This article is a part of the 2023 Fall Travel Guide, a sponsored collection brought to you by our travel advertising partners. You can find more fall travel destinations and events here.

Crisp morning air and the subtle transition from green to yellow, orange, and red announce autumn’s arrival in East Texas. While there are many ways you can enjoy the season in Texas’s gorgeous Piney Woods region, Palestine is the perfect place to appreciate nature’s beauty. Beyond exploring Davey Dogwood Park or the unforgettable entertainment from live shows at the Texas Theatre, you can take a trip to Palestine and experience everything from the haunting season of fall to the festive season of Christmas. Plan your perfect magical getaway by checking out these amazing adventures in Palestine.

Texas Jailhouse Entertains All Season

When the old, abandoned county jail takes on new life…it can mean lots of things!  Get ready for the ultimate adrenaline rush at a spine-chilling haunted adventure this October as you step into the eerie darkness of an old, abandoned jailhouse, where spirits roam freely, ready to give you the scare of a lifetime. Or make your way through the Grinch’s Lair starting mid-November as you follow the grouchy green character through his infamous jailhouse living quarters and he tells tales of how he once tried to steal Christmas from Whoville. Don’t miss the chance to experience one or both fully immersive experiences at the Texas Jailhouse, 704 Avenue A. Admission is $15 per person.

Drinks that Build Memories

Dark, flavorful, and smooth like a flowing river, Tahwahkaro Distillery’s spirits are world-renowned. Now you can taste them at the source in Palestine. Tahwahkaro crafts its bourbon and whiskey using corn from Valley View, rye from Denton, malts from Fort Worth, and water from Palestine. Try them out for yourself at the distillery’s Steel Driver Whiskey Lounge and make sure to set some time aside for a behind-the-scenes tour of the distillery.

And speaking of whiskey, snag tickets for the Whiskey & Wine Swirl. This festive event is a treasured part of the holiday season in Palestine. Walk the beautifully decorated streets and savor wines and whiskeys from across the state. Each tasting station is set up in one of the charming shops that line the main street district, giving you the opportunity to discover unique, local items as you enjoy your drinks. The air is filled with laughter and toasts as locals and visitors alike partake in this tradition.

October Brings Cooler Temps but Activities that Turn Up the Heat!

Enjoy a Haunted Mansion Ghost Hunt in a 140 year old mansion where you get to host your very own paranormal investigation. Behind the house’s stunning facade lies a hidden secret—a dark tale of a murder-suicide that unfolded, accompanied by numerous mysterious deaths throughout the years. Regarded as a local legend, this Texas Historic Landmark has remained unexplored by paranormal investigators until now. Prepare to witness a new chapter unfold as our team embarks on a riveting exploration of this historic gem, shedding light on its intriguing past.  Or take a spin at the “hottest little festival in Texas” the Hot Pepper Festival, on October 28 where we pay tribute to everything HOT!

Christmas in Palestine

Escape the hustle and bustle of the big city to experience the magic of Christmas in Palestine, Texas. With its brick storefronts adorned with twinkling lights and magical one-of-a-kind entertainment for the whole family, this small town feels like a destination in a Hallmark movie!

All aboard the Polar Express! This festive train ride is a must-do activity in Palestine during the holiday season. The journey begins from the Texas State Railroad, transporting passengers through the lush Piney Woods, making it feel like you are traveling straight to the North Pole. With hot cocoa in hand, listen to a heartwarming live reading of the classic children’s book, The Polar Express. The air buzzes with anticipation as children, clad in their cozy pajamas, anxiously await the arrival of Santa. This unforgettable experience embodies the essence of holiday joy and will leave you with memories to cherish forever.

After dark, visit Walk of Lights and enjoy the magical atmosphere of thousands of twinkling lights. Take a self-guided tour through this dazzling Christmas light show, absolutely free! Celebrate with hot chocolate or cider and some yummy treats to keep you warm. Enjoy the beauty of the holiday season while catching up on your favorite festive tunes and feeling the joy of Christmas in the air.

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