Tonkawa Falls is a swimming hole in Crawford in a 30-minute drive from Waco. It’s located in a city park and is known for its waterfall and cliffs. From the height of 15 feet, the water drops into a spacious swimming hole, which is good for swimming, cliff jumping, sliding down on tubes, and even kayaking. This place is most popular with family visitors, who bring their kids, pets, towels, and picnic coolers to spend a few hours relaxing in the sun and having fun in the water. Join in!
Access and Parking
Tonkawa Falls Park is located just 30 minutes away from Waco and is easy to find (4th Street, Crawford). It’s a popular place and entrance is free. Parking costs $10 per car, but on some days, it’s free as well.
There are no restroom or shower facilities. If you bring food, you can make use of the picnic tables. There is also a clubhouse, which overlooks the falls and is available for rent.
The swimming hole at Tonkawa Falls is deep enough for swimming and diving and big enough to receive many visitors. Most of them are children, jumping, splashing, and playing in the water. The water levels change drastically depending on the rainfall, and during dry periods, the waterfall disappears and the swimming area is closed. Be aware that there are no professional lifeguards on duty, so please be careful, watch your children, and bring lifejackets for weak swimmers.
There is a rock ledge running along the picnic side of the falls – a perfect place for hanging out with kids and some easy jumping. On the other side, there is a large cliff wall, allowing for some really exciting jumping. Although cliff jumping is an extremely popular activity at Tonkawa Falls, check the water levels before giving it a try.
There are signs prohibiting taking any food or drinks down the steps to the water. This is made to reduce the amount of litter in the creek as well as in the Bosque River, where the creek flows. Nevertheless, there are picnic tables and plentiful benches up on top and in the parking area. Some visitors, however, violate the rules and do bring food and beverages down, but they risk encountering the police who patrol the park regularly. Be aware that the rules also prohibit alcohol.
For those who like active outdoor recreation, there are basketball and volleyball courts available. Kayaking is an option when the riverbed gets full.
30 minutes from Waco, TX
1 hour 40 minutes from Austin, TX
1 hour 50 minutes from Dallas, TX
Hotels and rentals
If you're considering staying for one or even a few nights, there are plenty of options available near the beach. Chose your preferred accomodation type and your favourite room provider: