Looking for a charming small town that makes a great day trip from Austin or San Antonio? Look no further than all of the fun things to do in Gruene, Texas!
Packed with historic buildings, a walkable feel, and a great combination of downtown sightseeing in Gruene (pronounced “green”, like the color) and some cool outdoor adventures, it’s a Texas getaway not to be missed.
Gruene’s name comes from the town’s German roots, and you can see the German heritage woven into every street downtown.
This small town is located an hour outside of Austin and in the city limits of New Braunfels, Texas.
Gruene is a must-stop in Texas and a place that you are sure to return to time and time again.
Here’s what to do in Gruene!
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Best Things to Do in Gruene, TX
Eat delicious food at the Gristmill.
One thing Gruene is known for great restaurants, and there’s none more iconic than the Gristmill.
The Gristmill has a perfect location downtown overlooking the Guadalupe River and created in the place of an old cotton gin.
From burgers to the best spinach dip you could have, the Gristmill has something for everyone to enjoy!
Dance the night away at Gruene Hall.
Located right in front of the Gristmill is Historic Gruene Hall.
Some of the greatest country musicians of all time have come to play a Gruene Hall, and the live music draws in tons of people from all around.
Some of the greats, including Merle Haggard and Willie Nelson, have stood upon the Gruene Hall stage.
You can catch music every single night at the oldest dance hall in Texas, and be sure to try your hand at two-stepping on the large dance floor.
Peruse the antique shops.
If you are a lover of antiques, then Gruene Historic District is a great place for you to visit.
Around many of the corners in Gruene, you will find antique stores that are busting at the seams with treasures from every decade.
Gruene Antique Co and Black Swan Antiques are two great options to choose from and will give you hours of perusing through plenty of potential treasures.
Grab some unique pottery at Barn Pottery.
Pottery is a unique skill that takes a lot of refined practice.
While you are checking out all the cool Gruene attractions, you can stop in to get a special one-of-a-kind and handmade piece of pottery that is a perfect souvenir to take from this quaint little town.
The barn alone is a unique reason to stop because of its charm and you may even be able to catch pottery being made right before your eyes.
Float the river.
New Braunfels and Gruene are conveniently located near the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers giving you plenty of space for outdoor recreation.
You can choose to rent a tube from one of the local outfitters or find a space to sit and relax by the river for the day.
Since floating the river is an iconic Texas summer experience, we highly recommend adding it to your list of what to do in Gruene if you have time!
Satisfy your sweet tooth at The Great Texas Pecan Company.
Texas, pecans, and sweets…what can be a better combination? If you are overwhelmed by the number of offerings, you can always ask for a sample to narrow down your choice.
You can try out their toffee, grab some popcorn, munch on some brittle, and even grab some seasoned nuts for the road.
There are plenty of options for you to choose from, and everything that is made has one main ingredient: Texas pecans.
Sit back and relax at the Gruene Day Spa.
If you are due for a day of complete pampering, then Gruene Day Spa is a must-add to your Gruene itinerary.
Set up a massage to truly relax or book a facial to get a refreshing start to your vacation.
You can also book group events that you can enjoy as a group and because of its convenient location, you can simply head downtown afterward.
Shop Historic Downtown Gruene.
How could you travel to Gruene, Texas, without stopping in all of the adorable little shops scattered all over town?
Gruene is stocked full of unique shops that are covered in items and gifts that are hard to find anywhere else.
From outdoor decorations to clothing, outdoor gear, and more, downtown Gruene is a great place to shop until you drop!
Visit Gruene’s Historic General Store
As you walk inside the Gruene General Store, you will be greeted by wall-to-wall knick-knacks that are perfect gifts for anybody in your life.
You can also decide to grab an ice cream or soda at their old-fashioned soda shop that greets you as you walk inside.
You could spend hours looking at every single item in Historic General Store so make sure to give yourself plenty of time to look around.
Taste some olive oil at the Gruene Olive Tasting Room.
If you are an olive oil connoisseur, take your taste buds to bat at the Gruene Olive Tasting Room.
Besides olive oil, this tasting room is a great place to taste new spreads and kinds of vinegar to add to your everyday kitchen products.
Get geared up at Gruene River Outfitters.
The options for outdoor adventures in and around Gruene are endless, and Gruene River Outfitters is the perfect place to stock up on all of the gear you need.
They have plenty of name-brand options including Patagonia and Columbia and have gear for every season of the year.
Gruene River Outfitters is a wonderful stop for all those that love to get out and explore the outdoors.
Grab some caffeine at Gruene Coffee Haus.
A road trip to Gruene is definitely not complete without stopping at Gruene Coffee Haus where you can get your caffeine fix.
They have a beautiful outdoor seating area to choose from, or you can sit inside and soak in the ambiance of this quaint shop.
If you are in a hurry to get to your next stop, grab your coffee to go and get a new flavor to try.
There are so many options for different styles and types of coffee that everyone will get exactly what they need to start the day off right.
Go wine tasting at The Grapevine.
You may find places all over the state that offer you great options for wine tasting, but very few of them offer you free tastings. At the Grapevine, you get free tastings of any beer or wine you want to try.
The only catch is that you must buy a glass of your favorite one to enjoy outside on the patio or inside in the ac.
Spend the night at the Gruene Mansion Inn.
This amazing place was built in 1872 and offers you plenty of options for your stay in Gruene.
The best part about Gruene Mansion Inn is that it is located downtown so you don’t have to worry about parking and you can literally walk to all of the best Gruene attractions.
Gruene Mansion Inn is full of charm and is a great spot to catch some sleep after your all-day Gruene adventure.
Attend Old Gruene Market Days.
Local artisans make everything from jams and spread to bread and everything in between at this fun market.
Old Gruene Market Days happen on the third Saturday of every month and is a great stop to add to your itinerary for Gruene.
You can grab plenty of handmade gifts as well, from photographs to pottery and more.
While you are road tripping to Gruene, Texas you can stock up on gifts for loved ones and help support a local artist.
Grab a Margarita at Cantina Del Rio.
Voted the best margarita in New Braunfels, Cantina Del Rio is a must-stop on your Texas adventure.
Sit back, grab some chips and queso and sip on a delicious margarita as you reminisce over the day you had.
Being located in downtown Gruene, Cantina Del Rio is a great stop after you shop and explore all day and is a perfect end to your day in Gruene.
Where is Gruene, Texas, located?
Gruene, Texas, is located in the amazing town of New Braunfels, Texas that makes for a wonderful day trip from Austin or San Antonio.
It is also located near the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers, and you will likely catch a glimpse of at least one of them as you stroll into town.
Taking a road trip to Gruene is an excellent choice for music lovers, food enthusiasts, and outdoor adventure junkies alike.
Gruene is a perfect stop for any road trip and with great food, shopping, and plenty of outdoor adventures, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
No matter how many tourists come from everywhere around, Gruene has stayed true to its roots and stayed small and quaint.
After all, the true allure of enjoying the best things to do in Gruene is the small-town feel that has everything you need within a few steps of its historic downtown square.