best camping spots in texas for families
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Best Camping Spots in Texas for Families: Top 10 Picks

exas offers a diverse range of camping spots perfect for family adventures. From scenic state parks to serene lakeside campsites, there’s something for every outdoor enthusiast. Here are the top 10 best camping spots in Texas for families:

1. Garner State Park

Garner State Park
Garner State Park

Location: Concan, TX

Garner State Park is a beloved destination for many Texas families. Situated along the Frio River, this park is known for its picturesque views, family-friendly hikes, and refreshing swimming spots. During the summer, families can enjoy nightly dances at the pavilion, making it a vibrant and social camping experience​.

Activities:

  • Swimming in the Frio River
  • Hiking trails
  • Summer dances
  • Kayaking and paddleboarding

2. Inks Lake State Park

Inks Lake State Park
Inks Lake State Park

Location: Burnet, TX

Inks Lake State Park is a favorite for water enthusiasts. The park’s Devil’s Waterhole is a popular spot for swimming and cliff jumping. The lake offers opportunities for kayaking, fishing, and canoeing, making it ideal for adventurous families. The park also features nearly 200 campsites, many of which are right by the water​​.

Activities:

  • Swimming at Devil’s Waterhole
  • Kayaking and canoeing
  • Fishing
  • Hiking and birdwatching

3. Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park
Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Location: Canyon, TX

Known as the “Grand Canyon of Texas,” Palo Duro Canyon offers stunning landscapes and a variety of outdoor activities. Families can explore hiking trails, go mountain biking, or even enjoy horseback riding. The park also offers camping spots with breathtaking views of the canyon.

Activities:

  • Hiking to Lighthouse Rock
  • Mountain biking
  • Horseback riding
  • Zip-lining

4. Colorado Bend State Park

Colorado Bend State Park
Colorado Bend State Park

Location: Bend, TX

Colorado Bend State Park is perfect for families looking to experience unspoiled wilderness. The park features hiking trails, cave exploring, and the beautiful Gorman Falls. Visitors can also enjoy kayaking, swimming, and fishing in the Colorado River. The park offers drive-up and primitive camping sites​.

Activities:

  • Hiking to Gorman Falls
  • Cave exploring
  • Kayaking and fishing
  • Swimming at Spicewood Springs

5. Guadalupe River State Park

Guadalupe River State Park
Guadalupe River State Park

Location: Spring Branch, TX

This park is a haven for families who love water activities. The Guadalupe River is perfect for swimming, tubing, and fishing. The park also offers miles of hiking and biking trails and an on-site Discovery Center for kids. It’s a great spot for both RV and tent camping​.

Activities:

  • Swimming and tubing in the river
  • Fishing
  • Hiking and biking
  • Birdwatching

6. Caddo Lake State Park

Location: Karnack, TX

Caddo Lake State Park offers a unique camping experience with its bayou environment. Families can paddle among the cypress trees draped with Spanish moss, go fishing, and enjoy birdwatching. The park provides both RV sites and primitive camping options​.

Activities:

  • Canoeing and kayaking
  • Fishing
  • Birdwatching
  • Hiking trails

7. Caprock Canyons State Park

Location: Quitaque, TX

Caprock Canyons is home to the Texas State Bison Herd and offers over 90 miles of hiking and biking trails. Families can enjoy swimming and fishing in Lake Theo, and the park’s rugged terrain provides stunning vistas and plenty of wildlife spotting opportunities​.

Activities:

  • Hiking and biking
  • Swimming in Lake Theo
  • Fishing
  • Wildlife viewing

8. Big Bend National Park

Location: Big Bend, TX

Big Bend National Park offers a truly rugged and remote camping experience. The park encompasses the Chisos Mountains and the Chihuahuan Desert, providing opportunities for hiking, stargazing, and exploring historical sites. The Rio Grande offers options for kayaking and canoeing​.

Activities:

  • Hiking in the Chisos Mountains
  • Kayaking and canoeing on the Rio Grande
  • Stargazing
  • Exploring historical sites

9. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Location: Llano, TX

Enchanted Rock is famous for its massive pink granite dome, offering excellent hiking and rock climbing opportunities. Families can enjoy camping under the stars and exploring the park’s diverse trails. The nearby town of Fredericksburg offers additional cultural and recreational activities​.

Activities:

  • Hiking to the summit of Enchanted Rock
  • Rock climbing
  • Wildlife viewing
  • Visiting nearby Fredericksburg

10. Mustang Island State Park

Location: Port Aransas, TX

For families who love the beach, Mustang Island State Park is a great choice. The park offers five miles of coastline for swimming, fishing, and sunbathing. Campers can also explore the bayside via kayak or enjoy beachcombing along the shore.

Activities:

  • Beach camping
  • Swimming and sunbathing
  • Fishing
  • Kayaking

These top 10 camping spots in Texas provide a variety of experiences, from beachside relaxation to rugged canyon adventures, ensuring that every family can find the perfect destination for their next camping trip.

FAQs about the Best Camping Spots in Texas for Families

What are the best camping spots in Texas for families?

The top camping spots in Texas for families include:

  • Garner State Park
  • Inks Lake State Park
  • Palo Duro Canyon State Park
  • Colorado Bend State Park
  • Guadalupe River State Park
  • Caddo Lake State Park
  • Caprock Canyons State Park
  • Big Bend National Park
  • Enchanted Rock State Natural Area
  • Mustang Island State Park.

What activities can families enjoy at Garner State Park?

At Garner State Park, families can enjoy:

  • Swimming in the Frio River
  • Hiking on various trails
  • Kayaking and paddleboarding
  • Summer evening dances​​.

Are there any water activities available at Inks Lake State Park?

Yes, Inks Lake State Park offers numerous water activities, including:

  • Swimming at Devil’s Waterhole
  • Kayaking and canoeing
  • Fishing.

What makes Palo Duro Canyon State Park unique for camping?

Palo Duro Canyon, known as the “Grand Canyon of Texas,” offers:

  • Stunning canyon landscapes
  • Hiking to Lighthouse Rock
  • Mountain biking
  • Horseback riding and zip-lining)​.

Can I go fishing at Colorado Bend State Park?

Yes, Colorado Bend State Park offers excellent fishing opportunities in the Colorado River. Other activities include hiking to Gorman Falls and kayaking​​.

What amenities are available at Guadalupe River State Park?

Guadalupe River State Park offers:

  • Swimming and tubing in the river
  • Fishing gear loans
  • Miles of hiking and biking trails
  • An on-site Discovery Center for kids.

Is there birdwatching available at Caddo Lake State Park?

Yes, Caddo Lake State Park is a great location for birdwatching, along with canoeing, kayaking, and fishing in the bayous​​.

What can families do at Caprock Canyons State Park?

Families can enjoy:

  • Hiking and biking
  • Swimming and fishing in Lake Theo
  • Observing the Texas State Bison Herd and other wildlife​​.

What are the main attractions at Big Bend National Park?

Big Bend National Park offers:

  • Hiking in the Chisos Mountains
  • Kayaking and canoeing on the Rio Grande
  • Stargazing
  • Exploring historical sites like Langford Hot Springs.

Are pets allowed in Enchanted Rock State Natural Area?

Yes, pets are allowed in the day-use areas, campgrounds, and on the Loop Trail at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, but they must be kept on a leash at all times and are not allowed in primitive camping areas​.

What beach activities can families enjoy at Mustang Island State Park?

Families visiting Mustang Island State Park can enjoy:

  • Beach camping
  • Swimming and sunbathing
  • Fishing
  • Kayaking in the bayside​.

Do these parks require reservations for camping?

Yes, many of these parks, especially popular ones like Garner State Park and Inks Lake State Park, require reservations, particularly during peak seasons. It is recommended to book well in advance​.

What are the best times of year to camp in Texas?

The best times to camp in Texas are during the spring (March to May) and fall (September to November) when the weather is milder. Summer can be very hot, especially in areas like the Texas Hill Country and West Texas​​.

Are there any special considerations for camping with children in Texas?

When camping with children, consider parks with family-friendly amenities such as playgrounds, easy hiking trails, swimming areas, and educational programs. It’s also important to check for parks that provide clean restrooms and showers​.

Evie Carrick Evie Carrick

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