7 incredible place to go tenting in San Antonio

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Whether your dream camping trip is to fish for largemouth and Guadalupe bass (hello, Blanco State Park) or to explore prehistoric dinosaur tracks (Government Canyon State Natural Area, here we come), we have something for you.

Read on to discover seven amazing places to camp in San Antonio. But remember that advance reservations for overnight stays are recommended for each state park at all times.

Government Canyon State Natural Area (San Antonio)

An easy 30-minute drive from downtown San Antonio, you have 12,000 acres of wilderness at your disposal with approximately 40 miles of hiking and biking trails, all for an entrance fee of $6 per person. (The park secures Alamo City’s drinking water.)

Discovery Trail in the Government Canyon State Natural Area in San Antonio.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

A highlight not to be missed is along the Johnston Route to the 19th century Zizelmann House where you will see 110 million year old dinosaur tracks thought to belong to Acrocanthosaurus and Sauroposeidon dinosaurs. When you’re ready to rest your head choose from two campground options, water campgrounds ($18 per night plus entrance fee) for a total of eight people per site and group camps ($40 per night plus entrance fee) for a total of 16 people per site.

Find it: 12861 Galm Road, San Antonio, TX 78254

Medina River Nature Reserve (San Antonio)

Another quick detour from downtown, if you’re looking for a San Antonio campground, drive 20 minutes south of downtown to this admission-free gem. The varied terrain and abundance of wildlife make this area a popular hub for locals looking to hike and bike.

Medina River Nature Reserve

San Antonio Parks and Recreation

Once you’ve completed the seven miles of hiking trails with interpretive features marking the El Camino Real wagon trail, set up a shop tent at the campground that sleeps up to 25 people ($20 per night). You can reserve up to a year in advance by calling 210-207-7275 or online here. In addition to six tent sites, the campground also has a gazebo with two picnic tables, vaulted toilets, a spacious BBQ area, and drinking water.

Find it: 5800 Old Highway 90, San Antonio, TX 78227

Guadalupe River State Park (Spring Branch)

Located 45 minutes north of downtown San Antonio, many flock to scenic Guadalupe River State Park for a swim, but the park itself also offers plenty of stunning views and a colorful history.

Guadalupe River State Park is a popular spot for swimming and fishing.

Guadalupe River State Park is a popular spot for swimming and fishing.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Located on a four-mile riverfront, you can fish, tubing, and canoe when you’re all swimming outside, or head ashore for hiking, bird watching, biking, or horseback riding. A picnic is always a good idea. Entry fee is $7 per person and camping options include a powered campground for a total of eight people per site ranging from $15 to $24 per night or $90 to $144 per week plus the daily entry fee (more details here). Book your reservation in advance.

Find it: 31 Park Road 31, Spring Branch, TX 78070

Hill Country State Natural Area (Bandera)

This peaceful nature preserve is one hour and 15 minutes northwest of downtown San Antonio and costs $6 per person. Backpackers can enjoy 5,000 acres of canyons, mesa, and creek bottoms before settling into primitive campgrounds for $5 to $12 a night plus the daily entrance fee. Or stay at the Group Lodge, a 1930’s ranch house that sleeps up to 12 people for $300 per night per group plus individual entrance fees.

Notable: The expansive grounds were once a ranch, and there are countless trails for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. If you fancy a steep climb, venture out on the West Peak Overlook Trail, which offers sweeping views of Hill Country.

Find it: 10600 Bandera Creek Road, Bandera, TX 78003

John William Helton – San Antonio River Natural Park (Floresville)

Lose yourself among giant pecan trees, a meandering river, and three miles of hiking (or biking) trails at this admission-free park 30 minutes south of downtown San Antonio.

John William Helton - San Antonio River Natural Park

John William Helton – San Antonio River Natural Park

John William Helton Natural Park

For larger gatherings and celebrations, the park can rent a 5,000-square-foot pavilion. Choose between river and paddle trail access if you want to take your adventures out on the water, or three miles of maintained trails for hiking or mountain biking in this 98-acre urban escape. Like shooting hoops? There is also a basketball court. The park has campsites with a maximum occupancy of eight people for an overnight fee of $10.

Find it: 15662 FM 775, Floresville, TX 78114

Blanco State Park (Blanco)

An hour north of downtown San Antonio, a $5 entrance fee gives you access to the banks of the spring-fed Blanco River, perfect for picnics, a swim and a fishing trip. Although it’s only a mile-long stretch of river, the park offers many aquatic activities, from bass fishing to kayaking or canoeing. You can also participate in history and nature-based ranger programs.

A young girl and her father fish in the river at Blanco State Park.

A young girl and her father fish in the river at Blanco State Park.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

Bring those S’mores supplies while you camp at the powered campgrounds for a total of eight people ($20 per night plus daily admission) or fully wired (30 amp) campgrounds for a total of eight people ($23 per night plus daily) stargazing entrance fee) and premium full hookup campsites (30/50 amp) for a total of eight people ($25 per night plus daily entrance fee). Screened shelters are also available for a total of eight people per site ($30 per night plus day admission).

Find it: 101 Park Road 23, Blanco, TX 78606

San Antonio / Alamo KOA Vacation (San Antonio)

Fans of Kampgrounds of America (KOA) Texas camping will be pleased to know that the privately held company has an outpost 10 minutes from downtown San Antonio. An on-site swimming pool, playground, stocked fishing pond for catch-and-release fun, and the Howard W. Peak Greenway Trail System are available to guests, along with pedal car and bicycle rentals.

The playground at the San Antonio / Alamo KOA Holiday campground.

The playground at the San Antonio / Alamo KOA Holiday campground.

San Antonio/Alamo KOA vacation

Camping options range from RV sites and tent sites to 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom and deluxe cabins. Prices vary depending on travel dates, type of equipment and size.

Find it: 602 Gembler Road, San Antonio, TX 78219

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