You don't have to go very far north from San Antonio to find marvelous places to explore. Consider stopping at the missions in San Antonio before embarking on a San Antonio to Dallas road trip. Then, head north for caving, floating, fishing and hiking fun at state parks along the route. Johnson City, Fredericksburg, Brownwood and Mineral Wells hold lots of things to do along with wonderful campgrounds where you can spend the night.
San Antonio Missions National Historical Park
Before you leave on your San Antonio to Dallas RV road trip, take the time to see the San Antonio Missions. There are five different missions that you can hike, bike or drive to see. The oldest of the missions is Mission José y San Miguel de Aguayo, which is often called Mission Jose and was constructed in 1720. Mission Conception was dedicated in 1755, and it's the oldest unrestored church in America. Originally started in East Texas, Mission San Juan Capistrano was moved here in 1731. The vegetables grown at this site and the animals raised nearby helped keep many early settlers alive. Mission San Juan Capistrano was started near present-day Weches, Texas, before being moved here in 1731. Watch live weaving demonstrations at this mission on Thursdays. Once you've visited this site, use RVshare's guide to national parks to include on this or future trips.
Blanco State Park
Blanco State Park is a small state park on the Blanco River’s banks near Blanco. Anglers love to head to this park to catch largemouth and Guadalupe bass, channel catfish, sunfish and rainbow trout without needing a license and using equipment that they borrow from the park’s headquarters. Rent a tube to float on the shallow river. While you can bring your own, kayaks and canoes are available to rent, and you can launch electric-motor boats. If you have small children with you, they'll love wading at the river’s edge.
Longhorn Caverns State Park
Go deep underground at Longhorn Caverns State Park near Burnet. Choose between the walking cave tour or the wild cave tour, where you'll need to crawl on your hands and knees to explore parts of the cave. The Civilian Corps of Engineers created many of the park’s buildings and structures using native stone, so go on a short hike to admire their handiwork. Climb the observation tower to see the surrounding Hill Country, including Falkenstein Castle.
Lake Brownwood State Park
Reel in a fish on the 7,300-acre lake or go paddling or jet skiing on the water at Lake Brownwood State Park near Brownwood. Take a swim in the lake. Hike along the 6 miles of trails overlooking the lake. Group halls are available for special occasions or your next meeting. Play volleyball on the court or baseball on the diamond. Geocaching is also a popular activity at this park.
Lake Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway
While many people come to Lake Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway to relax by the 640-acre lake, others find it the ideal spot to ride their bikes, hike or run on the 20-mile trail running from the park to downtown Mineral Wells. There are also 12.8 miles of other hiking and biking trails in this park. Flat-bottom boats are available to rent at this park, and they make a great vessel to take fishing for catfish, crappie, sunfish and largemouth bass. You can also fish off the six piers in the park.
Dinosaur Valley State Park
Come prepared to wade in the river when you head to Dinosaur Valley State Park, which is located near Glen Rose. You'll definitely want to see the dinosaur footprints located there. There are also over 20 miles of hiking trails to explore along the river’s edge, and the South Primitive Area is a great place to go for a horseback ride. A vendor in this park provides trail rides for children aged 3 to 14.
National Museum of the Pacific War
Located in Fredericksburg, the National Museum of the Pacific War focuses on the Asian-Pacific Theater during World War II. The 55,000-square-foot museum highlights local resident Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz and presents his personal story to museum visitors. The George H. W. Bush Gallery encourages you to imagine what it was like to island-hop during the war. The Pacific Combat Zone uses technology that allows you to taste, see and smell certain aspects of the experience. The Plaza of Presidents pays tribute to the presidents who led the country during the war and those who served in it.
Enchanted Rock State Natural Area
The pink dome rising out of the Hill Country is Enchanted Rock, and it's a great place to go hiking with the reward being amazing views of the entire area. This natural area in Fredericksburg is a fantastic place to go rock climbing or to seek and find a geocache using your compass and orienteering skills. It's also a terrific spot for stargazing.
Lehnis Railroad Museum
The Lehnis Railroad Museum is in Brownwood, and it's an excellent family-orientated facility with special events happening often. See various exhibits related to Central Texas’ railroad history. On Saturdays, kids can ride the miniature train. A children’s play area lets little ones squirm and wiggle to their hearts' content.
Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
See animals from around the world at this drive-through safari park in Glen Rose. You can even give them special feed available at the gift shop by throwing the food out your RV’s window. One animal you may want to watch for is an ostrich as they have laid eggs in front of cars as they move through the park. You may also see bongos fighting for herd dominance near your vehicle. Stop at the halfway point to see birds and small farm animals in this facility's educational area.
Mineral Wells Fossil Park
Become an amateur paleontologist and go on a dig at Mineral Wells Fossil Park in Mineral Wells. You may unearth shark teeth and bones from animals who swam over this area thousands of years ago. Archaeocidaris are often uncovered by visitors to this park along with many different fossils. You're encouraged to bring a nail apron or small plastic bags with you because you get to take home what you find.
Johnson City is in the Hill Country, and it was where Lyndon Johnson was born and lived until he was elected president. You can find many attractions in this town related to his life. Johnson City campgrounds include Open Air Resorts and Roadrunner RV Park. Alternatively, check out the campgrounds in San Marcos, which is located about 50 miles away. Johnson City RV dump stations are available at Pedernales State Park and Pace Bend RV Park as well as a few other locations.
Brownwood is located on the edge of West Texas, and it features a revitalized downtown area that's an exciting place to visit. Brownwood campgrounds include Riverside Park and Brownwood Shady Oaks RV Park, or you may want to check out campgrounds in Abilene, which is located about 90 miles away. Brownwood RV dump stations are available at Lake Brownwood State Park or other nearby locations.
In addition to the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center and Dinosaur Valley State Park, you can find many things to do in Glen Rose, including Big Rocks Park and the Creation Evidence Museum. Campgrounds in Glen Rose include Oakdale Park and Tres Rios RV Resort. Another option is to head to Fort Worth, which is located about 50 miles away. Glen Rose RV dump stations are available at Cedron Creek Campground and Plowman Creek Campground.
You can play on Mineral Wells Lake, explore the trailway, dig for fossils and see the Clark Gardens Botanical Park when you visit Mineral Wells. Campground options in Mineral Wells include Eagle’s Nest RV Park and Texas Star RV Resort. You may also want to consider Fort Worth camping options. Mineral Wells RV dump station options include Back Acre RV Park and West End RV Park locations.