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Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden

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Address: 43869 SH 118, Fort Davis, TX 79734
Phone Number:
+1 432-364-2499
Website
Today
09:00 - 17:00
Closed now
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Hours:
Mon - Sat 09:00 - 17:00
Description:

Located 4 miles SE of Fort Davis on Hwy 118, the Chihuahuan Desert Nature...

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.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Good information and displays on the biology of the area

Loved the botanical garden walk which included a good representation of local fauna with identification. The cactus hot house was wonderful, with many cactus blooming! Could... read more

Reviewed 2 weeks ago
Kathryn C
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180 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 180: English reviews
Level Contributor
20 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Loved the botanical garden walk which included a good representation of local fauna with identification. The cactus hot house was wonderful, with many cactus blooming! Could have spent some more time here.

Helpful?
2 Thank Kathryn C
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

Thank you for your review of the Botanical Gardens. We're always happy to hear from our visitors about their experience while visiting. Happy you got to enjoy the cacti in bloom. Something we like to point out is that we offer both: a botanical garden (which you enjoyed and reviewed) and then, the nature center side of the facility with... More 

Mansfield, Texas, United States
Level Contributor
40 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This was by far our best hiking area that we encountered. The Canyon was difficult and very neat. We saw tons of wildlife. Trails were well marked and a variety of easy to difficult trails available. Will go back for sure.

Helpful?
2 Thank Denise S
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We are so happy to get your great review of the Nature Center and its hiking trails. As you indicated there are trails for all skill and ability levels from easy to difficult--all offering beautiful views, volcanic rock (extrusive & intrusive igneous rock), and what a treat to see the wildlife. We look forward to your return visit! Thank you! More 

Graham, North Carolina
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

It was a great place to learn about the different plants that we later saw wherever we went. You walk at your own pace with a guide pamphlet and get familiar with the foliage and cacti.

Helpful?
1 Thank dherron100
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

The Botanical Garden is a great place to start out! The plants are labeled along the walkway which leads to the Cactus Greenhouse where our museum collection of cacti and succulents are housed. And then, the hiking trails are waiting to be explored! We're glad to hear you enjoyed your visit! We look forward to your return. More 

A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

500 acres of native and adapted plants, all identified in natural setting. Great experience for botanists, plant lovers or just observers. Hiking trails offer panoramic views of the high dessert. The green house was filled with cacti in bloom, the most unique and exquisite blossoms. A must see for those who appreciate and protect our Earth.

Helpful?
2 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

"A must see for those who appreciate and protect our Earth." Thank you for your beautifully expressed review. We couldn't agree more! For those of us who live in this remote region of Texas, the high desert, often described as a "sky island," we are reminded daily of the fact that we are merely stewards of this gorgeous and fascinating... More 

Seguin, Texas
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Thank you for a great day of hiking and the knowledge you gave us. We will most definitely be back. A++++++++

Helpful?
1 Thank Frankster7
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We love to get feedback from our visitors and new friends! Thank you for coming by the Nature Center and staying a while to hike the trails! We hope you can return soon. The oak trees are just leafing out, claret cup put on blooms two days ago, and hummingbirds showed up a week ago! It just keeps getting prettier... More 

decatur,Tx.
Level Contributor
155 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

After reading the reviews, I made it a point to go. So glad I did. Friendly,helpful staff,pet friendly and good way to get a walk in. We did a short trail walk because of my dog but it was enough to see lizards and a snake along with flowering trees and bees. My husband and I then walked thru the... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank bennyjenks
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We're so happy you enjoyed your visit. And, yes, dogs (on a leash) are welcome to walk with you! The snake, we believe, was a garter snake, but with it getting warm, snakes will be out. For everyone, we suggest just watching where you step and keeping pets from investigating under rocks, or in grasses or shrubs. The cacti are... More 

Cedar Park, Texas
Level Contributor
66 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2017

We stopped at the Chihuahuan Desert and Nature Center not really knowing what to expect. The gentleman that was working that day did a great job of explaining what they had to offer and the various trails/routes we could take while at the center. We chose the longest route so that we could take in as much as we could.... More 

Helpful?
Thank Tina C
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We are delighted you enjoyed your visit to the CDRI Nature Center. Thank you! The gentleman at the Information Desk who was so helpful is Ralph. Ralph is a volunteer who simply loves people and birding, and we got lucky because he also loves the Nature Center. We'll pass your comments on to him! Now that you've experienced the trails,... More 

Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviewed 10 March 2017 via mobile

We didn't even get inside before being captivated by the chronologically ordered rock garden - fantastic! Then we hiked a short way on the Modesto Canyon Trail, but it got too steep and slippery for us, so we visited the cactus museum. They have 1700 varieties - who knew? - and many blooming! The Happy Jack mine display is also... More 

Helpful?
Thank Sandy B
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

Thank you for coming to the CDRI Nature Center! We're happy you enjoyed your visit, and we're always grateful for satisfied customers to extend their comments to TripAdvisor. We're delighted your description of the "chronologically ordered rock garden." We couldn't have described it better ourselves. And, inside the Powell Visitor Center, we have a new exhibit that ties in geologic... More 

League City, Texas
Level Contributor
90 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 March 2017

The "CDRI" (as I learned it is called by the locals) was a great discovery, and a wonderful natural history compliment to the cultural history attractions in Fort Davis. If you want to learn a bit about the native plants and animals, the regional geology and mining history, or have any interest is cacti, then you need to visit. The... More 

Helpful?
Thank karavans
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your visit! And, you got it right! "CDRI" and "The Nature Center" are how we're known locally, which we'll take the opportunity to say we are fortunate to be a part of a wonderfully close and supportive community--which you saw. We agree, there's a lot to see and do at CDRI, with... More 

The Woodlands, Texas
Level Contributor
94 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 February 2017

We visited in February and hiked the 2.4 mile loop which was a wonderful hike. The trail goes into a canyon, back up the rim, around a hill, through lava intrusions and across grassland, demonstrating a good variety of geologic features, plants and ecosystems. The geology exhibit along the trail was very good. The friendly and helpful staff at the... More 

Helpful?
Thank Cheesehead_In_Texas
cdri2015, Programs Coordinator at Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & Botanical Garden, responded to this review

We are always delighted to hear from our visitors. Thank you! We're happy you enjoyed the trails. At the information desk, we offer separate brochures/guides for each of the trails. These describe the numbers you'll see along the trails and in the garden, pointing out important features along the way. Each booklet costs $2, or you can get three booklets... More 

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