- Buc-ee’s is a convenience-store chain with a cult following across Texas.
- The chain serves as a super-sized highway pit stop complete with “world-famous” bathrooms, branded t-shirts, a beef jerky bar, a wide-ranging home decor section, and fresh-made fudge.
- We visited Texas to see if Buc-ee’s could live up to the hype, and were shocked by what we found.
If you’re on a road trip traveling through Texas, Buc-ee’s looms large as a mythical highway oasis — and not just because of the endless signs along the road, telling travelers how many miles until the nearest location appears on the horizon.
Much like Pennsylvanians worship at the altar of Wawa, the gas-station chain Buc-ee’s is answer to hungry road trippers’ prayers across the Lone Star State.
Need gas? Buc-ee’s apparently has it cheap! Food? Chefs say their breakfast tacos are some of the best! Clothing? Per sources, Buc-ee’s t-shirts — featuring its iconic beaver mascot — are one of the trademarks of a cool Texas teen.
Despite the Texan obsession, most of the world has never even heard of Buc-ee’s. The chain, founded in 1982, has almost 40 locations.
We visited Buc-ee’s to see if it lived up to the hype. What we found was like nothing we’d ever seen before:
We rolled into the Buc-ee’s parking lot well aware of the promise that “everything is bigger in Texas.” But even the state’s self-aggrandizing did not prepare us for what was waiting inside.
Walking into Buc-ee’s was like wandering into a mix of a Walmart, a barbecue-centric deli, and the Texas tourism bureau, plus a dash of the Cracker Barrel general store.
The snack aisles carry the classic road trip rations, like trail mix, dried fruit, and candy — but on a scale unseen anywhere else in the country.
There’s even a fairly large wine selection, complete with tasting and pairing notes.
Even Zima has a place on Buc-ee’s sprawling shelves. This gas station has the range.
Buc-ee’s cult status in Texas is ripe for merch.
Buc-ee’s branded food is just the start. The store also has t-shirts, stuffed animals, coolers, and even a Buc-ee’s-branded grill.
And, the home decor selection goes far beyond Buc-ee’s magnets. You want a Texas proverb wall hanging? A cowhide rug? A dozen scented candles? They’re all at Buc-ee’s.
While the food and merch is a draw, Buc-ee’s realized what people who have been on the road for hours really want: a high-quality bathroom. And Buc-ee’s earns its “world famous” moniker. The chain won an award for having the “cleanest restrooms” in 2012, and we can vouch that the judges weren’t lying: the bathrooms are private, immaculate, and remarkably spacious.