Fall in Texas is a celebrated time of year!
As the temperatures start to drop, the fall foliage in Texas begins to paint the horizon with colors of gold, red, and bronze.
Granted, Texas is probably not the first place that comes to mind when you think of a fall colors road trip, but I assure you, there are regions in Texas that are brimming with fall color from mid October through late November.
The fall foliage in Texas varies from region to region, so timing your Texas fall trip is crucial if you want to see the color in its prime.
From the Piney Woods of Northeast Texas, to the desert landscape of West Texas, fall foliage in Texas shows off for sure!
The trick to seeing it is planning your trip at the right time and to the right area of Texas.
Don’t worry though, not only have we given you some of the best places to experience the changes of the leaves in Texas, but we have also included some valuable tips at the end of this post to ensure you have a great Texas fall getaway!
Let’s dive into some of the best places to see the fall colors in Texas!
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The Best Places to Experience Fall in Texas
Lost Maples State Natural Area
Lost Maples State Natural Area, also called Lost Maples State Park, is located on the banks of the Sabinal River.
As one of our favorite state parks near San Antonio, a visit to Lost Maples State Park is great anytime of year, but especially during the Autumn season.
Texas fall colors come to life thanks to the Bigtooth maple trees that are found throughout the Lost Maples State Natural Area.
Take time to enjoy the many outdoor recreational opportunities offer at Texas state parks. These activities include hiking trails, camping, fishing, and more.
One of our favorite hikes in Lost Maples is the East trail as this is where you will find a large concentration of colorful maple trees.
If you want to experience fall in Texas at the Lost Maples State Natural Area, the best time to visit is between late October and mid November.
Keep an eye on the state park’s website and social media to follow the fall foliage report released by the administration.
Lost Maples is one of my favorite areas to see fall colors in Texas!
Garner State Park
Head about 2 hours outside of San Antonio, and you will find the small town of Colcan, Texas, and our next Texas fall destination, Garner State Park.
The pristine flowing waters of the Frio River and the towering limestone bluffs of Garner State Park set the perfect backdrop for this display of fall colors in Texas.
Here, the towering oak trees, persimmon trees, and cypress trees transform into beautiful fall foliage adopting the striking colors of red, gold, and orange.
Visitors can surround themselves in the fall colors when they walk the 11 miles of hiking trails found at Garner State Park.
For an awesome view of the fall foliage at Garner State Park, make your way to the scenic overlook and see the gorgeous colors reflecting off of the clear waters of the Frio River.
Of course, you can also swim, tube, or kayak on the Frio River if you choose to do so!
Texas state parks are extremely popular in the fall, especially Garner State Park, so please consider making reservations in advance and checking the park’s website for current visitor information.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
If choosing to visit Texas in the fall, the Guadalupe Mountains National Park is another area to see fall colors in Texas.
Located in the Guadalupe Mountain Range just east of El Paso, Texas, the Guadalupe Mountains National Park puts on a dazzling display of fall foliage.
The brilliant colors in this national park are attributed to the many Bigtooth maples, junipers, and mesquite trees that grow here.
Home to some of the highest peaks in the Lone Star State means that you have opportunities to get above the fall colors to see them from a different viewpoint.
In addition to viewing the fall foliage, take time to explore Guadalupe Mountains National Park during the fall, when the weather isn’t roasting hot!
Here, you can enjoy bird watching, mountain climbing, tent camping, mountain biking, hiking, and stargazing, just to name a few of the recreational activities.
Guadalupe River State Park
Guadalupe River State Park is breathtaking during the fall thanks to the numerous oak, sycamore, and cypress trees found here.
Visitors to the park can enjoy over 13 miles of hiking trails to explore while surrounding themselves with fall color.
While you are here, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Bauer House, which dates back to 1878!
Of course, the Guadalupe River found here is also a popular place to enjoy some fun water recreation like swimming, canoeing, and kayaking.
This is another of the great state parks that are perfect for enjoying fall in Texas!
Tyler State Park
Head to East Texas to see the glorious fall colors in Tyler State Park.
The area, known as the Piney Woods of East Texas, is home to some fabulous east Texas wineries and awesome natural areas to visit, so don’t miss out on those during your time in East Texas!
Of course, Tyler State Park also boasts some of the best colors during the fall season as well.
The fall foliage here tends to show up later than some areas of Texas, with peak fall colors often coming in late November to early December.
The towering oaks, maples, dogwoods, and sweetgums come alive with colors of red and orange, and are truly a beautiful sight to behold.
Be sure to check out the Lakeshore Trail and the Whispering Pines Trail during your visit.
You will be glad you experienced the Autumn colors in this area for sure!
Another highlight of this East Texas state park is the 170-foot-long Schofield Covered Bridge, so be sure to check it out during your time at Tyler State Park!
Daingerfield State Park
Daingerfield State Park is the perfect addition to your list of Texas fall getaways thanks to the beautiful display of fall colors produced from the pine, oak, and bald cypress trees found in this area of Northeast Texas.
The fall color from the bald cypress trees reflecting off of the shimmering lake is truly a sight to behold.
To fully immerse yourself in the fall foliage of Daingerfield State Park, go hiking or mountain biking on the park’s many hiking trails, or kayak out on the waters of the lake.
We like to visit in early November to catch the fall colors in Texas in this area, but they are know to appear in Daingerfield State Park in late October as well.
This state park is truly a fabulous place to experience fall in Texas!
Enchanted Rock State National Area
The fall season is a great time to visit the beautiful Texas Hill Country.
Head just outside of the German town of Fredericksburg, Texas, and you will find one of the most unique parks in the Lone Star State, the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, also called Enchanted Rock State Park.
Like most other Texas state parks, Enchanted Rock State Park offers numerous outdoor activities.
These activities include hiking trails, wildlife spotting, geocaching, and bird watching.
The thing that makes this state park so unique is the large, pink granite dome that is the park’s namesake.
For generations, Native Americans believed that Enchanted Rock was inhabited by spirits that protected the land surrounding it, making this a true piece of Texas history.
When you visit this area of the Texas Hill Country during the fall, be sure to make your way to the top of Enchanted Rock to get a bird’s eye view of the fall colors in Texas.
Late October and early November is when the fall color usually appears on the oak, woodland, and mesquite trees that are native to this area of the Texas Hill Country.
The Texas fall colors from the top of the Summit Trail are truly breathtaking.
The vibrant colors shine bright, reminding you that this is one of the best places to visit in Texas!
Fort Worth Botanic Garden
Our hometown of Fort Worth, Texas, is another fabulous place to experience fall in Texas.
While fall foliage can be seen throughout the city, one of our favorite places to see fall colors in Texas is the Fort Worth Japanese Garden at the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens.
The Japanese Garden shines with hues bright yellow, red, and orange during the Texas fall season.
Much of the flora was donated to the Fort Worth Botanic Garden from Fort Worth’s sister city of Kyoto, making you feel as if you have been transported to Japan.
To highlight the fall foliage, the Fort Worth Japanese Garden hosts an annual Fall Festival in October and November that highlights not only the fall colors in Texas, but also Japanese art and culture.
Dinosaur Valley State Park
Head about 1.5 hours from Dallas and you will find the charming town of Glen Rose, Texas.
One of the unique weekend getaways from Dallas, Glen Rose is big on Texas charm and unique attractions, like the fabulous state park that calls this area home, Dinosaur Valley State Park.
The fall colors in this area of North Texas start to appear mid October and reach their peak in late October.
In addition to the fall foliage, you can also explore the park’s great attractions, including the massive dinosaur tracks literally cemented in time in the bed of the Paluxy River.
To surround yourself in the fall colors, explore the hiking trails before searching for fossils or geocaching in this great state park.
Zilker Botanical Gardens
When the fall months roll in, people love to visit Zilker Park in Austin, Texas, and with good reason!
Zilker Park is a 350-acre urban park that contains some incredible attractions, one of which is Zilker Botanical Gardens.
A visit to Zilker Gardens in the fall months guarantees that you will see some incredible fall foliage in Texas.
Really, most of the park’s in Austin are alive with fall color during this time of year. Other parks of interest to check out are Mayfield Park, and St. Edward’s Park, and Lady Bird Lake.
McKinney Falls State Park
A visit to McKinney Falls State Park in late October to mid November is the perfect time to see the fall colors come alive.
People flock to McKinney Falls State Park to see some of the best waterfalls in Texas year round, but the park is really busy during the fall months.
The scenic trails found in this park are the best way to immerse yourself in fall in Texas.
The beautiful cypress trees lining the bank of Onion Creek display vibrant fall colors, especially when viewed in the reflection of the water.
Take time to explore the miles of hiking trails or just have a quiet picnic on the edge of the creek; the choice is yours.
No matter what, you won’t be disappointed when you visit McKinney Falls State Park in Autumn.
Tips For Seeing the Fall Foliage in Texas
What Month Do Leaves Change Color in Texas?
Most people image Texas to be hot year round, and while that is true in some areas, most of Texas experiences all four seasons.
The best time to see the leaves change color in Texas is mid October through late November.
Just keep in mind that there are many areas of Texas that do not experience the fall colors.
We advise keeping your fall trip to areas in North Texas and the Texas Hill Country.
How to Pack for Fall in Texas
I often tell people that Texas is the bipolar state when it comes to weather.
One day you might experience temperatures in the 90s, and the next day in the 50s.
These fluctuations in temperature are especially common in fall and spring.
With this in mind, I advise bringing layers and a few options that include pants, shorts, t-shirts, and jackets or sweaters.
Do Your Research
As mentioned above, not all of the state experiences fall colors.
We highly recommend researching the area you are interested in prior to planning your trip so that you can see the colors you desire.
Some areas of deciduous trees might only show yellow in fall. That would be disappointing if you have your heart set on seeing reds and oranges.
Time Your Visit
Fall in Texas is a popular time to visit, so you might want to keep that in mind as many of the state parks get extremely crowded with their leaves are changing color.
To avoid some of the crowds, try to visit during the week if possible.
Of course, visiting in the early morning and later afternoon or evening hours also helps with avoiding some of the people.
Be sure that you really research the area you are planning to visit to ensure that the leaves will be changing colors during the time frame of your Texas vacation!