Texas Living

6 of the Best Walking Trails in Texas

By Peter Simek 9.3.21

Texas is filled with many state parks and natural areas that preserve its wild, natural landscapes. Many of these places are easy to access, and they make for wonderful day trips and family walks. Here are some of our favorite walking trails in Texas.

Barton Creek Greenbelt Trail, Austin

Length: 13.8 miles
This popular walking trail winds through the gorgeous natural oasis along Barton Creek, leading past a waterfall and exposed limestone formations. It’s an easy walk suitable for children and dogs, and you can tackle it in sections or spend a day wandering the whole trail.

Overlook Trail, Bastrop State Park

Length: 1.7 miles
A dirt trail blanketed with pine needles leads walkers through the loblolly pine forests of Bastrop State Park, affording wide scenic views of the surrounding wilderness. The trail is very shady and offers many benches, which makes it family-friendly and enjoyable year-round.

walking trails in Texas

Santa Elena Canyon Trail, Big Bend National Park

Length: 1.7 miles
One of the prettiest walking trails in Texas, this short path crosses a tributary of the Rio Grande before leading walkers along the edge of the magnificent cliffs that form Santa Elena Canyon. Be warned that during busy times of the year, such as Thanksgiving, this trail can get crowded — and prepare for getting your feet a little wet.

walking trails in Texas
Photo from Alamy

40-Acre Lake Trail, Brazos Bend State Park

Length: 1.25 miles
Of the many great walking trails in Texas’ Brazos Bend State Park, the Lake Trail offers the best chance to view the park’s remarkable wildlife, including ducks, egrets, bobcats, and alligators. The trail winds around a shallow, marshy lake that’s home to a variety of aquatic habitats. A four-story observation tower also allows you to linger and watch without worrying about getting too close to the gators.

Lost Creek Nature Trail, Fort Richardson State Park

Length: 0.46 miles
This trail leads through oak strands, prickly pears, and natural springs. If you want to extend your walk, tacking on the Rumbling Spring and Prickly Pear trails can turn your sojourn into a 2.37-mile round trip.

walking trails in Texas
Photo courtesy Texas Parks & Wildlife Department

Old Baldy Trail, Garner State Park

Length: 0.5 miles­­
Garner State Park is a favorite Texas walking trail for a reason. The park features many manageable trails that lead through beautiful Hill Country terrain and offer spectacular vistas. One of the best is the Old Baldy Trail, which, though steep in parts and considered challenging, rewards walkers with a fantastic view of the Frio River.

For any adventurers looking to conquer new territory on two wheels, check out our guide to the best mountain biking trails in Texas.

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