The Wayback, Austin
The tranquility of the Texas Hill Country is minutes from town but miles from ordinary.
By Carly Summers & Jenna McElroy
When traveling from San Antonio to Austin, I always take the scenic route to enjoy the Spring wildflowers, clear Texas streams, and small towns. Sure, it might take you a little longer, but it is well worth the trip!
From San Antonio, head straight to Wimberley; this small artist community is a must stop for a one-hour stretch and stroll. Reserve a patio table at The Leaning Pear to enjoy Hill Country cuisine and river views. It might sound old school, but you have to try the meatloaf and mashed potatoes! After lunch, head to Jacobs Well, a small but beautifully blue watering hole just minutes out of town. There is a short hike into the park, so make sure you bring some walking shoes. You can choose to spend all day by the water or simply stop in to view the beautiful site.
After cooling off at Jacobs Well, head back down the road to Dripping Springs – the up-and-coming Texas wine country. At my favorite spot, Hawks Shadow Winery, you can enjoy a nice glass of organic Estate red wine on the patio with unobstructed views of the Hill Country. I might be biased but ask for my brother, Sam Bell, upon arrival. Not only does he make the wine, but he also serves it to guests and is quite the entertainer. Fun fact – you can schedule a barrel tasting which includes a journey down to the cellar, built into the Texas Limestone that has natural cooling abilities. After your tour, head up the hill to check out the horses and donkeys on the property!
Next stop, Texas Olive Oil Ranch, to pick up some organic olive oil! Stroll through the olive vineyards to the back of the property to visit the chickens and enjoy an olive oil tasting. If you need an afternoon snack, they have a small gift shop serving charcuterie and cheese boards.
After your long day of adventure, make your way back into Austin and check-in at The Wayback. Nestled on three lush acres in the sprawling hills of Austin, The Wayback is a destination not to be missed. The property exudes a sense of calm that washes over guests when they check-in. This boutique hotel offers eight private cottages surrounded by wildflowers and nature. The interiors include plush beds with luxury organic linens, custom art, and curated vintage pieces. If available, check into Cottage 8. This cottage is perfect for both quick romantic getaways and extended stays. Curl up on the sofa in front of the gas-burning fireplace before visiting the onsite café to enjoy a farm-to-table meal and craft cocktail. After dinner, sit fireside to stargaze from the back lawn. If you have family in town, you do not have to stay onsite to enjoy a glass of Texas wine or a meal inside the café! Our recommendation is to stay two nights so you can enjoy chicken and waffles for brunch and sit poolside under the Texas sun enjoying your relaxing getaway!
15-miles from downtown Austin, The Wayback Café and Cottages opened its doors in the Winter of 2018. Mother-daughter dynamic duo Vicki Bly and Sydney Sue, envisioned a place to take in a breath of fresh air outside of the bustling city – a place to stay awhile. On three acres of land overlooking the Texas Hill Country’s rolling hills are eight cottages available for nightly rental. The café is open Wednesday-Sunday serving farm-to-table meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Their bar serves craft cocktails, organic wine, and a full coffee bar. And yes, there is a drive-thru coffee hut providing espresso drinks and food-to-go for those beating the morning traffic. The Wayback is ready to house guests any time of year, opening their saltwater pool and cocktail cabana in the Spring and Summer or making s’mores by the stone fire pit during the Fall and Winter. To learn more, visitwww.waybackaustin.com or follow along on Instagram or Facebook.