On the north side of San Antonio lies a 12,000-acre wilderness that protects the city’s drinking water. You’ll find your own “Recharge Zone” in this vast urban refuge.
Things to Do
Government Canyon State Natural Area offers more than 40 miles of trails. You can also camp, attend a program or guided hike, geocache, picnic, take nature photos, and look for birds and other wildlife. Your kids will connect with “natural fun” at our playscape and Discovery Trail.
Reserve our gallery or pavilion for your next meeting or reunion.
Read about the accessibility of our facilities and Discovery Trail.
The natural area is open on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.
Our trails cross gently rolling grasslands and remote, rugged canyon-lands. Explore by hiking, mountain biking, or even trail running. Some trails are only for hiking – check our trails map and trail signs. Take a virtual tour with our Interactive Trails Map.
Take a walk through time on the Joe Johnston Route to the Zizelmann House, built in the 1880s. You’ll pass 110-million-year-old dinosaur tracks and a prehistoric midden (look for a sign with information on this Native American site).
For great views, hike the Far Reaches Trail to the Chula Vista and Sotol overlooks, or to the North and South Bluff Spurs overlooks.
Trails may close due to poor conditions or weather. Check our Twitter or Facebook accounts for the latest trail reports, or call the park.
Reserve one of 23 walk-in tent campsites. We also have two walk-in group tent camps for up to 16 people.
Campgrounds are open Friday and Saturday nights only. We open for additional nights around holidays; visit our Events page for those dates.
Camping made easy! Texas Park Outfitters provides camping equipment rental and set-up at this park. For more information and to book their service, visit the Texas Park Outfitters website.
Take a hike to see the only known dinosaur footprints on public land in Bexar County. Scientists think that Acrocanthosaurus and Sauroposeidon dinosaurs left the tracks, nearly 110 million years ago.
Leave No Trace
Government Canyon State Natural Area protects a highly sensitive ecosystem. We need your help to keep it pristine.
To reduce human impact here, please follow Leave No Trace principles of outdoor ethics. Government Canyon State Natural Area is an official Leave No Trace partner.
We welcome volunteers! Join a volunteer group (Friends of Government Canyon, Activities Committee, Natural Resource Projects, and Trail Patrol) or check our Volunteer page.
We also need park hosts, who stay for free in exchange for volunteering. Call us to learn more!
Stop by our park store for books, nature items and souvenirs.
Come to one of our programs and guided hikes. Check our Events page for the schedule, or contact the Natural Area for special tours.
Type of Day Trip: Outdoor Fun
12861 Galm Rd, San Antonio, Texas, 78254