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Get Back to Nature With the Best Camping Near Austin

Whether you’re cruising through Austin, Texas in a campervan or looking for a chill spot for a weekend camping trip with the family, the Austin area delivers the goods. From shady, forest camping spots and lakeside plots in the Texas Hill Country to campsites with all the amenities, there’s something for everyone. Start your travel planning with this handy guide to the best camping near Austin.

Best Camping Near Austin: couple campingBest Camping Near Austin

McKinney Falls State Park

McKinney Falls State Park is located just 10 miles from downtown Austin and offers 81 campsites as well as 6 cabins for getaway accommodations. All campsites have water and electricity hookups, though some sites are listed as premium, meaning you’ll have a higher amperage. All campers must pay a daily entry fee of $6 and campsite prices range from $20 per night to $24 per night while cabins go for $86. The state park offers access to miles of hiking trails in addition to fishing, swimming, and biking opportunities.

Inks Lake State Park

Camping near Austin can be tricky, particularly if you’re visiting and want to visit one of the many swimming holes or lakes. These swimming holes are often closed or restricted due to weather changes or when there is algae growth. Inks Lake State Park is one of the parks least affected by droughts and consequent closures. While almost 70 miles from Austin, it’s the perfect spot to plan a getaway camping trip. Located in the Hill Country of Central Texas, this state park offers activities including volleyball, backpacking, kayaking, nature-watching, and even scuba diving. Campsites range from $11 to $23 per night and include hike-in primitive sites, tent camping, and RV camping with hookups.

Pedernales Falls State Park

Pedernales Falls State Park offers extensive opportunities to mountain bike, hike, swim, and wildlife watching. You can swim in the Pedernales River, but the area near Pedernales Falls is closed to water activities for safety reasons. The campground offers hiking access to primitive campsites as well as sites with water and electricity like those you’d find at an RV park.

Pace Bend Park

Pace Bend Park offers camping sites on the cliffs overlooking Lake Travis. Popular activities here include horseback riding, canoeing, lounging on the lakeshore and boating. There are miles of trails for biking, equestrian use, and biking. The campground consists of 400 primitive camping sites and 20 improved camping sites, some of which can be reserved while others are first-come-first-serve. At the campground, you’ll find three different boat ramps, multiple campfire rings, and barbecue grills, as well as designated swim coves, and an RV dump station.

Bastrop State Park

Bastrop State Park is located outside of the Austin city limits but is still close enough to visit both the city and enjoy the natural area. The park charges a $5 daily entrance fee and numerous campsite options at various price points. There are six walk-in campsites featuring a tent pad, outdoor grill, picnic table, and fire ring for $15 per night. In addition, you’ll find 16 additional tent sites in the Deer Run area with restrooms close by. For connected sites, there are 35 full hookup campsites for $25 per night and 19 campsites with electricity for $20 per night.

Lockhart State Park

Lockhart State Park is located just over 30 miles from downtown Austin. It’s the only Texas State Park that has access to a golf course and it consists of 20 campsites. All sites have water and electricity, but there are also ten sites that offer direct sewer hookups. Prices hover around $20 per night and the park offers easy access to fishing, swimming, and miles of trails.

Buescher State Park

Buescher State Park is the perfect place to enjoy a weekend getaway from Austin. Here, you can enjoy fishing, biking, hiking, and geocaching in the shade of the Texas woods. Camping ranges from $15 to 418 per night and includes primitive walk-in sites as well as campsites with electricity. Popular attractions include the challenging Pine Gulch trail, Big Tree, and the Winding Woodlands Trail.

AdobeStock 296386268Cedar Breaks Park

Cedar Breaks Park is located on a beautiful bluff overlooking Lake Georgetown. The campground closes at 10 pm so you must enter the park before then. The campsite consists of 64 campsites, most of which are shaded by large mesquite trees. The day-use area also features 41 picnic tables, a steep 4-lane boat ramp, and two separate fishing docks. Something to keep in mind is that the lake can be difficult to access from some campsites because of the craggy bluffs.

Enchanted Rock State Natural Area

Enchanted Rock is a pink granite dome that has drawn rock climbers from all over the world. The natural area offers extensive rock climbing routes as well as 11 miles of hiking trails. Camping here is only accessible to hike-in or walk-in campers. The primitive hike-in sites are located along Moss Lake and Walnut Springs, requiring a one to three-mile journey over rugged terrain. The walk-in sites are located close to the park road and some sites come with shelters. It’s a great spot for those looking to get away from the city and enjoy the quiet of nature.

Guadalupe River State Park

Guadalupe River State Park offers four miles of shoreline activities along the Guadalupe River. Here, you can tube, swim, and canoe and also enjoy horseback riding and hiking in addition to numerous bike trails. The campground consists of 85 campsites with water and electricity as well as nine walk-in tent sites.

Palmetto State Park

Palmetto State Park is one of our favorite spots when it comes to camping and enjoying water activities. At the park, you can rent paddle boats and paddleboards and three-person kayaks to enjoy the San Marcos River and you can also fish in the river or off the pier at Oxbow Lake. Best of all, you don’t need a fishing license to fish from the shore and the park has fishing equipment they are able to loan out. Check out the group camp that can accommodate 100 people or opt for one of the smaller sites with water and electricity hookups.

Colorado Bend State Park

Colorado Bend offers access to unspoiled wilderness including Spicewood Springs, Gorman Falls, and 35 miles of hiking and biking trails. The campground focuses on a back-to-nature atmosphere so there are no hookups. Campsites are drive-up and walk-in as well as a few primitive hike-in sites. There are also two composting toilets and an open-air shower for a truly natural experience.

Enjoy the Great Outdoors At These Campsites Near Austin

There’s a lot of planning that goes into making a vacation, especially a camping trip, a resounding success. Start your planning by checking out these spots that are consistently ranked as the best camping near Austin. Remember to check with the state parks before booking for up-to-the-minute information on closures, campsite changes, and other park information. They can also help you find more information on things to do in Austin including the top swimming holes and hiking trails near your chosen camping area.

Whether you’re looking to explore the Onion Creek area, relax in Hill Country,  or want to enjoy the refreshing waters of the Colorado River, there are hundreds of campsites near Austin that can help you make it happen. Load the family into the car and strap up the kayaks and get ready to enjoy everything the great outdoors in Texas has to offer at these best campsites near Austin.

Erika Marty
Erika Marty

Erika is an avid traveler who has been to more than 60 countries where she finds food, activities, and hidden locales for touring like a local. When she’s not writing, she enjoys mountain biking, hiking, and planning her next adventure.

Learn more about Erika

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