There are so many parks, trails and nature preserve to explore the best hiking trails in Dallas. Here are my favorite hiking destinations in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.
In the Fort Worth and Dallas area, you’ll find the best places to spend the day hiking. These hiking spots typically have a large parking area, picnic tables, miles of walking trails, incredible views, scenic overlooks, and wide-open spaces all within a short drive around DFW. Below is a list of the best hikes for all skill levels.
This is an easy 7 mile trail that runs through Dallas. It’s a popular spot that is usually busy with hikes, bikers and dog walkers. The trail has beautiful wildflowers in the spring as well as several icehouses located right off the trail.
Texas Buckeye Trail
And easy 2 mile loop that is lined with Buckeye trees along the Trinity River. It’s a paved trail, but a great destination to see wildlife and bird watching.
Fort Worth Nature Center & Refuge
This gem is made up of over 3,000 acres filled with bison, deer, and buffalos. It’s easy to spend an entire day here exploring and bird watching.
The center also has guided hikes, kayak tours, canoe rentals, and guided birding. Not wanting to do a group activity? Don’t worry, the park has plenty of trails to explore on your own and places to picnic.
Price is $5 for adults and $2 for children.
North Shore Trail
This 22 mile trail goes from Rockledge Park to Twins Coves Park on the north side of Lake Grapevine. It’s a difficult trail, but with cool breezes from the lake makes it bearable during the hot summer months. The trail is prone to flooding, so check the trail status before beginning the hike.
Eagle Mountain Park
Has 6 different trails that offer views overlooking the lake to shoreline trails. The park is free and great for all hikes, with trails ranging from easy to moderate. All trails are wide and marked – so no chance of getting lost here.
Bob Jones Nature Center
Expanding over 750 acres, takes you on several trails with some leading to lake Grapevine. Be sure to see if you can find the rope swing by the like. This hidden gem is a fun spot to take a break from hiking.
The nature center has over 20 miles of hiking trails as well as a fishing pond. Some trails are narrow, so long socks or pants are great – especially if you or your kids don’t like getting scratched or touched by bugs!
Colleyville Nature Preserve
Offering 9 lakes, paved trails, an unpaved nature loop, and a forested wetland. This nature preserve is a jewel in the middle of the city.
The preserve offers stocked fishing ponds, a playground, picnic spots, and the perfect place to spot lots of wildlife.
Oak Point Nature Preserve
This is Plano’s largest park that spans over 800 acres. Being such a large park, I highly recommend exploring on bicycles. You can stay on the paved trail or cut through the dirt paths for a little more adventure.
Want to take a break from walking trails and biking? Then grab your fishing pole, cast a line, and try to snag a fish at the large pond. This is also a great location to launch your kayak, canoe, or SUP.
White Rock Lake Loop Trail
Follow the shoreline of White Rock Lake and it connects to the Union Pacific Trail, Santa Fe Trail, Katy Spur Trail and White Rock Creek Trail. The west side is a great spot watch the sunset.
Start at Harrington Park, goes to Legacy Drive, and intersects with the Bluebonnet Trail in Jack Carter Park. The trail has multiple access points at several parks along the trail.
Dogwood Canyon Audubon Center at Cedar Hill
Has over 2 miles of trails. You can take the stroller-friendly trail or a more challenging 1.5-mile trek with spectacular views.
Although these are shorter hikes, it is the perfect destination if you are looking for a quick hike.
Dinosaur Valley State Park
This 1,524-acre beautiful park lets you explore nature and search for dinosaur tracks on the trails.
This is a park favorite for kids and adults. When the river is low you can see dinosaur prints at several locations throughout the park.
Adults are $7 and free for those under 12. This park is great for those looking to spend a full day in nature. There is everything to do from hiking, picnic, biking, swim, rent a kayak, or taking a trail ride on horseback.
Arbor Hills Nature Preserve
Have a kid with an endless amount of energy? Then lace up your sneakers and go explore this 200-acre park. The trails are a mix of 3-mile concrete trails and over 4 miles of nature trails. You can also bring bikes and ride along the almost 3 miles of off-road trails.
Be sure to take a break at the observation tower. You’ll enjoy sweeping views of the gorgeous nature preserve.
Oak Cliff Nature Preserve
This well-wooded preserve has over 100 acres to explore with 8 miles of multi-use trails for hiking and biking.
The trails feature wildflowers and are moderately easy to hike. With the park being very dense with trees, it’s best to stay on the trails.
Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area
With a raised platform hiking trail, makes it easier to hike through the wetlands. The park offers 7 different hiking trails that range from .25 – 2 miles each. The entrance fee is $5 per car.
Cedar Ridge Nature Preserve
The Cedar Ridge Preserve spans 600 acres between Mountain Creek Parkway and FM 1382, which is only 20 minutes from downtown Dallas. The view is incredible and will have you feeling like you are in the Hill Country. Cattail Pond trail via the Escarpment Trail is a great option for the summer as most of the hike is shaded.
This wooded area is filled with beautiful wildflowers. You’ll find 8 miles of trails that range from easy to difficult. Also, a great place to enjoy the outdoor amphitheater, butterfly gardens, and picnic areas.
Marion Samson Park Trail
Here you will find trails that wind through a wooded area and gorgeous vistas that overlook Lake Worth. This is the perfect destination for hiking and mountain biking. Trails range from intermediate to expert.
Ray Roberts Lake State Park
Located one hour from North Texas, this state park offers amenities that include camping, hiking, bike trails, and water sports.
The 20-mile Greenbelt Corridor goes from the Ray Roberts Dam to Lake Lewisville. The Johnson Branch and Isle du Bois offer multi-use trails that include both paved and dirt trails.
Trinity River Audubon Center
What’s unique about hiking here is that you get to view the largest urban hardwood forest in the United States! Explore the 6,000-acre Great Trinity Forest filled with plants, animals, bottomland hardwood forest, wetland, and prairie habitat by hiking through over 5 miles of trails.
Adults are $6, children $3, and members and residents are free.
Great Trinity Forest Gateway and Horse Trail
Has over 4 miles of hiking that are both paved and dirt trails. The dirt trails are mainly used for horse trails and cross a couple of natural springs. While the paved trail eventually leads to McCommas Bluff, one of the most impressive features along the Trinity River.
So lace up your hiking boots, grab water and go explore one of these parks for afternoon fun! With countless DFW hiking trails, there is always a place to go explore!
Do you enjoy hiking? Where are your favorite trails?