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7 Best Small Towns in Texas (And Awesome Nearby Campsites)

7 Best Small Towns in Texas (And Awesome Nearby Campsites)

Everything is Bigger In Texas! Right? Well, sometimes the best stuff is hidden in the SMALL towns, and Texas has a zillion of them to explore. Here are 7 of the best small towns in Texas.

Nacogdoches, Texas

Why You’ll Love It: The first official town in Texas, this East Texas gem has a quaint brick paved downtown with plenty of shops and attractions to discover.

Don’t miss Butcher Boys, ranked #1 on Wide Open Eats “10 Best Burger Joints in Texas.” From great hiking trails around the lake, which once served as trade routes for Native Americans, to tea in a Victorian mansion, the town that produces the most blueberries in Texas has got you covered.

Nearby Camping: Camp Tonkawa Springs RV Park

Miles to Downtown: 19 miles

With 75 sites, this campground is nestled under towering Texas pines, and has swimming, horseshoes, volleyball and a recreation hall. This campground is off the beaten path and quiet, with wildlife wandering through. WiFi and cell is spotty.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 9/10

Image Source: Jerry and Pat Donaho on Flickr

Fredericksburg, Small Town Texas

One of the Hill Country’s gems, Fredericksburg is a popular tourism spot for locals and visitors alike. This German flavored town has historic buildings, amazing shopping, wineries and great food options. Antiques, art and culture, museums and outdoors activities are plentiful. 

Why You’ll Love It: This area of Texas is very picturesque, with plenty of photo ops, especially in the bluebonnet and wildflower spring season.

Plenty of bird and bat watching, popular hiking trails, rock climbing at Enchanted Rock, bicycling and horseback riding. There are plenty of parks as well as amazing cuisine from around the world.

Nearby Camping: Fredericksburg RV Park

Miles to Downtown: Blocks, walking friendly.

This big rig friendly park has long level pull through spots, free WiFi and cable, concrete patios and on site laundry. This is a Good Sam park, pet friendly, and even has free ice! You will need that in summer.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 10/10

Image Source: Kevin Oliver on Flickr

Port Aransas, Texas

Why You’ll Love It: This historic seaside town is a gulf dream vacation spot. The island of Port A has a relaxing beach vibe with plenty of white sand for the whole family to enjoy and spread out. Go deep sea fishing, birding, attend a festival or eat amazing seafood!

Nearby Camping: Tropic Island RV Resort

Miles to Downtown: 1 mile

A family owned resort, this park is in the heart of Port A, and close to the piers, restaurants and shopping. They offer hotel rooms, cottages, and RV spots that accommodate the largest RVs. Boasting two heated pools, a hot tub, games, a dog park, event center, free WiFi, and even a fish cleaning area.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 9/10

Jefferson, Texas

Why You’ll Love It: Jefferson Texas was a major river port for products and immigrants and was a major shipping port for ag products from 1845-1875. This town was were many settlers first set foot in Texas.

A booming steamboat town, Jefferson boasts some impressive architecture and historical significance. There are many festivals and museums, as well as shopping. Outdoor activities include fishing, hiking, kayaking and river boat tours on Caddo Lake.

Nearby Camping: Buckhorn Creek COE

Miles to Downtown: 10

This Corps of Engineers park has 57 RV campsites with water and electric. There are also 38 non-electric tent sites. REstrooms with showers are on site, as well as a boat ramp, dock, and dump station. There is a playground on site. Lake o’the Pines is a 18,700 acre water and 9,000 acres of land park, spanning 5 counties and is popular with outdoorsmen.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 9/10

Port Isabel, Texas Coastal Small Town

Why You’ll Love It: This seaside port on the very southern tip of Texas has a great historic presence, as well as outdoors activities for the whole family including dolphin tours, fishing, the national wildlife refuge, and beach activities.

Nearby Camping: South Padre Island KOA

Miles to Downtown: 3.7 miles across the causeway but there is a free shuttle.

This KOA campground has lodging, tents sites, RV spots and extended stay options. Right on the beach, this KOA offers classes, a pool, a restaurant and bar right in the campground, a dog park, hot tub, a store, WiFi, cable, fishing, and more. There is a free shuttle for South Padre and over the bridge to Port Isabel.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 8/10

Del Rio, Texas

Why You’ll Love It: Located in extreme Southwestern Texas, Del Rio is a frontier town on the border to Mexico.

Known for being home of the Laughlin Air Force Base, Del Rio also has plenty of outdoor activities in the Amistad National Recreation Area.

Lake Amistad is the third largest lake in Texas and boasts some of the best bass fishing in the state. You can also kayak, boat, swim, or even scuba dive in the lake. In the park, you can also view some of the oldest Native American cave paintings, hike, bike, and explore. After a hard day of exercise, enjoy some fine Texas wine at the local wineries or take in the mix of Mexican and Texas culture.

Nearby Camping: Hidden Valley RV Park

Miles to Downtown: 1 mile

This shady park is quiet and friendly, and offers more privacy than other parks in the area. Campsites are larger, but back in, and offer concete patios. WiFi is available, and campers felt very safe here.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 9/10

Dripping Springs, TX

Why You’ll Love It: Dripping Springs is located west of Austin and is a popular tourist spot. Numerous wineries and distilleries are available for touring and libations after enjoying the beautiful Hill country views and outdoor activities.

Hiking, biking, kayaking, golf, fishing…the list is lengthy and your family can pick from their favorites in this diverse and beautiful area of Texas. The Hamilton Pool is one of the most photographed pools in the world, with waterfalls, grottos, and lush vegetation. The unique downtown offers an array of dining and shopping choices.

Nearby Camping: Sunset RV Resort

Miles to Downtown: 14 miles to Dripping Springs, 20 miles to Austin

Located West of Austin, this park has 37 sites, onsite restrooms with showers, and laundry. Spacious level sites are quiet.

Small Town Texas Vibe Score: 9/10

Texas is known for everything being bigger, but many great hidden gems are in the smaller towns in Texas. From the border towns to the gulf, and from the historic piney woods to the Hill Country, Texas small towns have outdoor activities, shopping, wineries, lakes and more to explore!

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