It’s almost summertime and that means it’s time to get out the camping gear, fishing poles, and sun screen! There’s no better way to relax than to sit outside of the tent you just set up and breathe in. Whether you’re getting ready for a day trip or a week of hanging out with Mother Nature, sometimes it’s the process of getting there that can be the most mind-numbing. Don’t get us wrong, road trips can be great, but sometimes you just want to skip the “are we there yet?”. So this year, if you’re interested in camping near home, we’ve got just what you need.
Regardless of your summer plans, planning and research can take away from the fun. This is why we wanted to help by making this list of 25 Best Campgrounds Within Two Hours of Houston, Texas for you! I’ll let you know ahead of time that a few are a little bit over two hours away but we stayed in the general area of the time limit. Now all you have to do is decide which amenities you want and what activities you want to participate in!
PRO TIP: Hitting the road with your crew? You need this 5 port USB charger that takes care of people in the front and back. It’s awesome.
Sam Houston National Park : New Waverly, TX
Brazos Bend : Needville, TX
This gorgeous national park offers tent pads, picnic tables, parking spurs for trailers, lantern posts, grills, potable water, and toilets. Hiking is very popular in the spring when the climate is milder. Water activities get going in the summer on Double Lake with canoes and paddleboats that can be rented from the park. Deer is the most popular game animal in the Sam Houston National Forest, with squirrels second. Quail and dove are found around newly regenerated timberland. For the water sportsman, fishing and duck hunting can be enjoyed on area lakes and streams.
Brazos Bend State Park 21901 FM 762 Rd, Needville, TX 77461
This park has got plenty of options for activities during your stay. Lots of trails, some of which are even wheelchair friendly, wind through the woods and bring you to the water’s edge of the lake. Just make sure you’ve brushed up on your alligator safety because they’re not uncommon in certain areas of the park. Aside from walking or biking the trails, there’s also the option of horseback riding on one of the multiuse trails.
Brazos Bend State Park 21901 FM 762 Rd, Needville, TX 77461
Here’s a KOA that’s got your back this weekend if you’re trying to relax to the max. Bring your RV here, up to 80′, and enjoy the cable tv, wifi, hookups, and pools to lounge in all day. If you haven’t got an RV, don’t feel left out! You can stay in one of the 35 cabins that have bathrooms and a full kitchen. Tent campers are welcome as well. Visitors can explore the area and find the nearby golf course, restaurants, and the lake has plenty of recreational activities.
This park is a freaking island, so as far as camping goes you really can’t go wrong with this option. There is hiking, biking, fishing, bird watching, and lots more. One of the many things that make this island campground unique is the paddle trails they boast. Though, if you decide to go on these, you’ll need to bring your own canoe or kayak because they don’t rent them out. Outside the campground, there is an educational theme park called Moody Gardens. Bring the kids along and there’ll be plenty of nature for people of various interests to enjoy and participate in during the stay.
This lovely State Park has six miles of hiking trails that are open to bikers as well. Campsites have full hookups and some sites even hold up to 60 people. Stephen F. Austin State Park also holds events for youth over the summer. Nearby attractions include but are not limited to: a neighboring golf course, a beautiful riverbank to fish from, and the San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site.
Here’s a State Park full of relaxation. You can go and unwind in the shade of the trees and go fishing from one of the fishing piers or off your boat or canoe. There are watercraft for rent including paddle boats, canoes, and kayaks. There’s even a bird blind to enjoy watching the local feathered friends who flit about the forest.
This park has 4,000 acres of marsh and a boardwalk going through so you can enjoy without getting your feet wet. Campers, cabin-dwellers, and RV-goers all have a place here at Sea Rim State Park. Feel free to fish from the boardwalk or explore with your rented or own canoe or kayak. Sea Rim also has the option to explore its grounds from home via their virtual tour of the trails map. If you’re interested, check it out on their website!
Come to Northlake RV Resort if you’re looking for a nice and relaxing place to kick your feet up and breathe deeply. This resort has got a massive list of amenities so it’s ridiculous to try to write them all here, but if you’re interested you should definitely check out their website below. Some of the best aspects of this resort are the park-wide wifi, the stocked fishing lakes, and the fire pits. This place allows for extended stays and weekend trips, so regardless of your plans you’ll definitely have plenty of options right next to home!
Traders Village is a short drive for you and a wonderful place to stay. The electric and water hookups are free, there is a pool for swimming, and there’s wifi. Bring your picnic supplies so you can eat outside at the picnic tables while enjoying the weather. You’re welcome to lounge around and enjoy relaxing or you can go next door to the flea market that hosts events and activities for visitors.
At AllStar RV Resort, they’ve got anything you could need while camping in your RV and more. If you’ve got yourself a Fido who wanders himself into a smelly situation, there’s a dog washing station here for your (and your nose’s) convenience. Take advantage of the swimming pool, the computer room, the recreation room, and more. There’s also a stadium nearby for baseball fans to watch their games.
10650 SW Plaza Ct
Houston, TX 77074
Price: unavailable online
There are actually two camping sites associated with Escape the Pavement near Houston. There are four aspects to Escape the Pavement: Heyne Ranch, Lake Houston Wilderness Park, Blackwood Land Institute, and Big Thicket National Preserve. It’s actually super great, because no matter your flavor preference of outdoors experience, this place has got you. One is a ranch for you and your horse to enjoy pastures, rivers, and wooded trails; perfect for a day trip. You’ll also love the bonfires on the beach! One of their campgrounds has over 4,000 acres of forest and a creek that you can go ahead and explore the trails winding around through it on your horse, bike, or on foot. The other area available for camping is restricted to primitive camping only because it is located on a preserve. Lastly, the land institute is a great educational place for kids and adults alike. Check out their website if any of these interest you and start planning a trip!
There are multiple locations. For information, check their website.
The campground and park are also full of opportunities for fun in the sun. Water activities like swimming, skiing, fishing, and the likes are all great ideas on Lake Somerville. There are picnic areas for campers or day hikers to sit, enjoy the view, and munch on their sandwiches. Birdwatching, volleyball, hiking, and horseback riding are popular pass times. Overall, this is a wonderful place to relax and play in the great outdoors.
Sheldon Lake State Park is open to fishing and wildlife observation. You’re welcome to take your boat out for a ride or fish off the banks, so long as you’re wary of the alligators inhabiting the park. The learning center has tons of activities for the kids that you can sign up for and enjoy. Some of these activities are more hands-on, like catch and release fishing and some are visual demonstrations like green building technologies or smart wildscape demonstrations for gardening and using beautiful native plants.
A forest with a history and personality, the Lost Pines located on Bastrop State Park used to be a luscious and well-groomed forest before being damaged by floods and fires. Now, the forest’s recovery is just as beautiful a sight. The story itself is a perfect reason to visit, but Bastrop also has swimming, biking, hiking, and geocaching as an incentive. If you’re looking to exploring the surrounding area, Bastrop also has museums and restaurants to check out on your vacation!
Experienced bicyclists looking for a challenge will enjoy the bike trails here at Buescher State Park. This park connects with Bastrop State Park via a paved road with great views of the area. Unfortunately, there is currently no swimming in this park, but if you adventure the short commute to the nearby Bastrop you’ll find a nice swimming pool for visitors like yourself. Lastly, if you’re hankering to float along in a tandem kayak or a canoe, you can do so through rental at Buescher State Park.
This park has a pool, grounds for camping, trails to hike, and a nine-hole golf course among many other things that allow you to get active! If you want to go fishing but don’t want to lug around your equipment, you’re in luck! The park has fishing equipment available for guests to use during their stay. If you’re looking to have a gathering of people for a family or church event, there is a Group Recreation Hall that also has a kitchen capable of holding up to 75 people at once.
If you’re looking for a beautiful place to host a family reunion, try looking here! Campsites have full hookups and there are rentable screen shelters as well. As long as you’re wary of the alligators that dwell in the area, visitors can enjoy camping, hiking, birding, swimming, and biking. On your way in and out you can stop at the souvenir shop that sells treats and equipment!
Here’s a popular KOA that you’ll probably need to make a reservation for ahead of time to ensure you get yourself a spot for the night. There is a beautiful pool with lounge chairs for you to relax and sink into while soaking in the sun. Your kids will enjoy the playground. If you love enjoying the great outdoors and its many inhabitants, there is a local bald eagle named Eddie who supposedly flies around the area frequently. There is also fishing, a pavilion to admire the scenery in, and is known for the sunset views.
Campers interested in sleeping in tents, RVs, or cabins are welcome here. You’ll be able to go swimming, fishing, biking, hiking, and more with your friends and family. No need to get a fishing license when you’re on the shore of a state park, so go ahead and try your hand at catching sunfish, bass, or catfish! If you prefer to learn about your surroundings and its history rather than being emerged in the real deal, there are programs and museums aplenty for you to observe and glean information from during your stay.
This little oasis has a multitude of thirsty plants that cannot live in other areas due to the lack of water. The park is named for the dwarf palmettos that grow beneath the trees. As a visitor, you can also enjoy the copious amounts of flowing and stagnant water by swimming, tubing, fishing, and canoeing. Those interested in keeping dry will enjoy bird watching, hiking, geocaching, or staring at the dwarf palmettos.
Come to this RV and tent camping site to enjoy the lovely wildflowers, scattered oaks, birds, and other wildlife. There is a pond with catfish that you can relax on the edge of while fishing and other areas for freshwater fishing. The winters are not as frigid as up north, so you can always count on decent weather should you decide to vacation here! There are plenty of places in the area for you to check out, making it perfect for both short or extended stays.
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