Markets, festivals, biergartens and other activities heat up in autumn as temperatures fall

New Braunfels is known for abundant summer activities, from tubing the river to zooming down a wild waterslide at Schlitterbahn.

But when fall arrives, there’s no shortage of fun and entertainment in this historic Texas Hill Country town. Read on for some of the best ways to enjoy autumn in New Braunfels.

Visit a Biergarten

The season’s cooler temperatures make the beer gardens of local breweries even more inviting. New Braunfels is home to several renowned craft breweries, each with its own distinct atmosphere and beer styles, which are often served up along with food and live music.

 New Braunfels Brewing Co. creates unique, artistic beer in the heart of downtown, welcoming guests to its taproom and patio. Located within the historic Faust Hotel, the Faust Brewing Co. serves its signature beers (many named after local legends) along with German-inspired pub grub. Guadalupe Brewing Co. creates beer inspired by European brewing traditions, using local ingredients to create an array of year-round and seasonal brews. Just outside of town in a peaceful rural setting, 5 Stones Artisan Brewery uses fresh seasonal ingredients to craft one-of-a-kind brews, perfect for enjoying in its oak-studded beer garden.

Want to try them all and then some? Check out Hill Country Craft Beer Trail where 25 unique hill country breweries, distilleries and bars showcase a blend of innovation and tradition in craft beer. Want to try them all and need a chauffeur? Rockin’ R offers tours. Join a pre-arranged tour or book one for a private group.

Celebrate fall at a festival

New Braunfels loves any excuse to come together and have fun. When autumn comes along, the city celebrates by gathering for food, wine, music, art, entertainment, culture and family fun.

The Comal County Fair heralds in the fall September 21- 25. The largest county fair in Central Texas is chock-full of events including PRCA rodeo and bull riding, livestock show, a carnival,  and kid-friendly competitions like mutton busting.

The Gruene Wine & Music Festival, winner of the 2022 Texas Travel Award, returns to the Gruene Historic District Oct. 6-9. Now in its 36th year, this event celebrates Texas and Americana music and Texas-made wine, all while raising funds for United Way.

Dia de Los Muertos, another 2022 Texas Travel Award winner, is a free community event highlighting Hispanic culture with local food, drinks, arts and crafts, entertainment, shopping and more. This celebration of life, family and heritage will draw thousands of people to downtown New Braunfels on Oct. 22.

Two long-running festivals showcase the city’s passion for art. The Fall Into Art Festival, Oct. 15-16, brings together award-winning artists, painters, potters, photographers, jewelers, and artisans, along with kids' activities, live music, food trucks and more. The 30th annual Texas Clay Festival, Oct. 22-23, will bring more than 80 of the finest clay artists in Texas to Gruene for two days of fun, shopping and education in the ceramic arts.

The 10th annual NB KidsFest, Nov. 5-6, is an action-packed two-day celebration of kids, with performances, games, activities, arts and crafts, food and more, while vendors offer resources, products and services for families.

The 10-day salute to sausage known as Wurstfest, Nov. 4-13, celebrates German culture, Texas fun, and of course, sausage. Thousands of visitors come each year to enjoy Alpine and Bavarian-style entertainment, food, music, dancing, carnival rides and games, and beer from Germany, Texas and the U.S.

Visit an outdoor market

Crisp fall days are the perfect time to visit a local outdoor market and discover fresh produce, new tastes and artistic expressions.

The New Braunfels Farmers Market is open downtown every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Locally-sourced produce, flowers, dairy products, baked goods, pasture-raised meats, eggs, olive oil, personal care products, candles and more draw food lovers and craft enthusiasts to the market year-round.           

For more than 30 years, Gruene Market Days has featured the talents of local artisans who create wood crafts, jewelry, sculptures, fiber arts, pre-packaged foods and spices and much more. This market, taking place monthly in the Gruene Historic District, is a must-see for Texas-made treasures and gifts.

Drive the Guadalupe River

The waters of the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers are best experienced from a tube while floating on a summer afternoon. But when temperatures cool down, a drive along River Road is the next best thing.

Experience the changing seasons along River Road, a scenic 10-mile drive that follows the winding Guadalupe River from New Braunfels to the Canyon Lake area. This rural two-lane road crosses the river four times, offering views of oak tree canopies, towering limestone bluffs and glimpses of life along the river.