Camping is one of the best ways for families to unplug from the stresses of the world and plug into quality time with each other. Texas, with its short winters and a variety of landscapes, offers a plethora of camping experiences that any adult or child will love. That’s why this list of best places to go camping in Texas is sure to please anyone ready to embrace the great outdoors.

Colorado Bend State Park

Best camping in Texas Colorado Bend State Park

This popular state park sits two hours north of Austin and draws visitors to see Gorman Falls and paddle the river. Reservations for camping are strongly encouraged, and those who want to visit the caverns must make reservations for a tour.

The hikes offer a great view of the falls, but it’s best for hikers to be prepared to handle rougher terrain and longer walks. Colorado Bend State Park works for adventure seekers or those who simply want to drink in the wilderness.

Primitive walk-up sites start at only $10 a night while group sites near the river reach $75 a night. There are plenty of options in between.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Fire ring
  • Water nearby
  • Lantern post
  • Restrooms nearby

Dinosaur Valley State Park

Dinosaur State Park camping in Texas.

Budding archaeologists will love walking in the footprints of dinosaurs in the Paluxy River. Just a short hop from Fort Worth, Dinosaur Valley State Park has 20 miles of trails and plenty of places to bike, fish, or swim, which makes it an awesome place to go camping in Texas.

This location works for those hoping to bring an RV or tent camp, and visitors can reserve a place beforehand or take their chances and just show up when they are ready. A simple $7 daily fee applies for visitors 13 and older, though campsite costs range from $15-$60 a night depending on the size of the group and what amenities are available.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water and electrical hookup
  • 30 amp hookup (some campsites)
  • Fire ring and/or grill
  • Lantern post
  • Access to bathrooms requires a half-mile walk

Hueco Tanks State Park

Hueco Tanks State Park in TX

This West Texas state park takes visitors into the past as they tour the images left by people from centuries before. Rock climbing, hiking, or simply taking in the nature in this area are also options.

Most people only come to Hueco Tanks State Park for the day, but it is possible to camp here. Make reservations early since there are only 20 campsites. All guided tours have to be booked at least a week in advance.

To protect the park, it is necessary to get a permit to visit. There are a limited amount offered a day, so planning ahead gives visitors the most if this is where they choose to adventure.

Available Amenities

  • picnic table
  • water
  • restrooms close
  • 50 amp hookup (some campsites)

Balmorhea State Park

Texas Balmorhea Stat Park campgrounds

The world’s largest spring-fed swimming pool resides in Toyahvale, Texas at Balmorhea State Park. The obvious main attraction is the pool where visitors can swim or scuba dive. It’s also fun to geocache or bird watch in this West Texas location.

The daily entrance fee is only $7 and includes access to the pool. Be advised that repairs to the pool started in September of 2019. Check to make sure this park is open before planning a trip.

Pay between $15-$30 a night depending on if you need a small or group site.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water and electrical hookup
  • Restrooms nearby

Ray Roberts Lake State Park

Ray Roberts State Park camping in Texas

On the edge of the DFW Metroplex sits Ray Roberts Lake State Park. Rollerblade, go backpacking, or try fishing at this laid back location. Group hikes and other special events occur often. Check out the Marina during your stay and get your exercise on a hike.

Those 13 and over pay $7 for a daily pass.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Outdoor grill
  • Fire ring
  • Lantern post
  • 20/30/50-amp electric
  • Restrooms with showers nearby

Goose Island State Park

Goose Island campsites

There are plenty of sites for camping while enjoying the breeze off the coast at Goose Island State Park. Camping, hiking, and fishing are great ways to spend time here, though swimming is not recommended. Beware of alligators since they are sometimes spotted in the area.

Guests should check the website for closures before trekking to this state park. Areas were affected by Hurricane Harvey and construction and repairs are ongoing.

The entrance fee is $5 a day for visitors 13 and over. Campsites range from $10-$64 depending on what is needed.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Outdoor grill
  • Fire ring
  • Water hookup
  • Electric hookup
  • Lantern post
  • Restrooms nearby

Eisenhower State Park

Best camping in Texas, Eisenhower State Park

Ride an ATV or dirt bike as long as you possess an OHV permit at Eisehower State Park.

For those who desire a semi-roughing it experience while camping in Texas, try staying in Ike’s Cabin. It allows visitors to sleep inside but does not have bathrooms or cooking areas in the cabin. It is possible to enjoy the screened-in porch and the lovely view each morning from this cabin.

Locate just an hour north of Dallas, this park offers day passes for $5 a day for visitors 13 and older.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water hookup
  • Sewer hookup
  • Electric hookup
  • Lantern post
  • Restrooms nearby
  • Fire ring with grill

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

If size is a factor, head straight for Palo Duro Canyon State Park since it is the 2nd largest canyon in the entire country. With more than 30 miles of trails equipped for walking, biking, or horse riding, visitors can spend days discovering the beauty that waits in the canyon.

Want to take in a show? Visit the canyon during summer when the TEXAS Outdoor Musical lets the audience experience a dramatization of what life might have been like for the early settlers.

Day passes are $8 for anyone 13 and older.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Fire ring
  • Tent pad
  • Water hookup
  • 30/50 amp hookup
  • Lantern post
  • Paved sites
  • Restrooms with showers nearby

Big Bend National State Park

Big Bend National State Park camping

Big Bend National State park nestles against the border of Mexico and offers visitors a surreal experience. Take the Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive for spectacular view. Visit the Fossil Discovery Exhibits next to step back in time and learn about park history.

The park site offers itineraries depending on how long guests can stay. This keeps visitors from missing any highlights.

Fees are dependent on a variety of factors. Find the fee schedule here.

Available Amenities

Each campsite has its own amenities. RV camping is also available.

Caprock Canyons State Park

Caprock Canyons State Park

Bats and bison and biking, oh my! That’s what visitors encounter when they come to Caprock Canyons State Park. Ninety miles of trails offer plenty of opportunities to take in wildlife and unwind while camping here.

Water activities are also available at this park located in the Texas panhandle thanks to Lake Theo. Remember that only experienced bikers need to brave the trails that are marked difficult for safety reasons.

Only $5 a day gets guest 13 and over a day pass. Campsites range between $10-$22 a night.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Fire ring
  • Water nearby
  • Shade shelter
  • Lantern post
  • Restrooms nearby

Lost Maples State Natural Area

Lost Maples State Natural Area

Known for fall colors, the Sabine River, and proximity to San Antonio, Lost Maples State Natural Area is the perfect place to practice photography while hiking through beautiful terrain. The natural area doesn’t have cell phone service, and this can be truly appreciated by anyone hoping to unplug.

Fishing and birding are popular activities, and $6 a day gets anyone 13 and over in the park. Pay $10-$20 a night for campsites.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water hookup
  • 30 amp hookup
  • Fire ring
  • Back-in RV parking
  • Showers and restrooms nearby
  • Primitive sites offer no amenities

Inks Lake State Park

Inks Lake Stat Park camping in TX

Just an hour out of Austin it’s possible to experience nature on hiking trails or play a pickup game of volleyball. Inks Lake State Park offers a well-rounded experience with close to 200 campsites and 22 cabins.

Explore waterfalls or take a dip in the Devil’s Waterhole. It’s only $6 a day for all these opportunities and many more.

Campsites range from $11-$23 a night.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water hookup
  • 30/50 amp hookup
  • Fire ring and/or grill
  • Restrooms and showers close
  • Wheelchair accessible sites available

Davis Mountain State Park

Davis Mountain State Park

Those seeking tranquility will enjoy hiking, stargazing, or driving through the mountains at this West Texas park. Bird lovers can visit the bird blind to see feathered friends and check out birds at the watering and feeding stations.

It’s also possible to bring a horse into certain areas of the park to ride the trails.
The day use fee is $6 for anyone 13 and over. Campsite fees range from $10-$25 a night.

Available Amenities

Lake Bob Sandlin State Park

Lake Bob Sandlin State Park

For a laid back experience, come rest under the tall trees at Lake Bob Sandlin State Park. There’s an abundance of plants and animals, and those who love to fish will feel right at home.

The lake allows opportunities for water activities, but fall is when this area truly shines. The foliage is breathtaking and worth the trip.

It’s only $4 a day for a pass for those 13 and over. Pay between $10-$18 for a campsite. Cabins and screened shelters are also available to rent.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water and electrical hookup
  • 30 amp hookup
  • Fire ring and/or grill
  • Chemical toilets nearby

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Enchanted Rock State National Area offers great camping.

A Hill Country favorite, the dome at Enchanted Rock beckons to visitors from all around the area. This is an ideal place to stargaze, hike, and rock climb.

Pets are only allowed on one trail and in certain picnic areas, so this park isn’t exactly pet-friendly. However, there is plenty to do even if the dog stays at home.

Pay only $7 for a day pass for guest 13 and over. Reserve a day pass up to one month in advance. Renting a campsite is only $14-$18 a night unless renting a group site.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water nearby
  • 30 amp hookup
  • Restroom nearby
  • Only tent camping allowed
  • Fire ring and outdoor grill

Mustang Island State Park

Camping in TX at Mustang Island State Park

A day at the beach looks pretty great when taking in Mustang Island State Park. There are the usual beach activities, but it’s also possible to bird watch, mountain bike, or simply hike the trails and enjoy the view. Try the paddling trail if adventure calls and stop by the local shop for refreshments after for snacks.

Those 13 and older only pay $5 to enter the park. Plan to pay between $10-$20 a night for campsites.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water hookup
  • 50 amp hookup
  • Outdoor grill
  • Restrooms and showers
  • Primitive sites don’t offer amenities

Big Thicket National Preserve

Big Thicket National Preserve in Texas.

Venture to Southeast Texas for hunting, hiking, and paddling. It’s possible to observe a multitude of ecosystems while also free camping in the back country. A free camping permit is required. There are over 100,00 acres to explore, so take the time to invest in learning about this unique, diverse area.

There are no entrance fees at Big Thicket. Pick up your free camping permit for free at the visitor center. It’s a good idea to make reservations. Campgrounds are not developed and there are no amenities.

Available Amenities

  • None

Garner State Park

Garner State Park in Texas

Venture to the Frio River in Uvalde County. The Hill Country offers beauty at every turn as you bike, geocache, or even play a round of miniature golf. Bring a tent to camp or reserve a cabin or screened shelter where you can rest. Don’t forget to join the Summer Dance if visiting in the right season. It’s a popular tradition that spans almost a century.

Expect to pay between $15-$35 for a campsite. It cost $8 a day to enter the park if guests are 13 and older.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water and electrical hookup
  • 30 and 50 amp hookup
  • Fire ring and/or grill
  • Lantern post

Guadalupe River State Park

Guadalupe River State Park

Known for great swimming, Guadalupe River State Park has even more to offer guests. Water enthusiasts can definitely take a dip or tube down the river, but there are also over a dozen hike and bike trails.

Borrow an explorer pack from the Discovery Center to get a closer look at nature, and run to the shop for items you might have forgotten.

Entrance is only $7 for people 13 and over. Campsites range from $15-$24 a night.

Available Amenities

  • Picnic table
  • Water and electrical hookup
  • 30/50 amp hookup
  • Fire ring with grill
  • Restrooms close

Padre Island National Seashore

Camping at Padre Island National Seashore

Historians, bird watchers, and water lovers find themselves at home when visiting Padre Island National Seashore. Learn more about the shipwrecks that occurred in the 16th century or simply roam over 70 miles of untainted coast.

Making reservations is not an option here because camping is first come, first-served. Make sure to have a camping permit and remember that there are no RV hook-ups. There are five campgrounds available with a variety of amenities.

Fees range depending on how long campers stay and what pass is purchased. Check rates here.

Available Amenities

  • Flush toilets
  • Cold-water showers
  • Picnic table
  • Grill

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20 Best Places to go Camping in Texas. #TentsnTrees