25 Texas parks within driving distance of San Antonio where you can see the fall colors
Texas doesn't have a reputation for colorful fall foliage, but that doesn't mean you need to fly out of state to see autumnal hues.
Many Texas parks, including some near San Antonio, put on a fall show each year. Whether you want to make a short jaunt to the Hill Country or have a more distant location in mind, these Texas parks are all worthy destinations for an autumnal road trip.
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Lost Maples State Natural Area
37221 FM 187, Vanderpool, (830) 966-3413, tpwd.texas.gov
If you’re a sucker for fall foliage, Lost Maples is a must-visit — especially if you don’t want to go too far from home. True to its name, this park is filled with bigtooth maples that flash their reddish orange leaves every fall. This natural area is perfect for hiking, so grab your camera and let the views here take your breath away.
Photo by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Pedernales Falls State Park
2585 Park Road 6026, Johnson City, (830) 868-7304, tpwd.texas.gov
Right in the heart of Central Texas, Pedernales Falls offers plenty of ways to experience the beauty of nature — especially in the fall. In addition to camping, picnicking, geocaching, bird-watching and riding horses, there’s also plenty of fun to be had hiking the park’s trails.
Photo via Instagram / arianamarlie
Palo Duro Canyon State Park
11450 State Hwy Park Rd 5, Canyon, tpwd.texas.gov
Need an excuse to go on a road trip? Let Palo Duro be reason enough for you. Located in the Panhandle, this state park is home to the second-largest canyon in the U.S. The canyon’s cottonwood trees turn yellow in the fall, competing in brilliance with the reddish rock of the canyon.
Photo by Earl Nottingham
Martin Creek Lake State Park
9515 Co Road 2181D, Tatum, (903) 836-4336, tpwd.texas.gov
Head to east Texas and you’ll be able to explore the 286 acres at this recreational area. It’s not one of the larger parks on this list, but you won’t need much space to appreciate the undisturbed wonder of the land. You can fish or walk the trails, or just simply sit back and enjoy the sunset making its way down over the lake.
Photo via Instagram / martincreeklake
Caddo Lake State Park
245 Park Rd 2, Karnack, (903) 679-3351, tpwd.texas.gov
Located in East Texas, Caddo Lake is all about wildlife and the natural lake. Camp, fish, paddle, hike and go boating here — whatever you may wish. All activities aside, the serene beauty of this park is reason enough to travel to this park.
Photo via Instagram / flyfotonbtx
Guadalupe River State Park
3350 Park Road 31, Spring Branch, (830) 438-2656, tpwd.texas.gov
A quick drive away and you’ll find yourself in Guadalupe River State Park. Though popular for its swimming in the summer, you can visit for its awesome trails – 13 miles worth to be exact. Throughout the trails, both long and short, you can appreciate the fall foliage, often reflected in and enhanced by the Guadalupe river.
Photo via Instagram / lonestarhippiehiker
850 Caprock Canyon Park Road, Quitaque, (806) 455-1492, tpwd.texas.gov
Venture up to the Panhandle and you’ll be able to explore Caprock Canyons — where there’s miles and miles of open land. You won’t run out of things to do here, as you can camp and watch bison roam free. Yes, really. There are still splashes of fall color across this open landscape, though, thanks to the local population of cottonwood trees.
Photo via Instagram / texanflower
Lake Bob Sandlin State Park
341 State Park Road 2117, Pittsburg, (903) 572-5531, tpwd.texas.gov
Within this park, where two ecoregions meet, you’ll be amazed by lots of different natural wonders. From massive trees and tall grasses to a variety of plants and animals, there’s a lot to take in here. You can find a variety of trees here that provide lush fall color, including oak, hickory, pine, dogwood, redbud and maple.
Photo via Instagram / thislifewellspent
Daingerfield State Park
455 Park Road 17, Daingerfield, (903) 645-2921, tpwd.texas.gov
You’ll be up for quite a road trip if you head out to Daingerfield. This state park is located southwest of Texarkana, which is quite a drive, but provides top-notch views. With a range of fall colors found in the foliage, you’ll be enamored by the scenery here.
Photo via Instagram / pam.osborn.12
Martin Dies, Jr. State Park
634 Park Road 4a8 South, Jasper, (409) 384-5231, tpwd.texas.gov
This 705-acre recreation area is complete with nature spots where you can simply get lost in all the beauty of the park. The park offers a number of campsite options including a cozy cabin, making it a great spot for telling scary late-night campfire stories surrounded by lush towering trees.
Photo via Instagram / martindiesjrstatepark