Palmetto State Park is a tranquil campground located in Central Texas. It offers campers the chance to hike, bike, swim, paddle, fish or just lay in a hammock under the shade of trees. The park is located a few minutes drive from the towns of Gonzales and Luling. The park's most unique feature are the dwarf palmetto plants which grow throughout the forest.
When entering the park you are welcomed by a canopy of overhanging trees. At the entrance there is an office where you can pay your admission fee and shop for some basic camping necessities. There are also after-hour pay stations nearby.
At each campsite there is a parking space with water and electrical hookups, a picnic table, barbecue grill and fire pit. Most of the sites will fit small to medium sized RVs. There are plenty of shade trees around the campsites which are welcome during the summers in Texas. The restrooms are near the campsites and all of the restrooms, although somewhat dated, have sinks, flush toilets and showers.
Some of the attractions of this park include a small artesian spring, lake and the San Marcus River. There is a nice hike and bike trail which runs along the bank of the river which is flat and easy to walk or bike. There are some amazing sights and sounds while walking through the forest - from birds to insects to small mammals to plants. As previously mentioned, one of the unique features of this park are the dwarf palmetto plants that grow on the forest floor. These palmettos make you feel as if you've been transported to a tropical paradise. Paddle boat, kayak and canoe rentals are available at a concession office near the lake.
There are a number of activities to enjoy at this park, but some of the facilities could use an update. I would think that is a nice park for families with kids because of the variety of activities that can be pursued. There are no extreme features like mountains or cliffs, just a number of peaceful nooks in nature.
Before or after your stay at Palmetto State Park be sure to pass by the little town of Luling, Texas where you can eat at the City Market Café which has some of the best barbecue in Texas.
As a Ranger for The Dyrt, I am offered the opportunity to test products. At this campground, I tested the Gregory Inertia 30 Hydration Backpack.
Top reasons I loved the Gregory Inertia 30 Hydration Backpack:
- Size: The pack is 30 liters and is useful for day hikes, weekend adventures or carry-on airline travel.
- Features: The pack has well thought-out organization with a large main compartment, a mid-sized compartment, a top stash pocket, stretch mesh front and side pockets and a flexible suspension. Also, there are a number of attachment loops for attaching tools, poles, solar chargers or other gear.
- Technology: The new 3D hydration bladder is a breeze to fill, empty and clean. It has an tactile grip handle and rubberized fill top which make opening and closing easy. When cleaning or drying out the bladder, the sidewalls of the bladder maintain an open shape which allows easy access and evaporation of any residual water.
- Quality: All of the materials are of high quality. I expect that the backpack will last many years. This is important for a day use backpack which will see regular duty under a variety of conditions. It is also important for backpacking, because no one wants a gear failure while in the backcountry.
I hope and expect that this backpack will become my go to backpack for a variety of adventures.
Trees! Beautiful park with a lot of trees and a tropical feel too. Will be going back! Good hiking trails and very attentive camp host.
This a cool campsite right off the Colorado river. The trails remind me of swamp lands the way they made the trails. If your into geocaching there is plenty of it.
Palmetto is a great state park. Easy access to the river and right in between San Antonio and Houston. Close enough to pop out of town for a few days.
we really enjoyed our time here. the camp site managers were very friendly and helpful. we took the time to walk all the trails around the area. they allow dogs as well as long as they are on a leash. nice bathrooms are located close to camp sites. would definitely recommend this place.
The tent camping spots in this somewhat small state were spacious. They had both a grill and a fire pit, picnic table, water spigot, and a "lantern hook" (a giant pipe thing like for a basketball hoop, but with a little hook sticking out of it. Each site is supposed to accommodate 2 cars, but about half of them only had parking for 1. Fortunately we got there early and were able to switch. Try to be nice to the camp hosts, they're volunteers and when I got grumpy at the one who told us we couldn't park with our wheels hanging off the pad, I thought she might cry.
The website doesn't get updated easily, so ignore any reports of tubing. There are no tube rentals there and no convenient, nearby tubing put-ins/take-outs. Don't try to tube the Zedler Mill Paddling Trail. The water is super slow and full of logs and if you suck at tubing it could take you 10 hours.
Some claim there's a Bigfoot or skunk ape in the woods but maybe it's the cows mooing? Who knows. Either way, I'm still going back to look some more. This place has an eerie quality to it in the swamps. Easy to hike all the trails in a couple hours. Small lake for swimming. You can kayak the river using your own shuttle. Very nice group campsite!
I really enjoyed this park. My dog and I camped and hiked here in February. The plant life was great. We had a nice campsite, not another soul around. We hiked about 10 miles. I would definitely recommend this for individuals and families.
We came here on a day trip and were very pleased with the park. It didn’t really feel like Texas as we walked through the almost tropical looking forest. We enjoyed the lake and rented a paddle boat. We decided next trip we would rent a canoe and head up the river. The park offers camping and cabin for overnight stays.