Dripping Springs, Texas

Hamilton Pool

An emerald-green grotto in the heart of the Texas desert

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Just 23 miles west of Austin, a city known for its quirks and weirdness, is perhaps the weirdest sight in all of Texas: a breathtaking natural oasis emerging out of the hill country chaparral.

Hamilton Pool is a natural spring formed in the limestone bedrock and fed by an underground river, which also feeds the small tributaries and lush flora surrounding the pool. The abundant freshwater has allowed a diverse population of trees and vegetation to emerge surrounding the pool, forming what is now a protected nature preserve of the same name.

The first thing visitors will marvel at is the deep overhang etched into the far wall of the pool--remnants of a natural dome that once concealed the entire grotto underground, until it collapsed more than a century ago. The sheer cavern now provides deep shade and rocky exploration for visitors.

Waterfalls routinely fall from the lip of the overhang, flowing down the 50-foot drop and splashing into the cool water below, making this a beautiful and refreshing location for sunbaked summer adventurers and swimmers.

  • Address
    Hamilton Pool, Dripping Springs, Texas, 78620, United States
  • Cost
    $15/vehicle, $8/bike or pedestrian. $5 surcharge per vehicle/bike/pedestrian now in effect.
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Map/Directions
23 miles west of Austin, on Highway 71. Surrounded by the Hamilton Nature Preserve.
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