Travel back in time in this river town.

Ghost Walks and Riverboat Tours in Jefferson, Texas
Credit: Inge Johnsson / Alamy

Located on the Red River, Jefferson was a major river port en route to New Orleans. Today, you can relive city history on a tour by boat, horse and carriage, or on foot after dark—wealth and scandal left Jefferson with its fair share of ghosts. The pedestrian-friendly town is also brimming with antique shops, historic buildings, and a handful of charming B&Bs. If outdoor activities are a priority, stay on Caddo Lake, full of cypress trees heavy with Spanish moss, just outside of town.

Delta Street Inn

Built in the 1920s, this prairie-style, five-room inn sits on a lush green lawn anchored by a gazebo. Of the five rooms, all of which are drenched in natural light and furnished with antiques, opt for one of the two with private balconies.

Historic Jefferson Ghost Walk

On Friday and Saturday nights, join resident historian Jodi Breckenridge on tours of Jefferson—said to be the most haunted town in Texas—where she recounts tales of murder, tragedy, and ghosts.

Turning Basin Riverboat Tours

Jefferson was on the cargo route to New Orleans so its rivers have a long steamboat history. Hear about those lucrative years on this boat tour; your guide will also point out local flora and fauna.

Austin Street Bistro

It’s like dining at a friend’s house at this neighborhood bistro, dishes such as salmon topped with toasted pecans are served on floral-printed tablecloths. Leave room for dessert—the white chocolate cheesecake is a standout.

Scarlett O’Hardy’s "Gone With the Wind" Museum

Fans of Margaret Mitchell’s classic shouldn’t miss a trip to this small museum, packed with movie posters, reproductions of costumes, select book editions, and other Gone With the Wind collectibles and memorabilia.