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  HILL COUNTRY SEE & DO

Plan to spend some quality time when you visit the Hill Country. Its 22-counties occupy 22,722 square miles of diverse geography on the Edwards Plateau and the Llano Basin portion of the Great Plains, with 156 square miles of rivers, lakes, and creeks and a population of 3.4 million friendly folks you’ll probably enjoy meeting. It won’t take long to understand why the Hill Country is consistently a Top 10 tourist destination and attraction for Texans and non-Texans alike, or why early explorers described it in glowing terms as the land of milk and honey, or why the New York Times cited it in 2009 as the top tourist destination in the whole United States. It is very simply a land of beauty and bounty. What’s more, eight of the remaining Top 10 Texas tourist attractions are in the Hill Country, too. Use our site to make sure your trip includes all you want to see and do on your Hill Country visits.

The Hill Country is popularly known as the Arts & Entertainment Capital of Texas, unofficially, at least. Artists, sculptors, woodworkers, photographers, glass blowers, and other artisans and craftsmen live in the Hill Country and share their original works of art with pride. The performing arts are well represented, too, with live music, dance, and theatre performances being found throughout the Hill Country at venues both large and small, indoors and out. More entertainment waits, too, whether for family, children, or adults, with rodeos, festivals and fests, outdoor markets, honky-tonks, museums, historical re-enactments, and much more at entertainment venues dotting the map at popular Hill Country destinations. Check your favorite Hill Country destinations for arts and entertainment venues and “Events” for even more arts and entertainment opportunities.

The Hill Country is consistently a Top 10 tourist attraction and in 2010 was home to eight additional attractions in the exclusive Top 10. The other eight include the Alamo, the runaway #1 tourist attraction in Texas, Bass Pro Shop, Six Flags Over Texas, Paseo del Rio, aka the River Walk, Cabela’s, Sea World of Texas, State Capitol, and the San Marcos Outlet Mall. Quite an achievement for the Hill Country, and there are many, many more attractions worthy of a visit. The only non-Hill Country attraction in the Top 10 was Galveston Island, weighing in at number two.

An excursion can be a jaunt, junket, outing, ramble, sashay, sortie, or a spin, but by whatever term you use, the Hill Country offers exceptional opportunities for visitors to explore and enjoy its many facets, from parklands and picnics to informative guided cave, nature sanctuary, or wildlife and bird watching tours. Your excursion may also include a lake cruise on the Highland Lakes, a glass- bottom boat ride, or following a trail like the Wine Trail, Paddle Trail, Trail of Lights, Fort Trail, Wildlife Trail, or Hill Country Trail. So, whether you plan to take a jaunt down main street on a shopping excursion, a sashay to the winery, a rumble to the river, a ramble to the rodeo, or a scenic spin on country roads ….get the information here that you need to map out your favorite excursions.

Serene deep blue-green lakes, rivers cutting through rugged canyons and rocky hills, and tributary streams coursing over limestone or gravel beds make the Hill Country a water enthusiast’s paradise. With fish aplenty, and populated with marinas, public parks, swimming beaches and swimming holes, camp grounds, boat ramps, and other facilities, Hill Country lakes rivers, and streams beckon fishermen, tubers, kayakers, water skiers, boaters, campers, and all other water sports devotees with open arms.

In a word, the Hill Country is “loaded” with night life activities for all ages. Life after dusk might include a quick spin or two around the dance floor or just listening to music at a local honky-tonk or club, attending a concert or movie in the park, enjoying live theatre, joining in festival activities after dark, enjoying a leisurely dinner at your favorite eatery, taking the family on a rodeo, fair, or carnival outing, or taking advantage of any number of other fun-filled, after hours activities offered seasonally or year round at many Hill Country destinations. Check your favorite Hill Country destinations for night life options and “Events” for even more night life opportunities.

Whether you’re planning a family picnic, an overnight primitive or RV camp out, or something in-between, the Hill Country is likely to have exactly what you’re looking for. It’s a destination of parks, preserves, and camp grounds, both public and private, offering an array of facilities for your use and pleasure. Use our handy search tools to find the park, preserve, or camp ground that’s just right for you.

The verdict is in! Shopping is one of the top two most popular pastimes of Hill Country visitors, second only to Dining. Quaint shops, mega malls, mini malls, roadside markets, specialty shops, country stores, farmer markets, antique shops, art galleries, wineries, market days, and a host of other unique businesses and events all contribute to the trove of trinkets and treasures awaiting the Hill Country shopper. Get a head start on your shopping excursion by using the “Shopping” search for your favorite Hill Country destinations, and be sure to check “Events” for indoor and outdoor markets and specialty shows and sales.

Explore your spa and wellness options here and add additional relaxation to your Hill Country visit. You’ll find day, getaway, resort, medical and destination spas throughout the Hill Country, offering your favorite types of massages, from Swedish to hand and foot, Myofacial, shiatsu, hot-stone, lymphatic, Rolfing, reflexology, couples, prenatal, back, scalp, deep tissue, Thai, and more. Outcalls are offered at many destinations so you can enjoy the relaxing benefits of a massage of your choosing in the privacy of your own room, suite, or cottage.

Sports aficionados and outdoor enthusiasts seem to all agree….the Hill Country IS the Sports and Outdoors Capital of Texas. With its great abundance of lakes, rivers, streams and creeks, public and private parks, flora and fauna, canyons and caves, grottos and gorges, and rolling hills and prairies, the Hill Country is often described as a sportsman’s or outdoorsman’s paradise. There’s something to do for all skill levels, novice to expert, whether its rock climbing or rafting, tubing or swimming, golf or tennis, hunting or fishing, or riding a “flying fox” at any one of the three Hill Country zip line locations. There are great family fun places, too, but the best thing of all may well be the beauty of the surroundings in which Hill Country activities take place.

When romance is in the air, and a trip down the aisle is being planned, look no further than the Hill Country. It is a premier wedding and honeymoon destination area, bar none. Use our site to find the services you need to make your wedding complete, from wedding to reception venues, photographers, DJ’s, caterers, wedding planners, wedding dress salons, florists, jewelers, music for the wedding, and more. And, don’t forget to plan your Honeymoon in the Hill Country for a lasting wedding remembrance!

With more than 25 state-of-the-art wineries in nine of its 22-counties, the terms “Hill Country” and “Wine Country” are virtually synonymous. Winemaking today is a far cry from the early winemaking days in Gillespie and surrounding counties when German and other European settlers practiced their winemaking skills and began making Mustang grape and dandelion wines, primarily for personal consumption. Today, with a wide variety of wines, many award winning, the Hill Country has become a leading wine producing area in Texas and is now ranked the 2nd fastest-growing wine destination in the nation. The Hill Country also hosts and boasts micro-breweries and brew pubs in several locales, as well as the State’s only legal whiskey distillery in Blanco County. Come visit the Hill Country and enjoy your favorite wines and spirits.


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