The Texas Hill Country is proving to be one of the hottest travel destinations this year, with Gruene and Fredericksburg leading the way, according to Forbes Advisor’s new list of the “50 Best Places to Travel in 2024.”
The report researched 18 U.S. cities and 32 global destinations, and categorized each place based on region. The locations were selected based on a destination’s appeal to a wide range of travelers, plus the benefits provided by travel accommodations, rewards, and credit cards.
The Gruene Historic District in New Braunfels was selected among Forbes Advisor’s top places to travel in the South, alongside the ever-popular town of Fredericksburg. The district proudly claims the oldest dance hall in the state, where legendary country singers like George Strait and Willie Nelson have played.
When visitors aren’t dancing the night away or dining at one of the historic Gruene restaurants, they can explore the rest of what New Braunfels has to offer, such as floating the Comal or Guadalupe rivers or visiting Schlitterbahn.
“Towering cypress trees line the river banks creating a perfect canopy to rent a tube and float down the Guadalupe River or the more gentle Comal River during the spring and summer months,” the report’s author wrote. “The latter is fed by the Comal Springs, the largest natural freshwater spring in Texas, making the water crystal clear and cool. With a temperate climate for much of the year, anglers can try their luck fly fishing along the Guadalupe River.”
New Braunfels, like Fredericksburg, also has German roots; major events like Wurstfest brings in thousands of visitors during its annual 10-day stint in November.
“Partake in Alpine and Bavarian entertainment, dance to polka music and enjoy German and Texas beer along with other themed food and events at this 10-day festival held near the headwaters of the Comal River,” the report says.
Fredericksburg is home to more than 60 wineries, vineyards, and tasting rooms, and there is no shortage of new places to try.
Fredericksburg is miles and miles of wine country.www.forbes.com
Forbes Advisor also includes fun activities for outdoorsy travelers, such as hiking on Enchanted Rock, or stargazing at night.
“From the top of this giant pink granite dome, you’ll see scenic views of the Hill Country,” the report says. “Be warned that there’s no shade on the climb, so if you’re visiting during the warmer months, complete your climb early in the day to limit your exposure to the hot sun.”
Enchanted Rock is also on the path of totality during the April 8 total eclipse, which is expected to be one of the most dramatic solar events in 2024.
Other Southern U.S. cities that were highlighted in Forbes’ report include Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Hot Springs, Arkansas; Hutchinson Island, Florida; and Pine Mountain, Georgia. Top international destinations included Lucca, Italy; Barranquilla, Colombia; the entireties of Mongolia and Namibia; and more.
The report can be found on forbes.com.