Feast your eyes on a cornucopia of colors.
Let’s be real, the only way you can see fall colors in Houston is through filters and photoshop. Those that seek the upmost fall experience with breathtaking sights of blazen, changing leaves, will have to take their PSL to-go on a state-bound road trip. Here are the 10 best places in Texas to see fall foliage:
1. Lost Maples State Natural Area
As succinctly put on its website, Lost Maples State Natural Area is “[w]here the bigtooth maples turn spectacular colors of red, orange, and yellow; and nature proves that Texas does have four seasons, after all”. While boasting bright colors year round, Lost Maples is a must visit come mid October. The state natural area, located two hours or so northwest of San Antonio, features over 10 miles of hiking trails, including a loop that takes trekkers alongside the edge of a 2,200-square-foot cliff.
2. Garner State Park
While most well known for the Frio River, Garner State Park is equally enjoyable in the autumn. With some 1,774 acres equipped with 16 miles of breathtaking hill country scenery, the park’s persimmon, mesquite, cypress, and oak trees flash in brilliant fall colors in late October. The most scenic overlook is located off the top of the Old Baldy Trail, a steep, half-mile trail that gifts visitors a jaw-dropping 1,845-foot-high view of the majestic park.
3. Dinosaur Valley State Park
Imprinted with tracks from the land before time, Dinosaur Valley State Park in North Texas is a vibrant destination located an hour southwest of Fort Worth for autumn lovers in the last week of October. Immersed in brilliant fall foliage, the Paluxy River at the park gives visitors the chance to follow in the foosteps of actual dinosaurs. For a more Spielberg-type photo-op, visitors can also come in contact with the park’s life-size dinosaur statues at this Jurassic Park.
4. Mckinney Falls State Park
Located just 15 minutes outside of Austin where Onion Creek and Williamson Creek meet, McKinney Falls is filled with a tumbling bunch of limestone falls amid hiking trails, cypress trees, and gorgeous scenery. In late October and early November, visitors can treat themselves to a gorgeous spectacle of orange, yellow, and red colors.
5. Daingerfield State Park
Populated with pine, sweet gum, cypress, and oak trees, Daingerfield State Park in northeast Texas becomes a haven of glorious fall foliage in the months of October and November. For the most scenic vantage points, we recommend taking a saunter around the lake on Rustling Leaves Trail, or, hop in a kayak and soak in the spectacular sea of fiery orange, red, and yellow colors. You can also get a bird’s eye glimpse of the forest from the Mountain View Trail.
You know the one. Texas’ state capital puts on a dazzling fall spectacle when the season rolls around. Patched with no shortage of trails, parks, and green spaces, Austin offers an array of natural settings in which to enjoy the colorful seasons’ change. Town Lake, Ladybird Lake, St. Edward’s Park, Mayfield Park, and Redbud Isle are just some of such places to experience the explosive fall showcase.
7. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area
Located some 18 miles north of Fredericksburg, Enchanted Rock State Natural Area lives up to its name during the autumn season. A short hike up its dome-shaped rock offers an enchanting panoramic sight of the auburn, gold, and copper trees below.
8. Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Coincidentally one of the best places to stargaze in the country, the Guadalupe Mountains National Park in West Texas is populated with a brilliant variety of flora. Located 100 or so miles outside of El Paso, the park’s collection of bigtooth maples, desert sumac shrubs, and ponderosa pines turn into brilliant shades of golden, bronze, and scarlet from mid October to mid November. Its best vistas to see such foliage are on McKittrick Ridge and Canyon Trail.
As the proud Rose Capital of America, the city of Tyler truly flourishes in the fall. Among its roses that peak bloom every autumn, the city also hosts a kaleidoscopic collection of maples, dogwoods, gums, and elms that offer breathtaking scenery in late October and November. To catch a glimpse of the changing seasons, take your pick of the city’s winding farm-to-market roads, county, backroads and byways, as well as Highway 14 from Tyler to Winnsboro, for a majestic road trip. Or, visit Tyler State Park for a more truly immersive experience.
10. Fort Worth Japanese Garden
Fort Worth Japanese Garden, the oldest botanical garden in Texas, is an absolute gem. Its brilliant collection of Japanese maple trees, cherry trees, magnolias, offer truly majestic scenery to stroll among the garden’s ponds, bridges, hanging granite lanterns, and winding paths.