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Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden

#4 of 12 things to do in Fort Davis Features Animals
43869 Sh 118, Fort Davis, TX 79734
+1 432-364-2499
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Review Highlights
Interesting array of plants in the Chihuanuan desert

Well laid out and clearly marked. So many more plants than I would have expected. A booklet is... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Alice L
,
San Marcos, Texas, United States
First time to stop after many passes!

Modesta Canyon hike was really great, love seeing water holes in the desert! Best part was the new... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
markfQ5596RK
Read all 195 reviews
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Located 4 miles SE of Fort Davis on Hwy 118, the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center is comprised of semi-desert grasslands and igneous rock outcrops with a riparian canyon and spectacular views from all directions. Visitors may explore more than 3 miles of hiking trails from the moderate to strenuous 1.75 Mile Modesta Canyon Trail that leads into a hidden canyon featuring a series of permanent springs and pools, to the moderate 1.0 Mile Clayton's Overlook Trail which provides miles of breathtaking scenery from the overlook along with a Geology Exhibit to several additional trails, as well. The 0.5 Mile winding path through the Botanical Gardens offers a variety of trees and shrubs native to the Chihuahuan Desert region. Halfway through the gardens, is the Cactus and Succulent Greenhouse featuring one of the finest collections of cacti and succulents from the Chihuahuan Desert region. Many of the 165 species and subspecies bloom in early spring, providing a profusion of color and texture.
  • Excellent73%
  • Very good24%
  • Average1%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“hiking trails” (18 reviews)
“native plants” (11 reviews)
Open Now
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Hours Today: 09:00 - 17:00
LOCATION
43869 Sh 118, Fort Davis, TX 79734
CONTACT
Website
+1 432-364-2499
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Reviews (195)
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1 - 10 of 195 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

Well laid out and clearly marked. So many more plants than I would have expected. A booklet is available with clear explanations and interesting tidbits. There are several other more strenuous walks that take longer, but this one is less than a mile and is...More

Thank Alice L
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Thank you for your review! We're happy you enjoyed your visit and the Botanical Garden area. The Cactus Greenhouse has ~1,700 labeled cacti and succulents from throughout the Chihuahuan Desert. As for being hot outside, the temps have cooled down to the mid 80's. A...More

Reviewed 1 week ago

Modesta Canyon hike was really great, love seeing water holes in the desert! Best part was the new mining exhibit! The old geologist working there gave us a great history of mining in Texas and his own history to boot. The rocks under the black...More

1  Thank markfQ5596RK
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Thank you for venturing on in! Now that we've had a few rains, the ferns in Modesta Canyon will be greening up and flowers around the Visitor Center and plants inside the Visitor Center will be flowering nicely! Glad you got to visit with Miner...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Bring camera, comfortable shoes and walking stick. Hike to top of peak and see the geologic exhibit.More

Thank mmercado7511
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Thank you for your great review! The peak with the geologic exhibit (Clayton's Overlook) with its vistas is a great 1.5 mile (round trip) hike. And, thanks for the reminder to bring camera, comfortable shoes and walking stick! Those are important! Happy trails, and hope...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Small visitor center with restrooms & gift shop. Miles of hiking trails through natural areas. Great views in some areas. The cactus/succulent greenhouse was my favorite area. So many varieties I've never seen before! Take your camera, lots of water, and a hat, and wear...More

Thank MyZiggyMan
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Thank you for visiting us and for your review. We're glad you discovered the trails and the Botanical Garden. The Powell Visitor Center has a few indoor displays including our newest exhibit of the Geologic Timeline called "It's a Long Story." And, in case you...More

Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This place was the highlight of our stay in Fort Davis. The Modesta Canyon hike was spectacular. The staff was extremely helpful and knowledgeable. The bookstore had an excellent selection. The exhibits in the Visitor Center, especially the chart on the geological history of the...More

Thank hlaurence
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

We are speechless--which is pretty difficult to say if you've visited with any of us at the Nature Center! THANK YOU! We are so happy you chose to visit us. And although you live far from Fort Davis and Far West Texas, we hope you...More

Reviewed 15 June 2017 via mobile

The most beautiful hike in the area, in my opinion. Modesta Canyon is absolutely gorgeous. I wouldn't advise the hike mid-day during the summer months. The cacti greenhouse is definitely worth a visit.More

Thank peaceseeker X
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

THANK YOU! We agree with you that Modesta Canyon is "absolutely gorgeous." And for those of us who "work" at the Nature Center, we are a bit spoiled. Hiking is best from 9:00 a.m. until about Noon during the hottest part of the summer. Temps...More

Reviewed 14 June 2017

Nice walk through this desert, with a greenhouse full of cactus. The views were beautiful, and we saw a Rock Squirrel. They also loan walking sticks, which was very helpful.More

Thank jaynerwilson
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

We are happy you enjoyed the walk through the Botanical Gardens. Temps are cooling down so those garden strolls will be even more enjoyable as the summer progresses. Those little rock squirrels are adorable (but don't tell our Gardener that!). You can often see jackrabbits...More

Reviewed 13 June 2017 via mobile

We visited the botanical garden with my elderly aunt, and great nieces and nephews. Really enjoyed the scenery the walking with the plant life and animals. Some of the walking trail was a little tough for my older aunt, but the rest of us managed...More

Thank Lonnie J
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 14 June 2017

We appreciate our visitors' reviews tremendously and thank you for your kind words. And, thank you for letting us be a part of your family reunion. Hoping you can come back this way again in the near future. Best regards and Happy Trails!

Reviewed 2 June 2017

We spent a a great day here the middle of May. The staff is super helpful and friendly. The trails are very well-marked with great scenery. The cactus collection was amazing! The young gentleman who is responsible for creating the mining exhibit was full of...More

Thank itsannmartin
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 3 June 2017

We're delighted to learn that you enjoyed your visit to the CDRI Nature Center! We're happy to hear that you appreciated the "well-marked trails." Two of our volunteers recently added new trail markers throughout the trail systems which will help many know exactly where the...More

Reviewed 18 May 2017

We were fortunate to be here when the cacti were in bloom, and it was wonderful. I enjoyed the path with each type of cacti identified. There was also a mining museum that my husband enjoyed.More

Thank trfdar
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

We are always happy to hear from our visitors who have enjoyed their experience at the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center. THANK YOU! Our Gardener just replaced all of the identifying labels and signs this year for the garden and the Cactus Greenhouse. It's extra special...More

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