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Girlfriends’ Guide to Waco

Heading to Waco? Or hoping to go someday soon? This is for YOU! Because if we lived a little closer, we might get together for coffee and chat before your big trip. You know, discussing all the fun little details that you won’t wanna miss! I’m no expert, but I’ve been lucky to visit a few times and each trip has been so unique and action-packed. Soooo, ready? Let’s talk about WACO!

Are you flying to Texas? If you’re like me, it’s not within driving distance. You can either fly into Dallas or Austin, and either way it’s about a 90 minute drive to Waco. We’ve found that it’s more economical to fly into Dallas. Oh, and you’ll need a rental car…be sure to choose something that has plenty of room for your luggage and all of your fun finds! While we’re on the subject of flights, think carefully about the days you’ll be in Waco. Keep in mind that most of  Waco’s fun shopping opportunities are closed on Sunday, so if you’re going for a long weekend, use Sunday as your day to travel home.

Now you’ll need a place to stay! There are so many options. In the past we’ve spent the first night in Dallas, and driven down to Waco the next morning. HOWEVER, this year, at the last minute we decided to drive down to Waco as soon as our flight arrived at Dallas-Fort Worth. Best decision ever. This way we had a FULL first day in Waco…and we used up every second! When selecting your lodging, consider the following:

1. The number of people in your party.

2. Budget.

3. Proximity to the fun.

If you have a big group going (girls trip!), it might be fun to stay somewhere you’ve seen on TV! This year, our group of girlfriends stayed at Harp House (Clint and Kelly Harp’s former residence as seen on Fixer Upper). We. Had. A blast. Here’s a little peek at their darling kitchen:

Aaaand all of us girls on the front porch:

A weekend to remember for sure! We laughed, we cried, we shared our hearts…Oh, it was the best.

Last year, I got to stay with this crew at Magnolia House. Have you heard of it? 😉 You know, Chip & Joanna Gaines’ bed & breakfast. IT. WAS. EPIC. Seriously. I’ve never stayed somewhere that dreamy in all of my days. It’s a little tough to get a reservation, but if you happen to get lucky and book it for your group, you WON’T be sorry. It will be an experience you’ll never forget! Here we are last year. 🙂 (below)

I mean, can you even DEAL with this? So gorgeous! Here we are walking from Magnolia House over to the cutest little Italian restaurant in McGregor for dinner. Whatta fun night.

If your group is a little smaller, you might check out another fun home from Fixer Upper, the German Schmear House.

Or if your group is VERY small, like maybe just you and your hubby? You might try the Shotgun House! (This one is on my bucket list!)

If staying somewhere “famous” isn’t your thing (or hey, maybe you’d rather save your money for SHOPPING! I’m with ya, girl!), there are plenty of hotels in town as well. This last time we spent the first night here, and it was great!

And NOW. What are your plans while in town? Ummm. I might be able to guess your first stop. You know. Because I DON’T LIVE UNDER A ROCK. 😉 Yes, I get it. Get up, put on that cute outfit you’ve been planning, and hope for the BEST hair day in the history of your life. This day is a GOOD DAY. Time to hit Magnolia Market.

If you go first thing in the morning, there will most likely be a CROWD. My take on it is, WHO CARES? Of course there’s a crowd! It’s AMAZING! It adds to the fun. Don’t you worry. The kind, friendly staff at Magnolia is constantly putting out more inventory, and there’s enough farmhouse goodness for all of us. Take a deep breath, and enjoy the experience. Notice the displays (hello, brilliant styling ideas). Smile at the people around you. Like you, they’ve probably been planning this trip for awhile. The line at the registers looks long, but it actually goes pretty quickly. So, don’t stress. Just ENJOY! I must say, we were so completely impressed by every encounter we had with a Magnolia Market employee. Always friendly, always helpful…it’s like Disneyland for grown-ups! (SERIOUSLY!)

The store is much less busy in the late afternoon, so if crowds aren’t your favorite, try hitting it then. Be sure to stop by the bakery as well…YUM!!! The line for the bakery is ALWAYS long, but worth it.

Pull up a seat on this pretty little patio and enjoy your cupcake or pastry!

You’ll want to plan to spend a good chunk of the day at Magnolia. After you’ve shopped and hit the bakery, it’s fun to hang out on the lawn, take a selfie with your besties, and hit the food trucks for lunch! Everything I’ve had to eat from the food trucks has been amazing, but this time I surprised myself with my choice. Are you ready for this? It was from Vitek’s BBQ and called “The Gut Pack.” Ummm, ya. It was SO NOT on my diet. But worth every calorie. Think fritos, brisket, beans, cheese, and all the toppings. So bad. But so good.

After lunch, waddle (and I do mean WADDLE) on over to the Seed + Supply shop/garden. So fun!

This time we got to chat with Joanna’s mom, and take a quick pic…she is the sweetest!

After Magnolia, there’s so much more to see! Just down the street (you don’t even need to move your car!) is a super cute shop, The Findery. You will love it! Don’t forget to go upstairs as well.

And OH! Just past The Findery, is the “Warehouse”, which is part of the Findery, but a HUGE BONUS shop. Don’t miss it!! It was one of our favorite spots!

When you’re at The Findery, ask for a list of all the shopping in town. I wish I still had mine…but it was a great directory to all of the other must-see spots! You’ll want to visit Junque in the Trunk (and hey, they’re even open on Sundays!)…look at this cuteness!

And Spice Village is filled to the brim with treasures! Here we are after a fun shopping trip to Spice Village:

Be sure to visit Harp Design Co…you might even spot Clint Harp! (and the Harp House is right next door!)

Now, a most important topic. Food. So much to eat, so little time. For the most amazing home-cooked breakfast, try Lula Jane’s. Everything is divine, especially the baked oatmeal (it’s pretty much famous), and just look at this sweet roll that has bacon baked into it. I mean, come on. So good.

Here’s our crew outside Lula Jane’s. 🙂

If you go, PLEASE, I BEG YOU, get a chocolate chip cookie. Even if you’re full. Just save it for later. Quite possibly the best chocolate chip cookie I’ve ever had. And just look at this sweet garden. They grow their own produce for the restaurant!

Get a super delicious lunch at Cafe Homestead. I hear it’s also amazing for breakfast. My husband and I ate at Cafe Homestead last year, and wow. So good. I hear the Gaines family enjoys it as well!

Dinner? If you’re in the mood for some great southern food, try Jake’s in downtown Waco. Oh. My. Gosh. Delish. Another favorite is Ninfa’s, if you’re hungry for some great Mexican food!

Besides shopping and eating (two of my favorite activities), I’d highly recommend Waco Tours! Owned by Luke & Rachel Whyte and David Ridley, it’s a great way to learn more about Waco and explore the city! David took us on an amazing tour this time, along with Melinda his co-pilot and excellent tour guide. We enjoyed every minute! We learned a lot, and it was inspiring to see their passion for their city. It’s a must!!

Do we look like we’re having fun or what?

As part of the tour, we got to stop at Heritage Creamery for delicious ice cream (I tried Blueberry Cheesecake, YUM!) and Common Grounds for yummy coffee. Waco Tours knows the way to a girl’s heart!

So?? What are you waiting for? Get that trip to Waco booked, and ENJOY EVERY SECOND. Girl, you are in for a TREAT!!!

  • June 1, 2017 - 12:45 am

    Brooke - Thank you very much! I love this, because you don’t know what to expect and it all seems a bit overwhelming. Sounds like a great time. Question tho, what do you do with all your purchases? Do you ship it all?ReplyCancel

    • June 1, 2017 - 4:10 pm

      yellowprairieint - Great question! It’s a good idea to pack an extra duffle bag that you can use as a carry-on, to hold all of your treasures. Magnolia does have a shipping option, where you can purchase and then have it shipped home. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • June 1, 2017 - 6:52 pm

    Krystle - You couldn’t have posted this at a better time. We are passing through and only have about 2 days to spend in Waco. This was a great help in narrowing down the “must see” list. Thanks! 🙂ReplyCancel

    • June 2, 2017 - 2:53 am

      yellowprairieint - So excited for you! Enjoy!ReplyCancel

  • June 2, 2017 - 2:56 pm

    Misty Palmer - Such a great guide! I will definitely refer to it when I plan a trip!ReplyCancel