37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (2024)

By Kelsey Kennedy | June 4, 2024

So, you’re visiting New Braunfels...and you know it’s home to an epic waterpark and that it’s a German-founded town in Texas, but you don’t know much more than that. Well, you’re in the right place! I’m going to share some of the best things to do in New Braunfels, Texas with you!

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (1)

New Braunfels is a city on Interstate 35, a major north/south highway that runs through the state of Texas.

It's about 30 miles north of San Antonio, and you’ll pass through it every time you drive from San Antonio to Austin. And since I’m a writer for both The Austin Things and The San Antonio Things, I have driven through New Braunfels approximately 9 billion times (more or less.)

As a Texas native, I’ve been to Schlitterbahn a bunch of times, attended the amazing Wurstfest, and just stopped by New Braunfels to see some of the fun restaurants, historic bakeries, and cool things to do in this city. I looooove me some New Braunfels! And I’m really excited to share them with you.

Too Long;Didn't Read

Psst: if you don't have time to read this whole thing and just want a few quick tips, here are the top 4 things I recommend doing in New Braunfels:

1. Go in the fall during Wurstfest.It's New Braunfels' own 10-day Oktoberfest, and it's a rowdy and fun time!

2. Check out Landa Park. It's a 51-acre park in the heart of New Braunfels Read below to know more about the rich history of this place (it's actually pretty phenomenal!), and be sure to check out the Olympic-sized swimming pool, 18-course golf course, playgrounds, and mini train.

3. Float the river in the summer.Guadalupe or Comal? Pick your own adventure! There are pros and cons to each one - read on for more info.

4. Eat at a New Braunfels restaurant.Krause's Cafe and Naeglin's Bakery are two of my favorites, and then of course there are tons of great places to eat in historic Gruene Texas, too!

powered by Proxi

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, Texas

1. Visit Schlitterbahn

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (2)

Ok, it’s an obvious first choice for things to do in New Braunfels…but I can’t start this guide any other way! My childhood was full of visits to this EPIC waterpark in Texas. I seriously remember so much anticipation before the weekend trip finally arrived, because it seriously is the World’s Best Waterpark. It’s a great thing to do in New Braunfels with a family, but you could also have fun here with a group of friends.

It has four distinct sections that include dozens and dozens of pools, lazy rivers, rides, waterslides, and other fun adventures. And did you know Schlitterbahn is a resort? Yep! They have 7 different options for accommodations including condos, a budget-friendly hotel, and a vacation rental with 5 rooms. There’s nothing like waking up AT the waterpark to get those kiddos excited!

One of my favorite parts of Schlitterbahn is the way they name the various parts of the waterpark. I mean… Blastenhof? Surfenburg? Come on! Tubenbach? They went with the German influences in New Braunfels and just ran with it. And the whole park has the same theme going with it, so it’s branded really well and just makes for a fun time.

Schlitterbahn has multiple places to eat, so you don’t have to worry about packing food or leaving the park to go get lunch. You can easily make a day out of it!

Both day passes and season passes are available, as well as group discounts, military discounts, and other options.{Photo: Schlitterbahn}

WEBSITE | 400 N Liberty Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

2. Wurstfest in New Braunfels

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (3)

Ok, I’m still being Captain Obvious here, but I seriously need to list this one next. Wurstfest is SO much fun, and this German fall festival is one of the top things to do in New Braunfels….but it only happens at a very specific time of year.

Wurstfest is New Braunfels’ version of Oktoberfest. It’s a 10-day festival that typically happens during the first week of November. New Braunfels even has its own designated fairground location for the festival! Wurstfest happens at the Wurstfest Grounds at Landa Gardens.

The entire city basically revolves around this festival! It brings in a HUGE amount of tourism money for the city, so it’s marketed well and a ton of people attend it.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (4)

What can you do at Wurstfest? Enjoy all the Bavarian-style entertainment! They have polka music, German beer, and (obviously) lots of sausages. There’s shopping, carnival games, live music, food, drinks, and good times.

People wear lederhosen and dirndles and seriously go all out with their German attire. It’s hilarious.

If you’re in New Braunfels during the first week of November, try to make it to Wurstfest! It’s always a good time. And they even offer free admission days - just check their website to stay up to date on all the FAQs.

WEBSITE | 178 Landa Park Dr, New Braunfels, TX 78130

3. Visit Landa Park

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (5)

Landa Park really is the crown jewel of New Braunfels. It’s beautiful! It’s a 51-acre park with giant oak trees, walking trails, and a peaceful ambiance. This isn’t just any old random park that I’m listing to fill up space on a travel blog post….promise. This really is a remarkable place to visit and one of the top things to do in New Braunfels.

It was actually privately owned by the Landa family until 1927. But as railroads started coming down to New Braunfels, more and more folks discovered this oasis, which is all centered around the natural Comal Springs, and loved visiting it as a tourist destination.

As the park eventually landed in the city of New Braunfels’ ownership, multiple improvements have been made. Over the last 90 years, the city has added an Olympic-sized swimming pool, an 18-course golf course, and a miniature train. And there are lots of other things to do at Landa Park, too!

Go swimming at the Landa Park Aquatic Complex, which includes an Olympic-sized pool, a kiddie pool, and a natural swimming area.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (6)

Enjoy the 1.25-mile walking trail that meanders through the arboretum

Play 18 holes of golf at the Landa Park Public Golf Course

Rent a paddleboat and head out on Landa Lake

Ride the Landa Park miniature train for just $5 per person

Play a round of mini golf at the Landa Gardens mini golf course

Hike the Panther Canyon Trail, a 2.5-mile round-trip hiking trail

WEBSITE | 164 Landa Park Dr, New Braunfels, TX 78130

4. Float the Comal River

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (7)

People go to New Braunfels with the sole intention to float the river…and do nothing else. So if you really want to know one of the most popular activities in New Braunfels, it’s floating the river.

And if you’re not from Texas and you don’t know what it means to float the river, here’s a brief for ya:

The Comal River is a spring-fed river in Texas. It’s constantly 70ish degrees. And in a state that gets HOT in the summer (we’re talking triple-digit temperatures for months on end), that cold water feels really good!

The river moves slowly, so folks will get a tube, bring a floating ice chest full of cold beverages, and…float.

What do you do while you float? You sit. You talk. You listen to music if you were smart enough to bring a waterproof speaker along. You take a nap. You drink.

It’s basically the equivalent of laying out on the beach…but central Texas style.

So anyway, floating the Comal River is one of the coolest things to do in New Braunfels. You can float the Comal or the Guadalupe in New Braunfels, but the Comal is spring-fed, so it stays the same temperature year-round. It’s also shorter. The river rides on the Comal are about 2-3 hours, and the Guadalupe offers longer river rides, up to about 6 hours.

WEBSITE | 550 Landa St. New Braunfels, TX 78130

5. Float the Guadalupe River

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (8)

What’s the difference between floating the Comal and Guadalupe?

>> If the Comal is the smaller, quieter river, the Guadalupe is the PARTY RIVER! Since it’s bigger, there are more people, it’s a bit louder, and the rides can last all day….and the longer you float, the more you drink, you know? <<

Floating the Guad is SO much fun! People who want to have a tame, quiet afternoon of a quick float will go down the Comal, but if you want to have a party, definitely float the Guadalupe.

Another fun part about floating the Guadalupe River is that you get more rapids…depending on the time of year. There are some really fast parts, which make for a very fun float. (But full disclosure: check the weather and the tubing companies before you go. In the late summer as the lake levels get low, they’ll sometimes close off the Canyon Creek dam that feeds into the Guadalupe, making the Guad really low. That means you have to get out of your tube and walk over slippery rocks. If that happens, I’d recommend tubing on the Comal instead, which is spring-fed and always has a nice flow.

Whether you choose to float the Comal or the Guadalupe, you’re going to have a great time floating the river in New Braunfels. Like I said, people literally plan entire trips around floating the river, so if this is your one activity in New Braunfels (maybe followed by visiting a brewery or grabbing dinner at a restaurant), you’re going to have a blast.

WEBSITE | 550 Landa St. New Braunfels, TX 78130550 Landa St. New Braunfels, TX 78130

6. Eat German Food at Krause’s Cafe

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (9)

Looking for a great place to dine in New Braunfels? Try Krause's Cafe, located in the heart of historic downtown New Braunfels.

This place is a must-visit destination for foodies and fans of classic German cuisine. It's been here for over 80 years!

The menu is quite robust, but you can expect all sorts of traditional German cuisine like schnitzel, brats, various sausage samplers, and a lot of BEER!! (My personal favorite is the wild game sausage sampler because you get to try a bit of everything - antelope sausage, rabbit sausage, venison, and all the fixings.)

The biergarten is ALL the fun vibes! It's a green tspot to gather after a day of floating the river where you can kick back, enjoy a big cold lager, and eat some delicious food.

The staff is super friendly in my experience, and everyone loves this place. I snapped the photo above during a quiet morning so I could capture the space, but keep in mind that this place gets CROWDED during the summer months...especially on the weekends!

If you want to experience the rich history of New Braunfels through its food, Krause's cafe is one of my top recommendations of places to eat in New Braunfels.

KRAUSE'S WEBSITE | 148 S Castell Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

7. Walk Through Downtown New Braunfels

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (10)

Downtown New Braunfels, Texas, is the charming little historic district in the center of town. It's best explored on foot (because it's very small...just a few streets.)

The area is home to so many adorable shops, restaurants, and theaters. It's the perfect destination for locals and visitors alike.

You can stroll down the streets and see all the well-preserved historic buildings that are retail stores, restaurants, hotels, and commercial businesses. They've really done a wonderful job taking care of this downtown square.

I'd say that this area is your classic "small town Texas downtown." It has some antique shops, a few restaurants, and lots of quirky little stores. You probably won't want to spend more than about an hour walking through downtown, but it's a fun "filler" activity if you're looking for things to do in New Braunfels.

8. McKenna Children’s Museum

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (11)

Visiting New Braunfels with kids? You HAVE to check out McKenna Children's Museum!

It's my top pick for kid-friendly things to do in New Braunfels. It's a sweet little learning space that has interactive exhibits including art, water, climbing, space, science, technology, and more. It's really beautifully designed so that kids of all ages can have fun and learn.

Admission is pretty inexpensive and you can easily fill half a day letting your little one run around and explore! Highly recommend.

MCKENNA MUSEUM WEBSITE | 801 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

9. Take Pictures At Faust Street Bridge

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (12)

Visiting Faust Street Bridge won’t take very long during your trip to New Braunfels, but it’s a cool New Braunfels bucket list item to check off your list! It’s a historic bridge that was built in 1887. (Don’t worry - it’s sturdy!)

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (13)

The bridge has a few parking spaces on the south side. You can stop by, take a few photos, or even rent it for a 2-hour private event. (It's a popular spot for engagement photos - there was a a couple walking up to start their photography session right after I snapped these pictures!)

FAUST ST BRIDGE WEBSITE | Faust St Bridge, New Braunfels, TX 78130

10. Visit Dry Comal Creek Vineyards

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (14)

Calling all wine lovers! If you're in New Braunfels and you're looking for the perfect place to relax, unwind, and enjoy a delicious glass of wine while taking in the beautiful Texas countryside, you must visit Dry Comal Creek Vineyards, located in New Braunfels. It's about a 15 minute drive from the center of town.

They offer a lovely wine-tasting experience. The vineyards are situated on 103 acres of beautiful Hill Country land, featuring breathtaking views of the rolling hills and expansive vineyards.

Visitors can enjoy samples of some award-winning wines. The winery also offers tours of their production facilities, giving visitors a behind-the-scenes look at the winemaking process.

Oh, and Dry Comal Creek often hosts special events like live music, wine tastings, and food pairings, making it a fun and festive destination for 21+ visitors to New Braunfels.{Photo: Dry Comal Creek Vineyards}

WEBSITE | 1741 Herbelin Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78132

11. Naeglin’s Bakery

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (15)

Naeglin's Bakery is a historic and oldest bakery that has been serving up delicious pastries and bread in New Braunfels since 1868!!

The bakery's charming storefront and cozy atmosphere are a testament to its rich history, and visitors can indulge in a variety of freshly baked goods, including bread, pastries, cakes, and pies.

One of the bakery's signature items is the famous "strudel," a delicate and flaky pastry filled with sweet or savory ingredients like apple, cherry, and peach.

Worth note: Naeglin's also offers a range of gluten-free and vegan options. Everyone is welcome!

One of the best things about Naeglin's Bakery is the personal touch and friendly service provided by the staff. Every time I visit, they're happy to make recommendations and answer any questions I might have. If you want to taste history and tradition in every delicious bite, Naeglin's Bakery is the best bakery shop in town!

NAEGLIN'S WEBSITE | 129 S Seguin Ave, New Braunfels, TX 7813

12. Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theater

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (16)

The Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theater is the cutest little destination for a date night idea in New Braunfels. It offers that nostalgic movie-watching experience that you can't find very often.

You can get tickets to enjoy the latest blockbuster from the comfort of their car, with a giant outdoor screen and high-quality sound system providing an immersive viewing experience. It's so much fun!

And don't worry about bringing your own snacks - the theater sells a range of delicious snacks and bevs, including classic movie theater goodies like popcorn and soda, as well as burgers, hot dogs, and nachos.

One of the best things about the Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theater is the fun and festive atmosphere, with special events and themed movie nights held throughout the year.

Oh, and you can bring your furry friends along, too! They have a designated dog-friendly section. This is a wonderfuldog-friendly activity in New Braunfels.

The Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theater is a must-visit destination for every cinema lover. It provides that fun and unique movie-watching experience that's perfect for families, couples, and friends.

WEBSITE | 1178 Kroesche Ln, New Braunfels, TX 78130

13. Texas Ski Ranch

If you are an outdoor activity enthusiast or adrenaline junkies, then visiting the Texas Ski Ranch is a great thing to do in New Braunfels! Add it to your list.

It's a premier action sports complex featuring a 70-acre lake that's perfect for wakeboarding and water skiing. They also have a skate park, trampoline park, and rock climbing wall.

Visitors can also rent equipment or take lessons from experienced instructors to improve their skills or try something new. (So if you're new to all of this, just book that lesson.)

The ranch also offers a few dining options, like a cafe and a bar, making it a great place to drink and relax after a day of a thrilling adventure.

It's a family-friendly spot, so most activities and amenities can cater to all ages and skill levels.

They also host various special events throughout the year, like live music concerts and festivals, which all add to their fun and festive vibe.

So be sure to check their event calendars to stay updated! Visit Texas Ski Ranch for a unique and exciting outdoor experience perfect for thrill-seekers and adventure lovers!

WEBSITE | 6700 I-35, New Braunfels, TX 78130

14. New Braunfels Brewing Co

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (17)

If you're a beer enthusiast, the New Braunfels Brewing Co is a must-visit spot to enjoy delicious local brews!

New Braunfels Brewing Co is a small-batch, family-owned craft brewery. It's a teeny-tiny taproom, but it's an excellent spot to stop by and enjoy a few pints in a friendly environment. (Kids and dogs are allowed, too!)

They have a rotating tap list. A lot of it has European influences, based on owner Jackie's time living abroad in London and Scotland. But there are plenty of options for every taste palate, including Austin east ciders for those who aren't into beer.

The brewery also hosts several events throughout the year, like live music performances and food trucks. It's a fun spot for both locals and tourists!

WEBSITE | 180 W Mill St #100, New Braunfels, TX 78130

15. New Braunfels Farmers Market

Buy some locally grown vegetables, fruits, flowers, baked goods, pasture-raised meats, and other local goods in the New Braunfels Farmers Market! It's open every Saturday morning from 9 am - 1 pm in the heart of downtown New Braunfels.

With over 60 vendors, the market offers a wide variety of goods including fruit, vegetables, meats, baked goods, and artisanal products.

All the products sold at the market are produced by local farmers, ranchers, and artisans. So you know that if you shop here you'll be getting the highest quality products.

Aside from offering local food and goods, the market also has some fun events like live music, educational booths, and cooking demonstrations.

Whether you're looking for ingredients for a special meal or simply want to soak up the local culture, the New Braunfels Farmers Market is the perfect destination for you. If you're planning a weekend trip, plan on spending your Saturday morning here!

WEBSITE | 186 S Castell Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

16. Guadalupe Brewing Co

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (18)

This is legit the best place to go for beer + pizza in New Braunfels. It's a big brewpub that has a lot of beer options and a menu of Detroit and NY-Style pizzas. You'll definitely want to get a flight of beer and try a few pints!

The outdoor patio is my favorite spot to enjoy a cold pint while taking in the beautiful Texas scenery.

And whatever you do, DEFINITELY order one of those Detroit-style pizza. Folks come form all over just for the pizza...even if they're not beer drinkers!{Photo: Guadalupe Brewing Co}

GBC WEBSITE | 1586 Wald Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78132

17. Cypress Bend Park

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (19)

Calling all nature lovers out there! Cypress Bend Park is a 20-acre park located in the heart of New Braunfels. It has stunning scenery that reveals the natural beauty of nature, perfect for relaxation.

You can rent out the pavilion and invite a bunch of people for an afternoon of BBQing, swimming in the river, and relaxing. The water is cold and clean, and kids and dogs love it!

Also, the park has several picnic tables and areas with BBQ & horseshoe pits. You don't have to rent these!Insider tip: bring a tent or canopy for shade...there's not a lot of shaded area, and it gets so hot in the summer!

The park also features a safe playground area for your little ones, and walking trails for those who enjoy a peaceful walk or biking around the area.

WEBSITE | 503 Peace Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

18. Drive to nearby Gruene and go to Gruene Hall

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (20)

Located in the the charming and historic town of Gruene, the iconic Gruene Dance Hall is a must-see!

As the oldest continually running dance hall in Texas, Gruene Hall has seen its fair share of legendary performers over the years, including Willie Nelson, George Strait, and Lyle Lovett.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (21)

Be sure to book a ticket in advance, because they often sell out. Visitors can catch live music most nights of the week.

And the honky tonk atmosphere is unbeatable, designed with vintage decor and rustic charm that are going to transport you back to the good old times.

Of course, if you're catching a show at Gruene Hall, you need to get to Gruene a little early to walk around. It's a quaint town full of unique shops and restaurants, making it the perfect day trip destination. Here are a few of the best things to do in Gruene, TX.

WEBSITE | 1281 Gruene Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78130

19. Eat at Huisache

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (22)

When you start to ask New Braunfels locals about the best place to eat in town, you'll start to hear the name "Huisache." And for good reason! It's an amazing grill and wine bar in New Braunfelsthat's perfect for a lunch or dinner.

The restaurant offers creative contemporary cuisine with fresh regional ingredients, featuring a wide variety of dishes, like grilled meats and seafood, salads, sandwiches, bites, and more.

They also offer an extensive selection of wines, beers, and co*cktails to complement your meal. The restaurant prides itself on using locally sourced and sustainable ingredients. It's a great choice for those who want to support the local community and eat fresh, healthy food.{Photo: Huisache}

HUISACHE WEBSITE | 303 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

20. See A Vintage Show At Brauntex Performing Arts Center

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (23)

Another must-visit destination in Braunfels, TX for anyone who appreciates the arts is the Brauntex Performing Arts Center. This historic theater has been entertaining audiences since 1942 and offers SO many fun performances, plays, movies, and more!

Sure, it's a vintage theater, but it has state-of-the-art sound and lighting systems. It's all been updated to make sure that you can enjoy every performance.

In the summer they show adorable vintage movies from the 1940s and 1950s (like old Disney classics, the original Wizard of Oz, etc.) as well as summer theater productions.

The theater's interior is also beautifully decorated and features a vintage ambiance that will definitely take you back to a time when going to the theater was a grand event.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (24)

If you have school-aged kids, The Brauntex also offers a variety of educational programs and events. It's a great spot for families! If it works into your schedule, seeing a show at The Brauntex is one of the best things to do in New Braunfels.

BRAUNTEX WEBSITE | 290 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

21. Museum of Texas Handmade Furniture

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (25)

Let's file this under "weird things you find in Texas..."

The Museum of Handmade Furniture less of a museum and more of a village of historic homes! This place is very cool...so if you typically run at the word "museum," just give this one a try.

The museum is home to an impressive collection of handmade furniture from the mid-19th century to the early 20th century, all crafted by Texas artisans. Visitors can admire the intricate craftsmanship from New Braunfels' own historic German immigrant community and the design of each piece, which reflects the unique culture and style of Texas during the old period.

The museum also provides an educational experience. You can learn about the techniques and tools used in furniture making during the era!

There are also workshops and demonstrations on traditional furniture-making techniques, so you and your kids can get a hands-on experience and an opportunity to try creating your own pieces of furniture.

Whether you're a history buff, an art lover, or simply looking for a unique and educational experience, the Museum of Texas Handmade Furniture is a top thing to do in New Braunfels.

WEBSITE | 1370 Churchill Dr, New Braunfels, TX 78130

22. Eat at Gristmill River Restaurant and Bar

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (26)

Located in nearby Gruene, Gristmill River Restaurant and Bar is one of the most unique (and popular!) dining spots near New Braunfels.

Located in a historic cotton gin building, the restaurant offers a cool dining experience with a beautiful view of the Guadalupe River. The restaurant's atmosphere is rustic and cozy, with wooden interiors and a spacious outdoor patio. Its multi-level dining patio makes it feel like you're in a treehouse!

(Ok, and I'm going to be completely honest here: as someone who has eaten at a lot of Gruene restaurants, I wouldn't say that the food here is the best in Gruene. It's kind of your typical "pub" food. The burger is pretty good, but it's not going to blow your mind or anything. But the ambiance wins for sure!)

The menu has a variety of "Texas" dishes like chicken-fried steak, ribs, and beef. Like I said, it's all pretty good but not life-changing. However... no matter what you order, you MUST get the onion rings. They actually are the best in Texas.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (27)

GRISTMILL WEBSITE | 1287 Gruene Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78130

23. The Sophienburg Museum

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (28)

Ever wanted to know more about the history of New Braunfels? Here's your chance!

You can explore the history and culture of the region by visiting the Sophienburg Museum. The museum's exhibits provide a truly fascinating glimpse (and this is coming from someone who doesn't really like museums!) into the life of early German settlers who founded the town in the mid-19th century.

There are a bunch of artifacts and photographs that showcase the town's German heritage, as well as exhibits rich in local artifacts, photos, maps, and documents.

Visitors can also learn about the history and cultural heritage of New Braunfels and Comal County Courthouse and the devastating flood of 1972, which significantly impacted the town.

Oh, and you can also take guided tours of the historic Sophienburg House, which dates back to 1858. It's a beautifully restored building that shows a wonderful example of traditional German architecture and provides a unique glimpse into life in the early days of New Braunfels.

You can also visit Sophie's shop and Carl's Stein Hause during the 10 days of Wurstfest and shop for authentic handmade German imports. Plan on a few hours here!

SOPHIENBURG WEBSITE | 401 W Coll St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

24. Downtown Antique Mall

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (29)

Love antique shopping? I'm not personally a big antique shopper, but I've spoken to enough people who love it and they all tell me that New Braunfels is one of the top places to go!

The Downtown Antique Mall features multiple unique vendors, each with its own collection of antiques and vintage items. From furniture to clothing, jewelry to home decor, the Downtown Antique Mall has it all.

It's the perfect place to browse for that one-of-a-kind piece to add to your collection or to find a unique gift for a loved one who really loves antique items.

The mall is located in the heart of downtown New Braunfels, which I mentioned earlier as a fun place to browse, stroll, and shop around.

WEBSITE | 209 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

25. New Braunfels Fire Museum

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (30)

The New Braunfels Fire Museum is another must-visit destination for history lovers and anyone interested in firefighting history.

You can learn about the evolution of firefighting equipment and techniques through exhibits featuring vintage firefighting equipment, photos, and memorabilia. And most importantly to the little ones...you get to see all the bright red fire engines!

One note: the museum isn't typically just "open" to the public. You'll have to go next door to the fire station and knock on the door and ask them to open it for you.

The museum also showcases the history of the New Braunfels Fire Department. The highlight of the museum is its impressive collection of antique fire engines.

WEBSITE | 169 Hill Ave., New Braunfels, TX 78130

26. Play In The Splash Pad At Fischer Park

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (31)

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (32)

Fischer Park is the largest park in New Braunfels at 62 acres! It's a fantastic place to bring your kids.

The park features a playground with areas for both younger and older children, including swings, slides, and climbing structures. There are also several sports fields, including soccer fields, baseball diamonds, and a basketball court.

But what sets Fischer Park apart is the natural play area, where kids can explore the natural surroundings and play in the grass and on the water features. There's even a splash pad to cool off on hot summer days.

Also, the park has several walking trails that weave through the trees and offer great views of the park's ponds and streams where people can also catch fish. If you're looking for things to do in New Braunfels with kids, Fischer Park is a great place to spend a day with the family, enjoy nature, and experience different activities of discovery and exploration.

WEBSITE | 1935 Hilltop Summit Road New Braunfels, TX 78130

27. Natural Bridge Caverns

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (33)

Folks come from all over to see this one, so if you're in New Braunfels, definitely take advantage of it and book a ticket!

If you're a nature enthusiast and adventure seeker, then you must include Natural Bridge Caverns on your bucket list.

(Psst: is natural bridge caverns actually worth the cost? Here's our unbiased review.)

This vast underground network of limestone caves is one of the largest in Texas and features a range of awe-inspiring formations, including stalactites, stalagmites, flowstones, and more.

Visitors can take a guided tour through the caverns to explore the various chambers and formations. They have different types of tours such as Discovery Tour, Hidden Wonders Tour, Cavern Combo Tour, Adventure Tours, and Bracken Bat Flight Packages, you can also book Private VIP Tours and Experiences if you want it to be just you and your family or friends.

And there's more to do than just exploring the cave! You can also try panning for gemstones, tackling the Canopy Challenge Adventure Course, and soaring high above the Texas Hill Country on the thrilling Zip Lines.

NATURAL BRIDGE CAVERNS WEBSITE | 26495 Natural Bridge Caverns Rd, San Antonio, TX 78266

28. The Grapevine In Gruene

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (34)

You know those perfect Texas summer nights? The sun has set and the air has cooled off a bit, there's a light breeze, and the cicadas are chirping. Those are the nights when you want to be at The Grapevine.

The Grapevine is one of the award-winning boutique wine bars located in the heart of Gruene, Texas. If you love Texas wine, check it out!

The winery has a beautiful little garden where visitors can sample a wide range of wines, including red, white, and rosé. There's also a tasting room where visitors can indulge in wine flights and get a chance to purchase their favorite wines.

One of the best things about this adorable spot is its breathtaking scenery and tranquil atmosphere, which is perfect for relaxing and enjoying a glass of wine with family or friends.

GRAPEVINE WEBSITE | 1308 Gruene Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78130

29. New Braunfels Railroad Museum

Do you have any little ones who are obsessed with trains? If so, the New Braunfels Railroad Museum is the perfect place for them!

Located in the heart of downtown New Braunfels, the museum is a non-profit organization. They focus on preserving railroad artifacts and showcasing the rich railroad history of New Braunfels. This city had a major role in the expansion of the railroad industry in Texas.

The museum is open to the public for free! Visitors can explore the museum's collection of vintage locomotives, railcars, photographs, and artifacts, as well as learn about the impact of the railroad on the growth of the city.

Right next to the museum is the North/South Union Pacific railroad tracks with over 30 trains passing by each day. (Kids love it.)

The museum also hosts a variety of special events and activities throughout the year, including model train displays and train rides for kids. This is definitely a very fun thing to do in New Braunfels for little ones.

WEBSITE | 302 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

30. Enjoy Burgers + Beer At Freiheit Country Store

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (35)

Freiheit Country Store has been around since 1889. It's a go-to spot for locals who want burgers, beer, fries, and a good ol' time.

There's an open-air indoor portion with a stage, as well as lots of outdoor seating (and a playground for the kids).

Burgers are cooked over an open-flame grill, charred to perfection. The beer is always ice-cold, and the weekend crowd is always there for a good time.

WEBSITE | 2157 FM1101, New Braunfels, TX 78130

31. Millstreet Art Gallery

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (36)

Another art gallery that will delight every art lover and collector in New Braunfels is the Millstreet Art Gallery. This art gallery has a one-of-a-kind collection of original artwork from renowned local and international artists.

Visitors are not only allowed to admire the exhibits but can also purchase some paintings, sculptures, and other unique artworks that reflect the cultural diversity of Texas and beyond.

The gallery's relaxed and inviting ambiance creates the perfect atmosphere for browsing, and shopping the art and mindfully enjoying the experience.

If you're a seasoned art collector or just starting to explore art, Millstreet Art Gallery is going to be a fun place for you to visit in New Braunfels. Who knows...maybe you'll discover your next favorite piece of art!

WEBSITE | 387 W Mill St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

32. Animal World And Snake Farm Zoo

Calling all animal lovers out there! There is a great zoo in New Braunfels called Animal World and Snake Farm Zoo. The zoo's history dates back to the 1920s when it was founded as a snake farm (and was literally just called "Snake Farm"), and it has since evolved into a full-fledged zoo.

It's a great place to spend a day exploring and learning about animals from around the world.

With over 500 animals, including exotic snakes, crocodiles, and big cats, visitors can experience a unique and thrilling adventure inside the premise.

The zoo also features a petting zoo and a playground area for kids.

The animal exhibits are pretty well-maintained and spacious.

The zoo's mission is to provide a safe and educational environment for the animals and visitors, which is always appreciated.

Aside from that, they also offer interactive shows, field trips, and a rental service for birthday parties.

WEBSITE |5640 I-35, New Braunfels, TX 78132

33. Get a sandwich at Cravings

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (37)

Cravings is a local favorite in New Braunfels. What started as a little food booth started by two former teachers (turned full-time moms) who met in Landa Park has grown into one of New Braunfel's best restaurants for delicious breakfast, freshly made sandwiches and wraps, and scratch-made pastries.

Everything here is made from scratch, including all the delicious cakes, cookies , and pies you see in the pastry case when you walk in.

The breakfast menu is full of delicious breakfast sandwiches, omelettes, and quiches. For lunch, you can get get sandwiches, wraps, soups, and salads. Again: it's all made fresh right there in the restaurant, so it really tastes like you're eating a homemade meal in your own kitchen.

WEBSITE | 712 W San Antonio St, New Braunfels, TX 78130

34. Prince Solms Park

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (38)

If you want an inexpensive place to float the river in New Braunfels AND you already have your own tube, head to Prince Solms park! There's a tube chute you can use that just cost a couple of dollars, and the park has some public parking spaces where you can pay an hourly rate while you float.

PRINCE SOLMS PARK WEBSITE | 100 Liebscher Dr, New Braunfels, TX 78130

35. Circle Arts Theatre

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (39)

The Circle Arts Theatre in New Braunfels is another destination space for theater enthusiasts. They've been entertaining audiences for over 55 years and this place has become a cultural landmark in the community.

The theater puts on a few productions each year, ranging from classic plays to contemporary shows. The productions are performed by a talented cast of local New Braunfels actors and actresses who seriously always deliver top-notch performances!

A note for locals: the theater offers youth programs and some auditions and workshops for aspiring actors to hone their craft.

Visiting the Circle Arts Theatre is not just about watching a play but rather experiencing the vibrant local theater community in New Braunfels. This is a great way to truly experience the local art scene here!

CIRCLE ARTS THEATRE WEBSITE | 124 Elizabeth Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

36. Go Boating at Canyon Lake

While it's just a bitof a drive from New Braunfels, boating on Canyon Lake is a fantastic thing to do if you have the time! Canyon Lake is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for one of the best boating experiences in Texas.

Canyon Lake is actually a reservoir on the Guadalupe River located in the Texas Hill Country. It's a very popular destination for boating enthusiasts. With over 8,000 acres of clear blue waters, the lake offers visitors a perfect opportunity to enjoy water sports and boating activities.

The lake is surrounded by stunning cliffs and rocky shores. It's quite the scenic backdrop!

One of the best parts about Canyon Lake is that it has several boat ramps, so it's fairly convenient for visitors to either rent or bring their own boats.

Whether it's kayaking, jet skiing, wakeboarding, or just fishing and hanging out with friends, there's something for everyone at Canyon Lake. It is also an excellent place to relax and unwind, soaking up the sun while taking in the picturesque views and swimming near the shore.

WEBSITE | 1720 Hunter Rd, New Braunfels, TX 78130-3008

37. Check Out Nearby Gruene!

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (40)

Fun fact: historic Gruene, TX is actually located within New Braunfels! So if you're already in New Braunfels, you might as well go check out this adorable little village.

There are sooo many fun things to do in Gruene, and they all revolve around shopping, eating , and music!

Check out my guide to the best things to do in Gruene, Texas.

powered by Proxi

How old is New Braunfels?

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (41)

Really old by Texas standards. 😉 Ha.

It was established in 1845 by Prince Carl of Germany. (His official title was Commissioner General of the Nobleman’s Society, but Prince Carl is easier to say.) He named this Texas city after his hometown of Solms-Braunfels, Germany…hence, NEW Braunfels.

Is New Braunfels worth visiting?

Yes! But with one caveat... It's a small town, so you probably don't need to stay for more than about 48 hours. If you're planning a weekend trip, one night will be plenty! (Two nights if you want to be sure to check out everything there is to do.)

I truly LOVE visiting New Braunfels! I’ve done overnight stays in nearby Gruene, and I’ve done plenty of day trips to New Braunfels to go tubing down the river.

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (42)

New Braunfels is a fun Texas city city for a couples' getaway, a girlfriend's weekend, a family vacation, or just a solo trip to try something new!

There are tons of things to do in New Braunfels. Honestly, my “to-try” list just keeps getting longer and longer because there are a bunch of great restaurants, breweries, museums, parks, and outdoor activities in New Braunfels.

Hope you enjoy visiting New Braunfels!

Related posts

25 Free Things To Do In San Antonio (2024)

I happen to be an expert on free things to do in San Antonio. Why? I have two young kids, and their attention span is SHORT! So I love…

Read More...

The Perfect 3-Day Itinerary In San Antonio

It’s overwhelming to plan a perfect weekend trip anywhere, and when you’re hoping to visit the 2nd largest city in Texas (both by square mileage AND population), planning this…

Read More...

The Solo Traveler’s Guide To San Antonio

If you’re a solo traveler visiting San Antonio, you can rest assured that San Antonio is a very safe city to visit. It’s the 2nd largest city in Texas…

Read More...

Posted in activities, day trip,, kid friendly

37 Cool Things To Do In New Braunfels, From A Texas Local - The San Antonio Things (2024)

References

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jeremiah Abshire

Last Updated:

Views: 5824

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (74 voted)

Reviews: 81% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jeremiah Abshire

Birthday: 1993-09-14

Address: Apt. 425 92748 Jannie Centers, Port Nikitaville, VT 82110

Phone: +8096210939894

Job: Lead Healthcare Manager

Hobby: Watching movies, Watching movies, Knapping, LARPing, Coffee roasting, Lacemaking, Gaming

Introduction: My name is Jeremiah Abshire, I am a outstanding, kind, clever, hilarious, curious, hilarious, outstanding person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.