20 Wonderful Hiking Trails in San Antonio

12 mins read
Hiking Trails in San Antonio
By Justin / unsplash Copyrights 2020

Hiking trails in San Antonio is an excellent way to get an adrenalin rush and raise the bar if you are an adventure junkie, outdoor enthusiast, and love excitement. There are city parks and state parks in San Antonio that give access to a lot of trails. If you are looking for a weekend getaway, a romantic weekend, or an exciting, adventurous weekend, then this is one place you can visit.

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
By Shelly Collins / unsplash. Copyrights 2020

San Antonio

San Antonio, Texas, is one of America’s top ten largest cities, and it is a city rich in culture, history, and parks with spectacular views. Be it the art museums, amusement parks, or historical monuments, San Antonio has something to offer to the discerning traveller.

There are a lot of things to do in San Antonio, which makes it an interesting place to explore. Shop, dine, meet the locals, and marvel at the city’s natural area that will leave you amazed with its authenticity and uniqueness. One of the things on your list should be making one of the hiking trails in San Antonio and getting close to the natural beauty of the region.

Hiking Trails in San Antonio

If you are looking for ways to spend in outdoor activities while visiting San Antonio, the best way would be to experience one of the hiking trails in San Antonio and get close to the raw and natural beauty of the region. There are challenging trails, easy ones, and moderate trails, and you can choose from one of those depending on your expertise.

Hike, bike, run, camp, picnic, and explore San Antonio and its attractions unabashedly and soak in the beauty of this city. Many of the hiking trails in this area are accessible through the city area. Opt for one of those quiet trails where you can avoid the rush and the crowd and enjoy the scenic beauty of the place undisturbed.

Opt for one of the hiking trails in San Antonio and move away from the din of city noise and the glare of city lights. Instead, listen to the silence of the woods, the chirping of the birds, the silence of the leaves in the breeze, and the silence of the canyons. The State Parks offer incredible hiking trails to experience San Antonio and its natural attractions at close quarters.

1. Brackenridge Park

Enjoying Brackenridge Park is one of the main things to do if you are in the San Antonio area. There are a lot of things to do here, visiting the Japanese Tea Garden, San Antonio Zoo, Witte Museum, Sunken Garden Theater, and the Train at Brackenridge Park. This public park stretches over 343 acres of land and captivates you with its majestic trees. Jog, run, walk, hike, or bike to enjoy the beauty of the Park. If you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio, you can look at the popular trails here. They are:

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
By Cesira Alvarado / unsplash. Copyrights 2019
  • Japanese Tea Garden Trail

  • Wilderness and Wildlife Trail

  • Hike and Bike Trail

2. Cibolo Nature Center

The Cibolo Nature Center, built along the Cibolo Creek, has 6 miles of trails and invites visitors to connect with nature and its healing powers. This area’s hiking trails and mountain biking are the best way to be in tandem with nature and its natural beauty. The trails here are well maintained and take you through the woods.

Some of the best trails at the Cibolo Nature Center are:

  • Prairie, Creekside, and Woodlands Trail Loop

  • Cibolo Trail

  • Currey Trail

  • Old No. 9 Trail

3. Comanche Lookout Park

The 96-acre Comanche Lookout Park is owned by the city of San Antonio and has a fourth-highest point in Bexar County. The Park overlooks the Guadalupe River Valley and gives sweeping views of the Texas Hill Country. It is believed that the place’s natural beauty attracted settlers to this area once upon a time. The Park was used by the Native Americans and is a historical treasure. The ruins of a medieval-style stone tower are one of the attractions inside the park.

This is one of the places you can visit if you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. Comanche Lookout Park offers many trails to its visitors. Enjoy the beauty of the Mexican Buckeye, Honey Mesquite trees, and Chinaberry up close. Do not forget to carry your camera. Some of the most popular trails here are:

  • The Library and Comanche Loops Trail

  • Comanche & Deer Loop Trail

  • Tower Loop Trail

  • Comanche Library Loop Trail

4. Denman Estate Park

The 21-acre public park has a variety of activities for visitors, like being amid nature, enjoying the sunshine, the vibrantly coloured Korean Pagoda, and hand-crafted gift items by artisans from Gwangju, Korea. There is a man-made pond, and this park attracts a lot of birds. The Live Oak trees and Cypresses provide a lot of shade to the park. There are hiking trails, walking trails, and biking trails here, and the trail here is:

  • Denman Estate Pond Loop Trail

5. Enchanted Rock State Park

The Enchanted Rock is known for its pink granite dome, and you can call this a hidden gem in the hiking trails of San Antonio. This Texas State Park in Hill Country, not far from downtown San Antonio is a fascinating place to hike and explore. The rock spreads over an area of 640 acres and is 1825 feet above sea level. Climbing the pink granite monolith 425 feet is hard and a challenging hike to the summit.

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
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Go camping, rock climbing, star gazing, and hiking here, and this park is quite popular; it sees a lot of visitors every year. This 4.6-mile Loop Trail is at the base of the Enchanted Rock, and there are campsites to stay, hike, and enjoy the plant life there. The hiking trails here have different difficulty levels giving visitors a choice depending on their skills and experience. Some of the popular hikes in this State Park are:

  • The Summit Trail

  • Turkey Pass Trail

  • Loop Trail

  • Moss Lake Trail

  • Interpretive Loop

6. Eisenhower Park

Eisenhower Park, 19399, NW Military Hwy, San Antonio, is one of the places to go if you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. The wooded area, rocky terrain, clear paths, and dog-friendly trail make it one of the popular hiking trails in San Antonio. Eisenhower Park is a family-friendly park located the Northwest of San Antonio. The Park offers different trails, and the Observation Tower in the Park is the best way to get sweeping views of the place.

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
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There is a playground at the entrance of Eisenhower Park and an educational area. The park offers a large parking lot with a lot of parking spaces for visitors. Enjoy wildlife and nature on the trails here, and make sure you click a lot of pictures. Some of the trails you can do here are:

  • Hillview Nature Trail

  • Cedar Flats Trail

  • Yucca and Hillview Nature Trail Loop North

  • Yucca Paved Trail

  • Bush Hill via Hillview Nature Trail

7. Friedrich Wilderness Park

Friedrich Wilderness Park glimpses rare birds, exotic orchids, steep hills, and deep canyons. This park is a nesting place for two endangered species of birds, the Black-Capped Vireo and the Golden Cheeked Warbler. The Park offers biking trails, hiking trails, running trails, and specially curated trails for its visitors to appreciate the park’s wildlife and vegetation. If you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio, you can choose from some of the trails at Friedrich Wilderness Park mentioned below:

  • Main Loop and Juniper Trail

  • Water Trail

  • Main Loop to Restoration Way Trail

  • Juniper Barrens Loop

  • Restoration Way Trail Loop

8. Garner State Park

Located near downtown San Antonio, the Garner State Park in the Texas Hill Country is again one of the most-visited State Parks in the region. With the Frio River snaking through the Park for about 2.9 miles, the Garner State Park is a perfect weekend getaway for all those looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. Enjoy the diverse terrain, the meandering streams, limestone cliffs, mesas, canyons, and the dense forestry of the region by opting for one of the hiking trails.

There is history here, and the Park dates back to the time when dinosaurs lived on earth. This Park has a lot to do because the Frio River runs through it. The Crystal Cave Trail is one of the most popular trails where hikers get a cave and a river which makes the hiking exhilarating. A few of the other trails, like the Crystal Cave, are there to enjoy the scenic splendour of the area are:

  • Bridges Trail

  • Blinn River Trail

  • Donovan Trail

  • Old Baldy Trail

  • The Painted Rock Overlook

9. Guadalupe River State Park

The Guadalupe River State Park is located near downtown San Antonio and offers a variety of trails for visitors looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. The charm of Guadalupe River State Park is unparalleled, and the 9-mile stretch of the sparkling waters of the Guadalupe River makes it a good place for tubing, swimming, fishing, and canoeing. The bald cypress trees lining the river banks are a sight to see. Visit the nearby Honey Creek Natural Area and get educated on plants, animals, and geology.

Hit the hike and bike trails here and soak in the splendid views of the park and the river. Some of the trails here are:

  • Guadalupe Peak Trail

  • Devil’s Hall Trail

  • The Bowl

  • Bamberger Trail

  •  Curry Creek Overlook Trail

10. Government Canyon State Natural Area

Are you looking for hiking trails in San Antonio? Hike, bike, camp, picnic, and get surprised to see the ancient dinosaur tracks dating back to almost 110M years in this Government State Canyon, which is just a 30-minute drive from downtown San Antonio. Scientists think the Acrocanthosaurus and Sauroposeidon have left the dinosaur tracks. The rugged terrain, rolling grasslands, and steep hills are typical of the Texas Hill Country.

The Government Canyon State Natural Area has about 40 miles of trails that will allow you to enjoy the out-of-the-ordinary natural area, which is rich in flora, history, geology, and stunning views. Some of the exciting hiking trails are:

  • Cave Creek Trail

  • Discovery Trail

  • Black Hill Loop

  • Joe Johnston Route

  • Overlook Trail

11. Hill Country State Natural Area

Explore the beauty of the Hill Country State Natural Area if you are travelling to San Antonio and go back in time to soak in the panoramic vistas of the canyons, picturesque plateaus, and serene creeks. This quiet park is good for birdwatchers as around 160 birds live in the area. Go camping, hiking, biking, horseback riding, and picnicking. This is the perfect place for adventure seekers, be it hikers, bikers, campers, backpackers, or horseback riders.

Escape into the lap of nature and some of the exciting trails to do here are:

  • Heritage Loop

  • Merrick Mile Trail

  • Madrone Trail

  • Bandera Creek Trail

  • Medina Loop

12. Leon Creek Greenway Park

Revel in the beauty of colourful wildflowers, enjoy running, birdwatching, road biking, and enjoy the expansive views of the limestone cliffs. The Leon Creek Greenway Park hiking trails cater to visitors of all skill levels, and dogs are allowed on this trail. The trail is open throughout the year and can be used by those on wheelchairs and those who use mobility equipment or strollers. There are designated accessible spaces in the paved parking lot at the northern end of the trail, which can be accessed by van.

Looking for a hiking trail in the San Antonio area, these are a few of them to choose from:

  • Leon Creek Greenway Trail

  • Leon Creek Greenway: Fox Park to TX 16

  • Leon Creek Greenway: Ingram to Military Dr.

  • Leon Creek Greenway: Ingram to Cathedral Rock

13. Lost Maples State Natural Area

This State Park has located in the Northwest of San Antonio in the Texas Hill Country. The picnic facilities, 10 miles of hiking trails, fishing, and fall foliage make Lost Maples State Natural Area an attractive place to visit if you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. This is a haven for hikers, campers, and backpackers as they get bewitched looking at the landscape, streams, canyons, and wildflowers.

This Park is famous for its electrifying fall colours. Be it the Bigtooth Maples, Sycamores, or Oak trees, the entire region is bathed in yellow, orange, and red. Then there is the Sabinal River which begins at the mouth of the Lost Maples State Natural Area, and this trail gives you good views of the Monkey Rock, River Valley View, Bird’s Eye View, and The Grotto.

Some of the popular hiking trails in Lost Maples State Natural Area are:

  • Lost Maples East Trail Loop

  • Lost Maples West Trail Loop

  • The Sabinal River Valley View Loop via East Trail

  • Lost Maples, East and West Canyon

  • Lost Maples, East Trail, West Trail, and West Loop Trail

14. McKinney Falls State Park

Prairie and plateau go together in the McKinney Falls State Park, making the views unique and unconventional compared to the other hiking trails in San Antonio. The park’s wildlife and natural beauty attract many visitors annually. There are winding trails through the wooded areas, making the trails exceptional. There are trails here for hikers and bikers, and the views of Williamson Creek will take your breath away.

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
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There are campsites in the Park, nine miles of trails, and pets are allowed as long as they are leashed. Some of the hiking trails you can go for are:

  • Roch Shelter Trail

  • Onion Creek Hike and Bike Trail

  • Picnic Trail

  • Homestead Trail

  • Flintrock Loop Trail

15. McAllister Park

McAllister Park is on the Northern side of San Antonio and is stretched over an area of 976 acres and is between the Wetmore Roads and Jones Maltsberger. The place has a fenced dog park, barbecue pits, picnic tables, baseball fields, and a fitness station. The trails here are good, especially during springtime when the Bluebonnets and Evening Primroses are in full bloom.

The trails in McAllister Park will enliven your mood if you are looking for hiking trails in San Antonio. Some of the popular trails here are:

  • Blue Loop Trail

  • Soccer Fields along the Blue Loop Trail

  • Mud Creek Loop

  • Salado Creek Greenway North

16. Medina River Natural Area

This area is spread over 511 acres of land and has 7 miles of trails with amenities like camping, parking, restrooms, water service, and a trailhead. Are you looking for a hike in San Antonio? The Medina River Natural Area is a good spot for trails. Enjoy the verdant greenery, go back in time while visiting the ruins of an old farm, look at the wildlife there, and listen to the silence of the Medina River as it snakes its way around the place.

The trails wind through the riparian forests along the Medina River; the trails range from 85 to 485 feet in elevation gain enjoy. Enjoy views of the Medina River Plan your next hike here. The popular trails here are:

  • Rio Medina Trail

  • Medina River Greenway Trail

  • El Camino and Rio Medina Trail

17. O.P. Schnabel Park

Formerly known as the Bandera Park, the O.P. Schnabel Park is known for mountain biking, hiking, and walking trails. There are miles and miles of multi-use trails with many trees and walkways. It is a great place to enjoy nature. There are a lot of picnic tables here and a playground for kids.

Some of the trails at the O.P. Schnabel Park are:

  • O.P. Schnabel Park Outer Loop

  • Big O.P. Trail and Sleeper Trail Loop

18. Phil Hardberger Park West

Phil Hardberger Park West is in San Antonio’s Central Park and is one of the best parks in the heart of the city. This sustainable natural urban park has a nature area, outdoor classrooms, play areas, dog parks, and trails for biking, hiking, and walking. The park has a lot of shade, making it a favourite haunt of many people during summer. There are picnic areas with picnic tables and BBQ pits throughout the park, and there are benches to sit on when you are tired from hiking.

Salado Creek is a waterway in San Antonio, and it runs for around 38 miles from North Bexar County to the San Antonio River near Buena Vista. This moderate 3.4-mile out and back trail offers around 25 miles of paved trail along the Eastern side of San Antonio. The Salado Creek Greenway Trail runs through hardberger Park, and hikers can enjoy picturesque views of large oak trees and pecan along Salado Creek.

Some of the other popular hiking trails in this Park are:

  • Hardberger Park Water Loop

  • Oak Loop Trail

  • Salado Greenway from Hardberger Park

  • Geology Loop

  • Savannah Loop, Land Bridge, Water Loop, Geology Loop, Salado Creek Greenway, and Savannah Loop Bypass Trail Loop

19. San Antonio Missions National Historical Park

This is a National Park and a UNESCO Heritage Site. Appreciate the architectural wonders of Missions Concepcion, San Jose, San Juan, and Espada. They are all connected by 8-mile bike and hike trails. The trails at the San Antonio Missions National Historic Park wind through the small neighbourhoods, city parks, and farmlands, There is no entrance fee to enter the park. The popular trails here are:

  • San Antonio River Walk Mission Reach Trail
  • San Antonio Mission Trail
  • Mission San Jose to Mission Concepcion
  • Missions San Jose-San Juan
  • Woodlawn Lake Park

This 62-acre scenic park offers something for every visitor who visits the park. Run, walk, jog, hike, and feed the ducks and geese. This park is on the Northwest side of Lake Antonio and has a huge artificial lake. You can go walking, jogging, or running; the park is open year-round. The 1.4-mile trail here is relatively easy and has an elevation gain of 16 feet.

In The End

Hiking Trails in San Antonio
By Eric Francis / unsplash. Copyrights 2020

Hiking trails anywhere attract many visitors all year round, especially those who want to experience nature, natural beauty, the outdoors, and adventure. Texas Parks offer bike and hiking trails to visitors who visit the state. Visit Mission San Jose, a Texas monument and World Heritage Site, the San Antonio Zoo, and the San Antonio hike trips.

If you liked this article, here is something more. 

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Mamta Madhavan’s body of work includes web content writing, book reviews, interviews, articles, and poetry, mainly free verse. Her works have been published in various reputable journals and magazines worldwide. Living in creatively inspiring India, Mamta incorporates vivid imagery into her writings, influenced by nature, mysticism, and spirituality. Her poetry collection is titled connecting the dots.

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