hill country

Four Texas Hotels and Resorts With Plenty of Star Power

April 17, 2024 | By

As Texans got a front-row seat to a magnificent total solar eclipse this month, interest in astronomy has reached a record high.

A Weekend Getaway in the Central Texas Hamlet of La Grange

April 15, 2024 | By

The Daytripper Finds Comfort Food and Natural Wonders in McGregor

April 12, 2024 | By

Just 18 miles west of Waco lies McGregor, a slow-paced suburb with a charming downtown area.

The Splendor of Texas Wildflowers on Full Display

March 18, 2024 | By

Texas Sheepdog Trials Are the Ruff-est Sport You’ve Never Heard Of

March 12, 2024 | By

Donna Rock’s eyes follow the three Dorper sheep as they make a tight curve at the base of a mesquite tree 300 yards in the distance.

Frolicking Among the Bluebonnets at Fort Parker State Park

February 29, 2024 | By TH Staff

This photo from the Texas Highways archives shows a handsome couple—and their handlers—frolicking in a bumper crop of bluebonnets at Fort Parker State Park.

Your Guide to Maximizing Texas Wildflower Season

February 27, 2024 | By Dina Gachman

Texas Treehouse Retreats Bring Guests Closer to Nature

February 21, 2024 | By Sarah Thurmond

Roadside Oddity: The Giant Uvalde Cut-outs

February 15, 2024 | By Sarah Thurmond

Our state is full of novelties, many of which have a peculiar story of how they came to be on their particular bend of the road—and we’re on a quest to tell them all.

Embracing the Wild Side Through Glamping

February 5, 2024 | By Jennifer Stewart

The Total Solar Eclipse by the Numbers

January 26, 2024 | By Asher Elbein

Texas Towns Are Partying Through the Total Eclipse

January 8, 2024 | By Lori Rackl

A Guide to the Upcoming Eclipses in Texas

September 27, 2023 | By Layne Van Vranken

The Serenity of Westcave Preserve

September 19, 2023 | By TH Staff

The Lasting Legacy of Willie’s Picnic

August 22, 2023 | By Michael Corcoran

The Daytripper Digs Into Gardens and Grub in Goldthwaite

July 25, 2023 | By Chet Garner

Two hours northwest of Austin, you’ll find a town that has served as a Texas crossroads since 1885.

Braving the Narrows, One of Texas’ Most Mythic and Wild Oases

June 27, 2023 | By Bobby Alemán

In a field of brickellbush, hundreds of monarch butterflies move with the

Where to Picnic This Summer in the Hill Country

June 1, 2023 | By Carol Milberger

I recently introduced the term “sack lunch” to my young grandchildren for a park outing. They were so impressed, you’d think I told them I’d invented fire. 

Weekend Getaways from Austin: Sonora and Blanco

May 30, 2023 | By Joe Nick Patoski

Don’t Miss Out on Great Early Season Peaches This Year

May 26, 2023 | By John O. Lumpkin

Seventy Years Ago, Cedar Choppers Ruled the Hill Country with Axes and Muscle

May 10, 2023 | By W.K. Stratton

I had my one encounter with honest-to-goodness cedar choppers just about the time those “almost mythical, gypsy-like people,” as Texas literary legend Edwin “Bud” Shrake referred to them in an essay, were disappearing from the Hill Country.

Shift Your Sightseeing Up a Gear with Self-Guided E-bike Tours

March 3, 2023 | By Pam LeBlanc

Venture to Marble Falls for Highland Lakes Fun and Relaxation

February 28, 2023 | By Melissa Gaskill

Trek Travel Designs Hill Country Rides for Serious Bicyclists

February 28, 2023 | By Lori Rackl

Roadside Oddity: The Statue of Old Yeller in Mason

December 24, 2022 | By Dale Weisman

“We called him Old Yeller. The name had a sort of double meaning. One part meant that his short hair was a dingy yellow, a color that we called ‘yeller’ in those days.

Find Exotic Animals and Hill Country Culture in the No-Stoplight Town of Harper

November 23, 2022 | By Heather Brand

For a Quick Road Trip, the President’s Ranch Trail Takes You All the Way With LBJ

November 22, 2022 | By Joe Nick Patoski

Get Creative in the Scenic Hill Country Town of Wimberley

October 27, 2022 | By Matt Joyce

Paint Rock’s Prehistoric Pictographs Take The Daytripper Back in Time

October 27, 2022 | By Chet Garner

Not every Texas town is full of obvious tourist destinations. Sometimes, you’ve got to flip a couple rocks to find the good spots hidden out of sight.

The Texas Vintage Motorcycle Museum Introduces Johnson City to the Wild Side

August 25, 2022 | By Clayton Maxwell

Kerrville Folk Festival Celebrates 50 Years of Music, Community, and Lasting Memories

May 24, 2022 | By Sarah Thurmond

In March 1972, a short writeup in the Kerrville Mountain Sun described what locals could expect at the town’s brand-new music festival.

Nice N Easy Serves Craft Beer and Wine in One of Johnson City’s Oldest Buildings

April 28, 2022 | By Ruvani de Silva

Idyllic Vacations Are the Norm in the Picturesque Hill Country

April 28, 2022 | By

Kinky Friedman Introduces Gold Star Kids to the Land That Shaped Him

April 28, 2022 | By Joe Nick Patoski

He’s the bard of the Hill Country—a satirist, author, singer-songwriter, raconteur, and equal-opportunity offender. He’s run for Texas governor, not to mention state agricultural commissioner and Kerr County justice of the peace.

Boerne’s Hill Country Charm and Texas-German Heritage Fuel a Weekend of Fun

April 28, 2022 | By Jacqueline Knox

Peel Back the Layers of Austin’s Onion Creek

April 28, 2022 | By Ian Dille

OroBianco Cultures Small-Town Texas With the Italian Tradition of Slow Food

April 28, 2022 | By Laurel Miller

Editor’s Note: Preserved Paradise

April 28, 2022 | By Emily Roberts Stone

I’ve lived in the Hill Country for five years now, yet I’m still finding new reasons to admire its grandeur on a regular basis.

Where Does the Texas Hill Country Actually End?

April 28, 2022 | By John Nova Lomax

The Healing Power of the Texas Landscape

April 28, 2022 | By Fowzia Karimi

The Daytripper Drives a World War II Tank in Uvalde

April 28, 2022 | By Chet Garner

At the crossroads where the Hill Country meets South Texas sits a charming town with a history deeper than its swimming holes.

Hiking the Summit Trail at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

April 28, 2022 | By

10 Hidden and Iconic Hill Country Destinations You’ll Want to Visit

April 28, 2022 | By

Peeler Farms Is One of Texas’ Premier Purveyors of Wagyu Beef

February 24, 2022 | By Steven Craig Lindsey

Austin’s Beerburg Brewing Forages Plants for Its Wildcrafted Brews

February 24, 2022 | By Laurel Miller

How Artists and Ex-Austinites Are Changing Bastrop

December 23, 2021 | By Dina Gachman

Return of the Winter Texans: Migrating South for Warmer Climes

November 26, 2021 | By Heather Brand

Seasonal migration is underway, and it’s not just cranes and warblers making their way to Texas.

A Mother’s Quest to Give Her Autistic Son an Untethered Childhood

November 24, 2021 | By May Cobb

Hill Country Spring Water is the Secret Ingredient in Nine Banded Whiskey

September 23, 2021 | By Pam LeBlanc

Sympathy for the Devil in Southwest Texas

September 22, 2021 | By Matthew Adams

In a world where we are perhaps overly dependent on GPS—focused on getting from point A to point B as quickly and efficiently as possible—I’ve found that simply unfurling a road map and blindly jabbing a finger down on the page just to see what’s there is a surefire way of reopening my mind to the possibilities of exploration and adventure.

The Daytripper Checks Out the Heart of Czech Country

June 24, 2021 | By Chet Garner

In the rolling hills and prairies between Austin and Houston, you’ll find the heart of Texas Czech country.

Fredericksburg’s 175th Anniversary: 4 Things to Check Out This Weekend

May 6, 2021 | By Amanda Ogle

Fredericksburg has a long history of attracting enterprising people looking for land and new opportunities. During the 1840s, thousands of Germans immigrated to Texas and, under an effort led by the Society for the Protection of German Immigrants in Texas, the town was founded on May 8, 1846, by Baron Otfried Hans von Meusebach.

The Refreshing Hill Country Oasis at Krause Springs

April 29, 2021 | By

Jester King Brewery Adds a 2-Mile Trail to its 165-Acre Property

January 23, 2021 | By Kimya Kavehkar

Even before the trail officially debuted last weekend, Jester King was a fun place to socialize while spreading out. But the new addition tap into something else Texans have been craving since March—a connection with nature.

Boerne Writer Finds Lessons and Comfort in Fly Fishing the Hill Country

December 14, 2020 | By Dan Oko

Reading Boerne-based author Steve Ramirez’s first book, Casting Forward, feels a lot like stepping into the refreshing Texas Hill Country rivers Ramirez visits in the book’s pages.

Late Summer Grape Stomping Has Become a Texas Tradition

July 30, 2020 | By Julia Jones

Shhh … This Just Might Be the Prettiest Body of Water in Texas

June 25, 2020 | By Joe Nick Patoski

The Frio is Chilly but That’s the Point

June 25, 2020 | By Pam LeBlanc

Dip a toe in the blue-green swirls of the Frio River and brace for the shiver that’s sure to ripple up your leg.

Texas’ Roadside Peach Stands Report Plenty of Fruit and Brisk Business

June 16, 2020 | By John Lumpkin

Try These 5 Texas Rosés This Summer

May 13, 2020 | By Jill Coody Smits

From frosé to brosé to “rosé all day,” pink wine has moved from fad to favorite among summertime libations. It’s only right—given the light, refreshing wine pairs perfectly with Texas  heat—that our state’s vintners are producing rosés that any oenophile would be proud to pour.

Tillie’s is a Dining and Architectural Gem in the Hill Country

February 27, 2020 | By Paula Forbes

Spring Getaway: How to Spend a Weekend in Kerrville

February 27, 2020 | By Kimya Kavehkar

5 Romantic Retreats in Texas

February 6, 2020 | By Julia Jones and Kimya Kavehkar

Valentine’s Day comes with a lot of pressure—gifts, dinner reservations, grand gestures. Perhaps the most romantic thing of all is to eschew the holiday’s expectations and get out of town—with your honey, of course. These Texas resorts offer seclusion with a dash of luxury for a weekend of bonding and relaxation.

See Bald Eagles This Winter at the Hill Country’s Canyon of the Eagles

December 6, 2019 | By June Naylor

The annual pilgrimage became so popular that a resort called Canyon of the Eagles was built around the experience. This month, the eco-lodge—located 60 miles northwest of Austin, and about 19 miles from Burnet—celebrates its 20th anniversary.

A Fredericksburg Native Reckons With His Hometown’s Evolution From a German Enclave to a Tourist Destination

November 27, 2019 | By John Davidson

Commune with Nature at These Treehouses in the Texas Hill Country

November 26, 2019 | By Allison McNearney

This Fredericksburg Restaurant Features a Rare All-Texas Wine List

September 30, 2019 | By John Lumpkin

Asign above the door to Cabernet Grill in Fredericksburg tells patrons what they need to know about the restaurant: “Texas Wine Spoken Here.” Fluently, in fact. Cabernet Grill has landed on Wine Enthusiast’s “America’s 100 Best Wine Restaurants” two years in a row with an all-Texas wine list—a feat even the most Texas-centric restaurants haven’t achieved.

Fall Really Does Happen in Texas – You Just Have to Know Where to Look

September 23, 2019 | By

Mother Nature’s autumnal coloration of leaves before she applies her cruel winter grip is a visual gift typically associated with areas of the country that actually experience four distinct seasons. In Texas, where for the most part it’s oppressively hot and dry in September and October, green can abruptly give way to brown, without displaying even a hint of the kaleidoscope of oranges, reds, and yellows typical of a postcard New England fall. There are hidden pockets of the state, however, where the trees, beneficiaries of just the right weather conditions, offer one final, dramatic blush. Follow our photographers to these special places for some of the best foliage in the state—from the Nolan River in North Texas and Garner State Park in the Hill Country, to the Canadian River in the Panhandle and Guadalupe Mountains
National Park in West Texas.

Photo: Keep Cool at Devil’s Waterhole in Inks Lake State Park This Summer

June 24, 2019 | By

A lot of lore surrounds the naming of Devil’s Waterhole along a northeast branch of Inks Lake State Park near Burnet: One legend says the land’s previous owner was known to curse loudly whenever his wagon got stuck crossing it, while others believe Native Americans originally named it for its warmer waters. While the source of the name is unconfirmed, there’s no question that it’s a popular natural swimming area for daredevils. It can only be reached from inside the park by either hiking the quarter-mile Devil’s Waterhole Trail or by paddling along Inks Lake. Upon arrival, hikers and paddlers are greeted by the park’s metamorphic rock, Valley Spring Gneiss, with ledges rising up to 40 feet above the water.

Last-Minute Weekend Plans: Milton Reimers Ranch Park

June 20, 2019 | By Anna-Kay Reeves

Hill Country summer favorite Hamilton Pool has been reservations-only since 2016 due to the swimming hole’s popularity. But if you’re still looking for a scenic place to cool your heels, there’s a more secluded spot five minutes away.

A Road Trip to Utopia, Complete with Wildflowers and the Rugged Wonders of the Hill Country

May 23, 2019 | By

Garner State Park, Lost Maples State Natural Area, and the surrounding Hill Country take you away from it all in the May edition of “A Piece of Texas” video series.

A Relative of German Settlers Retraces Her Ancestors’ Arduous Path to the Texas Hill Country

May 22, 2019 | By Amanda Eyre Ward

Where to See the Most Historic Bat Roost in Texas

April 15, 2019 | By Asher Elbein

On summer nights in the Hill Country, rivers of Mexican free-tail bats stream out of caves and abandoned buildings, spiraling up to hunt in the skies. One colony of bats emerges from a strange, 30-foot-high structure that resembles a church steeple on stilts, with pyramidal shingles, and is visible from a public road in the Kendall County town of Comfort.

Gallery: Wildflowers of the Hill Country

April 2, 2019 | By TH Staff

For our March 2019 issue, we sent photographer Theresa DiMenno out to capture spring color in 2018. These are some of our favorite images that we didn’t have room for in the issue.

Photographers Capture Texas’ Spectacular Variety of Wildflowers in Every Region of the State

March 1, 2019 | By

Awed by the spectacular variety of wildflowers throughout Texas, we sent four photographers on a springtime mission across the state. They combed seven distinct regions of Texas, from the shaded forests of the Piney Woods to the mountains and deserts of the Big Bend, from sandy coastal dunes to rolling hills and the vast plains of the Panhandle. The results are as magnificent and diverse as the lands that nurture our abundant blossoms.

Escape the Urban Freeway with a Motorcycle Jaunt Through the Hill Country

February 19, 2019 | By Dale Weisman

After a rainy spell, a sunny Sunday morning window opens up: a perfect day for a Hill Country ride. My motorcycle, a silver BMW sport-touring machine, is ready to roll. Jacket, gloves, and helmet on, I hit the ignition. The engine rumbles to life and warms up. I shift into first gear and ease through Austin’s Zilker Park.

Paddling and Floating the Llano River Just Got Easier

February 14, 2019 | By E. Dan Klepper

The popular Llano River is a state-owned, navigable waterway over 100 miles long, but much of its riverfront property remains in private hands, creating accessibility challenges for anglers and paddlers who want to tackle its meandering course. Texas Parks and Wildlife has made getting onto the river a little easier by introducing four new public access points, with a fifth on the way, all available for fishing, floating, canoeing and kayaking.

5 Texas New Year’s Wellness Retreats

December 14, 2018 | By Kimya Kavehkar

The New Year can bring a much-needed impetus for change and self-improvement, especially when it comes to health and wellness. And achieving those goals can be fun when they’re combined with a vacation. These five New Year’s retreats in Texas promise days of yoga, meditation, mindfulness, and an all-around good start to your 2019.

Planning a Family Get-Together? Rent a Historic Home for the Holidays

November 28, 2018 | By Melissa Gaskill

When grandma wakes up on a deflated air mattress and half the cousins are banished to the kids’ table, Christmas might be too crowded. Enter the home rental, where extended family can gather under one roof, everyone has a bed, and the dining table is big enough for all. For something even more special, look for houses that pack history in locations featuring plenty of festivities and activities, helping to create lasting memories—the perfect gift for the
entire family.

Tannat Is the New Texas Wine Everyone Will Be Talking About

September 19, 2018 | By

The growing throngs of oenophiles traveling what is known as Wine Road 290—the winery-heavy stretch of US 290 between Johnson City and Fredericksburg—have become very familiar with once-exotic wines like tempranillo, sangiovese, and viognier that thrive in the Texas heat and soil.

Now here’s another one to get acquainted with: tannat, an under-the-radar red wine that’s poised to become Texas’ favorite varietal.

Texas Arts and Crafts Fair Returns to the Hill Country After Five-Year Absence

September 4, 2018 | By Julia Jones

The Texas Arts and Crafts Fair, which the legislature deemed the official arts and crafts fair of the Lone Star State in 1995, is returning this fall after five years of absence. The Hill Country Arts Foundation will debut its newly updated Ingram campus to an estimated 5,000 guests in support of more than 150 Texas artists Sept. 28-30.

Find Rustic Relaxation on the Nueces River at Camp Wood in the Hill Country

August 10, 2018 | By E. Dan Klepper

The Nueces River valley plummets from the Edwards Plateau with the abruptness of a summer squall. The topography plunges from dry to drenched when you cruise south from Rocksprings on State Highway 55, blank skies giving way to blue-green canopies of oaks and pecans as the road abandons the grassless flats for glimpses of resplendent waters that seem to chase canyon twilight into the brightness of day. Here, the Nueces River finds its voice: a convergence of forks, prongs, creeks, and springs that begin their last odyssey to the Gulf of Mexico as one.

Make A Splash With These 7 Quintessential Texas Rope Swings

August 1, 2018 | By Written by Pam LeBlanc

When Mother Nature doles up a summer afternoon so hot you need oven mitts to handle the steering wheel of your car, smart Texans head to the nearest swimming hole.

Sure, You Know the Wine in Fredericksburg, but There’s More to This Place Than Just Great Vino

April 25, 2018 | By

Just as I enter the city limits, I note the beautiful Hill Country University Center, where Texas Tech University offers viticulture and winemaking education. Soon I’m marveling at the proliferation of new and old buildings housing bistros, coffee bars, art galleries, and herb apothecaries. I spy the occasional shop offering T-shirts, fudge, and German beer steins, but altogether I find a more sophisticated Fredericksburg. What really matters, though, is this: While the town is most famous for its rich German heritage, it has grown into an invigorating destination for all of the pleasures found in the heart of the Hill Country, whether I’m visiting with my mom and sisters, closest pals, or my husband.

Four Wildflower-Focused Texas Road Trips (Plus Guaranteed Photo Ops)

February 12, 2018 | By Melissa Gaskill

At Texas Highways, we’ve learned a few things over the years about spring wildflowers in Texas: We have lots of them, many kinds, all over the place. We’ve learned this, too: Once Mother Nature shakes off winter’s chill, there’s no better way to celebrate the new season than with a wildflower-focused road trip.

Dog-Friendly Trails, Restaurants, and Lodging in Central Texas

December 14, 2017 | By Melissa Gaskill

When that road-trip itch needs scratching, I can always count on one friend to join me: my big mutt Max.

Take a Train Ride with Santa on Austin Steam Train’s North Pole Flyer

November 8, 2017 | By Cynthia J. Drake

North Pole Flyer
Austin Steam Train’s holiday-themed rides start Nov. 25 at the Cedar Park Depot, 401 E.

Scenic Route: Flying Colors at Enchanted Rock

August 15, 2017 | By

Eighteen miles north of Fredericksburg on Ranch Road 956, a 425-foot pink rock looms over the landscape.

Texas’ Top Natural Wonders: Enchanted Rock

August 7, 2017 | By

Enchanted rock
“Hiking over E-Rock makes me feel like an astronaut exploring the surface of a planet, one so small that you can see its curved horizon no matter where you stand.

Nine-river Day

April 18, 2017 | By Matt Joyce

There’s something about the summer solstice that inspires adventure. As the official start of summer and the longest day of the year, the solstice illuminates a world of possibility with more than 14 hours of daylight.

9 Divine Hill Country Hikes

October 14, 2016 | By Eric W. Pohl

In the Texas Hill Country, the flat Gulf Coastal plains to the east and the Texas brush country to the south collide with the Balcones Escarpment—a conspicuous topographic demarcation that nearly bisects the state from Del Rio northwest past Waco. West of the escarpment, which roughly parallels Interstate 35 in Central Texas, a land of contrasts presents itself as soaring limestone bluffs, rugged hills, and steep canyons.

What’s Brewing in the Hill Country?

September 16, 2016 | By Melissa Gaskill

Texas boasts a strong German heritage, which naturally includes a long history of breweries and beer.

Scenic Route: Pennybacker Bridge

February 25, 2016 | By

For more places to see in Austin, visit www.austintexas.org.

Long and Wine-ding Road

February 11, 2016 | By Jessica Depuy

The Texas Hill Country has long attracted visitors for its combination of outdoor recreation and historic towns, and in recent years it has developed into one of the most visited wine regions in the country.

Keeping Up with the Johnsons

January 4, 2016 | By Clayton Maxwell

Romanesco broccoli, I just learned, is the ultimate fractal vegetable. On a visit with my children to the new Hill Country Science Mill in Johnson City, we gaze into a supersized glowing head of broccoli.

Scenic Route: Boots ‘n’ Barb

July 30, 2015 | By

For more information on nearby attractions, visit the Kerrville Convention and Visitors Bureau website.

Touring Travaasa’s Farm

June 22, 2015 | By Lori Moffatt

As chickens chortle in the background and the raspy buzz of a distant tractor mirrors the clackety-clack-clack of happy cicadas in the surrounding oak trees, I lean in closer to try to comprehend what I’m hearing: That plants can communicate with each other.

Dolph Briscoe: Texan

June 15, 2015 | By

In Uvalde, the Briscoe-Garner Museum will hold an open house on July Fourth featuring its new permanent exhibit, Dolph Briscoe: Texan.

Scenic Route: Turkey Bend Recreation Area

March 17, 2015 | By

Find more information about Texas wildflowers at texashighways.com/wildflowers.
To order a print of this photograph, call 866/962-1191, or visit texashighwaysprints.com.

Lure of Llano

March 11, 2015 | By E. Dan Klepper

Shades of an urban beat have finally arrived in Llano, a Hill Country community along the Llano River and the default capital of the Llano Uplift, the ancient dome of characteristic pink granite poking out of the Edwards Plateau.

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