Who wants to go fall camping in East Texas?
Here in Texas, our fall season slowly starts to come around about the end of October first of November. So when you’ve had enough of the northeastern cold weather, come on down to Texas! We Texans get so fired up when the cooler side of fall arrives that we start planning more outdoor adventures. Many families scramble to find that perfect spot to camp. Though there are plenty of beautiful places to camp in Texas, this article is about the best places for fall camping in East Texas –one of my favorite places to go in autumn.
9 Best Places For Fall Camping In East Texas
First, what do you think of when someone says, “Let’s go camping?” Do you think it’s only about tent camping? Well, let me assure you, it’s not. My way of camping is in a cabin full of amenities—I’ve documented that in my bio! I’m all about the outdoors and the miles of hiking trails, but when it comes to laying my head down, I want and need something softer than the hard ground. Maybe one day I’ll try tent camping with my son, but until then, I’ll leave that to him and his Boy Scout troop. This list provides all types of camping.
Here in Texas, around the middle of November, you will not believe the beautiful fall foliage we get, especially in East Texas. I hope you find a wonderful place to camp – no matter how you like it!
The further east you go in Texas or, for that matter – northeast, the better the fall foliage will be. And who doesn’t like the warm autumn colors? I do because it’s my favorite time of year, plus fall produces all my favorite colors. So maybe I’m a little partial.
Best Time To Go Fall Camping In East Texas
Right after Labor Day, when fall finally rolls around, tents and sleeping bags come out from the garage to get inspected, and the fall camping checklist is dug out of the drawer – it’s time to start preparing for that annual camping trip.
Although this time of the year is the most popular for camping, it’s still in the upper 90s here in Texas. So we have time to consider where we want to camp and when. So, the best time to go camping in Texas is in late September, October, and November, and maybe the first part of December.
Best Places For Fall Camping In East Texas
From tent camping to camping in an RV park to tiny cabin camping – it’s all here—the piney woods of East Texas! Remember, if camping in Texas State Parks, there is a nominal entrance fee unless you have a Texas State Park Pass. But you do need to make reservations.
1. Caddo Lake State Park
Caddo Lake State Park offers all kinds of camping, from tent, cabin, RV, and camping under the stars (no tent – nothing!), and you’ll see blankets of gorgeous fall foliage in late October and early November. However, it really does depend on the weather and Mother Nature when the leaves start to fall.
If time allows, take a guided tour of the bayou to see the Spanish moss hanging from the 100-year-old bald cypress trees.
2. Piney Woods Of East Texas
LaRue, Texas (Near Dallas)
LaRue, TX, is a short drive from Dallas on Hwy 175 and is a great place to escape the rat race. Have you heard of Getaway House? They offer the perfect place and tiny cabins for camping out in nature. There are 40 tiny cabins in the woods, surrounded by pine trees, a picnic table, a fire pit, and chairs right outside the cabins.
Pro Tip: If you like to zipline, there is an awesome zipline course near LaRue called the New York Texas Zip Line. My son and I have zipped the 6-line and the 9-line zip course. The 9-zipline course, by far, was the best. It’s that last one over the lake that is so spectacular.
3. Brazos Valley
Navasota, Texas (Near Houston)
Just a short drive from Houston is the same Getaway cabin as in the Piney Woods. My son and I have stayed at both. Look up getaway.house.com for the cabins.
Pro Tip: This part of Texas boasts pine needles and pine cones. Bring a bag while hiking to pick up a few cones to take back home for a nice table display and other fall decorations.
4. Daingerfield State Park
Northeast Texas is where you’ll find this park, and it’s on every list about fall because of all the natural beauty of yellow, orange, red, and pink that fall foliage provides. Check out the cabins for rent in the park and all the hiking you could do at Daingerfield State Park.
The best time to visit this Texas park for fall colors is early to mid-November. This would be the state park that I would take my son to next if we can find the time.
5. Lake O’ The Pines
Lake O’ The Pines is a lovely lake that offers all types of camping, including campsites and tent sites, and easy access to the lake. The views of the lake at Johnson Creek Campground are incredible. I don’t think there’s a lousy camping spot in the Pines. And if you get antsy and want to wander around, the small town of Jefferson is only 10 minutes away.
6. Tyler State Park
Each year, the town of Tyler hosts its annual Texas Rose Festival in October. This time of the year would be great for camping at the state park. Bring a pole if you like fishing because the lake contains crappie, catfish, and bass. There are screened-in cabins (no air conditioning), tent spots, and other cabins to rent. Hiking is at its best here as well. Tyler State Park has plenty of trails that are easy to hike.
If you want something more cozy and fun for the kids, check out Jellystone Park in Tyler. My son went there a couple of years ago with his other family, and they had the best time. The cabins there were very cozy and suitable for the whole family.
7. Lake Bob Sandlin State Park
Lake Bob Sandlin State Park is a very nice lakeside park located a little north than east, but all the same, the area is excellent for fall camping, and the fall colors are some of the best in the Lone Star State!
8. Lake Livingston State Park
If fishing is your thing, you’re in luck here because you can fish all morning long and into the night on the lighted fishing pier. Nature trails all around, birding is great here, and there is a nature center to visit. Bring your bike.
9. Wright Patman Lake
Queen City, Texas (9 miles from Texarkana, Texas)
Located in the beautiful piney woods of northeast Texas, Wright Patman Lake offers a huge area for camping – all types of camping, plus lots of outdoor activities, including boating, swimming, hiking, and more. No getting bored here!
These are some of the best places for fall camping in East Texas for families to have fun and enjoy the outdoors. And if you’re looking strictly for RV Camping in East Texas, we’ve got that too.
Best Fall Camping Gear For The Family
Before heading out to your campsite, check out these must-haves (affiliate links) camping gear for kids and camping gear for adults that you’ll need to get the most from your camping experience. Of course, it’s all optional but fun to have at your side. And, like my son, when he goes camping, I mark everything with custom camp labels, or else it could end up in someone else’s bag.