Places to Camp in Texas

Enchanted Rock State Park
Arnab Guha Photography / Getty Images

Texas offers visitors a variety of ways to spend time outdoors. For those visitors who never want to be indoors, Texas has a number of excellent spot to pitch a tent and spend the night under the stars. Because Texas is such an expansive state and encompasses so many geographical regions, campers can also choose from a variety of ecosystems and terrains in which to camp. So, whether it is a state park, national park, a sandy stretch of beach or a natural reserve, Texas offers campers a vast variety of areas to choose from. Here are some of the very best places to camp in Texas. 

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    Santa Elena Canyon, Big Bend National Park (Explored)
    roberthensley/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

    Designated as an International Biosphere Reserve, Big Bend offers a variety of outdoor recreational activities in a primitive setting. Backpacking, mountain biking, fishing, boating, hiking, nature watching, camping - you name it, if it can be done outdoors, it can be done in Big Bend. There are three campgrounds withing Big Bend, all at an elevation of 1,800 feet or higher. Although there are a number of sites within each of these campgrounds, they fill fast and reservations are required.

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    Big Thicket National Preserve

    Big Thicket National Preserve
    National Park Service

    Covering nearly 100,000 acres, Big Thicket National Preserve was the first such preserve in the United States. The Big Thicket NP is home to a diverse group of plants and animals and plays host to thousands of nature enthusiasts annually. While camping is allowed, there are no prepared campsites in the Big Thicket, so be prepared to make your own. But, for the DIY camper, Big Thicket National Preserve is an ideal location to spend a tent vacation. 

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    Enchanted Rock State Park
    Arnab Guha Photography / Getty Images
    Located just north of Fredericksburg in the Texas Hill Country, Enchanted Rock is one of the largest natural rock formations in the United States, with a dome that rises 425 feet above the ground (1825 feet above sea level). Designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1970, Enchanted Rock is also part of the Texas State Parks System and attracts thousands of visitors annually. Walk-in sites with tent pads and water are available, as are primitive hike-in campsites.
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    A heron catches a fish at Padre Island National Seashore
    Carol Wood / Getty Images

    Padre Island National Seashore stretches from Corpus Christi south some 75 miles to the Port Mansfield Cut - offering some of the most remote seashore to be found anywhere. For campers wishing to get away from the crowd, Padre Island National Seashore is an ideal location. Semi-primitive campsites are available at Malaquite Beach and provide toilets, rinse-only showers, and picnic tables. Primitive camping with no facilities is available at both North and South Beach.

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    Hueco Tanks State Park, near El Paso, Texas, USA
    Witold Skrypczak / Getty Images

    Hueco Tanks offers a variety of outdoor activies, most notably camping and rock climbing. However, one of the biggest draws to this historic site are the prehistoric pictographs that dot the cave walls there. Visitors and campers must make reservations at least two days prior to visiting. Pictograph tours are also avaible by advanced request, giving campers a wide variety of unique ways to spend their days while camping at Hueco Tanks State Historic Site.