Brazos Bend State Park
Brazos Bend State Park is probably best known for its alligators. The Brazos River is the park's eastern boundary. Much is the park is marsh-like, which attracts these reptiles.
The park is also a great place for birdwatching; over 200 species of birds have been spotted there, according to the Official Guide to Texas State Parks and Historic Guides.
Another unique site at this park is the George Observatory, which has great programming as well.
WHAT TO SEE
Wildlife, specifically, the American alligator is the main draw to this park. There is an accessible boardwalk that overlooks the marsh. There's also a nature center that has interesting exhibits. Also located on the property is the George Observatory. Look online (Houston Museum of Natural Science website) for programs and when it's open to the public.
WHERE TO STAY
Brazos Bend has campsites for tent camping, including ones with electricity. Additionally, there are screened shelters as well as one lodge. There are also accessible campsites and shelters. Reservations need to be made through State Park website.
WHERE TO EAT
There are picnic tables available for picnics throughout the park.
BEST HIKES FOR FAMILIES
The park has 37 miles of trails, including 13 miles of multiuse trails for that can be used to horseback riding.
The Creekfield Lake Nature Trail is half mile. It's an accessible boardwalk trail around the wetland area. Ask the park ranger about the scavenger hunt for this trail.
If you want to see even more alligators, hike the 1.2 mile 40 Acre Lake Trail. It covers a number of water habitats. The 1.4 mile Red Buckeye Trail is quieter. It goes into the forest and isn't as crowded.
Remember to follow guidelines and stay at least 30 feet away from alligators.
BEST TIPS FOR KIDS
Check out park website for special ranger programs. Brazos SP is a great park to visit with the family. It's close to Houston, so it's accessible for families living in the area.