• Activities:

    Chillin, Photography, Swimming

  • Skill Level:

    Beginner

  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Picnic Area
Romantic
Scenic
Waterfall
Swimming Hole

Enjoy a clear, natural pool in a beautiful, overhanging rock cave. This is a great place to swim with family or friends and the 50-foot waterfall makes for amazing pictures.

Hamilton Pool Preserve, about a 45 minute drive from Austin, TX, is one of the most beautiful places to spend a hot, Texas afternoon. A short hike from the parking lot through a wooded forest opens up onto a scenic, natural pool. The small beach to one side is usually dotted with sunbathers and picnicing families, enjoying relaxing day out of the city.

The park has a limited capacity, and often fills up on warm weekends and even weekdays. Be sure to arrive early to avoid lines.

Pack List

  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Swimsuit
  • Picnic
  • Camera
  • Water
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Reviews

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Pretty area, but not a whole lot to do

5 months ago
5 months ago

Since I Last Left My Review They Have Closed it down and your no longer allowed to swim you can still go but you must have a reservation ranging from 150 for four people to 1000 for 5

8 months ago
8 months ago

This is an amazing spot for swimming and take great pictures, water is great for kids, this place remember me a little the Cenotes back in my country Mexico. Highly recommended!

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

In my opinion, it was a pretty place, but the amount of people killed the nature vibe. It was fun to get in and swim around, however, and a nice place to just hang out. Hiking to the pool took about 10 minutes. Once you're at the pool, your activity choices are to sit or swim. The beach was completely full of people. I did not go down the river trail, but that is another option. I probably would not consider it worthwhile to go back, since it was a $10 reservation fee and then $15 to get into the park. Having to make a reservation 2 weeks ahead is also inconvenient, though completely understandable. It was a good one-time experience.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

My boyfriend and I are on a month long road trip from Florida to Oregon. Hamilton pool was our first stop and we were amazed. Being early June the pool wasn't to crowded. You need a previously made reservation to go, but I would recommend making the stop. The bacteria levels were high the day we visited due to the heavy rain they had, so we weren't aloud to swim. But don't let that detour you. The waterfall was very full due to the rain, even causing more dropping from the top. Everyone in the park was very friendly and the staff was very helpful towards any questions we had. The trails were surrounded by beautiful wild flowers, trees and rushing water. Hamilton pool changed my mind on what I thought of Texas.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

Has a very interesting feel to it. It is definitely quite the experience to walk around and relax, but not to swim. The water is ice cold and not enjoyable. Good if you just want to see it.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

If you are more into photography than swimming (like myself) I would absolutely recommend going in the off season to avoid the crowds. Definitely a beautiful spot and worth a trip even when crowded. However, starting on May 1, reservations will be required to enter the preserve. So if you want to visit and see this gorgeous place in person, you will need to plan accordingly!

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Crowded but super cool. Worth checking out no matter what but if you can try to go at a less popular time I'd recommend it.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

This is constantly featured as a top 10 swimming hole in the world. And while it is amazing I would suggest you get there super early. In the summer it can get really crowded but it is really a unique place. If it is super full head down to West Cave Preserver to see what a similar swimming waterfall looks like when it has been preserved.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Hamilton Pool was so pretty and although we didn't get to swim because the bacteria levels were high, it was still beautiful and perfect for a hot day. The trail is a bit rocky but pretty easy for people of all ages. The water is a gorgeous emerald green color and it's very relaxing hearing the river as we hiked. Get there early and call ahead to see if you can swim.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Very cool and worth the trip. Be sure to call ahead to ensure open- they are closed a lot for bacteria levels being high.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

This is an obvious must-do if in the hill country. In season, bring your trunks; off-season, bring your camera. However, you'll want to time it carefully. If there hasn't been a lot of rain, flow can drop to almost nothing, and the water becomes very muddy and green. If you come late in the day in mid-summer (especially weekends) the crowds are serious. This is more of an issue with parking, as the parking lot is limited capacity, and once it fills up, you can only wait until someone leaves to be allowed to enter the park (though they might make exceptions for motorcycles). Come in the morning, and you will find the water a lot less murky, and have it more yo yourself.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Must see gem in Texas! Less busy in the off-season such as the winter. There is also a trail you can take the opposite way of Hamilton Pool and there are little mini-pools you can swim in as well if you are there on a crowded day.

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

Sarah Williams

Med Student by day. 
 Rock Climber by night.

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