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20 Destinations for Best camping in Texas

Looking for best spots for camping in Texas this summer?

The best campsites in Texas offer amazing views and lots of outdoor fun.

From popular tent camping spots in Texas state parks to RV campgrounds on the Gulf coast, the Lone Star State has a wide variety of best camping places.

You can enjoy camping in the many state parks, national parks, national forests, and recreation areas.

While some campgrounds are first come, first serve, most campsites in Texas need advance reservations.

We recommend planning your camping vacation at least four to five months in advance to be able to pick the campsite that you want.

Padre Island National Seashore campsite no one else in sight
Padre Island National Seashore campsite no one else in sight

Best places for camping in Texas

Most visitors know about camping under the starry skies at Big Bend National Park in West Texas.

Almost all the campsites here have iconic views of the Chisos mountain ranges, desert scenery, and splendid isolation.

But the best Texas campgrounds go well beyond the Big Bend region.

Choose from the many campgrounds located right on the beach in Texas or explore the riverside campsites or RV parks in the Texas Hill Country.

Enjoy primitive camping in the Texas Panhandle or spend a family vacation camping in a luxury RV Resort.

Here are some of the best places to pitch a tent or go RVing in Texas.

Wake up to these views by camping near Frio River at Garner State Park
Wake up to these views by camping near Frio River at Garner State Park

Big Bend National Park

When it comes to the best camping in Texas, Big Bend National Park has it all!

Pick from RV camping at Rio Grande Village RV Campground or tent campsites at Chisos Canyon or get a permit for backcountry camping in the national park.

Visitors have several ways to explore this unique West Texas landscape.

Hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, scenic drives, and kayaking the Rio Grande river are some of the most popular ones.

Popular hiking trails in the park include Santa Elena Canyon Trail, South Rim Trail, and Cattail Falls Trail.

Spend some time camping in Big Bend and exploring the unique flora and fauna of the region to understand why it is one of the most popular national parks in America.

Camping under the starry skies in Big Bend region of West Texas
Camping under the starry skies in Big Bend region of West Texas

Padre Island National Seashore

Padre Island National Seashore, managed by the National Park Service, has the best camping in Texas for beach lovers.

The barrier island located near Corpus Christi is a protected area and devoid of development.

The park has several options for beach camping.

North Beach and South Beach are open to 4WD vehicles for camping.

Pick a permit at the visitor center, choose any of the primitive sites near the sand dunes, and have an amazing time on the coast.

Malaquite Campground with its picnic tables, nearby restrooms, and fire rings is good for those who prefer developed sites.

Bird Island Basin on the bayside has only primitive campsites and is popular with windsurfers and kayakers.

Other things to do at Padre Island National Seashore include bird watching, fishing, swimming, and surfing.

Padre Island National Seashore Texas is best place to camp on the beach in Texas
Padre Island National Seashore Texas is best place to camp on the beach in Texas

Mustang Island State Park

Mustang Island State Park is another great option for beach camping in Texas.

The state park located on Mustang Island near Corpus Christi has several miles of Gulf beaches to explore.

Camping options include beach camping with RV hookups, primitive camping near the water’s edge, and group areas.

More things to do at Mustang Island State Park include kayaking in the bayside, fishing, surfing, beachcombing, and sunbathing.

Caddo Lake State Park

Caddo Lake located in East Texas features some of the best camping in Texas.

The park has two campgrounds featuring both RV sites with water and electric hookups as well as primitive sites right by the water’s edge for tent campers.

Caddo Lake State Park campsites have stunning views of the bayous.

Camp on the lakeshore and wake up to beautiful sunrises over the foggy bald cypress trees draped with Spanish moss landscape.

Caddo Lake is also popular for bird-watching, nature photography, fishing, paddling, and kayaking.

In fact, Caddo Lake State Park is one of the best destinations to enjoy kayaking in Texas.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon located in the Texas Panhandle is known as the Grand Canyon of Texas.

It features one of the prettiest geological wonders in Texas.

Spend a night or two camping at the Palo Duro Canyon State Park and enjoy stunning sunrises and sunsets over the canyon landscape.

Pick an RV site or tent campsite for your stay.

The park also has designated areas for primitive camping deep within the rugged canyon.

The state park is also perfect for mountain biking, horseback riding, and outdoor adventures like hiking to Lighthouse rock formation and zip lining.

Inks Lake State Park

Inks Lake State Park, located in the Texas Hill Country near Austin, is a favorite with outdoor enthusiasts.

Almost all the campsites here are located right by the water’s edge and have amazing views.

The park has almost 200 campsites and still gets fully reserved in the peak seasons.

This state park is also a favorite with RVers since it offers longer duration stays.

The park has excellent amenities as well as a wide variety of things to do for visitors.

Enjoy the Texas Hill Country hiking trails, mountain biking along scenic paths, swimming at Devils Hole, picnicking, bird-watching, photography, stargazing, and bluebonnets in spring.

Colorado Bend State Park

Colorado Bend State Park, also located in Central Texas, is a favorite place to camp among locals.

The park has several miles of scenic trails perfect for hiking and biking.

Some of our favorite things to do in Colorado Bend State Park include Gorman Falls Trail and swimming at Spicewood Springs.

Camp at the Colorado Bend State Park near Austin to enjoy fishing, kayaking, canoeing, or tubing in the Colorado River.

Bring along your fishing poles and catch some bass at this park which is known for excellent fishing spots.

Dinosaur Valley State Park

Dinosaur Valley State Park, located in North Texas, is one of the most unique camping spots in Texas.

At the park, you can pitch a tent on land that was once home to prehistoric dinosaurs.

Look at the stars coming up in the night sky and imagine a time when dinosaurs roamed here.

During the day, venture on the hiking trails in the Paluxy River bed and spot several hundreds of dinosaur tracks.

Dinosaur Valley State Park is, undoubtedly, a fun camping trip for dinosaur crazy kids.

Guadalupe River State Park

Guadalupe River State Park, located an hour north of San Antonio, is one of the most popular camping spots in the Texas Hill Country.

The park has excellent RV camping at Turkey Sink and Cedar Sage Campground.

Tent campers will find primitive campsites located right next to the river at Wagon Ford Campground perfect for a relaxing outdoor vacation.

The park looks beautiful in fall when the trees on the river banks change color.

Garner State Park

Garner State Park, located in the Texas Hill Country, is one of the best places to see fall colors in Texas.

The park has several campsites and is a favorite among RV campers.

The park gets fully booked months in advance so reservations are highly recommended.

Fall is the ideal season to see beautiful sunrises and sunsets over the scenic landscape of this Hill Country park.

During the summer months, enjoy tubing on the Frio River or attend the dances held at night.

Muleshoe Bend Recreation Area

Muleshoe Bend Recreation Area, located on the shores of Lake Travis, is one of our favorite places to go camping during spring.

The nature reserve is home to vast Bluebonnet fields on the lakeshore.

You will be camping with gorgeous views of the blooming state flower and can enjoy the bluebonnet trails during the day.

The sites have easy access to Lake Travis for paddling, kayaking, and boating.

Caprock Canyons State Park

Caprock Canyons State Park, located in the panhandle, is one of the best camping spots near Amarillo.

The park has several miles of trails perfect for hiking and biking.

You can spot some wildlife species here including White-tailed deer, foxes, javelinas, skunks, rabbits, and ringtails.

Some of the other activities at this park include fishing and swimming at Lake Theo, bat caves, and birdwatching.

Camp in the park to experience the wonder of the night sky filled with stars and spot a few shooting stars as well.

Lake Livingston State Park

Lake Livingston State Park is one of our favorite camping spots near Houston.

The park has several campsites and is a popular destination for those looking to go kayaking or canoeing.

You can enjoy fishing on Lake Livingston as well at this beautiful campground in East Texas.  

Davis Mountains State Park

Camp at Davis Mountains State Park in West Texas near Fort Davis to witness beautiful sunrises over the mountains.

The state park features spacious campsites with stunning views.

Several hiking trails lead to scenic spots over the mountain ranges.

The sky at night here is filled with stars because of the remote location.

Fort Davis National Historic Site located adjacent to the park is also a must visit.

Franklin Mountains State Park

Franklin Mountains State Park is an urban park located in El Paso, Texas.

The park has several campsites and is a favorite among those looking for a backpacking trip.

Several trails lead from the campgrounds to hills with stunning views of El Paso and Mexico.

The skies here are filled with stars at night because of light pollution in the city below.

Campsite reservations are highly recommended as the park gets fully booked months in advance.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, located an hour from Austin, is one of the best places to enjoy tent camping in Central Texas.

The park does not allow RVs.

The main highlight of a visit to Enchanted Rock is the Summit Trail.

The trail is a 1.5-mile roundtrip leading you to the summit of this massive pink granite dome.

As the day wanes, cool winds sweep through and clouds roll in making for spectacular photos.

Camping overnight at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area lets you enjoy the beauty of the starry sky and the Texas Hill Country.

Goose Island State Park

Goose Island State Park near Rockport is one of our favorite camping spots near the coast.

The park has several bay-front as well as wooded campsites.

It is a great destination for those looking for birdwatching, kayaking, fishing, boating, and wildlife viewing.

Huntsville State Park

Huntsville State Park is a great option for those looking for camping and hiking within one hour of Houston.

The park has several campsites and is a popular destination for those looking to do some kayaking or canoeing.

The park has a greater day-use area with a swimming beach.

You can enjoy fishing at this Texas state park as well.

Tyler State Park

Tyler State Park has some of the best camping in Texas during the fall.

Also located in the Piney Woods Region of East Texas, the park has plenty of camping options.

The park has miles of trails perfect for hiking and biking as well.

Camp in the state park to enjoy the fall foliage.

You can also swim and fish at this beautiful Texas state park.

Visit the charming city of Tyler and its rose garden while you are here.

Balmorhea State Park

Balmorhea State Park is one of our favorite camping spots near El Paso.

The park is located on San Solomon Springs and is a favorite among those looking for water activities such as swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving.

The park has several campsites with about 30 sites featuring electric hookups for RV camping.

The best camping destinations in Texas are a great way to enjoy the natural beauty of the Lone Star State.

Many of these camping spots are close to the best hiking trails in Texas, historic sites, and charming small towns – they offer the ultimate, budget-friendly vacation in Texas.

We hope you liked our list of these spots that offer the best camping in Texas.

Know of a Texas campsite that needs to be on this list? Let us know in the comments.