Big city living can be a wonderful experience as you live in the midst of all that is exciting, but while we can appreciate being able to run to the nearest convenience store in less than 5 minutes and being close to theaters and restaurants, the lifestyle can get to be tiring and stressful. Offering too many people, too much noise, and a tension that can be too much, it is no wonder that many big city dwellers choose the quiet and serenity of small-town Dripping Springs, Texas, for their annual getaway! Located close enough to the big city of Austin while allowing room to breathe, this small town is a favorite for visitors at any time of the year, but especially during the summer and fall months. If your annual sojourn has you turning in the direction of our favorite small Texas town in the summer or fall, this guide to the homes we offer and the fun you can have during your stay will make this getaway one you will never forget!
A Vacation Experience
Life has changed a lot from the days when we used to vacation in hotel rooms, all members of our families cramming together in one space, qualifying the experience with the phrase “it is just a place to sleep at night!” Today’s travelers want a vacation experience, a place where we can eat, play, and sleep without having to step on someone’s toes, and our I Love Dripping Springs vacation properties offer all that and so much more.
Save money on meals by creating family feasts in rooms filled with updated appliances, custom cabinetry, and all the equipment needed to ensure you are well fed and comfortably hydrated. Our Dripping Springs homes are designed to make you feel at home and are furnished in ways that ensure this getaway is as relaxing as you wish it to be. Nap on plush couches strategically placed in front of smart televisions, relax some more as you soak up the rays poolside on a hot summer’s day! Game rooms with pool tables, shuffleboard tables, and state-of-the-art consoles offer teens and adults hours of entertainment on those days when staying in sounds like a really good plan. Theater rooms are most popular on rainy days and lazy nights, and as you lounge in leather recliners watching your favorite movies on the big screen, you may begin to wish that you never had to go home again!
Dining rooms are where the family will gather, playing board games, putting together puzzles, and creating a game plan for your adventures in Dripping Springs and Austin, but they also serve as a space to enjoy the meals you prepared in our fully equipped kitchens, located just steps away. Those moments you spend out on the patios, enjoying the quiet of the night and the awesome expanse of sky stretching out for miles before you, will be the times you appreciate our small-town wonders most of all. Peaceful, tranquil, and quiet, your big city life will seem millions of miles away, and you will not mind the distance one bit—especially when the sun dips below the horizon, the moon rises high in the sky, and the stars begin to twinkle merrily as if someone has just flipped a switch and you realize your eyes can not stay open another second! Your time spent in our comfortable beds will give you the ultimate luxuries: a long night of deep and uninterrupted sleep, allowing you to wake up the next morning, refreshed and ready to face a new day of adventures, some of which we are about to discuss next!
The Long Lazy Days of Summer
There is a special magic that comes along with the summer solstice, even as we get up most days and head into work, but during your summer getaway in I Love Dripping Springs, summer becomes even more magical. Our town is a small one, but there are still many things you can do without having to drive 20 miles to Austin, especially if you are fond of the grape! There are a variety of wineries in our small village, including the Bell Springs Winery located at 370 Bell Springs Road, the Solaro Estate Winery at 13111 Silver Creek Road, and because you can never have too many opportunities to sip and sample, the Sidecar Tasting Room, while not a winery, can be found at 501 Fitzhugh Road. Offering a delicious selection of silky-smooth wines, The Sidecar Tasting Room also features a draft beer bar that makes non-wine drinkers incredibly happy. The Sidecar Tasting Room is actually an offshoot of the Bell Springs Winery, built to give visitors more places to enjoy great wine while celebrating the prohibition history of Dripping Springs. The Bell Springs Winery offers its own expansive tasting room, and because live music makes even the most delicious wine taste better, they feature live entertainment on most weekends! The Solaro Estate Winery has the added attraction of being built on an ancient fossil bed, and all the wineries and tasting rooms are developing a reputation that compares to those in Napa Valley!
Man (and woman) cannot live on wine alone, however, and if you are looking for more adventures in the Texas Hill Country, a quick jaunt over to the big city of Austin will give you all the excitement you can handle! One of the more unique activities you can participate in, bat watching at the Congress Avenue Bridge, takes place at sunset from late spring to early fall and can be added to your itinerary in either season. At dusk, crowds gather on the bridge and in boats in the water below, waiting for thousands of bats to exit their habitat beneath the bridge. The sky will grow dark, not from the sun setting, but from the mass of bats flying off to begin their nightly adventures, and the crowds never cease to be amazed. It is truly a sight to behold, and if you are watching the show in the fall at the end of their migration season, expect to be stunned as over one million bats fly off into the night! Bat Fest, taking place again after a hiatus due to the pandemic, will offer live entertainment, arts & crafts vendors, a costume show, food, drinks, and children’s activities, so if it sounds interesting, schedule your Dripping Springs escape to coincide with this event!
Summer is beautiful in Dripping Springs, but as the temperatures drop, pumpkin spice everything becomes available, and the trees turn from verdant green to brilliant shades of crimson, gold, and purple, our small town becomes a shining example of seasonal excellence! Take your annual Christmas tree pics in front of the waterfall at Hamilton Pool Preserve, hiking along groomed paths that take you deep into a canyon. As the pool preserve opens up before you, the feeling that you have entered a new world will definitely fall upon you! Feel the temperatures drop even further as the spray from the waterfall wets your face and lose yourself in the magical surroundings. Crystal clear waters, stone walls that offer an ombre shading of grays, browns, and golds, and of course, the vibrance of the trees that surround this grotto, all dressed in their autumn finest—the natural landscape promises to provide a backdrop for your annual picture that will be the envy of all who receive the card!
You may not be a Michelin star-level chef, but even the most inexperienced of family cooks understand the importance of the right olive oil when it comes time to create a family meal, and a tour of the Texas Hill Country Olive Oil Company will help you in your culinary endeavors. This tour, while not exclusively a fall adventure, will teach you about the different flavors that are available to you and surprise you! The bistro found on the property offers more than a menu filled with delicious examples of how their olive oil can make any meal taste gourmet; it also features wines from local wineries, allowing visitors to enjoy yet another sit and sip adventure!
Family vacations will be made even sweeter with a visit to Reimers Ranch, where travelers can hike, climb rock walls, and even ride mountain bikes rented from the Dripping Springs Rental Center, located at 299 W. Mercer Street. Spend a day reveling in the beauty of the natural landscape of Reimers Ranch, being sure to pack a picnic to enjoy along the banks of the river that runs through the property. There are fees of $5 per person for day use of the ranch, and they don’t accept debit or credit cards, so be sure to bring along enough cash. Children 12 & under and disabled veterans are free, and seniors only have to pay $3 per person, so you can take that information into account when loading up your wallet!
Getting Hungry Yet?
Just writing about all the fun you can have during your Dripping Springs getaway is making us hungry, so we can imagine that if you are actually getting out there and experiencing all these adventures, you will be starving! If packing a picnic lunch doesn’t quite sate your appetite, there are plenty of restaurants in the area that are definitely up to the challenge of feeding hungry travelers, no matter the size of your group!
Start out your day with the sweet and savory dishes found at Crepe Crazy, a wonderful spot that offers a children’s menu, sandwiches, salads, milkshakes, and a selection of beer, wine, and other beverages that will go perfectly with the variety of crepes that is the mainstay of their menu. Crepe Crazy also offers delivery options, allowing you to sleep in later still eat a hearty breakfast before going out and exploring our hometown.
Enjoy the fabulous flavors of Texas barbecue at one of our favorite family-run joints, the Railroad Bar-B-Cue, located at 1111 US-290 #3818, where the scent of smoked meats will greet your nose long before you catch sight of the restaurant! Open every day of the week from 10:30 AM until 8 PM (on Sundays they don’t open until 11), the menu is simple, featuring meat, more meat, and stuffed potatoes (stuffed with meat) so large they are designed to be an entire meal! Yes, they also offer salads, side dishes, and a yummy kids’ menu, but the mesquite-smoked meat is the reason you are there, so be sure to fill up.
Sometimes you want to eat AND play, and Roadrunners Kitchen & Spirits truly get you and what you want, offering an 18-hole miniature golf course, ping pong tables, dart boards, a disc golf course, and a full menu filled with your favorite bar foods: burgers, sandwiches, a full bar, and a Chocolate Lava Cake so rich and sweet, you need to remember to SAVE ROOM!
Fall & Summer Delights
There are more than a few activities you can explore in Dripping Springs, no matter what the season and the time-honored tradition of shopping is included on that list! Our downtown area offers a selection of boutique stores such as Vintage Soul and Fresh Native, offering a stylish selection of women’s clothing, and our favorite gift shop, Dripping Springs Delights. Located in the downtown area (right next to the historic dance hall), DSD is where you can find sweet treats and special gifts for the ones who weren’t so lucky as to accompany you during your Texas travels.
Whether you spend your days hiking, exploring the history of the area, or gorging yourselves on delicious Texas cuisine, coming home at the end of every day to the comforts and luxury found in our I Love Dripping Springs vacation hideaways will always be the best part of your trip—reserve yours today!
Popular amongst those that have a destination wedding date just around the corner, adventurers looking for outdoor fun, and those that crave moments indulging in old world charm, the Texas Hill Country has long called to travelers from across the map. While the area that makes up the greater Texas Hill Country is vast, there’s only one place that’s earned the title as the gateway to it all and that’s Dripping Springs. This inviting and scenic locale has much to offer up in the way of fun and provides just the right launch point for even more exploration into this appealing terrain that makes up the region. Complete with fun local establishments to check out, boutique stores, and savory dining stops, it’s easy to get swept up in the welcoming ambiance that has long defined this destination. Just as appealing for travelers headed this way is the opportunity to get out and explore the abundance of natural attractions that exist nearby. If you’re the type of visitor that can’t wait to connect with nature, there are plenty of options to choose from in charming Dripping Springs.
Hamilton Pool Preserve
Versatile beauty is every visitor’s for the savoring when they find themselves at Hamilton Pool Preserve. Located at 24300 Hamilton Pool road, this preserve hosts a spectacular natural pool designed by Mother Nature herself within the confines of a captivating canyon crest. The wonder of this natural combination is further enhanced with the inclusion of a 50-foot waterfall that cascades over limestone ledges. Throughout the year, the waterfall never entirely stops thanks to its connecting point with the nearby Pedernales River, but during dry times, it’s likely that visitors will see the spill slow to a trickle. That being said, the pool below has a wonderful way of staying constant in its level, providing an eye-catching blue-green hue to enjoy with your own eyes or capture on camera year-round. Surrounding grottos offer up a whimsical beauty to this area which in total, covers 232 acres of ground.
The land that surrounds the pool is forested and home to a variety of local bird species that are interesting to observe as they thrive in their natural habitat. Among these is the golden-cheeked warbler. Hiking trails wind throughout this preserve to offer up a more direct route to admiring towering trees and wildlife along the way. Those hiking through the uplands of this area will find a landscape dominated by oak and juniper savannah surrounded by a plethora of wildflowers. This area is known for helping rare plant species thrive including the chatterbox orchid, red bay, and the canyon mock-orange. The preserve itself was designated as such in 1990 by the Travis County Commissioner’s Court and to this day, continues to be a place where visitors come to authentically connect with nature at it’s finest.
The Original Dripping Springs
Historic Mercer Street runs through the heart of Dripping Springs and for many, it’s appeal lies in the collection of shops and storefront that speak to centuries past. However, sitting at the very west end of this well-known street is the reason that Dripping Springs has the name it does. Fern-covered limestone slabs and ledges lend themselves to a dropping point for a trickling spring known as the original Dripping Springs. Water cascades over these ledges into a pool below and for those excited to view the original springs, limestone stairs are accessible near the Visitor’s Bureau parking lot. Stories surrounding this original spring suggest it was an important gathering point for First Nation Tribes that called the land home. Later on, it would be an essential water source for early settlers and likely, a primary reason the main street of town was built up around this area.
Charro Ranch Park
Situated at 22690 W. FM 150, Charro Ranch park covers 64 acres of land and was dedicated to the area by Lucy Reed Hibbard in 2008. The park is designed as a place dedicated to preserving the beauty of nature for all visitors. While the parameters are official, nature is truly allowed to pave its own path within this park boundaries and many come this way to enjoy wildlife viewing, bird watching, and learn about the tree and plant species thriving thanks to meticulously placed signage. Comprised of grasslands paired with Juniper and Oak woodlands, Charro Ranch Park houses a stunning variety of animal and plant life and functions as a natural drainage basin too. Over 117 species of birds nest in this area including painted buntings, eastern screech owls, black-chinned hummingbirds, and red-shouldered hawks.
Enjoy the Getaway
Taking time to unwind, relax, and enjoy Dripping Springs is sure to be an inspiring choice. Elevate the experience from start to finish by letting the team at I Love Dripping Springs help you get settled in just the right vacation rental during your next visit. Contact us today to learn more and to start planning your Texas-bound adventure!
Known and loved as the gateway to the Texas Hill Country, Dripping Springs is a scenic and exciting place to set your travel sights, particularly when you’re getting ready to enjoy a fall getaway. Complete with wonderful weather, intriguing landmarks, and plenty of options for fun in the great outdoors, Dripping Springs provides a place to rest, relax and restore your sense before winter ever has a chance to set in. Here are a few options to add to your itinerary when you’re planning your Dripping Springs vacation:
Hike Through Charro Ranch Park
When fall rolls around in Dripping Springs, Texas, the beauty of a trip this way is often rooted in the fact that the weather takes a turn for the comfortable, meaning visitors can get out and explore as easily as ever. With fewer crowds to contend with, those that love to lace up their hiking boots and hit the trails will find many of the routes open and waiting to be discovered. While there are many options when it comes to exploring the terrain through and around Dripping Springs, a hike through Charro Ranch Park is bound to please hikers of all age levels and skillsets. Located at 22690 W. FM 150, Charro Ranch Park sprawls across 64 acres of pristine land and was donated to the city of Dripping Springs in 2008 by the Reed Hibbard family. This multi-use park is perfect for walking, running, or simply enjoying the surrounding nature. Trails throughout Charro Ranch Park were designed for recreation, but also for moments of reflection in the great outdoors. It’s common to come across signs indicating specific trees, birds, plants, and more—specifically placed to give hikers reasons to stop, think, and reflect in surroundings that will surely inspire.
Take to Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail
For the hiker that’s looking to take their Dripping Springs fall journey even further into the heart of nature, focusing on the Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail is a must! Integrated into Reimer’s Ranch Park this lower river trail follows the current and provides outdoor enthusiasts with a 1.9-mile adventure to enjoy. Complete with small grottos, rock formations, and plenty of fun river views, hikers will find that this trail works just as well for the solo adventurer as the explorer looking to spend time with the family. While fall weather is ideal for this trek, the trail still tends to get warm in the afternoon hours so it’s advisable to pack plenty of water and sunscreen for the journey.
As a follow up to a hike along the Reimer’s Ranch Lower River Trail, those that enjoy taking time to spot local and migratory birds will find Reimer’s Ranch Park to be a fantastic bird spotting destination overall. Bring your binoculars and keep your eyes on the trees and skies when you’re looking to end your day of adventure on a sky-high note.
Fall Foliage Trip Through Pedernales Falls State Park
It may not come to mind as a destination where fall colors can readily be admired but the changing season does create a palette of different hues amongst the trees and many of those transitions can be viewed at nearby Pedernales Falls State Park. Access at 2585 Park Road, Pedernales Falls State Park is named for the cascade that the destination hosts which flows with energy over impressive limestone slabs. The park itself is filled with trees, foliage, and wildlife that makes it an ideal place for animal spotting, hiking, and mountain biking. From any of the trails within this park, guests can enjoy the changing colors of the season and it’s advisable to bring your camera as it’s likely you’ll run across a photo-worthy moment or two during your journey. If you’re looking to combine some time on the water with your fall foliage experience, it’s simple to put a kayak, canoe, or tube in at Trammell’s Crossing Trail and enjoy time on the water paired with perfect seasonal views.
Stroll Down Mercer Street
Considered the historic heart of Dripping Springs, Mercer Street is a fantastic destination to just enjoy a stroll when you’re in town during the fall season. Take some time to admire the architecture which speaks to eras past and feel free to do some people-watching too! This area is packed with charming shops but it’s the landmark at the end of the street that draws the most attention. Situated on the street’s west end, guests can take time to view the dripping spring for which the city was named! Flowing over limestone ledges perfectly covered with ferns, this small, yet meaningful place gives great insight into those spaces where nature and city collide.
Savor the Getaway
Whether you’re planning a fall adventure to Dripping Springs or can’t wait to enjoy the stay any other time of year, the team at I Love Dripping Springs is always on-hand to make sure you have the ideal accommodations to match. Contact us today to learn more about our properties and to begin planning!