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Top 10 Things to Do Outdoors in Texas This Fall

Fall is a wonderful time to enjoy the outdoors in Texas. Since fall brings cooler temperatures to the Lone Star State, many Texans enjoy outdoor recreation during autumn, like camping, hiking and golfing. With so many unique places to go in the big state of Texas, there is a lot of potential for outdoor fun, no matter where you are in the state. Get out and explore these best things to do outdoors this fall in Texas.

Go Camping Fall at Guadalupe River State Park
Credit: Fall at Guadalupe River State Park by © Richard Mcmillin | Dreamstime.com

Go Camping

What Is It? Texas, in the fall, offers relief from the high temperatures that typically occur during the state’s summer months. Therefore Texans flock to campgrounds and cozy cabins to take advantage of the cooler weather.

Why Do It? There are a number of great campgrounds in Texas, including national parks and state parks. You can spend your days enjoying outdoor adventures like swimming, hiking, and kayaking before snuggling up to a warm campfire and gazing at the starry sky.

Good to Know: Lost Maples is a favorite in late October or November to see the fall foliage, while Guadalupe River State Park is the perfect area to set up camp. It’s a beautiful 1,938-acre park and home to the four-mile stretch of the Guadalupe River.

See Fall Foliage Lost Maples State Natural Area
Credit: Lost Maples State Natural Area by Lost Maples State Natural Area

See Fall Foliage

What Is It? Texas’ fall is short and sweet. And the Texas landscape may not be known as a haven for fall foliage, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some beautiful places to view changing leaves

Why Do It? For picture-perfect fall foliage views, head to Lost Maples State Natural Area in Vanderpool to see the changing maple trees. 

Good to Know: Visit Lost Maples Natural Area during late October or early November to catch a glimpse of the brightest fall foliage Texas has to offer.

Visit the Beach South Padre Island
Credit: South Padre Island by © Amy Nicolai | Dreamstime.com

Visit the Beach

What Is It? Visiting the beautiful Texas coast shouldn’t be reserved for just the summer months.

Why Do It? Texas regularly experiences warm weather well into fall. Therefore a beach day in the fall is a great way to avoid summer crowds at Texas’ most popular beaches.

Good to Know: The Padre Island National Seashore spans 70 miles and is a popular beach getaway in the state. Corpus Christi is a great beach town to visit for a fall beach getaway.

Explore the Desert South Rim at Big Bend National Park
Credit: South Rim at Big Bend National Park by daveynin via Flickr

Explore the Desert

What Is It? Many outdoor enthusiasts flock to the Chihuahuan Desert in the fall to experience this beautiful part of the state.

Why Do It? The Texas desert is great for camping, hiking, mountain biking, off-roading, and wildlife viewing. Texas’ national parks are found in this part of the state, such as Big Bend National Park and Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

Good to Know: West Texas is a mountainous, desert environment that can reach excruciating temperatures in the summer, while fall is ideal for cooler temps.

Go Stargazing McDonald Observatory
Credit: McDonald Observatory by McDonald Observatory

Go Stargazing

What Is It? For an epic night under the stars, experience the big Texas sky this fall when you go stargazing in West Texas.

Why Do It? Big Bend National Park is designated as a gold tier ranking with the International Dark Sky Association. Thousands of stars can be seen with the naked eye here on a clear night.

Good to Know: Another top stargazing spot in Texas that will enthuse star lovers is the McDonald Observatory, found two hours from Big Bend National Park in Fort Davis. The McDonald Observatory is home to one of the largest telescopes in the world.

Take a Hike Garner State Park
Credit: Garner State Park by Garner State Park

Take a Hike

What Is It? If you don’t have a night to spend camping under the stars, the next best thing to do would be to take a day hike.

Why Do It? From easy strolls to strenuous treks, Texas has a number of great walking and hiking trails to enjoy during the fall season. However, if you’d like to embrace the gorgeous scenery that autumn brings, take a hike in Garner State Park.

Good to Know: There are 11 miles of hiking trails in Garner, including the Old Baldy Trail and Blinn River Trail.

Enjoy a Round of Golf
Credit: by omnihotels.com

Enjoy a Round of Golf

What Is It? A great way to enjoy the cooler weather found in autumn in Texas is to get out on the golf course.

Why Do It? If you want to practice your swing, this state is the place to do it. Why? Because every one of Texas’ major cities has world-renowned golf courses.

Good to Know: If you’re in the Texas Hill Country, the Omni Barton Creek Resort and Spa is a top-ranked public course that draws golfers from all over the state.

Go Birdwatching Sparrow in Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park
Credit: Sparrow in Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park by Vince Smith via Flickr

Go Birdwatching

What Is It? Many bird species head south for the winter; therefore, Texas is a popular pitstop during the fall months for migrating birds traveling south.

Why Do It? Birders rejoice during this time since hundreds of bird species can be found in the state. A popular spot to view birds is Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, which is also home to the World Birding Center.

Good to Know: Another popular hotspot for birders is the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center.

Visit a Drive-In Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theatre
Credit: Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theatre by Stars and Stripes Drive-In Theatre New Braunfels

Visit a Drive-In

What Is It? Spend a cool fall evening at the drive-in. Drive-ins aren’t just a thing of the past in the Lone Star State.

Why Do It? Year-round showings play at Town & Country Drive-In, one of the biggest drive-ins in Texas. Both classic and new movies play at this classic attraction in Abilene.

Good to Know: While Town & Country Drive-In is one of the best, drive-ins are found throughout the state.

Go Hunting White-tailed deer
Credit: White-tailed deer by M&R Glasgow via Flickr

Go Hunting

What Is It? Hunting season begins in Texas during the fall season.

Why Do It? Home to the largest white-tailed deer herd in the nation, deer hunting is actually a form of population control in the Lone Star State.

Good to Know: Hunting season varies on what you intend to hunt and where. However, hunting season generally begins in September and ends in November.

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