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Camping Texas: Our Favorite Locations And Pro Tips


Modified: January 3, 2024

by Carmelita Holmes



Welcome, fellow adventurers, to the wild and wonderful world of camping in Texas! With its vast landscapes, diverse ecosystems, and breathtaking natural beauty, the Lone Star State offers a myriad of opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts to immerse themselves in nature and embark on thrilling camping adventures.


From the majestic mountains of the Guadalupe Mountains National Park to the enchanting rock formations of Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, Texas is a haven for those seeking an escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Whether you’re a seasoned camper or a novice looking to dip your toes into the wilderness, Texas has something to offer for everyone.


Prepare to be awestruck as you explore some of the most awe-inspiring locations Texas has to offer. Venture deep into the heart of Big Bend National Park, where towering canyons, panoramic vistas, and the mighty Rio Grande await. Or discover the rugged beauty of Palo Duro Canyon State Park, often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of Texas.” These are just a taste of the incredible camping destinations that await you in the Lone Star State.


But it’s not just the stunning landscapes that make camping in Texas so special. The state boasts an impressive array of outdoor activities to suit every interest and skill level. Hiking, fishing, birdwatching, stargazing – the possibilities are endless.


Whether you prefer pitching a tent under a starlit sky or parking your RV in a comfortable campground, Texas has no shortage of options to accommodate your camping style. So gather your camping gear, pack your sense of adventure, and let’s embark on a journey through some of our favorite camping locations in the great state of Texas.


Big Bend National Park

Prepare to be transported to a land of awe-inspiring beauty and untamed wilderness in Big Bend National Park. Located in West Texas, this national park offers a spectacular mix of towering mountains, vast desert landscapes, and a winding river carving its way through the canyons.


One of the standout features of Big Bend is its sheer size, covering over 800,000 acres of diverse terrain. With such a vast expanse to explore, you’ll have endless opportunities for hiking, camping, and wildlife spotting. Strap on your hiking boots and venture into the Chisos Mountains, home to challenging trails like the South Rim and Emory Peak, rewarding hikers with breathtaking panoramic vistas of the surrounding desert.


For a more leisurely experience, take a scenic drive along the Ross Maxwell Scenic Drive, where you’ll witness sweeping views of canyons, unique rock formations, and the remnants of ancient volcanic activity. Don’t forget your camera – every turn offers a picture-perfect moment to capture the essence of the park.


As the sun sets, prepare to be enchanted by the dark skies of Big Bend. The park is designated as an International Dark Sky Park, making it a haven for stargazers. The absence of light pollution allows the stars to dazzle in their full glory, offering a mesmerizing celestial experience.


Camping options within Big Bend National Park are just as diverse as its landscapes. Choose from developed campgrounds near the main visitor centers, or venture off the beaten path and opt for backcountry camping, where you can truly immerse yourself in the wilderness. Just make sure you obtain the necessary permits and follow Leave No Trace principles to preserve the park’s natural beauty.


Big Bend National Park is a place where adventure and serenity coexist. Whether you’re conquering challenging trails, marveling at the unique geological formations, or simply taking in the beauty of the rugged desert, this iconic Texas destination is a must-visit for any camping enthusiast.


Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Prepare to be awestruck as you venture into the majestic Palo Duro Canyon State Park, often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of Texas.” Located in the Panhandle region, this hidden gem offers picturesque views, fascinating geological formations, and a wide range of outdoor activities for adventurers of all ages.


With its vibrant, multi-hued layers of rock formations, Palo Duro Canyon is a sight to behold. As you hike or bike along the numerous trails, you’ll be treated to stunning vistas at every turn. The Lighthouse Trail, a moderate trek, is a favorite among visitors due to its unique rock formation resembling a lighthouse. Be sure to bring plenty of water and sturdy footwear, as the sun can be intense and the terrain rugged.


Looking for a more leisurely way to explore the canyon? Hop on a guided horseback ride and soak in the natural beauty while channeling your inner cowboy or cowgirl. The park offers various equestrian trails, providing an unforgettable experience as you traverse the captivating landscape atop a trusty steed.


For those seeking a camping experience like no other, Palo Duro Canyon State Park has you covered. Choose from a variety of campsites, including tent camping, RV camping, and even equestrian camping. Wake up to the soothing sound of nature, breathe in the fresh canyon air, and spend your days hiking, picnicking, and enjoying the serenity of this unique Texas destination.


One of the highlights of visiting Palo Duro Canyon is the opportunity to witness the mesmerizing Texas Outdoor Musical, the official musical of the state of Texas. Held in an outdoor amphitheater within the park, this captivating show portrays the history and culture of the Lone Star State through song, dance, and thrilling performances. It’s a true Texas experience you won’t want to miss.


Whether you’re an avid hiker, a nature enthusiast, or simply looking for a place to unwind and reconnect with the beauty of the outdoors, Palo Duro Canyon State Park offers an unforgettable camping experience. Immerse yourself in the geological wonders, marvel at the expansive vistas, and create memories that will last a lifetime in this Texas treasure.


Guadalupe Mountains National Park

Get ready to embark on an extraordinary adventure in Guadalupe Mountains National Park, home to the highest peak in Texas and a treasure trove of natural wonders. Located in West Texas, this rugged and remote national park offers unparalleled opportunities for hiking, wildlife viewing, and immersing yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the Guadalupe Mountains.


The crown jewel of the park is Guadalupe Peak, standing tall at an impressive 8,749 feet. Hiking to the summit of this iconic peak is a must-do for any outdoor enthusiast. As you ascend upwards, you’ll be rewarded with sweeping vistas that extend for miles, showcasing the vast expanse of desert and mountains below. The trail to Guadalupe Peak is challenging but well worth the effort for the sense of accomplishment and the stunning panoramic views that await you at the top.


But the adventure doesn’t stop at Guadalupe Peak. The park offers a multitude of other hiking trails catering to various difficulty levels and interests. Explore the dramatic limestone canyons of McKittrick Canyon, renowned for its vibrant fall foliage. Or venture into Devil’s Hall, a breathtaking narrow gorge where you can navigate twisting passages and marvel at the intricate rock formations.


For nature lovers, Guadalupe Mountains National Park is a veritable paradise. Keep your eyes peeled for the diverse wildlife that calls this area home, such as mule deer, golden eagles, and even the elusive mountain lion. As you explore the park’s trails, don’t forget to look down and appreciate the abundance of unique plant life that thrives in this desert environment.


Camping options within Guadalupe Mountains National Park include the Pine Springs Campground, which offers tent and RV sites, as well as backcountry camping for those seeking a more secluded experience. Fall asleep under a canopy of stars and wake up to the serene beauty of the mountains surrounding you.


Guadalupe Mountains National Park is a hidden gem in the Texas wilderness. Whether you’re conquering peaks, exploring dramatic canyons, or simply basking in the tranquility of nature, this national park offers a truly unforgettable camping experience for those seeking adventure and serenity alike.


Garner State Park

Escape to the natural beauty and tranquility of Garner State Park, nestled along the Frio River in the heart of the Texas Hill Country. Known for its crystal-clear water, lush greenery, and breathtaking river landscape, Garner State Park is an idyllic destination for camping, swimming, hiking, and creating memories with family and friends.


One of the main attractions of Garner State Park is its pristine river, offering opportunities for swimming, tubing, and kayaking. Grab your swimsuit and cool off in the refreshing waters of the Frio River, surrounded by towering cypress trees and stunning limestone cliffs. The park also offers equipment rentals for tubing and paddleboarding, allowing you to float along the river and take in the picturesque beauty of the surroundings.


For those seeking land-based adventures, Garner State Park boasts an extensive trail system that winds through the rugged Hill Country terrain. Hike along the Old Baldy Trail, a moderate trek that leads to a scenic overlook offering panoramic views of the park. Alternatively, explore the trails along the river, taking in the sights and sounds of nature as you hike through forests and meadows.


In addition to its natural beauty, Garner State Park offers a variety of recreational activities to keep visitors of all ages entertained. Spend the afternoon partaking in a game of volleyball or horseshoes, rent a paddleboat or kayak to explore the river, or simply relax on the sandy beach and soak up some rays. The park also hosts regular interpretive programs and guided hikes, providing educational opportunities to learn more about the abundant flora and fauna in the area.


Camping options in Garner State Park range from tent camping and RV sites to cozy cabins and screened shelters, allowing you to choose the accommodation that best suits your camping style. Wake up to the sounds of birds chirping, gather around a campfire to roast marshmallows, and fall asleep under the star-filled Texas sky.


Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure or simply a place to unwind and connect with nature, Garner State Park provides the perfect backdrop for a memorable camping experience. Immerse yourself in the beauty of the Frio River, explore the trails, and create lasting memories in this captivating Texas destination.


Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Prepare to be enchanted by the mystical beauty of Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, a captivating destination located in the Hill Country of Central Texas. This unique park is centered around a massive granite dome that rises 425 feet above the surrounding landscape, captivating visitors with its otherworldly appeal and offering a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.


One of the main highlights of Enchanted Rock is, of course, the granite dome itself. Lace up your hiking boots and embark on the trek to the summit for awe-inspiring views of the surrounding countryside. The Summit Trail provides a challenging but rewarding hike, leading you to the top where you can marvel at the panoramic vistas stretching as far as the eye can see. As you ascend, keep an eye out for the fascinating rock formations and crevices that dot the landscape.


For those seeking a more leisurely experience, there are plenty of other trails to explore within the natural area. The Loop Trail offers a relaxed hike through the mystical scenery, allowing you to immerse yourself in the unique beauty of the park. Be sure to keep an eye out for wildlife such as white-tailed deer, armadillos, and a variety of bird species that call this area home.


Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is also known for its exceptional stargazing opportunities. As day turns into night, the absence of light pollution allows the stars to shine brilliantly in the night sky. Join a stargazing event or simply lay back on a blanket and gaze up at the celestial wonders above.


Camping options within Enchanted Rock State Natural Area include both primitive and developed campsites, allowing you to choose the camping experience that suits your preferences. Spend the night under the stars, sharing stories around a campfire, and waking up to the sounds of nature in this enchanting setting.


With its mystical allure and natural beauty, Enchanted Rock State Natural Area offers a one-of-a-kind camping experience. Explore the granite dome, hike the scenic trails, and immerse yourself in the captivating charm of this magical Texas destination.


Lost Maples State Natural Area

Escape the hustle and bustle of city life and immerse yourself in the majestic beauty of Lost Maples State Natural Area. Tucked away in the picturesque Texas Hill Country, this hidden gem is a haven for nature lovers, hikers, and outdoor enthusiasts.


Lost Maples is renowned for its stunning display of fall foliage, showcasing vibrant shades of red, orange, and gold. The park’s namesake, the uncommon Uvalde bigtooth maple, transforms the landscape into a breathtaking tapestry of colors during the autumn months. Visitors flock to the area to witness the beauty of nature’s palette as they embark on scenic hikes through the park.


One of the standout features of Lost Maples is its extensive trail system, offering a variety of routes catering to different fitness levels and interests. For those seeking a challenging hike, venture along the East-West Trail, a rigorous trek that rewards hikers with panoramic views of the surrounding hills and canyons. Alternatively, take a leisurely stroll along the Maple Trail, admiring the picturesque streams, limestone cliffs, and dense foliage along the way.


Aside from its stunning foliage, Lost Maples is a sanctuary for birdwatchers. The park is home to a diverse range of bird species, including golden-cheeked warblers and black-capped vireos, both of which are rare and endangered. Bring your binoculars and keep a keen eye out for these elusive feathered friends as they flit through the trees.


Camping in Lost Maples State Natural Area is a serene and immersive experience. Step away from modern distractions and find solace in the simplicity of nature. The park offers a variety of camping options, including tent sites and RV sites, allowing you to spend the night surrounded by towering trees and the soothing sounds of nature.


With its stunning fall foliage, diverse trail system, and abundant wildlife, Lost Maples State Natural Area is a true gem in the Texas Hill Country. Whether you’re exploring the vibrant trails, capturing photos of the stunning autumn colors, or simply basking in the tranquility of the natural surroundings, Lost Maples is a place where adventure and serenity converge.


Pedernales Falls State Park

Prepare for an outdoor adventure like no other at Pedernales Falls State Park, located just outside of Austin, Texas. With its unique geological features and the picturesque Pedernales River, this park offers a range of activities for nature enthusiasts and camping enthusiasts alike.


The star attraction of Pedernales Falls State Park is undoubtedly the stunning waterfall that cascades over massive limestone rocks, creating a breathtaking sight. Explore the various trails that wind through the park, leading you to scenic overlooks where you can witness the power and beauty of the falls up close. Capture the perfect photograph or simply sit back and marvel at the natural wonder before you.


If you’re up for a challenge, embark on the Wolf Mountain Trail, a rugged and rewarding trek that takes you to the highest point in the park. From the summit, you’ll be treated to sweeping panoramic views of the surrounding Texas Hill Country, a sight that will leave you in awe of the natural beauty that surrounds you.


For those seeking water-based activities, the Pedernales River offers a refreshing respite. Take a dip in the clear waters, go fishing for bass or catfish, or even try your hand at kayaking or paddleboarding. The river provides endless opportunities for fun and relaxation.


Pedernales Falls State Park is also a paradise for birdwatchers and wildlife enthusiasts. The park is home to a variety of bird species, including the rare and elusive golden-cheeked warbler. Keep your eyes and ears open as you explore the trails, as you may spot an array of other wildlife such as white-tailed deer, armadillos, and foxes.


Camping options within Pedernales Falls State Park range from primitive campsites to RV sites with hookups, ensuring there’s a suitable accommodation for every type of camper. Fall asleep to the sound of the nearby river, wake up to the chirping of birds, and enjoy the peaceful serenity of the Texas Hill Country.


Pedernales Falls State Park is a true gem within reach of the bustling city of Austin. Whether you’re exploring the rugged hiking trails, cooling off in the river, or simply relaxing amidst nature’s beauty, this park is a must-visit for camping enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.


Davis Mountains State Park

Enter a world of rugged beauty and serene wilderness at Davis Mountains State Park, a true gem nestled within the scenic Davis Mountains of West Texas. From sweeping vistas to unique flora and fauna, this park offers a captivating camping experience for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers.


One of the standout features of Davis Mountains State Park is its breathtaking panoramic views. Climb to Skyline Drive, a high point within the park, and be rewarded with sweeping vistas that stretch as far as the eye can see. Marvel at the rugged peaks and expansive valleys below, and soak in the sheer majesty of nature’s grandeur.


Embark on a hiking adventure amidst lush forests and meandering streams, immersing yourself in the tranquil splendor of the park. Trails such as the Indian Lodge Trail and the Montezuma Quail Trail offer opportunities to spot the unique flora and fauna that call this area home. Keep your eyes peeled for mule deer, javelinas, and a variety of bird species along the way.


Explore the beauty of Davis Mountains State Park on horseback, channeling your inner cowboy or cowgirl as you traverse the rolling hills and rugged terrain. The park offers equestrian trails, providing a unique and immersive way to experience the enchanting landscapes of the region.


For a different perspective, venture into the night sky for some exceptional stargazing. The park’s remote location and clear skies make it an ideal spot for observing the celestial wonders above. Lay back, gaze up at the glittering stars, and witness the beauty of the universe unfold before your eyes.


Camping options within Davis Mountains State Park include tent and RV camping, as well as cozy cabins, providing a comfortable and scenic base to explore the surrounding beauty. Unwind by the campfire, savoring the tranquility of the mountain setting, and bask in the peace and stillness that only nature can provide.


Davis Mountains State Park is a sanctuary for nature lovers seeking respite from the everyday chaos. With its stunning vistas, diverse wildlife, and opportunities for hiking and stargazing, this West Texas gem offers a truly incredible camping experience.


Pro Tips for Camping in Texas

Camping in Texas is a unique and rewarding experience, but it’s important to come prepared for the ever-changing weather, diverse landscapes, and specific considerations that come with camping in the Lone Star State. Here are some pro tips to make the most of your camping adventure in Texas:

  1. Check the weather: Texas weather can be unpredictable, so it’s essential to check the forecast before heading out. Be prepared for sudden temperature changes, thunderstorms, or extreme heat.
  2. Stay hydrated: Texas is known for its sweltering summers, so bring plenty of water to stay hydrated during your outdoor adventures. Consider bringing a water filter or purification tablets for longer stays in backcountry areas.
  3. Protect yourself from mosquitoes: Texas is home to its fair share of mosquitoes, especially in humid regions. Pack insect repellent and consider using mosquito nets or screens for tents and hammocks.
  4. Know the rules: Familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations of the specific park or area where you’ll be camping. Some parks have restrictions on campfires, fishing, or certain activities.
  5. Practice Leave No Trace: Respect the environment and practice Leave No Trace principles. Pack out your trash, refrain from damaging vegetation, and minimize your impact on wildlife.
  6. Prepare for wildlife encounters: Texas is home to a variety of wildlife, including snakes, spiders, and large mammals. Research the local wildlife and take precautions to minimize encounters, such as storing food properly and keeping a safe distance.
  7. Bring appropriate gear: Texas has diverse landscapes, so bring gear suitable for the specific environment you’ll be camping in. This could include sturdy hiking boots, lightweight clothing for hot weather, or warm layers for cooler regions.
  8. Reserve in advance: Popular camping spots in Texas can fill up quickly, especially during weekends and holidays. Make reservations well in advance to secure your desired campsite.
  9. Enjoy local cuisine: Texas is known for its delicious cuisine, so take advantage of the opportunity to savor some local favorites. Try traditional barbecue, Tex-Mex dishes, or indulge in some tasty pecan pie.
  10. Embrace the local culture: Immerse yourself in the spirit of Texas by exploring nearby towns, attending local events, or engaging in outdoor activities specific to the region. Embrace the warm hospitality and friendly nature of Texans.

By keeping these pro tips in mind, you’ll be well-prepared to make the most of your camping adventure in Texas. So pack your bags, hit the trails, and create unforgettable memories in this vast and diverse state.



Camping in Texas is an adventure like no other. With its diverse landscapes, captivating natural wonders, and countless outdoor activities, the Lone Star State offers a playground for nature lovers and camping enthusiasts. From the rugged beauty of Big Bend National Park to the serene forests of Lost Maples State Natural Area, there’s a camping destination in Texas to suit every preference and interest.


As you explore the incredible camping spots in Texas, remember to come prepared for the weather and unique challenges that may arise. Stay hydrated, protect yourself from mosquitoes and wildlife, and always practice Leave No Trace principles to preserve the pristine beauty of the environment.


Immerse yourself in the local culture, savor the delicious Texas cuisine, and embrace the warm hospitality of the locals. Whether it’s hiking, swimming, stargazing, or simply relaxing in nature’s embrace, camping in Texas offers endless opportunities for adventure, serenity, and connection with the great outdoors.


So gather your camping gear, plan your itinerary, and embark on an unforgettable journey through the breathtaking landscapes and hidden treasures of Texas. It’s time to create memories, find solace in the simplicity of nature, and experience the joys of camping in the Lone Star State.