Hill Country Day Trips

Hill Country Day Trips

There are so many adventures to have in the beautiful Texas Hill Country. Here are some fun, family hill country day trips you don’t want to miss!


  • Austin Nature & Science Center – Admission is Free
  • Zilker Botanical Gardens – $1 for Children, $3 for Adults
  • McKinney Falls – Adult: $6 Daily. Child 12 Years and Under: Free. Camping $20/night
  • Congress Avenue Bats – Free. Go to this website for weather & time information.
  • Hill Country Flyer – You can typically find a Groupon for this. Tickets from their direct site are
    $22-$55/each. Starting in Cedar Park, travel 66 miles through the Texas Hill Country crossing the bridge over the South San Gabriel River and Short Creek Canyon. During a two hour layover in Burnet enjoy lunch on your own, a stroll around town and the Wild West Gunfight (weather permitting). Finally, relax and enjoy our historic cars as the train returns to Cedar Park in the afternoon.
  • Mount Bonnell – Free
  • Spare Time – Game Arcade with lazer tag and bowling. You can usually find a Groupon for this.
  • Pinballz – Game Arcade. You can usually find a Groupon for this.
  • High Five – Game Arcade with lazer tag & bowling. Another place you can usually find a Groupon for.

Bandera/Boerne Area

  • Medina River – Go kayaking!
  • Cascade Caverns – This is one I am excited about! They have 2 tours. One is during the day and they also have a flashlight tour at night. That is the one we will more than likely do because of my little reptile/amphibian enthusiast as we will most likely be able to see the salamanders at that time. Adult tickets are $19.95-$24.95 and Children’s Tickets are $12.95-$15.95. Children 3 and under are free
  • Guadalupe River State Park – Swim, toob, canoe, fish, hike, geocache, bird watch. Adults $7, Children 12 and under are free. Campsites $15-$24
  • Mayan Dude Ranch – This! Another item on my mommy bucket list! Waking up, riding horses to a cowboy breakfast. Check out their website as there is a ton of fun here!
  • Snowflake Donuts
  • Cave Without A Name – This one looks incredible! Ticket Prices: Adults $20, Seniors $18, Kids $10, children 6 and under are free.


  • Colorado Bend State Park (Goman Falls) – Swimming, kayaking, fishing, geocaching, birding, hiking & caving. Entrance Fee: Adults $5 daily, kids 12 and under are free. 6am-10pm Campsites $10-$7


  • Inks Lake – Swim, boat, scuba dive, fishing & hiking. Entrance Fee: Adults $6 daily, Kids 12 and under are free Campsites & cabins $11-$55/night

Dripping Springs/Driftwood

  • Hamilton Pool – Reservations required. $11 for the online reservation + $15 for the car you arrive in. Only 1 car per reservation. We just booked our reservation for the morning of Miles’ 11th birthday!
  • Westcave Preserve – The Grotto is a must see! Adults $15, Kids (4-17) $7
  • Pedernales Falls State Park – Swimming, toobing, wading, fishing, hiking, camping, geocache & bird watching. Entrance Fee: Adults $6, children 12 and under free Campsites $10-$75
  • Reimers Ranch – Astronomical observatory, equestrian trail riding, fishing, guided tours, hiking, monthly bird walks, mountain biking trails, rock climbing, swimming. $10/car
  • Dr. Pound Historical Farmstead – $5/person
  • Camp Ben McCulloch – Free Swimming


  • Fredericksburg Herb Farms – Free to visit
  • Enchanted Rock – Adults $7/each, Children 12 and under are free. Make a reservation to ensure a spot.
  • The Preserve (animal sanctuary)


  • South Llano River State Park: Swimming, toobing, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, hiking & bird watching. Entrance Fee: Adult $5 daily, Children 12 and under free. Campsites $8-$20

Hunt (close to Kerville)

  • Schumacher’s Crossing – This crossing is located on State Hwy 39 a little east of Hunt and it can get very crowded on the weekends because it is a popular swimming hole. In fact, it often is mentioned on the top ten lists of swimming holes in the Hill Country. This portion of the Guadalupe River typically is very clean because there are no large cities or urban areas upstream.

New Braunfels Area

  • Natural Bridge Caverns – Adult tickets $18-$30, Children $12-$20. To get the best deal, purchase your tickets online well in advance.
  • Natural Bridge Caverns Wildlife – Adult tickets $22-$24, Seniors $20-$22, Children $13-$15.50
  • Animal World & Snake Farm Zoo – Adults $12.75, Seniors $11.75, Kids 3-12 $9.75, Children 2 and under are free.
  • Schlitterbahn – Hottest, coolest time in Texas! Adult tickets $54.99, Children Tickets $41.99
  • Landa Park
  • Son’s Island – Glamping (avg. $145/night) Day Cabana Rentals $145, Evening Cabana Rentals $65. This includes entry for up to 8 people from 7:30pm-10:30pm. Live music most Friday’s and Saturday’s. Eat s’mores, fish, play volleyball, kayak, paddleboard & ifloat.
  • Gruene Dance Hall

San Antonio

  • Six Flags Over Texas – Great deals on memberships & season passes right now!
  • Visit the Mission’s – Price: Average $35/person
  • Ripley’s Believe It or Not – Adult Tickets $30, Children’s Tickets $20

San Marcos

  • Olympic Outdoor Center – They usually have a really good Groupon.
  • Wonder World Park – Cave tour, train ride through wildlife park, antigravity house, observation tower, amusement rides & gem mining. Adult $25.95, Children $16.95, Seniors $20.95
  • Comal River Tubing – Another one you can usually find a Groupon for. You can also book online at Comaltubes.com or online. $20 each.


Krause Springs – Krause Springs has many natural sites to explore making it one of the best hill country day trips. There are 32 springs on the property, and several feed the manmade pool and the natural pool which flows into Lake Travis. It’s a refreshing treat to swim in the Springs during the hot summers of Texas! If camping is in your plans, there is primitive tent camping as well as 24 RV sites with water and electricity available.

Guests are also welcome to relax and to stroll through the Butterfly Gardens – take time to listen to the music of the wind chimes and the fountains during your visit!Open 9am-8pm. Admission: Adults $8, Children 4-11 $5, Children under 4 are free. Camping Fees: Adult $15, Children $10. Krausesprings.net


  • Capital of TX Zoo – Admission Prices: Teen and Adult (12 and up) $10.84, Children (Ages 2 to 11) $8.32, Under 2 (Free)
  • Dr. Pepper Museum – Adults $10, Children $6, Seniors $8
  • Hawaiian Falls – Adults $28.99, Children $20.99, Seniors $20.99
  • Waco Mammoth National Monument – Admission is free. Guided Tour Fee for Adults $5, Guided Tour Fee for Children $3


  • Blue Hole – Beautiful water. Just like Hamilton Pool, you are required to reserve your spot ahead of time and it is in time slots. Either 9am-1pm or 2pm-6pm. Admission: Adults $10, Youth $6, Seniors $6
  • Jacob’s Well – To swim is $9 for adults unless you are a Hays County resident which makes admission $5. Children 5-12 are $5 and under 5 years are free.

Other Hill Country Day Trips

  • NASA
  • San Antonio Zoo
  • Six Flags Fiesta Texas
  • Houston Aquarium
  • Sea World
  • Dallas Aquarium
  • Blue Bell Factory

Terlingua Road Trip

  • Lost Maples – Your whole family will find plenty to do here. Take a hike or a photo, go fishing, look for birds and other wildlife, camp, backpack, stargaze and hunt for geocaches. Lost Maples protects a special stand of Uvalde bigtooth maples. Many folks come here to see colorful leaves on these and other trees in autumn. Admission: Adults $6, children 12 and under are free.
  • Garner State Park – Garner State Park is a great place to visit for a swim or hike, or to enjoy a relaxing weekend. With 2.9 miles of Frio River winding through 1,774 acres of scenic Hill Country terrain, the park offers lots to see and do! Swim in the Frio River or float its waters on an inner tube, operate a paddle boat, and hike 16 miles of scenic trails. You can also camp, study nature, picnic, canoe, fish, play miniature golf, geocache and ride bikes. And, of course, you can dance. Take a virtual tour with our Interactive Trails Map. If you plan to swim or float at the park, read through our swimming safety tips before you come.Overnight visitors can stay in screened shelters, cabins or campsites. Large groups can rent the screened shelter or group campsite.
  • Terlingua Ranch
  • Caverns of Sonora – “Its Beauty Can Not be Exaggerated, Even by Texans.” -Bill Stephenson Adults $18, Children $16, Children 4 and under are free
  • Big Bend – $30 per vehicle

State Parks fill up quickly during their busy season. Visit the Texas State Parks website to make reservations so you don’t waste a trip or your time.

Austin, San Antonio or Dallas Pogo Passes all have great deals as well!

Groupon also has great deals for hill country day trips and if you become a Groupon Select member you save even more money. It paid for itself in my first purchase.

This article was written by Kimberly Kennedy and shared on the K. Kennedy Co. Facebook page.

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