We had an incredible and easy getaway in Fredericksburg, Texas this summer. You know when you just need to escape the hustle and bustle of life but there may not be time, or funds, to travel far? Fredericksburg was exactly what we needed. Our journey was full of indoor leisure, beautiful landscapes, outdoor fresh air, and offered a wide variety of activities for our interests.
Overnight rest and relaxation surpassed our expectations at the only AAA 4 diamond or Select Lodging B&B in town, Rose Hill Manor. I had been desperate for a break from the concrete jungle and was ready to clear my head in the countryside. Our approach to the property seemed like simple countryside until we rounded the turn in the road to the wide open expanse of serenity with a beautiful southern style main house and cottages. Only an hour away from San Antonio, yet the serene location almost convinced me we were a million miles from the “to-do” list of home and work.
We toured the grounds, and the rooms in the main building were spacious and offered gorgeous views from the wrap around porch on the 2nd floor. We stayed in one of the cottages and it certainly exceeded expectations. Here is a list of our favorite things from Rose Hill Manor:
- Front porch: The porch of our cottage included comfortable outdoor recliners. We loved stargazing at night. The stars were definitely brighter in the country. We had fun using our favorite SkyGuide App (free app) and talking about our discoveries. The porch seemed to perfectly present the newness of morning while deer frolicked across the uninterrupted meadow. This was my favorite time for reading and meditation.
- Breakfast: Creative, beautiful, and delicious. I have a diet restriction and they accommodated me without compromising taste. We preferred having our breakfast on the front porch of the main house each morning. The air was comfortable and a soft breeze moved through the patio. One morning while enjoying breakfast, we noticed an armadillo roaming through the garden below. Danny snuck behind him to observe his little adventure for a few minutes. It was one of those moments you realize how much fun it is to play together.
- Patti: The owner, Patti, was engaging, hospitable and so knowledgeable about the area. Her husband has done an amazing job maintaining the grounds and creating new features to the property. Love this family business.
Weekday prices vary from weekend prices. Children welcome during the week but couples only on weekends. Great location for planning a couples getaway with friends too.
Just around the corner from Rose Hill Manor is Chocolates El Rey and their free tasting room. Yep, FREE! Who can pass up free chocolate? Of course we stopped. It is a little shop but the tasting presentation made a big impression. A sample of several different chocolates were plated and the host shared each of the flavors, geographic origin of each chocolate, and other fun facts.
Side note: I don’t care for white chocolate, never have. But, when we discovered the award for best white chocolate in the world has been awarded to El Rey for best white chocolate in the world… who is going to say “no” to a sampling? I admit, it was very good. Get there before 5:00 p.m. or you’ll miss your chance.
Their web site describes the ambiance perfectly… “The Treaty House offers a welcoming, sophisticated yet relaxed ambiance. Featured throughout this beautiful space are traditional, stylish, and eclectic elements.”
We were greeted with such sincere joy that we were immediately glad we chose the Treaty House for our evening. Our table was quaint but perfect for the two of us to relax and enjoy a sampling of several small plate menu items. Our favorites were the truffle fries and charcuterie board. Danny also enjoyed the crab stuffed mushrooms and the lobster mac and cheese (not gluten free for me).
We loved talking about the artwork. A few staff members joined our conversation and shared about the history of the building and the art on display. We enjoyed it so much, we went back a second night with friends. Evening two was spent indulging great food with best friends and then quality time on the patio, relaxing under the stars.
Bat watching was not on our original agenda, but how fun is it when new friends and conversations with strangers inspire unexpected adventures? We were chatting with other guests at Rose Hill Manor and one man, originally from the area, asked if we were going to go see the bats.
He explained that three million bats take flight at dusk from Old Tunnel State Park and it was minutes away. It also happens to be FREE! Visit their web site for more info next time your headed to the Frederickburg area. We enjoyed it so much that we brought our kids and parents back two weeks later.
We had no idea that Luchenbach was just around the corner from Frederickburg. Are you singing the song in your mind yet? It was another one of our completely unexpected destinations. On our 15 minute drive there, Danny researched the history of this little town and let me encourage you to do the same. The founding story is full of good ole’ boy fun facts and a spirit of community. When you arrive, there is a great sign at the entrance for a scrapbook picture. A gravel parking lot directs you to a little village of old fashioned american wood farmhouses and a dancehall, free roaming farm birds, and white bulb lights casually draped around the property. It beckons any visitor to put on a pair of boots and join the two step, or at least relax and enjoy the live country band.
We were happy to find couples, families, and friends of all ages having a good time. Food is sold on the property on weekends, there is a gift shop in an old post office building, several large picnic tables scattered about, and a wood bridge crossing a creek to a wide open field where you can star gaze upon the country sky.
Here are a few of my favorite pictures from Luckenbach
Visit their web site for performance schedules, history, and more.
Enchanted rock may be one of my favorite hikes. I like a little struggle in my outdoor hiking adventures. But just when I think I can’t go much further, bam! I am on top. The view from the top is panoramic and the breeze perfectly cools you after the hustle of the journey up. Our family loves to explore the caves at the top and take the winding creek bed path down.
Tips for your hike:
- Bring a light lunch or snacks for a picnic at the top
- Check the Enchanted Rock State Park social media announcements or the web page ahead of time. They are often full to capacity by mid morning during summers and weekends.
- Check the weather report
Warning: if you have any condition that would caution you toward hiking, read through the web site info first. I would recommend this hike in the early morning. By 3:00 on the day we hiked, the rock temperature measured 133 degrees. Fortunately we were gone by mid morning.
Photo courtesy Texas Parks and Wildlife Department © 2006
SO.MANY.SHOPS! If you are looking for quaint shops, tasting parlors, museums, and more…look no further. I think we could have spent most of a day walking main street. If that is your ideal activity, main street offers everything from the National Museum of the Pacific War to a 5 and dime shop, and the convenience and variety of lunch and dinner options. And as any texan knows, check the weather first and start in the cool of the morning. Many shops close around 5:00, so evening shopping may be limited.
Other noteworthy destinations recommended by the locals of Fredericksburg:
Lyndon B. Johnson State Park: Childhood home, TX white house, museum
Alamo Springs Cafe Awarded Best Burger Joint in Texas by Texas Best