Texas’ hill country has an incredible amount of beauty, culture, and activity, all at a price almost anyone can afford. Hill country stretches from the Northern outskirts of Austin, down South to San Antonio. Between Austin’s weird, alternative vibe, and San Antonio’s rich, historical Mexican and Cowboy culture, there really is something for everyone. If you’re looking for a fun, unique, and affordable vacation this summer, hill country has what you’re looking for.
San Antonio has a lot to offer its visitors. Perhaps the most famous of all tourist attractions, is the Alamo. This legendary landmark, provides a brief Texas history lesson, and is a relic from the past. Another San Antonio must-see, is the river walk. Take a stroll along the scenic riverside, where you can eat, drink, or buy pretty much anything you want. The river walk also offers frequent scenic boat ride tours. One of the lesser known gems in San Antonio, is the Mercado. El Mercado, or the market in English, is an authentic outdoor Mexican marketplace, featuring an array of items from Mexico, Central and South America, for a great price. With so much to do in San Antonio, it would be easy to make it a full vacation in and of itself.
Just over a half hour South of Austin, and less than an hour North of San Antonio, lies the scenic college town of San Marcos. Home of Texas State University, San Marcos offers the college culture without the crowd. Aside from the live music, food and shopping associated with a college town, San Marcos has a wealth of natural beauty as well. Visit the Aquarena Center at TSU. The Aquarena provides a lesson on the the area, and a place to take in the scenery. Cool down tubing the San Marcos river. The Aquarena Spring fed river, stays at a constant comfortable seventy-two degrees. If you’re looking to experience hill country and all of its natural beauty, make sure to stop in San Marcos.
You can’t leave Texas without experiencing some authentic cowboy culture! That’s where Bandera comes in. The hub for all the local cowboys, Bandera is truly a sight to behold. Browse the fun shops, eat some delicious, authentic South Western cuisine, restaurants, or even checking out some authentic cowboy gear. If cowboy culture is what you crave from you Texas trip, you better make a stop in the cowboy capitol, Bandera.
Austin has been getting a lot of attention the last few years, in part because of its two popular music festivals SXSW, and Austin City Limits. You don’t have to attend a music festival to enjoy the live music capitol of the world, however. Historical Sixth Street, boasts insanely fun shopping, eating, drinking, and of course live music, all year round. Whether you want to peruse an alternative bookstore, get a tattoo, or rock out to some wild music, you can do it on Sixth Street. If you’re visiting in the spring or summer, head over to the Congress Street Bridge at dusk to see the world’s largest urban bat colony take flight. With a city slogan like keep Austin weird you’re guaranteed to have an interesting time in Austin.
Â Don’t limit yourself to what’s listed here. Each location listed is a trip with in itself, and many fun towns didn’t even make the list. New Braunfel’s, German charm, and Boerne’s antique shopping, are both hill country experience not to be missed. A trip to hill country is so jam-packed with every kind of fun, you get a lot of bang for your buck.