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Study Butte

At the junction of TX 118 and FM 170, Study Butte is just two miles west of Big Bend National Park. There are several outdoor activity outfitters, various lodging options, gift shops and galleries, convenience stores, restaurants, auto service, a gas station, churches, a post office, a bank (ATM), and a liquor store

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Perhaps the best-kept secret about the Big Bend is the view from the porch in Terlingua Ghost Town. Visitors will also find a trading company/gift shop, art galleries, unique lodging options, restaurants, and bars.

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Be aware that cell phones may inadvertently change to Mountain Time and cause you to be an hour behind schedule. Double check when in the area for the correct local time when visiting. The Big Bend area is in Central Standard Time.