Whether you're a couple that likes complete relaxation or a couple looking for adventure, you can live your best life in the Texas Hill Country this Valentine's Day (it happens to fall on a Friday this year). Just under a four hour drive from Houston, a retreat to Boerne means panoramic hilltop views, centuries-old Live Oak groves, hiking, shopping, dining and more to look forward to.
Here now, a list of ideas certain to spark romance during your getaway.
Couple’s Massage in a Salt Cave
While a massage in a salt cave might sound a bit quirky, you’ll not only get in some romance and self-care, but the health benefits of a negatively charged ion environment, too—reduced inflammation, easier breathing, and impurities drawn from the body. These definitely aren’t your typical massage surroundings. The ceiling and walls of the small cave-like room at Puresolspa are made from salt blocks, and the floor is covered in several inches of salt crystals. The dim lighting adds to the ambiance, and the temperature is a bit cooler than usual to preserve the micro-elements in the air.
Located at the Tapatio Springs Resort in Boerne, Puresolspa not only offers the ultimate salt cave massage, but an entire menu of luxurious services as well. While at Tapatio Springs Resort (it’s owned by country music legend George Strait, by the way), head over to the resort’s restaurant La Cascada Table & Bar for a sip or two of Mr. Strait's Codigo 1530 Tequila. Drink it straight or in one of the restaurant’s specialty cocktails. Either way, it will have you feeling starry-eyed.
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Is there anything more authentically Texan than a trail ride through the Hill Country? A cowboy hat is not required as you take in scenic views while meandering your way through the limestone hills. Stricker Trail Rides in Boerne offers hour- and 1.5 hour-long rides—the perfect amount of time to explore with your beloved on horseback.
Texas Wines for the Win
Hop on the Texas Wine Trail and explore over 50 wineries in the Hill Country. Obviously, you won’t get to all of them (without a mean hangover), but exploring three or four is a great way to take in beautiful scenery, taste different vintages, and sample local fare. Texas’ sunny and dry weather make it the perfect place to grow dark purple grapes, so keep your eyes (and wine glass) open for different varieties of Malbec. If you decide Texas Malbec is your wine du jour, make a stop at Becker Vineyards which has the first Malbec grown and produced in Texas.
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Shop and Stroll
If quaint cafés, locally-owned shops, and historic architecture are what you're looking for, the Hill Country Mile has it all. Downtown Boerne's old-timey thoroughfare has trendy boutiques, art galleries, and antique stores, the perfect excuse for a stroll. Take a snack break at one of the mom-and-pop coffee shops and bakeries–there's nothing quite like a homemade pastry from the historic Bear Moon Bakery & Café.
Dinner for Two
Romantic restaurants with Texas charm are plentiful in the Hill Country, from barbecue joints to fine dining. You'll have no problem finding a restaurant with both excellent food and atmosphere. For a robust wine list and delicious food, head over to Cypress Grille in downtown Boerne which offers made-from-scratch pasta, locally-sourced meats, and garden-grown herbs. Want something more scenic? The Creek Restaurant is nestled along the Cibolo River with great views and inside a building that's also a historic landmark.