Mason, TX is Definitely the Next Hill Country Hot Spot

Mason, TX is a charming town located in the heart of the Texas Hill Country. It is known for its beautiful scenery, friendly people, and abundance of outdoor activities. Whether you are looking for a relaxing getaway or an adventurous vacation, Mason has something to offer everyone.

Here are some of the top things to do in Mason, TX:

mexican freetail bat emergences from the eckert james river bat cave

    • The Eckert Bat Cave is about 7-8 miles from the Dos Rios down the James River Road – a winding gravel road that goes over a couple of low water crossings (sedans welcome). It’s pretty magical to witness the bat emergence at dusk Thursday through Sunday from May to October. This world-renowned bat cave is home to millions of Mexican free-tailed bats. The drive alone is worth it, past high fenced exotic game and gorgeous scenery.

    • The James River Ice House is just across the street from the Dos Rios, with a beautiful sprawling lawn and outdoor area with views of the river. Great for a beer with views of the river.  Kid friendly.  And now featuring the amazing Santos trailer with killer street tacos and queso.

    • THC Beer Company: Savor handcrafted hill country microbrews and a great snack menu. THC stands for The Hill Country, or so we’re told. 

    • And if wine tasting is calling your name, check out Fly Gap Winery and Murphy Creek Cellars, each with a great assortment of wine, finger foods, and tasting flights. Add in tastings at Parr Vineyards, Robert Clay Vineyards, Peters Prairie Vineyard and you’ll have yourself a proper central Texas wine tour!

    • The historic Odeon Theater on the main town square shows movies and the occasional concert.

    • Texas Monthly did a lovely piece about the area and our rivers. Definitely worth the read!

    • The island in front of the property. One of the top six in Texas according to Texas Highways.

    • Plenty of scenic back roads to explore, with the amazing wildflower drives in spring.

cliff jumping into the crystal clear llano river

    • The Dos Rios offers kayaks for rent, and can set up a shuttle service for two different 3-5 hour sections of the river.

    • Tubing, stand up paddle-boarding, star gazing, cliff jumping, and a whole lot of relaxing.

    • Several 4wd off-road parks, including Katemcy Rocks and Wolf Caves. As well as the most epic section of the Texas Overland Trail.

    • Trophy game hunting, top notch fly fishing for tagged rainbow trout, topaz hunting, and even panning for gold!  Who knows, a trip to Mason, TX might even pay for itself.  

fly fishing on the llano for rainbow trout

    • Explore the Mason Square Museum. This museum tells the story of Mason’s rich history, from its Native American roots to its present-day status as a popular tourist destination.

    • Visit the Seaquist House. This beautiful mansion from the 1,800s has a unique architectural style built from massive carved stone. Explore the intricate details, numerous fireplaces, stained glass windows, a sprawling basement, and other fine architectural features such a third floor parlor that doubled as a poker room and confessional.

    • Go Fishing or Swimming in the Llano River. The Llano River is a popular spot for fishing, swimming, tubing, and kayaking. At the confluence of the James River into the Llano, you’ll find us (the Dos Rios) and can explore the 20 acre island just in front!
    • Stay in one of Dos Rios’ glamping tents, stylish cabins, or even a tipi on the banks of the Llano River.

llano river cabin

Here are some of the best restaurants in Mason, TX:
    • Coopers BBQ is top notch, known for it’s slow-smoked meats and delicious sides. Practically a right of passage while you’re in town.


    • Lea Lou Co Op is a great pizza joint / dance hall / beer garden right on the town square. The restaurant offers a variety of unique pizzas and bar snacks (think fried cheese curds) in one of the coolest spots on the town square. Live music most weekends, and a fantastic porch make this a must. Highly recommended!

best things to do in mason texas

    • Santos in Mason has great gorditas, queso, and crispy tacos. And the wine bar two doors over (Sandstone Cellars Winery) has wine-a-ritas that are pretty solid with a great little courtyard. They also let you walk back to Santos with them.

best restaurants in mason, tx

    • Willow Creek Cafe is on the main square and has great patty melts, incredible buttermilk pecan pies, as well as a whole menu of solid offerings. This restaurant is known for its delicious home-cooked meals and friendly service. All of the pies are spectacular. Seriously, get a pie.
    • Did someone say breakfast tacos?  The red trailer at Santos is on the town square serving up the best.  
    • Another great stop on the way from Llano to Mason is the charming one-stop town of Castell. Great for a burger and beer at the General Store.
    • Nacho’s Cafe: This Mexican restaurant serves up authentic dishes made with fresh ingredients.
    • Mi Pueblo Mexican Restaurant: This Mexican restaurant is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.

joe's italian restaurant in mason, tx

  • Joe’s Italian Restaurant: A new addition to downtown! Leo Lou’s has transformed into Joe’s Italian Restaurant. Experience a fusion of Brady’s popular flavors with a unique twist. It’s quickly earned a reputation as the best place in Mason!

No matter what your interests are, you are sure to find something to enjoy with all the things to do in Mason, TX! With its beautiful scenery, abundance of activities, and friendly people, Mason is the perfect place to relax and have fun. 

Indulge yourself in the outdoors, engage in diverse activities, and experience hospitality when you make a trip to Mason, Texas. 

And on April 8th, 2024 be prepared for the Great American Solar Eclipse!

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