When you think of Texas, you might imagine cowboys and rodeo. But this Southern state has so much more to offer.
Texas is one of the US states where most Germans settled in the middle of the 19th century. They did not just bring their labor but also their German culture.
German immigrants founded important Texan towns, such as Fredericksburg, Schulenburg and Muenster. You can even find German-speaking populations in these areas today.
In this article, we explore the most amazing German towns in Texas (see also: Top 19 Amazing Weekend Getaways Found In Texas)that show their German heritage around every corner.
The Most Beautiful German Towns In Texas
You might find yourself surprised that some of the best known towns in Texas have a history influenced by German settlers.
Here is our list of the most amazing German towns that you can visit around Texas(see also: The Best Texas Beach Towns To Visit This Summer).
Schulenburg was founded in 1875 by immigrants from Austria, the Czech Republic and Germany.
Located between Houston and San Antonio, this beautifully quaint town was named after the wealthy man who donated the land to the settlers, Louis Schulenburg.
As an essential stop for the railroad at this time, Schulenburg has remained one of the most popular German towns that you can visit when you are in Texas(see also: 15 Best Romantic Restaurants To Visit In Houston, Texas).
Important Landmarks In Schulenburg
Schulenburg is known for its stunning painted churches (see also: The Most Beautiful Painted Churches In Texas)that are dotted around the town. While they look plain on the outside, their bright interior is worth a visit.
The Schulenburg painted churches feature life-size statues, impressive murals and intricately painted ceilings.
Another important sight to visit in Schulenburg is the Texas Polka Music Museum. This collection displays artifacts that show the influence of German music on the town.
If you are more interested in the town’s history and its foundations, then you can visit the Schulenburg Historical Museum.
Another fun museum is the Stanzel Model Aircraft Museum that shows historic model plains inspired by German design and engineering.
Festivals In Schulenburg
One of the reasons why so many people flock to Schulenburg every year is their famous Sausagefest.
You can try a wide variety of German foods, from tasty pickles to traditional sauerkraut.
And, of course, there is also a fantastic choice of German sausages, German wine and live polka music.
During fall, you can join in fun games, parades and runs for the Schulenburg Fall Festival. They also show arts and crafts inspired by German designs.
If you love your German food and drink, then you can either wait for the festivals or visit one of the many German restaurants (see also: Best Restaurants To Visit In Ogunquit Maine: The Ultimate Guide!)in town.
It’s worth visiting the Sengelmann Hall in Schulenburg. It’s a replica of an old saloon from the time of the German settlers.
Fredericksburg is just a 90-minute drive from Sand Antonio and Austin. This quaint German town in Central Texas was established by German settlers in 1846.
It was originally known as Friedrichsburg as a reference to Prince Frederick of Prussia.
However, this wasn’t easy to pronounce in English, so the town’s name was changed to Fredericksburg.
This lovely German town offers a variety of German-inspired folklore, from beautiful German architecture to fantastic wineries.
In fact, there are over 50 vineyards and wineries in and around the town. This means that a Fredericksburg wine tour is a must when you are in town.
But Fredericksburg does not just offer a good wine. The town also has plenty of German history that shows how Germans settled in this part of Texas.
This German-Texan town also offers a variety of different places to stay where you can either stay in a home that shows German influences or directly with the descendants of German immigrants.
This is a great opportunity to get to know German culture firsthand, and you may even pick up a few German words here and there.
The Texan town of Muenster was found by German immigrants in 1889. The town was originally known as Westphalia in honor of this German region in the North West.
However, Westphalia was already the name of another town in Texas at the time, so the founders chose to rename their new settlement to the state capital of Westphalia in Germany, Muenster.
While you cannot find many people speaking Germany there today, the majority of residents in Muenster spoke German until the early 1920s.
Then, the German language slowly disappeared from the area.
This being said, there are many other German things you can find in this lovely town, including Fischer’s Meat Market.
This roofed market hall is a partially-timbered structure where vendors sell cheese, beer and meat.
But you can also find some excellent Bavarian restaurants around town, including Rohmer’s Restaurant.
You can get to Muenster without any problems. The town is just 85 miles North of Dalls.
Weimar is often left off the important list of German towns in Texas because it’s located near Schulenburg.
However, this small town also has a lot to offer when it comes to German heritage.
From wineries and cathedrals to different museum and a lavender farm, Weimar is worth a visit if you are visiting Schulenburg.
The name of the town comes from the town of Weimar in Thuringia, Germany.
The Weimar in Germany is known for the Bauhaus movement and the place where famous writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe died.
When you compare Luckenbach to Schulenburg and Fredericksburg, then Luckenbach is the smallest town on our list.
Despite its incredibly small size with a few remaining buildings, the location of Luckenbach has historic significance.
You can see the old dance hall that dates back to 1800. This historic building gives you a great insight into the time of the settlers.
Plus, this historic building is still an event venue used today by many country music legends. You can enjoy live music performances on a regular basis.
Luckenbach also hosts different festivals across the year. They are mostly music festivals which is great for all country music fans.
The town also has a couple of German restaurants and German souvenir shops.
6. New Braunfels
Located between San Antonio and San Marcos, New Braunsfels was founded by Prince Carl of Solms-Braunsfels who also gave his name to this lovely new settlement in 1845.
The town has a variety of historic buildings that are on the National Register of Historic Places.
They are all well-preserved, so you can easily imagine what the town looked like when the first Germans settled in the area.
New Braunsfels has some amazing fine dining restaurants and small shops that are ideal for a few German souvenirs.
This being said, New Braunsfels is most famous for its annual Wurstfest which is similar to the traditional German Oktoberfest.
People from all over the United States descend on the small town to enjoy traditional German sausages and German beer in an atmosphere inspired by German culture.
Pflugerville is another small German town in Texas. The founder, William Bohls, simply set up a post office and general store here in 1860.
However, the town’s name comes from another German immigrant who escaped the Prussian War in Germany at the time, Henry Pfluger.
While Pflugerville is one of the smallest German towns in Texas and it’s a suburb today, you can still see many points of interest that remind us of the town’s German heritage.
One of the best places to see the German influence on this area is the local Immanuel Lutheran Church Cemetery in Pflugerville.
Many of the tombstones here are in German and they were also erected for the original German settlers.
But Pflugerville is most famous for its yearly Pfugerville Deutschen Pfest that celebrates German heritage and culture.
The town sets up a beer garden with a carnival, a big parade and lots of live music. So, if you are visiting Pflugerville around this time (see also: 24 Greatest US Locations To Visit At Christmas Time)of year, then make sure to join in the fun.
The historic suburb of Gruene is often overlooked because it is so closely located to New Braunfels.
However, the entire historic Gruene district offers a variety of historical landmarks that you can visit.
One of the oldest dance hall in Texas is located here, and you can enjoy country music every evening in town.
Gruene is also famous for its many antique shops that sell old items. If you have a look around, you might even find some old German household items.
Named after the popular German writer Karl Ludwig Börne, Boerne was found in 1848 as part of the movement for Texas Hill Country Free Thinker Latin Settlements.
If you are visiting Boerne, then it’s a great idea to stop off at one of the many German restaurants and specialty shops in town.
You will be able to find them all through the historic downtown district of Boerne.
If you want some action, then pay a visit to the “Cave without a name”. This natural cavern features some impressive stalagmites and stalactites formed over hundreds of years.
But you can also have a great day at the Boerne’s Guadelupe River State Park. You can go hiking, swimming or simply enjoy a picnic along the 4-mile long river front.
If you don’t want a long drive to experience some German culture, then Bulverde offers some fantastic German history.
While this small town isn’t as famous as Brenham, Schulenburg or Fredericksburg, it was still founded by German immigrants and you can see their influence all around the town.
Plus, it’s only half an hour drive North of San Antonio.
Brenham is another German town settlement that’s perfect for a day trip(see also: Plan Your Perfect Caribbean Trip To The Exumas The Right Way) from Houston.
Brenham is particularly beautiful during the bluebonnet season when these stunning purple flowers start to bloom.
But the town’s main attraction is the Blue Bell Creamery that does not just sell ice cream but you can also explore how it is made there.
A Short History Of German Settlers In Texas
In the 19th century, Germany was split into a large number of self-governing states. This setup did not just produce civil unrest across the German nations but also several wars.
This meant that many Germans wanted to flee the country to the United States. But they did not just escape war. German settlers also sought a better life.
The first Germans arrived in Texas in the early 1940s where they created different colonial settlements in order to create a “new Germany”.
You can find most of the German settlements and towns in Texas North of San Antonio. This quickly became a popular area for Germans to live their new life.
Many residents of German settlements spoke German until as late as the 1970s. That’s why, you can still see and hear many German words in this part of the country.
There are even different German dialects in different parts of Texas.
While many other European languages vanished over time, the German language has persisted thanks to the descendants of settlers following their German roots.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Most German City In Texas?
Fredericksburg is often considered one of the most German towns in Texas(see also: 12 Best Activities To Discover In Fredericksburg, Texas). It was founded by German settlers in 1846 and maintained strong German roots into the 20th century.
You will be able to hear some German spoken and pick up a few German words in Fredericksburg.
What Towns In Texas Speak German?
The town of Shelby in Texas is known as Little Germany where residents speak only German.
Many Shelby residents are Germans or descendants of German immigrants who maintained their German language until today.
Where Do Most Germans Live In Texas?
The most German people live in or near larger German towns such as Fredericksburg and Schulenburg.
You can also find Germans and German descendants in Muenster, Luckenbach, Boerne and Gruene.
What Area Of Texas Did The Germans Settle In Texas?
Most German settlers founded towns and established roots in the regions North and West of Austin and Houston.
These German colonists are known as Austin County Germans. They settled from the Hill Country all the way to the state’s Coastal Plain.
There are some amazing German towns in the state of Texas. You can explore most of these towns North of Austin because that’s where most German immigrants settle in the 19th century.
You can experience German culture, food and traditional festivals in and around the bigger towns of Fredericksburg and Schulenburg.
They also have a variety of museums and historic buildings that are worth visiting.
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