The Blog

June 29, 2017

But Wait! There’s More of the Great Outdoors

Great Outdoors Month doesn’t have to end in June. Texas has it all when it comes to fun, healthy, and affordable activities to enjoy outdoors. These top summer adventures can be done with friends, family, or even your pet!

1) Paddle Board on the Lake

Soak up the surrounding scenery – beautiful parks, expanding skylines, clear blue skies – while getting a light workout and enjoying great company.

[Central] There are tons of paddle boarding options around Austin, such as the Nichol’s Landing Paddling Trail,  Inks Lake, and South Llano Paddling Trail.

[Dallas/Forth Worth] If you are near the Frisco/Dallas area, DFW SURF holds some amazing paddle boarding events, including Friday Night Fireworks, where beginners learn how to paddle watching fireworks off the horizon. You can also use White Rocks Paddle Co to paddle on White Rock Lake using their convenient online equipment reservation.

[East] Woodlands Lake provides an easy-going atmosphere while enjoying a good paddle. For a helpful trip overview, visit the Woodlands Lake paddling website.

Paddle board rental around $8-$30 per hour

Photo: Courtesy of Alberto Martinez

2) Take a Small Road Trip to a Local Swimming Hole or Spring

[Central] The Blue Hole is a beautiful and refreshing swimming hole in Wimberley. Lush green lawns, a fun rope swing, and cool clear water make visiting this swimming hole a must! Since it’s summer time, go later in the day to avoid crowds.

[West] The historic Balmorhea State Park holds the largest spring-fed swimming pool in the world! Dive into the crystal-clear pool which is open daily. The park as plenty to do with hikes, picnic areas, and playgrounds.

[Dallas/Fort Worth] Want to enjoy the summer heat on a sandy beach? Then head over to Grandbury Beach Park. Lake Granbury has the perfect beach scene, complete with tiki huts and a white sandy beach.

[East] The Boykin Springs Recreation Area is a hidden, nine-acre swimming hole located near Jasper in the Angelina National Forest. The boulder channel makes it a perfect place for kids, adults, and dogs to splash and explore. If you want to extend your trip, there’s free primitive camping near Bouton Lake.

Entrance fees from $0-$10

3) Hop on a Bike 

Photo: Courtesy of People for Bikes.

Texas is filled with endless opportunities to bike and enjoy the outdoors, including biking around rivers and trails.

In this surprisingly cycling-savvy state, many organizations hold weekly social rides for any type of rider. Check out this website for an extensive list of bicycle rides around Texas. Find a ride near you and be prepared for some truly active socializing!


4) Relax while Tubing

A great float is fun and relaxing for all ages! Bring a cooler with water and healthy snacks on the river for a full day of tubing.

[Central] Go on short, medium, or long trips floating down rivers such as Comal River, Guadalupe River, San Marcos River, and South Llano River.

[Dallas/ Fort Worth] The Trinity River runs through Dallas and Fort Worth and provides a slower-moving, more relaxed experience. At the end of the day, you can enjoy the Rockin’ the River concert series which hosts bands for a four-hour show so you can jam out while you float!

[East] The Neches River provides a scenic float for those looking to get away from the crowds.  It’s a fairly unused river for tubing, making it a perfect spot to unwind.

For more tubing spots, check out the Ultimate Texas Tubing Guide.

Tubing rental rates range from $10-$30

Photo: Courtesy of David Fulmer.

5) Hit the Trail

Texas offers some of the most impressive hiking trails for all ages and abilities. You don’t have to be in excellent physical shape or super athletic for many of these trails, and it’s fun, educational, and healthy!

Here are 15 epic hikes you have to try out this summer.


6) Explore a Botanical Garden

Botanical gardens awe tourist and Texans alike by showcasing beautiful native plants. Enjoy a walk around the gardens, and take photos with the lush plants and landscape.

[Central] Many of the garden’s host free events, such as Zilker Botanical Garden’s gardening event found here.

[Dallas/Fort Worth]  The Fort Worth Botanical Garden hosts events for all ages including a series of “Concerts in the Garden” and free activities for kids.

[East] In Orange, Texas, you’ll find a beautiful botanical garden with an educational discovery center, ponds, and boat tour. There’s plenty to do and see at the Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center.

Entrance fees around $1-$5


If you choose to enjoy the Great Outdoors this summer, be sure to post the pictures on social media and tag us! Check out the Choose Healthier app to find parks and other healthy places near you. Now go off and explore the Great Outdoors!

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