Family-Friendly Urban Camping Spots in Texas

Family Urban Camping Texas

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If you’re looking for exciting family camping ideas and urban camping tips, Texas has plenty of options to offer. Camping with kids can be a wonderful way to create lasting memories and experience the great outdoors together. From camping activities for families to the best camping destinations in Texas, this article will guide you through the top family-friendly camping spots in the Lone Star State.

Key Takeaways:

  • Discover the best family-friendly camping spots in Texas
  • Explore camping activities for families and outdoor adventures
  • Learn about essential camping gear and camping tips

Garner State Park

Garner State Park is one of the most beloved family camping spots in Texas. Located along the Frio River, it offers scenic nature, opportunities for swimming, geocaching, biking, hiking, and mini-golf. The park also provides rentals for outdoor gear and accommodations such as cabins and screened shelters. During the summer, visitors can enjoy family-friendly dance nights under the stars.

Activities for the Whole Family

Garner State Park offers a wide range of activities that the whole family can enjoy. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, the park has something for everyone. Here are some of the activities you can experience:

  • Swimming in the Frio River: Cool off and have fun in the crystal clear waters of the Frio River. It’s the perfect way to beat the Texas heat.
  • Biking and Hiking: Explore the park’s scenic trails by bike or on foot. Enjoy the beautiful views and immerse yourself in nature.
  • Mini-Golf: Challenge your family to a friendly game of mini-golf. Putt your way through the course and see who can get the lowest score.
  • Geocaching: Engage in a real-life treasure hunt by participating in geocaching. Use your GPS or smartphone to find hidden caches and enjoy the thrill of discovery.

Accommodations and Rentals

Garner State Park provides various accommodation options for families. Whether you prefer the comfort of a cabin or the coziness of a screened shelter, you’ll find suitable options for your camping trip. Additionally, the park offers rentals for outdoor gear, so you don’t have to worry about packing everything. From tents and sleeping bags to kayaks and bikes, you can easily rent the equipment you need.

Family-Friendly Dance Nights

One of the highlights of visiting Garner State Park during the summer is the family-friendly dance nights. Every evening, the park hosts dances under the stars where families can gather, socialize, and have a great time. Dance to popular music, make new friends, and create lasting memories with your loved ones.

Family-Friendly Activities Accommodations
Swimming in the Frio River Cabins
Biking and Hiking Screened Shelters

Big Bend Ranch State Park

Family Urban Camping Texas

For families seeking an immersive nature experience, Big Bend Ranch State Park in Texas is the perfect destination. As the largest state park in the state, Big Bend Ranch offers a wide range of activities and outdoor adventures that will captivate the whole family.

Connecting with the Untouched Wilderness

Big Bend Ranch State Park is renowned for its untouched wilderness, providing families with a unique opportunity to disconnect from the modern world and reconnect with nature. The park offers expansive landscapes, rugged mountains, and sweeping vistas that will leave families in awe of Texas’ natural beauty.

Primitive Camping and Outdoor Exploration

For families who love camping, Big Bend Ranch State Park provides primitive camping options that allow for a truly immersive experience. Set up a tent under a canopy of stars and enjoy the peace and tranquility of the park’s remote locations. Families can explore the park’s extensive trail system, go hiking, biking, or horseback riding, and discover hidden gems along the way. Wildlife encounters, such as spotting deer or observing unique bird species, are common occurrences.

Stargazing in an International Dark Sky Park

Big Bend Ranch State Park is designated as an International Dark Sky Park, making it an ideal location for stargazing enthusiasts. With minimal light pollution, families can witness the brilliance of the night sky and marvel at the countless stars above. It’s an experience that will leave lasting memories and ignite a sense of wonder and curiosity in children.

A Variety of Outdoor Activities

In addition to camping and stargazing, Big Bend Ranch offers a variety of outdoor activities for families. From fishing in the park’s rivers to bird watching or geocaching, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Families can also embark on guided tours and educational programs to learn more about the park’s unique ecosystems and history.

Big Bend Ranch State Park is an oasis of natural beauty, offering families the opportunity to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and create lasting memories in the great outdoors. With its diverse range of activities and untouched wilderness, it’s a true gem for family-friendly camping in Texas.

Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area

Nestled within the picturesque Davy Crockett National Forest, Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area offers families a tranquil camping experience by the stunning Ratcliff Lake. This family-friendly camping spot provides a serene setting for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages to immerse themselves in the beauty of nature and embark on exciting adventures.

Recreational Activities for Families

At Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area, families can indulge in a wide range of outdoor activities that cater to everyone’s preferences. The campground features:

  • Fishing opportunities in the well-stocked lake, perfect for family fishing competitions and bonding moments
  • Swimming area where kids can splash and play under the warm Texas sun
  • Designated kids’ playground to keep the little ones entertained and active

Moreover, the surrounding forest offers ample opportunities for hiking, biking, and wildlife observation. Families can explore the trails together, marvel at the diverse flora and fauna, and create lasting memories in the heart of nature.

Facilities and Amenities

Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area provides convenient facilities and amenities to make your family camping trip comfortable and enjoyable. These include:

  • Large campground with spacious and well-maintained campsites, suitable for tents, RVs, and trailers
  • Restrooms with showers and clean restroom facilities for utmost convenience
  • Picnic areas equipped with tables and grills for delightful outdoor meals with the family

This well-equipped campground ensures that families have everything they need to make the most of their camping experience.

Nearby Attractions

While Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area offers a peaceful retreat, there are also nearby attractions that families can explore for additional adventure and entertainment. Some of these attractions include:

Sam Houston National Forest: Just a short drive away, this expansive forest offers hiking trails, scenic drives, and camping opportunities.

Davy Crockett Birthplace State Park: Pay a visit to this historical park to learn about the life and legacy of the legendary frontiersman, Davy Crockett.

No matter what your family’s interests may be, there is something nearby to satisfy every adventurer’s curiosity.

Facilities Amenities
Spacious campsites Restrooms with showers
Picnic areas with grills Kids’ playground
Ample parking Scenic lake views
Fishing and swimming areas

With its idyllic setting, abundant recreational activities, and convenient facilities, Ratcliff Lake Recreation Area is a top choice for families seeking a peaceful and nature-filled camping getaway in Texas.

Dinosaur Valley State Park

Dinosaur Valley State Park

Dinosaur Valley State Park is a must-visit for families with kids who are fascinated by dinosaurs. This family-friendly camping spot in Texas offers a unique experience where you can explore fossilized dinosaur tracks and engage in various outdoor activities.

Immerse yourself in the ancient world as you hike along the tracks left by these magnificent creatures millions of years ago. The park provides informative guided tours that bring the prehistoric era to life, allowing your family to learn about the history and biology of dinosaurs.

After exploring the dinosaur tracks, take a refreshing swim in the beautiful river that flows through the park. The cool water is perfect for beating the Texas heat and creating lasting memories with your loved ones.

If you’re up for more adventure, grab your bikes and explore the park’s biking trails. Enjoy the scenic beauty of the surrounding nature as you ride through the park’s diverse landscape.

For younger children, Dinosaur Valley State Park offers wrangler-assisted kid-friendly trail rides. Let your little adventurers experience the thrill of horseback riding while being supervised by experienced wranglers.

Key Activities at Dinosaur Valley State Park

  • Exploring fossilized dinosaur tracks
  • Swimming in the river
  • Biking through the park
  • Guided tours to learn about dinosaurs
  • Kid-friendly horseback trail rides

With its unique paleontological attractions and outdoor activities, Dinosaur Valley State Park guarantees a fun and educational experience for the whole family. Take the opportunity to delve into the fascinating history of dinosaurs while creating unforgettable memories in the great outdoors.

Shaffer Bend Recreation Area

Family Urban Camping Texas

Situated in the charming town of Marble Falls, the Shaffer Bend Recreation Area is a hidden gem for families in search of a picturesque lakeside camping experience in Texas. This tranquil retreat offers a crystal clear lake, designated campsites, and an array of water-based activities, making it an ideal destination for families seeking outdoor adventures and quality time together.

At Shaffer Bend Recreation Area, families can bask in the beauty of nature while engaging in various recreational activities. The pristine lake provides ample opportunities for swimming, canoeing, kayaking, and fishing, ensuring endless hours of fun on the water. Whether you’re teaching your kids to catch their first fish or exploring the lake’s hidden coves and inlets, the recreational possibilities are abundant.

Wildlife Observation and Nature Walks

One of the highlights of Shaffer Bend Recreation Area is the abundance of wildlife that can be observed in its natural habitat. Deer, frogs, and a variety of bird species can often be spotted along the lake and surrounding trails, creating a memorable experience for nature enthusiasts and families eager to explore the great outdoors. Taking leisurely nature walks along the shoreline or embarking on a guided hike allows visitors to appreciate the diverse flora and fauna that call this area home.

Campfire Bonding and Stargazing

As the sun sets over the tranquil lake, families can gather around a campfire, sharing stories and creating lasting memories. Roasting marshmallows and enjoying s’mores under the starry Texas sky is the perfect way to unwind and connect with loved ones. The clear skies at Shaffer Bend Recreation Area also provide an excellent opportunity for stargazing. Away from the city lights, families can marvel at the constellations and teach their children about the wonders of the universe.

Shaffer Bend Recreation Area offers a serene and family-friendly camping experience that allows families to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. With its breathtaking lake, water activities, wildlife observation opportunities, and the chance to bond by the campfire, it is an idyllic destination for families seeking outdoor adventures and quality time together in the heart of Texas.

Highlights Activities Amenities
Crystal clear lake Swimming, canoeing, kayaking, fishing Designated campsites
Abundant wildlife Nature walks, guided hikes Campfire rings
Stargazing opportunities Wildlife observation Restrooms with showers

The Lost Lagoon

Family Urban Camping Texas

The Lost Lagoon is an RV campground located in El Campo, Texas, offering a unique and thrilling camping experience for families. This picturesque campground is known for its remarkable feature – the largest RV resort swimming pool in the world. Families can dive into a water wonderland that includes exciting water slides, swim-up bars, rope swings, and a dedicated kiddie lagoon. The Lost Lagoon promises endless moments of joy and excitement for children, making it a paradise for families seeking a memorable camping adventure.

Aside from the incredible swimming pool, The Lost Lagoon offers a wide range of amenities and activities for families to enjoy during their stay. From outdoor games and sports facilities to themed events and organized family-friendly activities, there is always something fun and entertaining happening at the campground. With a friendly and welcoming atmosphere, families can create lasting memories while bonding and engaging in outdoor adventures.

Camping at The Lost Lagoon provides the perfect opportunity to explore the beautiful Texas landscape and indulge in the tranquility of nature. Families can set up their RVs in spacious and comfortable campsites, surrounded by picturesque views of the Texas countryside. The campground also offers well-maintained facilities, including clean restrooms, showers, and picnic areas. It ensures that families have everything they need for a comfortable and enjoyable camping experience.

Highlights of The Lost Lagoon

  • The largest RV resort swimming pool in the world.
  • Exciting water slides, swim-up bars, and rope swings.
  • A dedicated kiddie lagoon for the little ones.
  • A wide range of amenities and organized family-friendly activities.
  • Spacious and comfortable RV campsites.
  • Scenic views of the Texas countryside.

Embark on a grand adventure with your family at The Lost Lagoon, where the excitement of the swimming pool and the joy of outdoor activities come together. It’s the perfect destination for family camping, providing an unforgettable experience for all. Make lasting memories and create special bonds amidst the natural beauty of Texas.

Canyon of the Eagles

Canyon of the Eagles, located on Lake Buchanan, is a nature park and resort that offers a wide range of activities for families. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures, educational experiences, or simply a tranquil retreat, this family-friendly camping spot in Texas has it all.

Outdoor Activities for Families

At Canyon of the Eagles, families can immerse themselves in the breathtaking natural beauty of Lake Buchanan and its surrounding areas. The park offers numerous outdoor activities that are perfect for families looking to bond and create lasting memories.

  • Enjoy scenic hikes on the park’s nature trails, where you can spot various wildlife species and marvel at the diverse flora.
  • Kayak or go paddleboarding on Lake Buchanan’s calm waters, taking in the picturesque views and enjoying the tranquility of nature.
  • Take a boat tour to explore the lake and learn about its rich history and ecosystem from knowledgeable guides.
  • Experience the magic of stargazing at the park’s Eagle Eye Observatory, surrounded by the beauty of the night sky with minimal light pollution.

Family-Friendly Amenities

Canyon of the Eagles caters to families with its range of amenities and accommodations designed for a comfortable camping experience.

  • Choose from various camping options, including tent sites, RV sites with hookups, and cozy cabins for those seeking a little more comfort.
  • Enjoy delicious meals at the park’s onsite restaurant, which offers a diverse menu featuring both local and international cuisine.
  • Relax by the outdoor swimming pool while the kids have a blast in the designated children’s pool area.
  • Make use of the park’s picnic areas and barbecue pits for a delightful outdoor meal with your loved ones.

“Canyon of the Eagles provides families with the perfect balance of outdoor adventure and relaxation, making it an excellent choice for a family camping trip in Texas.”

With its stunning scenery, abundance of outdoor activities, and family-friendly amenities, Canyon of the Eagles is a top choice for families seeking an unforgettable camping experience in Texas.


Texas offers a wealth of family-friendly camping spots, perfect for both relaxation and adventure. Whether you prefer the bustling activities at Garner State Park or the untouched nature of Big Bend Ranch State Park, there is something for every family to enjoy. These camping destinations provide the ideal setting for creating lifelong memories with your loved ones.

When planning your family camping trip in Texas, don’t forget to pack your camping essentials and gear. From tents and sleeping bags to cooking equipment and outdoor games, be prepared for a fun-filled outdoor adventure in the beautiful state of Texas.

With a wide range of outdoor activities for families, including swimming, hiking, fishing, stargazing, and more, you can immerse yourselves in the beauty of nature and create lasting bonds with your family. Explore the vast landscapes, indulge in campfire stories, and enjoy quality time together under the stars.

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