A couple weeks ago we stayed at a Jellystone Park while camping in Fredericksburg, Texas (aka the wine country of the south).
Being native Texans, we’ve made the drive through the quaint little German town on almost every trip west, but we’d never stuck around for a week to explore more of the area.
If you plan on camping in Fredericksburg, here are a few of the things you have to do while in town:
- Drink wine!
We knew there were a lot of wineries in the Fredericksburg area, but we had no idea exactly how many wineries there are (a lot). Texas is actually the number five wine producer in the country, according to Texas Wine Growers Association.If you’re looking to knock out a bunch of wineries in one day (no judgement here), this website will show you some helpful information on “Wine Row”, a stretch of Highway 290 that runs through Fredericksburg where you can find more than 15 wineries to tour.While in town at the Jellystone Campground, we traveled next door to the Fat Ass Ranch and Winery and tasted their famous Peach white wine (my favorite). We visited on a Sunday afternoon, which I highly recommend if you want a more intimate and quiet experience.
Hanging out with some fellow RVers at Fat Ass Ranch and Winery
For $10, we spent 30 minutes tasting the fleet of sweet wines — a specialty in this region of Texas — and hanging out with Frito, the official mascot for the Fat Ass Winery.
Alyssa and Frito, the mascot for the Fat Ass Ranch and Winery
He’s a little moody at times, but then again, he is a donkey.
Oh, and Fat Ass Winery is one of several wineries that are literally next door to Jellystone (another perk of camping in Fredericksburg). The other wineries that are within rock-throwing distance are (ranked in order of Google Reviews):
- Hike Enchanted Rock
Enchanted Rock, photo courtesy of Texas State Parks and Wildlife
Enchanted Rock is a giant pink rock that rises 425 feet out of the ground and gives you an incredible view of the Texas Hill Country. To visit Fredericksburg without taking the brief trip out to hike Enchanted Rock would be a big mistake.Enchanted Rock is also one of the best places to stargaze out in the Texas hill country. A few buddies and I hiked to the top to look at the Milky Way and it was mind-blowingly awesome.
Viewing the Milky Way on top of Enchanted Rock, photo by James Headrick
To hike Enchanted Rock, you’ll have to pay a per person fee to enter the state park of $7, but the climb is well worth it. If you’re making the trip during the summer season, make sure to bring plenty of water. The hike to the top won’t be a problem if you’re in any decent kind of shape, but I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone who struggles with a lot of physical activity.
- Explore Downtown Fredericksburg
Don’t let the looming clouds fool you, this place is beautiful 99% of the time.
One of my favorite things to do in Fredericksburg is to just walk around the downtown area. This downtown area is small town Texas to its core. People walking around in cowboy boots, southern accents, ice cream parlors, boutique clothing stores, and lots of free food samples. Trust me, it’s quite possible to explore downtown Fredericksburg and spend $0 on food and wine just from the free samples.
While in town, we naturally Googled “best place to eat ice cream in Fredericksburg” and we were pointed towards Clear River Ice Cream. This little place did not disappoint. It’s set up like an old diner, with 50’s music humming in the background and the musical Grease playing on the TV. The ice cream itself reflects local Texas flavors like Pecan Pie and Amaretto Peach Pecan Ice Cream (need I say more).
It would be too much to list out all of the great restaurants in town, but here is a brief list of the top 10 restaurants in Fredericksburg by TripAdvisor.
- Listen to live music in Luckenbach
Luckenbach is an old Texas town that consists of a population of around 500,000 (kidding, the population is 3). The town consists of two main buildings — one is the remnants of a building that used to be a post office, general store, and saloon and the other is a dance hall.Each Friday they have something called a “picking circle” where country singers get together in a circle and … pick the guitar together and sing. Locals say you cango and listen to “the next big thing in country” music in some of these picking circles.While there isn’t much to do in Luckenbach, the ghost-like town is definitely worth a short trip even if you don’t like country music.You can view upcoming concerts and events in Luckenbach here on their website.
- Relax and enjoy the hill country
Enjoying a Texas hill country sunset at our Jellystone Campground
What we loved most about our camping in Fredericksburg at the Jellystone was the overall peacefulness of the hill country. There is something about the Texas hills that makes you want to sit back, relax and not worry — probably has something to do with the colors in the sunset (or all the wine you’ve been drinking).
The biggest perk of camping at the Jellystone Park in Fredericksburg?
The largest hot tub I’ve ever seen at an RV park (will easily fit 10 people). Plus, since we visited during the off season (fall-winter), we had the entire pool to ourselves.
The hot tub was so big it made it in both side of my pano 😀
Because of the wineries, Fredericksburg is a known as a town made for adults. There really isn’t much for kids around. That’s why if you’re going to be camping near Fredericksburg, this Jellystone would be my number one recommendation.
Alyssa and I don’t have any kids ourselves, but we did try out the swings, the giant jumping pillow, the volleyball court, and the pool. Plus, on Saturday night the park hosted a wine tasting with live music (I’ve literally never seen this at a campground before).
So I can say from experience, this is the perfect RV park to entertain the entire family (or two twenty-something RVers).
Heath and his wife Alyssa are filmmakers, entrepreneurs, and full-time RVers. From 2014-15 they traveled to all 50 states filming a documentary called Hourly America — a film about meaning in work as Heath worked a job in every state. Heath is also the cofounder of CampgroundBooking.com and podcast host of The RV Entrepreneur podcast, a top ranked travel podcast. You can read more about them on their RVing blog at HeathandAlyssa.com.