Blue Hole – Wimberley
This quiet spot was saved from development in 2005, and the grounds around it were turned into a 126-acre park with opportunities for hiking, sports and camping. The swimming area requires reservations and has limited hours after Labor Day.
Hours: daily from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and from 2-6 p.m. Reservations for the swimming area are required.
Cost: free (ages 0-3),
$6 (ages 4-12, ages 60 and over), $10 (adults)
100 Blue Hole Lane, Wimberley
Cypress Falls Swimming Hole – Wimberley
The swimming hole at Cypress Falls was created by a small dam that sits above the pool. It is part of the Cypress Creek Events Center and Lodge, which lets visitors in for a fee.
Hours: daily from 8a.m.-sunset
Cost: free (ages 0-3), $6 (ages4-12), $8 (adults)
1 Woodcreek Circle, Wimberley
Five Mile Dam Park
The Blanco River flows from a series of springs in Kendall County and runs over Five Mile Dam before merging with the San Marcos River. The park next to the dam was damaged by floods several years ago but has since been restored.
Hours: daily from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
4440 S. Old Stagecoach Road, Kyle
Jacob’s Well – Wimberley
A remarkable geologic feature, Jacob’s Well in Wimberley is fed by the Trinity Aquifer. The deep swimming hole is at the top of a long system of underwater caves that have fascinated explorers for years. For more on explorations of the deepest parts of the cave system, visit www.jacobswellexplorationproject.org.
Hours: daily 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Reservations are required and can be made at the listed website.
Cost: free (ages 0-4), $5 (ages 5-12, seniors, veterans or service members, Hays County residents), $9 (adults)
1699 Mt. Sharp Road, Wimberley
Krause Springs – Spicewood
Founded in 1955, Krause Springs 155-acre park that is on the National Register of Historic Places. It has a spring-fed, manmade pool and natural pools.
Hours: daily 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Cost: free (ages 0-4), $5 (ages 4-11), $8 (adults)
404 Krause Springs Road, Spicewood
John J. Stokes Park – San Marcos
Downriver of Rio Vista Park, John J. Stokes Park is almost hidden behind the dam above the swimming area. Though it has been damaged by floods in the past, the park has been restored. Complete with rope swings, it is a convenient but secluded spot to enjoy the San Marcos River.
Hours: daily 6 a.m.-11 p.m.
600 Cape St., San Marcos
Rio Vista Park – San Marcos
The cool, clear San Marcos River originates in the San Marcos Springs, which flow first into Spring Lake before spilling through the rest of the city. There are a few places in San Marcos to enjoy the river, but Rio Vista park is one of the most accessible. In 2005 the city spent more than $2 million to fix up the dam at the end of the swimming area after it was damaged by flooding, and even built artificial rapids.
Hours: daily 6 a.m.-11p.m.
555 Cheatham St., San Marcos
Hinman Island Park – New Braunfels
At the headwaters of the Comal River is Comal Springs, the largest springs in Texas and one of the largest in the Southwest. The springs come out of the ground at Landa Park in New Braunfels, but that is not the only place to take a dip. Just downstream, Hinman Island Park offers a serene spot to access the cold, clear water, and it is free and open year-round.
Hours: daily 6 a.m.-midnight
Hinman Island Drive, New Braunfels
Hamilton Pool – Dripping Springs
Fed by an underground river and formed when the dome over that river collapsed, Hamilton Pool was officially made a preserve by the Travis County Commissioners Court in 1990.
Hours: daily from 9 a.m.-1p.m. or 2-6 p.m. Reservations are required.
Cost: $11 for a reservation, then $15 per car on arrival
24300 Hamilton Pool Road, Dripping Springs