Memorial Day weekend kicks off summertime in New Braunfels, Texas. Generations of Texans have flocked to the city’s Schlitterbahn water park and the Guadalupe and Comal rivers to cool off all summer long. Over the years, New Braunfels developed a broad and unique infrastructure of accommodations, attractionsand hospitality in the Texas Hill Country to keep everyone entertained. It’s a family vacation destination that evolved with local family-owned and operated independent attractions. This year many of the most popular celebrate big anniversaries and there’s always something new to keep folks coming back year after year:
The Schlitterbahn family celebrates 35 years as the world’s number one waterpark (according to the Travel Channel!) It’s where most of the world’s waterpark rides were created by the entrepreneurial family that started it all.
The Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch family celebrates 30 years with a birthday party for the rare reticulated giraffe twins born there last year. You can see Wasswa and Nakato in the brand new 50-acre addition to their “Texas Safari.”
The Natural Bridge Caverns family celebrates 50 years and the biggest show cave in Texas also has a spectacular zip line, an amazing maze, a just-expanded mining sluice for the younger set and some extreme adventure tours that let you cave like the original explorers did.
Gruene Hall celebrates their 40th anniversary next year. The iconic Texas dance hall features greats like Willie Nelson andMerle Haggard and is still a nursery for up and coming performers. But they’ve also featured some other folks, too, like B.B. King, Flaco Jimenez and Dr. John. Coming up later this summer Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue with a little jazz gumbo!
Great as a headquarters for tours of the Texas Hill Country wineries, New Braunfels has its own award-winning Dry Comal Creek Winery (you might want to sign up for their Winery U.) The world-class McKenna Children’s Museum, the spectacularTexas Ski Ranch cable lake and Landa Park with its playscapes, miniature train, spring-fed pools and Comal River tube shoot entertain the younger set from toddlers to teenagers.
There’s lots of live music at honky-tonks and dance halls in and around New Braunfels and great food from the fun New Braunfels Farmer to Market to dining at traditional German and Mexican restaurants or on sushi, prime steaks, Cajun, Italian and, of course, barbecue.
“Start the summer off with a splash in New Braunfels,” said Judy Young, New Braunfels Convention & Visitors Bureau Director. “Our attractions and hospitality industry offer great value. New Braunfels is family-friendly with plenty to do for everyone – families, singles, couples, mature folks and multi-generational groups. We’re ideally located between Austin and San Antonio, an easy drive on Interstate 35 or Interstate 10, or fly in – we’re just about an hour away from both airports. We look forward to making this the best summer vacation you’ve ever had.”