15 Top-Rated Things to Do in Fredericksburg, TX
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Fredericksburg is a lovely town in the center of the Texas Hill Country with a rich German heritage. Peach orchards and grape vines decorate the outskirts of the historic town, adding to its already scenic and hilly countryside.
There are so many things to do in Fredericksburg, from scenic drives to enjoy the sights of traditional Texas ranches, wildflowers, and roadside produce markets to local shops, where you find flower seeds and locally made jams to take home.
The small town was founded in 1846 by German immigrants, giving it a unique cultural influence that you do not find in other parts of Texas. The foundation laid by early German settlers is still present today, from historic buildings like The Vereins Kirche Museum, one of the first structures in the city, to the German-influenced food.
Speaking of the food, it is easy to nosh your way through Fredericksburg. You can enjoy quaint restaurants serving up authentic Hill Country cuisine, like Hill & Vine, or relax at small places like West End Pizza, with casual dining settings that extend outdoors.
One of the great appeals of Fredericksburg is its walkable downtown, where you can peruse the shops and cafés and easily access many of the local tourist attractions. Within a short driving distance are some natural wonders near Fredericksburg that are worth visiting, like stargazing at the Enchanted Rock Natural Area or the Old Tunnel State Park Bat Cave.
As you plan your visit, review our list of the top things to do in Fredericksburg.
1. National Museum of the Pacific War
The National Museum of the Pacific War is a museum and outdoor plaza dedicated to Fleet Admiral Charles W. Nimitz of the US Navy. The six-acre complex includes the museum and the boyhood home of Nimitz.
The Smithsonian Affiliate Museum is dedicated to sharing the history and stories of those who participated in or died in the Asiatic-Pacific region during World War II. The museum houses artifacts from the war including ships, uniforms, and other military items in the George H.W. Bush Gallery.
Other places to visit in the complex include the Admiral Nimitz Gallery, with interactive exhibits about his career; the Memorial Courtyard, which recognizes those who died during the conflict; the Plaza of Presidents, honoring the U.S. Presidents who served during WWII; and the Japanese Garden of Peace. You can access the museum and courtyard from Main Street.
Address: 311 E. Austin Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://www.pacificwarmuseum.org/
2. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area
One of Fredericksburg's best treasures, and worth topping your itinerary, is Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. The best times to visit are during the early morning light or stargazing in the evenings. There are 11 miles of hiking trails through the natural area that are suitable for all levels, from basic walking paths to extreme hiking. Rock climbing is also available.
Enchanted Rock is a special area because it has the third largest granite dome in the world. The three towering sections are referred to as Enchanted Rock, Little Dome, and Turkey Peak. You can participate in ranger-led programs on many weekends or take part in one of the regularly scheduled public events like bird-watching.
For a moderate hike, you can take a 4.5-mile loop trail around the rocks. You will want to research the trails ahead of time if you plan to walk on them, as some of them are quite rugged, and you will need to take water with you, a map, and have appropriate footwear and clothing. It is important to note that advanced reservations are required for day passes to visit Enchanted Rock, and they often fill to capacity, so you will want to plan ahead for this activity.
Address: 16710 Ranch Road, 965, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/enchanted-rock
3. Stroll Historic Main Street
The Historic Main Street in Fredericksburg is where you will likely spend quite a bit of time during your visit. It is the central hub of activity in the town, and it is where you will find small shops and restaurants inside renovated historic buildings. Look for the plaques on the exterior walls of the buildings as you pass by to see what they once were.
Shopping is popular on Main Street and one of the top reasons that visitors come to Fredericksburg. Main Street is lined with many apparel stores, boutique gift shops, home décor stores, and places where you can buy custom-fitted cowboy hats and locally made jewelry.
Just off Main Street is the Warehouse District, where you can shop at some of the local antique stores and art galleries. You can find convenient lodging at hotels like the Fredericksburg Inn & Suites or the Inn on Barons Creek, which are a short walk from Main Street.
Address: Main Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
4. Wildseed Farms
If you enjoy plants and gardening, you will want to visit Wildseed Farms. It is a 200-acre property made up of a nature store and a beautiful outdoor area to explore. The indoor garden store has an abundance of home and garden products, like birdhouses, lighting features, and bird baths.
You can buy seeds for planting at home and find locally made products like peach soap. The outdoor garden area has a nursery with plants for sale, pottery, home goods, and garden art.
Also outside, you can walk on the trails and see some of the colorful wildflower fields on the farm. Some of the best examples of flowers in the Texas Hill Country are on the farm, from bluebonnets and sunflowers to poppies and zinnias.
Address: 100 Legacy Drive, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://www.wildseedfarms.com/
5. Rockbox Theater
One of the best live entertainment options in Fredericksburg is the Rockbox Theater. The venue is popular for showcasing tribute bands that cover popular artists like The Eagles, Bon Jovi, Elvis, and the Rolling Stones.
Most shows have matinee and evening performances, and there is a full events calendar, so you will likely find something available during your stay. Since the theater is just off Main Street, you can plan to have dinner at one of the local eateries before the show and walk around afterwards for an evening coffee.
Address: 109 N. Llano Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://www.rockboxtheater.com/
6. Willow City Loop & Other Scenic Drives
While there are many attractions and activities available in Fredericksburg, you do not need an agenda to enjoy your stay. In fact, one of the most enjoyable things to do is just drive along the scenic roads to see the Texas Hill Country landscape. You can simply head out on the roadways in any direction and enjoy a few hours of fresh air and the scenery, or you can take one of several recommended routes.
Wildflower season runs March through May and is the best window for scenic drives. Willow City Loop is a scenic 13-mile loop around the countryside that meanders through a series of hills and valleys. It is especially beautiful in the springtime, when the trees are in bloom and the colorful wildflowers are easy to spot from the roadway. This is a private road, so you should not stop, but it is a stunning drive.
Other scenic drives near Fredericksburg include Old San Antonio Road, which goes past Old Tunnel State Park, with winding roads and scenic pastures with grazing horses in the fields.
The drive to Enchanted Rock State Natural Area on Ranch Road 965 is another scenic route, especially in the morning hours, when you can see the rugged landscape in an array of colorful light.
7. St. Mary's Catholic Church
St. Mary's Catholic Church, in the heart of Fredericksburg, is one of the most visited places in town, in part, because if its stunning architecture and history. The church is made of native stone and was completed in 1906. If you look closely at the church and sanctuary, you will notice the Gothic-inspired architecture and some asymmetrical structural features on its façade.
This church has been central to the Fredericksburg community since German immigrants started it in 1846, and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. You can take a guided tour of the church on Sundays or plan one by appointment.
Address: 304 W. San Antonio Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://church.stmarysfbg.com/
8. The Pioneer Museum
A fun place to visit to learn about local history is the Pioneer Museum and historical site, which is set up like a small village representative of the settlement of Fredericksburg and its German heritage.
Take a self-guided sightseeing tour of the 3.5-acre grounds, which chronicles the journey of German immigrants traveling to Texas in the mid 1800s. As you walk through the 10 buildings in the village, you can visit the smokehouse, a one-room schoolhouse, a traditional 1880s log cabin, and the Kammlah barn, a stone barn representative of the time period.
One of the most unique structures is "Sunday House." This is a traditional townhouse that would have been built by German settlers of the area and used on weekends by German families who lived in the rural regions so they could go to church on Sunday.
Address: 325 W. Main Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: http://www.pioneermuseum.net/
9. Old Tunnel State Park Bat Cave
Old Tunnel State Park is a 16-acre park that is small but one of the best treasures for wildlife in the region. The marquee experience at the state park is observing the bats as they emerge from the cave at night in the warmer weather between May and October.
Make a reservation to take a seat on the hillside bleachers for the most spectacular night experience. Watch as some of the three million Mexican free-tailed bats and 3,000 cave myotis bats fly out of the abandoned railroad tunnel below.
Old Tunnel State Park is great to visit in the daytime as well to enjoy the tall scenic lookouts at the park over the hilly landscape of Fredericksburg. There are many trails in the park, and quiet spots with benches for enjoying the peaceful countryside. The park is open all year, but if you plan to visit after 5pm between November and April, you will need a reservation and permit to enter.
Address: 10619 Old San Antonio Road, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/old-tunnel
10. The Lady Bird Johnson Municipal Park
Fredericksburg has fantastic recreational parks, and one of the most versatile and popular is the 330-acre Lady Bird Johnson Municipal Park. The multipurpose park has rolling hills, large trees providing shade on hot Texas days, Live Oak Creek for fishing, and children's play areas.
A highlight of the park is the Lady Bird Golf Course, which takes advantage of the rolling terrain for both a challenging course and for the stunning views. This is a nice park to go to and relax for an afternoon and take a walk on the nature trails. There are also designated camping and RV spots within the park.
Address: 126 W Main Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://www.fbgtx.org/236/Lady-Bird-Johnson-Municipal-Park
11. Texas Ranger Heritage Centre
Many people have heard of the elite Texas Rangers, but few visitors know much about their significance or history. The Texas Ranger Heritage Center, located in an open-air pavilion, is a wonderful stop where you can learn about Texas' most elite law enforcement regiment.
The center's mission is to educate visitors on the history of how the Texas Rangers protected settlers in the early 1900s and information on the 166 Texas Rangers that exist today. A large badge in front of the park bears the names of every Texas Ranger killed.
While you are visiting the center, you should stop next door at historic Fort Martin Scott and walk the pathway that takes you past the first US Army frontier post in Texas, which was established in 1848.
Address: 1618 E Main Street, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://trhc.org
12. Lyndon B. Johnson State Park and Historic Site
The Lyndon B. Johnson State Park and Historic Site can take an entire day to visit, but it is well worth putting on your agenda during your visit to Fredericksburg. There are many things to experience inside both.
Your first stop should be the visitor center to get a permit, so that you have access to all the locations and can learn about the presidency of Linden B. Johnson. Plan a portion of your time at the Sauer Beckman Living History Farm, where you can see what daily life was like on the farm in 1918. Just down the road from the farm is where the Texas State Bison Herd and the Texas Longhorn Herd are visible in the pasture.
In the historic site, there are many walking paths and trails in various lengths that take you past wildflowers and wildlife areas, historic German cabins, and other scenic routes in the park. If you are traveling with children, be sure to pick up an activity packet from the visitor center to keep them engaged, with information on things like how to identify animal footprints in the park.
Address: 199 Park Road 52, Stonewall, Texas
Official site: https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/lyndon-b-johnson
13. Das Peach Haus
For a true taste of Fredericksburg that you can take home with you, make a stop at Das Peach Haus, a popular roadside cabin selling products like jams and sauces made from the fruits of local orchards.
You can sample your way through the store trying some of the fresh-baked goods and any of the locally made Fischer & Wieser products, including their most well-known product, the roasted raspberry chipotle sauce.
Be sure to take a walk around the outside of the cabin to see some of the other historic buildings on the farm. If you have time, you can take one of the public cooking classes offered at Dad Peach Haus.
Address: 1406 S. U.S. Highway 87, Fredericksburg, Texas
Official site: https://jelly.com/fw-farmstead/das-peach-haus/
Fredericksburg is one of the best places to stargaze in Texas. The dark night sky and low levels of light in this region of the Texas Hill Country is why stargazers flock here to take advantage of the natural landscape.
There are two designated Dark Sky Parks in Fredericksburg: Enchanted Rock State Natural Area and the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park. Whether you bring your own telescope to the parks, join in on one of the local stargazing parties, or take part in an astronomy program, this is one of the most spectacular places to catch the brilliant stars over Texas.
15. Marktplatz and The Vereins Kirche Museum
The Vereins Kirche Museum in the center of town on the Fredericksburg Square is on the National Register of Historic Places, and it is one of the first structures of the settlement. The original building was erected in 1847 in the center of what is now Main Street. It was eventually torn down, and the replica, built in 1934, stands in its place.
This is an important part of the city's heritage, as it was where the settlers had their communal church. The Marktplatz that surrounds it is part of the community park in the center of town that is used by the public in various ways. The park is an easy place to take a rest and enjoy the views as you visit Main Street.
Address: 100 W. Main Street, Fredericksburg, Texas