The clear, blue Blanco River runs right through its namesake town.
The white limestone riverbed and rocky ledges prompted the Spanish name, but this being Texas both the town and river are pronounced "Blank O".
Even though the county seat moved 13 miles north to Johnson City in 1891, Blanco is known for its historic courthouse building and classic town square. The courthouse is an outstanding example of Second Empire style architecture and has been called one of the finest examples of courthouse architecture from the late 19th century in Texas.
The Blanco State Park, located on the southwest edge of town, is a good place to enjoy the cool, clear river. A nature trail and two-block city park lead from the town square right down to the state park.
The square is ringed with restaurants, cafes, art galleries, and other local businesses. It also hosts the Lavender Festival each spring featuring arts and crafts and local lavender products from area farms.
With a population of 1,669 Blanco has all the charms of a small town, but plenty of services too including grocery and convenience stores, post office, library, police, a volunteer fire department, and EMS. Larger medical facilities are located nearby in Austin and San Antonio.