The Texas Hill Country is recognized for its scenic drives, lush landscape, dreamy views, vibrant wildflowers, and a smattering of small towns with plenty to do in between. It’s a beautiful area to visit, and you won’t have to travel far to get there. Dripping Springs, Texas, is a quaint, unique small town with a long history and heart, nestled among the rolling hills and natural springs of the beautiful Texas Hill Country.
Just a forty-minute drive west of Austin, it’s easy to see why this beloved city is the “Gateway to the Hill Country.” Discover Dripping Springs’ natural beauty, with its deep blue-green natural pools supplied by waterfalls, breathtaking cliff arches, and lush greenery with enough hiking trails allowing you to connect with nature.
Discover more about this charming hill country town by reading on!
Dripping Springs: The Gateway to the Hill Country
Dripping Springs is the place to go if you want to try new outdoor activities, eat delicious food, or visit one of the many distilleries, wineries, or breweries that call this piece of Hill Country heaven home. Dripping Springs, just a short ride from Austin and a half-day drive from Houston and San Antonio, is full of big adventures. Whether you prefer big-city entertainment or outdoor activities, the Texas Hill Country town has something for everyone.
Dripping Springs is known for its scenic rivers and creeks, rolling hills, and distinctive downtown with quaint coffee shops, boutiques, and brew pubs. Climb Reimers Ranch’s limestone cliffs, visit the region’s many award-winning wineries or float in the azure waters of Hamilton Pool Preserve. There’s so much stuff to do in this town that the options are truly endless.
A Small Town With a Significant History
Three families packed their belongings and moved to what is now Dripping Springs, Texas, in search of a new home. Their early settlement between 1853 to 1854 left historical traces that helped shape Dripping Springs. The homestead would house the first church, the first school, a doctor’s office, and a social hub for the community.
Tour the Dr. Pound Historical Farmstead, which is filled with original family furnishings and provides a glimpse into life when the city was first settled. Explore the windmill, farmstead barn, underground cellar, smokehouse, and garden.
Bring your Hill Country Trail Passbook, which will guide you to approximately 30 additional historical sites in the region, get it stamped at every location, and receive prizes for exploring different landmarks in the Hill Country. That’s quite the adventure!
Visit historic Mercer Street in downtown Dripping Springs and step back in time. Examine architecture dating back to the 1870s while browsing unique, eclectic shop fronts that haven’t changed much in decades. Enjoy the live music, which perfectly complements the friendly, at-home, small-town atmosphere.
Grab a bite to eat or a drink at one of the inviting pubs and restaurants and catch glimpses of the original fern-covered limestone that gave the town its name. Native Americans first used the springs, and you can see them by parking at the Visitors Bureau lot, finding the USPS mailbox, and taking the stairs down towards the creek.
The Barber Shop
This establishment puts the “bar” in “barbershop.” Even though you can’t get a haircut here (well, you could, but it might not be very pretty), you can get a fresh pint of this bar’s craft brew. The bar also serves Texan brews from all over the state and house-made brews.
The (Actual) Dripping Springs
Before you head out to explore the hills of this town, there are a few things worth seeing. To begin, this town was named after a “dripping spring,” and you can see those actual springs on the homestead’s private property at the Dripping Springs B&B. Knock on the door, and its owner will gladly show you around.
Rolling in Thyme & Dough
Begin your day with breakfast at Rolling in Thyme & Dough, a delectable lunch and breakfast spot tucked away in an old house just off Highway 290. The egg/pesto/sausage croissant is incredible, the cinnamon rolls are larger than your face, and the sticky buns are delectable.
The Salt Lick BBQ
To round out an amazing day, head south to the town of Driftwood, TX, and chow down on some of the best BBQs in Texas at The Salt Lick. The ‘que is available in Family Style portion sizes for large groups — or just the truly hungry Texan — to enjoy everything they offer.
Visit the Many Distilleries, Wineries, and Breweries
Not for nothing is it called “sipping in the Springs.” Dripping Springs is one of the few Hill Country towns, if not the only one, that has distilleries, wineries, and breweries within a few square miles of each other.
Popular Festivals and Events
Thousands of people will descend on Dripping Springs for the well-known events and festivals each year. The Founders Day Festival is the biggest event of the year, taking place in the historic downtown district in April.
Enjoy the Mighty Thomas Carnival, beer, food, cook-off competitions, street dances, over 150 arts and crafts kiosks and vendors, and the Grand Parade. What’s not to love about this festive season of Dripping Springs’ pioneer spirit and heritage?
An Outdoor Paradise
Dripping Springs is deemed the “Gateway to the Hill Country” for a reason. This outdoor geek’s playground has a notoriety for such a small town, and for a good reason. Enjoy playgrounds, birding stations, and scenic parks jam-packed with adventures and activities that will provide visitors with a breath of fresh air and a fresh perspective on natural beauty.
Take some quiet time to relax and enjoy Birding, a hobby that is becoming increasingly popular in top birding destinations. Bring your patience and prepare to meet some fantastic feathered friends found only in the Texas Hill Country. Dripping Springs is a Texas “Bird City” located directly in the path of spring and fall bird migration.
Discover the best hiking trails in the state, with towering canyons, limestone bluffs, and cypress trees, along with meandering trails that bring you through the most beautiful madrone and juniper groves seen. Unsure about going on a hike? There’s no need because Dripping Springs has trails for everyone, including easy, moderate, and even grueling, thigh-high busting treks through breathtaking scenery.
Dripping Springs, Texas, is only a half-hour drive from Austin and combines several of the greatest outdoor activities in Texas with food and craft beverages typically found only in cities.