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Experience nature in the TX Hill Country with proximity to shopping & dining

Bedrooms Studio
Property type cabin
Minimum Stay 2 nights
Popular Features
  • Internet
  • Parking
  • Outdoor Grill
  • non smoking only
  • Air Conditioning


Minimum Stay
2 nights

Popular Features
  • Internet
  • Parking
  • Outdoor Grill
  • non smoking only
  • Air Conditioning

About the property

Experience ranch living in a nicely appointed, very private stone cabin

Los Madrones, a private ranch in western Travis County, in Central Texas, offers visitors the opportunity to 'rent-a-ranch' for a while, for nature photography, birding, or just relaxing. The 400-acre property features limestone bluffs, Little Bee Creek, open pastures, and hilltop vistas stretching past the Colorado River. Ranch owners Julie and Mike Murphy converted the property to wildlife conservation in 2000, and have managed it since then to improve habitat for turkey, quail, and other species.

Four or five pairs of Golden-cheeked warblers nest on the property every spring; and with luck, ranch visitors may observe and photograph this endangered species.

More Details

Mike Murphy
Member since: 2009
Speaks: english, spanish, dutch
Response time:
Within a few hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
February 26, 2017

Guestbook comments from the owner

Truly awesome experience, it's hard to imagine that Los Madrones is only 25 miles from Austin yet a world away in terms of peace and quiet. The Casita is beautiful and the ranch is ripe for exploration. Thanks for your hospitality! I enjoyed every minute.
May 2013
  • 1 of 2


Excellent! 4.7/5 -
(31 traveler reviews)

Experience nature in the TX Hill Country with proximity to shopping & dining
average rating of 4.677419 based on 33 reviews


  • 4 of 5

Very quaint and quiet. Inside was clean. No TV, but internet access available. Stove is not connected to gas. Enjoy the surrounding areas.

  • Submitted: Aug 1, 2016
  • Stayed: Jul 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Houston, Texas

Stunning property just outside Austin. Unbelievable location. Poperty has private swimming hole!!!

  • 5 of 5

My family and I stayed 2 nights at the casita. I can't even begin to tell you how beautiful this location is. The website doesn't begin to do it justice. The property is 400+ acres of rolling hill country hills. We pulled up to the casita and were just in time to witness a stunning hill country sunset (it's over a mile drive just to get to the house from the gate on Hamilton Pool road!! So amazing and secluded!!). My kids were so excited that we immediately hopped out of the car and walked down the hill to explore the property. We lucked out because all the rain has created a beautiful private swimming hole on Los Madrones property. There is also a creek that has waterfalls and is crystal clear and calm enough for us to walk most of the way down to the swimming hole in the creek (my kids are 4,7,11 and everyone was fine walking in the creek). The water hole is spectacular. Honestly we were thinking of skipping Jacobs Well and Hamilton Pool because we had our own swimming hole!! But we decided to visit both of those locations too since we already had reservations.

This little casita is located in a perfect location. 7 minutes to Hamilton Pool/Reimers Ranch/Westcave preserve. Just 10 minutes to Whole Foods and all the shops you can possibly need. 15 minutes to Dripping Springs. Only 40 minutes to downtown Austin. 30 minutes to Lake Travis. 30 minutes in the other direction to Wimberley. Close enough for us to hike enchanted rock and visit Fredericksberg as well (about 80 minutes away).

We will absolutely be back, but I think next time we will make sure the water is still flowing so that we can hopefully swim in the private water hole longer than we did this time. We could have easily spent all day just exploring the owners land, but I had planned too many other adventures, so we only spent a few hours actually exploring the property. If you go here, definitely plan for half a day just hanging out at the casita/exploring the land. You won't regret it!

  • Submitted: Jun 8, 2016
  • Stayed: Jun 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: We're so very glad you and your family made time to explore and enjoy our ranch! Especially including the swimming holes along Little Bee Creek. This area has been blessed with over 20" of rainfall so far this year, and the vegetation simply astounds, and the creek flows merrily day after day. Even should this rain stop falling for the remainder of the summer, the creek will flow all the way into August, allowing future guests the chance to enjoy their own private swimming hole. Julie & Mike
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Love the water fall so much

  • 5 of 5

Mike was so nice to us. He took us around his 400 acres ranch on his buggy. The water falls is so beautiful. Our daughter love it. We love the feeling that the water fall was ours. Nobody there. So privacy. The birds sang every morning. Butterflies, birds are everywhere. The cottage was clean and cute. Would love to come back soon.

  • Submitted: Jun 2, 2016
  • Stayed: May 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Comfortable and beautiful scenery

  • 5 of 5

The casita was clean, comfortable, and spacious! The drive in was gorgeous... Close enough to town but far removed enough you feel you are "out in the country". The walk to the waterfall is worth it!! And the view from the hot tub is indescribable ! Mike was friendly and knowledgable of the area.

  • Submitted: May 25, 2016
  • Stayed: May 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Great Accommodations and Hosts

  • 5 of 5

My husband and I spent 3 nights in the Casita. We came to the area to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary and for some bird photography. The Casita was larger than I had expected and I was pleased with the roominess. It was clean and seemed well-maintained. We were not aware that the stove would not be available for our use, but in the end, it didn't matter.

Breakfast our first morning was wonderful. Mike visited with us and made sure that we had everything we had requested.

My husband and I enjoyed a nice morning hike where we took advantage of an encounter with a Western Diamondback Rattlesnake. We enjoyed an impromptu photo session with the snake. The creek and swimming holes were a delight to see. We also got to see and photograph a Summer Tanager. We had good habitat and a hummingbird feeder outside our Casita door, so bird photography opportunities were good, when the sky wasn't overcast.

Unfortunately, the second night of our stay, my husband became quite ill from what we assume was food poisoning (from a local restaurant). Our hosts were wonderful! They sent over a care package, which got him through a rough couple days.

The overcast skies kept me from wandering the land too much for photography on my own, but Mike and Julie invited me to sit on their patio and enjoy the birds from there. Mike joined me and shared a few photography tips while we visited.

We would like a do-over with sun and good health. We'll be back!

  • Submitted: Apr 18, 2016
  • Stayed: Apr 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: So glad y'all were able to enjoy the property in full blush of spring, even though the skies proved overcast much of the time! And, definite bummer about your husband drawing the stomach bug card, nothing worse than being on the road with something like that. I'm glad we could cobble together something of a care package to ease his journey back to good health! Julie and I look forward to seeing y'all again another time.
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Rustic and peaceful!

  • 5 of 5

We had a great time in the Hill Country and loved our stay at the Murphy's cottage. It's very tranquil and pretty, plus it had a nice kitchen area! The best surprise was the portable crib in the closet - we thought our 2yo would have to sleep with us but he ended up having his own bed with a mattress! Our only regret was not getting to explore the property more. We definitely recommend this place!

  • Submitted: Mar 26, 2016
  • Stayed: Mar 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
30 Miles
Austin Bergstrom International
Nearest Train
27 Miles
Austin Amtrak
Car: recommended

Other Activities: rock climbing & mountain biking is 4 miles away at Reimer's Ranch, a county park.


Rates & Availability

Dripping Springs Cabin Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
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Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
My Standard Rate
2 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Tax Rate 6.0%

Breakfast is available for $15 per day for two people, and requires 48 hours advance notice.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
Enter dates for accurate pricing
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Dripping Springs Cabin Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cabin
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 600 sq. ft.
Location Type:
  • Rural
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alarm Clock
  • Basic Soaps
  • Bottled Water
  • Ceiling Fans
  • Filtered Water
  • Firewood
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Parking
  • Shampoo
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Wireless Internet
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Freezer
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Refrigerator
  • Toaster
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 4 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , shower
  • Studio, Sleeps 4
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double , 1 sleep sofa /futon
  • Our Casita has one double bed and one futon in the same room. In a pinch, there's a cot that can also be set up. Note: owners' residence is 100' east of the Casita.
  • Books
  • Radio
  • Barbecue
  • Bicycles
  • Deck / Patio
  • Outdoor Grill
  • Small Cooler
  • Unscreened Porch / Veranda
  • Wood Deck
  • 1 bicycles
  • non smoking only
  • pets not allowed
  • unsuitable for elderly or infirm
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Onsite Services:
  • Car Optional
  • cinemas
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • waterfalls
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horseback riding
  • scenic drives
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • swimming
Los Madrones features 400 acres of beautiful Texas hill country for our guests to explore. The ranch has a 3.5 mile road that loops around the back of the ranch, and guests are encouraged to walk it to view the terrain. Other trails lead to Little Bee Creek, culminating in a beautiful waterfall.

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