Wimberley, Texas hosts the oldest outdoor market in the Texas Hill Country, and the second largest in the state. With nearly 500 vendors lining tree-shaded paths, Wimberley Market Days is a “don’t-miss” Central Texas event that is free and fun for the whole family.
Wimberley Market Days Offer A Little Bit of Texas Heaven
Wimberley, Texas is my happy place. As I navigate the winding road through the Texas Hill Country, I can’t help but smile as I approach the sign that says, “Welcome to Wimberley ‘a little bit of heaven.’” As I enter this picturesque town on the banks of the cypress-lined Blanco River, Wimblerley Pie Company is the very next thing that catches my eye. But I can’t be distracted by pie! No matter how delicious. I am on a mission: Wimberley Market Days opens at 7 a.m. and I want to be one of the first shoppers through the gates.
Wimberley Market Days are held on the first Saturday of every month, from March to December, and I go at least once a year to buy all the things I never knew I needed. This free market has it all, from vintage quilts to potted plants; it’s nearly impossible to leave empty handed. So why try? I bring a cart and make a day of it!
My kids love Wimberley Market Days too, and are always happy to tag along. With pockets full of quarters from their piggy banks, they happily hunt for deals at my side. We wander the seemingly endless maze of outdoor booths, chat with friendly vendors, and search for the special keepsakes we just can’t live without.
Part flea market and part antiques mall, Wimberley Market Days has new treasures around every corner and bargains abound. Here a few deals we scored in March:
- A collection of marbles – 10¢ each
- A brand new Carter’s Easter outfit for my nephew – $3.50
- A brand new tutu for my niece – $5
- A vintage ‘50s apron for my sister-in-law – $5
We don’t spend much, but we go home happy (and with gifts!).
Other goods you may find at the Market include jewelry, furniture, stained glass, gourmet food, crafts, antiques, vintage toys, home decor, lawn art, tools, clothing… and quite possibly the kitchen sink.
What makes Wimberley Market Days such a unique shopping experience is that many of the booths are permanent structures, owned by the vendors. The booths have been painted and decorated; some have custom flooring and sales counters. As you stroll from mini-shop to shop, along tree-lined paths, you feel as though you’re exploring a rustic outdoor mall.
Wimberley Market Days serves as a major fundraiser for the Wimberley Lions Club, so while admission and entertainment are free, nearby parking is $5, food is available for sale, and you can pay to have your purchases transported to your car. So shoppers who ask for help with hauling and stick around for a yummy barbecue lunch are actually helping to support local charitable work.
What to Know Before You Go
- Bring cash, as some booths do not take credit cards. You will also need $5 for parking.
- Take along a lunch, or plan to buy a barbecue plate from the Wimberley Lions. If you sit at picnic tables in the pavilion, you can enjoy free live music periodically throughout the day.
- Bring bottles of water, sunscreen and hats. A good deal of the market is not shaded and oh boy does it get hot in the summer!
- Wear comfortable shoes. You will walk, and walk, and walk. Lions Field is a huge venue.
- Arrive early. The market opens at 7 a.m. If you get there when the gates open, parking is a breeze, it’s not too hot outside yet, and you get the best selection of goods. Later in the morning, the Wimberley roads get congested and traffic may come to a stand-still. This can make even the most eager shopper grumpy.
- Bring a cart, wagon, or stroller to load up with your purchases. But, note that many of the small booths cannot accommodate strollers. This can make shopping with littles tricky. You may want to have another adult along to be on “stroller duty” while you browse.
- No pets allowed.
- The market itself is open rain or shine, but a lot of vendors close up shop when it rains.
- Many vendors also close before the official end time of 4 p.m., which is another reason to arrive early.
- Shoppers can call 512-618-7121 from any Market Day booth and the Wimberley Lions Club will send a motorized cart to pick both you and your purchase up, and deliver you to your car. The minimum cost for this service is $10.
- Print a site map before you go, to help you navigate the huge market. You’ll still get lost, but that’s part of the fun.
Directions, from the Wimberley Lions Market Days Website:
- Wimberley is located in the Texas Hill Country, southwest of Austin and northwest of San Antonio.
- Wimberley Market Days is located at 601 FM 2325 in Wimberley.
- The major road into Wimberley is Ranch Road 12.
- The intersection of RR12 and FM 2325 has a traffic signal; look for ACE Hardware and King Feed Store at the intersection.
- Turn on 2325 (toward Blanco) and proceed less than a mile.
- Wimberley Market Days will be on the left; Lions parking lots are on the right.