Day Trips: River Trail Cottages, Kerrville

Old-fashioned motor court has new life with modern amenities

Photos by Gerald E. McLeod

River Trail Cottages are so retro they're futuristic, but are happening right now. On the banks of the Guadalupe River five minutes from downtown Kerrville, the hip new lodgings make a great base camp or a secluded hideaway.

When the cottages opened in 1928 as the Kerrville Motor Courts they were on the eastern edge of Kerrville on the San Antonio-to-El Paso highway. Each of the original eight rooms included a covered area for your car.

In 2016, new owners breathed fresh life into the property. The rooms were remodeled with modern conveniences and very comfortable beds. Unfortunately, some amenities, like hooks in the bathroom, were overlooked during the extreme makeover.

All things considered, this is a very nice property. With a lawn that slopes to the river, access to the 4.5-mile riverside trail, and a fire pit and grills, the former motor court is like a cabin in the woods with the conveniences of civilization nearby.

If the motel-sized rooms are too small for your party, River Trail has other options that include retro mobile homes, a two-bedroom house, new cabins, and a refurbished railroad freight depot for a meeting hall.

While you're in town, try these eateries: Wilson's Ice House is half a block from the cottages and offers a good menu to go with the sports bar atmosphere. Hill Country Cafe at 806 Main St. has served home-cooked breakfast and lunch since 1942. Billy Gene's Restaurant at 1489 Junction Hwy. features river views and popular Texas cuisine.

River Trail Cottages is at 1709 Water St. on the east side of Kerrville. Make reservations at 830/928-9002 or

1,378th in a series. Follow “Day Trips & Beyond,” a weekly travel blog, at

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Day Trips
Day Trips: South Padre Island Parks
Day Trips: South Padre Island Parks
The sunny side of SPI beaches

Gerald E. McLeod, May 7, 2021

Day Trips: The Riverside Dreamer, Mission
Day Trips: The Riverside Dreamer, Mission
Rolling on the Rio Grande

Gerald E. McLeod, April 30, 2021


River Trail Cottages, Kerrville Motor Courts, Wilson's Ice House, Hill Country Cafe, Billy Gene's Restaurant

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle