Situated about halfway between Boerne and Kerrville, the quirky town of Comfort was founded in 1854 on the banks of the Cypress Creek by German freethinkers and agnostics (the town’s first church wasn’t built until 1900). The town’s founders were also opposed to slavery, and sided against the Confederacy in the Civil War. Look for the Treu de Union (Loyalty to the Union) monument in the center of town (High St., between Second and Third sts.), which honors 68 townsmen who were killed by Confederate soldiers in the 1862 Battle of Nueces. 

The rough-hewn limestone buildings in the center of Comfort may contain the most complete 19th-century business district in Texas. Noted San Antonio architect Alfred Giles designed several of the structures. These days, most of the buildings, especially those on High Street, host an eclectic array of shops, such as The Elephant Story, 723 High St. (www.the-elephant-story.com; tel. 830/995-3133), a nonprofit selling merchandise—everything from sleep masks to pen holders—to benefit elephant conservation in Asia. Christy’s Boutique, 704 High St. (tel. 830/995-2493), carries colorful, distinctive fashions, some imports, some local, at reasonable prices. Around the corner, The Tinsmith’s Wife, 405 7th St. (www.tinsmithswife.com; tel. 830/995-5539), is the go-to spot for needlecrafters, knitters, and fabric artists of all types. There are antiques shops scattered all around town, but more than 30 dealers gather on High Street at the Comfort Antique Mall, 734 High St. (www.visitcomfortantiquemall.com; tel. 830/995-4678). Hill Country Distillers, 723 Front St. (www.hillcountrytxdistillers.com; tel. 830/995-2924) creates intriguing spirits crafted with cactus and jalapeño. 

In all cases, check ahead for hours, but as in other small towns around here, expect lots of places to be closed Monday through Wednesday. For more information, contact the Comfort Chamber of Commerce, 630 Hwy. 27 (www.comfortchamber.com; tel. 830/995-3131), open Tuesday through Saturday from 10am to 3pm.

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Where to Eat in Comfort

Take a shopping break on the cheery back patio of Comfort Pizza, 802 High St. (tel. 830/995-5959), a converted gas station serving thin-crust pies. Toppings include everything from lime-chile spiced pineapple to fresh basil. The weekly changing menu at 814, A Texas Bistro, 713 High St. (www.814atexasbistro.com; tel. 830/995-4990), might include grilled lamb chops with a balsamic glaze or sauteed salmon with spinach risotto.  

Where to Stay in Comfort

If kicking back on a rocking chair overlooking a quiet courtyard sounds appealing, consider spending the night at Hotel Faust, 717 High St. (www.hotelfaust.com; tel. 830/995-3030). A Texas Historic Landmark—it was built as an inn in the 1880s by Alfred Giles—the boutique hotel has six airy rooms ($185–$260), a log cabin ($260), and a cottage ($300).

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Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.