Tiny But Mighty, One Of The Smallest State Parks In Texas Is A Hidden Gem Worth Exploring
We’ve talked at length about the largest state park in Texas, but what about the smallest state park in Texas, which also happens to be home to the Old Tunnel State Park bats? Tucked away in Fredericksburg, Old Tunnel State Park is a historic site that’s also home to over three million bats! Watch them emerge and stroll through the lush Hill Country landscape for a day well spent at one of the best state parks in Texas.
Old Tunnel History
Old Tunnel Ghost Stories
Hiking In Old Tunnel State Park
Please note that children under four are not allowed on the lower viewing platform. Visit the Texas Parks & Wildlife website for more information about the park, including current hours and entrance fees.
Have you ever visited the smallest state park in Texas to see the Old Tunnel State Park bats? If so, do you think it’s one of the best state parks in Texas? We’d love to hear all about your experience in the comments! And if you’re looking for restaurants near Old Tunnel State Park, I highly recommend the Rathskeller, which is located in an 1800s building and accessible via a secret underground entrance.
Did you know one of the best hiking trails in America is hiding right here in Texas? The Santa Elena Canyon Trail is under two miles long, but it offers some of the most remarkable views you’ll ever see. Learn more about it (plus other bucket-list-worthy hikes in the U.S.) in this video by us at OnlyInYourState:
More to Explore
Best State Parks in Texas & Related Info
Which state parks should I visit in Texas?
In addition to Old Tunnel State Park, some of the best state parks in Texas are:
- Mother Neff State Park, Moody
Texas' very first state park, Mother Neff State Park opened to the public in 1937 and features an observation tower, nearly four miles of trails, a Native American rock shelter, and more.
- Davis Mountains State Park, Fort Davis
With towering mountains, brilliant night skies, and a gorgeous, historic motel, Davis Mountains State Park is a must-visit.
- Longhorn Cavern State Park, Burnet
What's better than a Texas state park? A Texas state park with a beautiful cave, of course! Experience the best of both worlds at Longhorn Cavern State Park, where you can hike aboveground and explore a whole other world beneath the surface.
What are the most beautiful hikes in Texas?
Both within and outside of our state parks, hiking is one of my favorite ways to enjoy Texas' great outdoors. Some of the most beautiful hikes in Texas include:
- Rusk Footbridge, Rusk
Surrounded by lush greenery, this magical bridge hike leads across a 550-foot wooden bridge that was built in 1861.
- The Window Trail, Big Bend National Park
One of the most iconic hikes in all of Texas, this world-famous trail features a scenic vista where the space between two adjacent mountains is reminiscent of a window.
- The Pinery Trail, Guadalupe Mountains National Park
You don't have to scale Guadalupe Peak to experience the beauty of the national park. The Pinery Trail is less than a mile long, but it still boasts incredible scenery such as wildflowers, ruins, and (of course) mountains. It's also ADA-accessible!