Sandwiched between lively Austin and scenic Dripping Springs, the tiny, unincorporated town of Driftwood, Texas boasts an outsized list of fun things to do (or more accurately, perhaps, to eat and drink).
While driving through Driftwood feels more like driving through the countryside punctuated by occasional wineries and sightseeing stops than heading to a traditional town center, it makes a phenomenal Hill Country day trip.
If you’re headed to the Texas Hill Country, here’s what to do in Driftwood–and why you should make a point of stopping in this blink-and-you’ll-miss-it town.
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Eat your heart out at Salt Lick BBQ.
Of all the reasons to visit Driftwood, Salt Lick is definitely the most famous. Widely considered to be one of the most popular barbecue joints in the greater Austin area, Salt Lick’s original location is in Driftwood.
The sprawling grounds are complete with picnic tables, fairy lights, and even a Doctor Who-themed blue phone booth, and it alone makes Driftwood worthy of a day trip.
Visit one of Driftwood’s wineries.
Enjoying a wine tasting on a beautiful day is definitely one of the best things to do in Driftwood!
Driftwood is home to several gorgeous wineries featuring beautiful Hill Country views, delicious food, sprawling grounds, and excellent wine.
Popular options include Fall Creek Vineyards, Duchman Family Winery (dogs are invited!), and the Driftwood Estate Winery.
There are also a handful of tasting rooms scattered around town!
… or breweries.
Jester King Brewery and Vista Brewing are both located on beautiful farms in Driftwood and serve up great food and craft beers.
Jester King Brewery also offers farm tours–new goat friends included.
Snap photos of the historic Texaco station.
This historic Texaco gas station is no longer operating, but its charm makes it one of the best things to see in Driftwood, as well as one of the town’s most photographed spots!
Enjoy a romantic dinner at Trattoria Lisina.
Trattoria Lisina is extremely popular in Driftwood, and for good reason.
The restaurant serves up wood-fired pizza and other Italian dishes in a setting complete with Tuscan-style architecture, all surrounded by the iconic and beautiful live oak trees that are so ubiquitous in central Texas.
Dance the night away at the Mercer Street Dancehall.
For a small-town take on a Texas classic, head out for a night of two-stepping at the Mercer Street Dancehall!
Stroll through Charro Ranch Park.
This peaceful, 64-acre park is the perfect place to enjoy a stroll while digesting an unseemly amount of barbecue and/or Italian food: home to both a 1.5-mile outer loop trail and several inner trails set up for both bird-watching and hiking, Charro Ranch Park is a relaxed way to round out a trip to Driftwood.
Check out the Driftwood Church.
Dating to 1884, this small church serves both the Methodist and Baptist congregations in Driftwood.
Some of the descendants of the town’s original settlers are still members here!
The Driftwood Church is also located just across the street from the Texaco, making it easy to visit both spots.
… and the Driftwood Cemetery next door.
Though small, the Driftwood Cemetery next door to the church carries historic significance to the town. It holds the final remains of some of Driftwood’s original settlers and church leaders, as well as veterans dating back all the way to the American Civil War.
The cemetery is in use to this day, and as always, be respectful if you choose to visit.
Pay a visit to Radha Madhav Dham.
Of all the things to do in Driftwood, visiting a beautiful, elaborate Hindu temple may be the most unexpected!
Located just a few minutes up the road from the Salt Lick, the temple is one of the biggest Hindu temples and ashrams in the USA, and welcomes visitors.
Sample sotol in Driftwood, TX.
Possibly the most unique drink available in Driftwood, sotol is similar to tequila in that it is distilled from a desert plant–in this case sotol, native to the Chihuahuan Desert and a very distant cousin of agave.
At the Desert Door Distillery, you can try this unusual drink for yourself!
More Hill Country Highlights
If you’re exploring small towns in the Texas Hill Country, consider also adding these spots to your list!
Fredericksburg: 31 Best Things to Do in Fredericksburg, TX
Luckenbach: Luckenbach: Fun Things to Do + Guide to Texas’ Smallest Town
Marble Falls: 11 Fun Things to Do in Marble Falls, TX
Hiking: 13 Amazing State Parks Near Austin