Quiet and charming, the small town of Navasota, Texas flies under the radar–but there are plenty of fun things to do in Navasota that make it worth a stop.
A railroad town that enjoyed its peak influence a century ago, the blend of past and present in Navasota is interesting to witness–and its location merely 7 miles from Washington-on-the-Brazos makes it an easy addition to a trip there.
Here’s what to do in Navasota, plus a little more information about the town itself!
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Navasota as we know it today first began in the mid-19th century and rapidly grew, in large part thanks to its location along railroad lines.
Despite setbacks brought on by struggles including the Civil War, a cholera outbreak, and the complications of ever-changing technology, Navasota ended the 19th century as a bustling area, with three railroads running through it and the town acting as a center for commerce in the county.
The population declined in the mid-20th century, due in part to a loss of local businesses during the Great Depression, but also in large part due to changes in–and especially the mechanization of–the agriculture industry.
Navasota residents are loyal to their town, though, and have worked tirelessly to keep new businesses interested in Navasota and to revitalize their downtown over the last several decades.
In addition to its ties to the railroad (including the famed Union Pacific Railroad), Navasota is known for music: it has been designated the “Blues Capital of Texas” in honor of Mance Lipscomb, who called Navasota home.
Stroll down Washington Ave.
As Navasota’s main street, Washington Avenue is home to many of the sights that make up the best things to do in Navasota, as well as some of the town’s best architecture.
Just outside of downtown, Washington Avenue is also home to some of the most beautiful homes in Navasota, including several historic mansions (I’m particularly fond of the intricate Victorians).
While many are still private residences, you’ll find historic bed and breakfasts here as well!
Seek out Navasota’s murals.
For a tiny town, Navasota has an impressive amount of public art!
Two of its most popular murals include the “Greetings from Navasota” postcard (head to the parking lot of Zippy’s Liquor) and the “Navasota Music Mural”, which celebrates the history of Blues music in Navasota and can be found on the side Classic Rock Coffee Co.
Visit the Horlock House Art Gallery & History Museum.
Navasota’s Horlock House is eye-catching at first glance: a fully restored Victorian, it stands proud on Washington Avenue–and some lucky artists get to live in it!
In addition to being a museum, 3 artists in residence are offered a chance to live and work in the home.
Visit the self-declared World’s Largest Teapot.
At Martha’s Bloomers, a nursery, restaurant, and antique shop all in one, you can also see the self-declared World’s Largest Teapot, which is one of the most popular roadside attractions in Texas in addition to one of the most sought-after Navasota attractions.
Check out Railroad Street.
Historic Railroad Street is home to some of the most interesting buildings in Navasota: an air of forgotten opulence lingers here, with intricate, late-19th and early 20th-century architecture showing off hints of Navasota’s past as a thriving railroad town.
With a historic hotel currently being refurbished and businesses slowly starting to trickle back in, though, Railroad Street also feels like an area about to resurge–I’m excited to see what the next 5 years bring!
See a show at the Navasota Theatre Alliance.
The Navasota Theatre Alliance is dedicated to bringing interesting, varied, and engaging live theatre to this small Texas town–if you’re sticking around overnight, consider supporting the local art scene and seeing a show!
Shop in a store that has been open for a century.
Strolling through Navasota’s small downtown, an independently operated department store isn’t something you expect to see–let alone one that has endured for over 100 years!
And yet, at P. Nemir’s Dry Goods, that’s exactly what you’ll find. This family-run business first opened its doors in 1911, and is still open on Washington Ave. today.
Take an alpaca farm tour.
As the self-declared alpaca capital of Texas, the Navasota area includes no less than three ranches where you can meet and interact with these adorable animals–definitely one of the most unexpected things to do in Navasota!
Visit a honey farm.
The local BeeWeaver farm welcomes visitors, and includes options as varied as taking on-site beekeeping lessons to simply purchasing local honey and honey-filled treats!
Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site is known as the place where Texas began–and more specifically, where the Texas Declaration of Independence from Mexico was signed in 1836.
Located only 7 miles from town, visiting the park is an easy and interesting addition to a trip to Navasota (or perhaps more commonly, Navasota is an easy addition to a trip to Washington-on-the-Brazos!).
Navasota is located just off of Highway 6 in southeast Texas, about 70 miles northwest of Houston, 115 miles east of Austin, and 25 miles southeast of College Station.
If you’re driving from Houston to College Station or vice versa, Navasota is right on the way!
Navasota is an easy addition to a trip to Round Top, Brenham, Washington-on-the-Brazos, or College Station–and it doesn’t take much time to enjoy several of the best things to see in Navasota!