A small and unassuming park set on the scenic Blanco River, Blanco State Park attracts San Antonio and Austin area residents for easy overnight camping trips that focus on low-key river activities: fishing, a swimming hole for the family, and a bit of kayaking and tubing. With water levels controlled by the dam, Blanco River is a particularly appealing option during hot summers when low water levels make the other area rivers impractical for swimming or floating.
Located in Blanco, TX, an hour north of San Antonio and an hour southwest of Austin, Blanco State Park is ideal for visitors from nearby towns. A small park with a limited number of camping spots and short hiking trails (perhaps better described as “strolling paths”), Blanco is better suited for guests looking for a slow-paced, relaxing camping experience than the out-of-town adventurer wanting to explore the wilderness and conquer new trails.
Campers at Blanco State Park can choose from about 30 campsites complete with water, electricity, and some with sewer hookups. Restrooms are located nearby for most campsites, and seven screened shelters are also available. No primitive, hike-in camping is available.
Kayaking, canoeing, and tubing are fun activities on the Blanco River. The Blanco River does not have a strong current, making paddling up and down the river easy for first-timers and children. Although seasonal equipment rentals are not currently available from the park itself, some rentals can be obtained nearby. Guests are welcome and encouraged to bring their own gear.
Blanco State Park is a great spot to swim in the river, and the swimming hole by the dam is especially popular with kids. A pavilion, picnic tables and grills along the banks make it an easy location to plan a picnic and a day of swimming, with restrooms available to change back into dry clothes before leaving.
Know Before You Go
Campsites are located in close proximity to the town of Blanco and Highway 281, and some visitors experience disruptive noise/light pollution from traffic and nearby businesses on overnight stays.
At least one person is guaranteed to make a corny joke about the “dam swimming hole” while there. You’ve been warned.