Warning: This post may cause extreme jealousy
Let me introduce you to a quaint German town nestled in the Texas hill country with access to all of the wineries on Hwy 290 (a.k.a. “Texas Wine Trail”). It is quite possibly the perfect vacation spot (definitely if you live within driving distance). It has everything: wonderful B&Bs, delightful shopping, amazing food, and did I mention, wine? Ryan and I stayed for a perfect 3 nights in between Christmas and New Year’s and it was such a good trip, I have to share some of the highlights with you!
Where to Stay: The Magnolia House
The Magnolia House is a charming bed and breakfast, located near Main Street in Fredericksburg. The home was built in 1923 by a local architect (whose father and grandfather worked at the bank and owned the lumber yard – how convenient!) and the original character has been maintained throughout the years. It is currently owned by a wonderful couple, Claude & Lisa, who were impeccable hosts and made us feel so welcome. The two course breakfast was to die for! I would need an entire post just to discuss the amazing-ness of the breakfast…seriously it was awesome! Here are some pictures Ryan took of the house – I love the built-ins and they were throughout the whole house!
What to Do:
We left Waco at 9:30am so that we could spend the day stopping at wineries and breweries along the way. If you are coming from the north, Google maps is going to suggest that you take I-35 to Marble Falls. My suggestion would be to take Hwy 84 to 281. It is scenic and you can start stopping at wineries sooner. Just watch the speed limits in the small towns. Some of our favorite wineries were Flat Creek (we stopped at the bistro in Marble Falls on our way down), Torre di Pietra, and Grape Creek. Here are some photos from the different wineries (again, courtesy of Ryan). I also recommend going to the Hye Market (the red wine sauce and garlic pepper pasta are must haves) and touring the Garrison Bros Distillery (fun even if you aren’t a whiskey drinker).
As good as the wine was (and it was good), my favorite thing was hiking around Enchanted Rock. The hike to the top is maybe half a mile, but it is straight uphill so you just take your time. Once you get to the top there are places to explore around and you can take other trails down. I went exploring in and on the caves and kind of had to be rescued by my man (I like to think of it more as a trust exercise). We got to the park around 10:30 and spent a little more than 2 hours exploring. As we were leaving the car line to get into the park was at least a half a mile long – I’d definitely recommend getting there as early as possible to avoid lines and having to share the rock with a lot of people.
You also need to plan an afternoon shopping on Main Street in Fredericksburg. There are lots of art galleries, antiques stores, boutiques, etc. on the main strip and through out the area. We did Enchanted Rock in the morning and then spent the afternoon walking and shopping throughout town (I had no problem hitting my 10,000 steps and then some that day).
Where to Eat: Otto’s German Bistro
We had a ton of great food while in Fredericksburg. I did not have a bad meal. But if there was one place that I had to recommend, it would be Otto’s. The spaetzl was amazing!! They don’t take reservations, so expect a wait. We had about a 45 minute to hour wait, but expected this so it wasn’t a big deal. They have dedicated cocktail waitstaff to bring you a drink while you wait (I recommend the Evy). The restaurant is small but there is an outdoor eating area as well. The food is wonderful (the menu is seasonal and changes frequently) and the atmosphere was so romantic.
Here are some additional photos of us in Fredericksburg! The Christmas decorations in the town were spectacular, especially the large erzgebirge (see our post about erzgebirge here) in the marketplatz!
Maybe it was getting away from the stress of the holidays, exploring something new, or being with the man of my dreams (or all of the above), but Fredericksburg easily falls on my list of best trips. It is a great place to go for a romantic getaway, girls’ trip, or for no reason other than to drink wine!
P.S. Believe it or not, this is just sampling of all the things we did. If you’d like to know all of the places we stopped (and which ones we’d recommend) let me know!