Visitor's Guide to Hill Country, Texas

Texas is a very huge state, and as such, has a vast — if not complete — array of topography. From rugged mountains to beaches and everything in between, you can find it in Texas, including the attractive "hill country." The lush rolling hills in the middle part of the state don't always come to mind when you think about Texas, but the area certainly deserves some attention for its magnificence and culture.

The hill country is most likely one of the finest areas in the state to hike, ride bikes, or just hang out. The variety of lush foliage and the occasional granite outcropping make it a wonderful setting for sightseeing. One of the most recognized landmarks in this piece of the state is Enchanted Rock, a large, pink granite mountain that can be seen for quite some distance. This natural monument is now in the middle of a park posted on the National Register of Historic Places and is a fantastic place for hiking and picnicking.

For those who enjoy hiking and scenery, Lake Georgetown is a key destination. The lake is nearly entirely surrounded by a hiking trail, making it one of the longest in the state. It is not an easy hike, as the terrain is rocky and uneven. But for individuals who can handle the trails, there are amazing sights of the lake waiting at various spots along the way. Cactus and cedar trees line the trails, and limestone boulders seem to pop up out of nowhere from time to time.

One more attraction for outdoor fans is the area's newest park, Berry Springs Park and Preserve. This park is set up to accommodate walkers of all ability levels, with a main paved path fronting the park, and unpaved side trails and cross-paths along the way to entice the more seasoned walker. The main pathway heads both east and west from the parking lot, with "turnarounds" at each end for individuals who want some exercise without the excitement. At each of these turnarounds, though, are a sequence of unpaved paths and trails that extend on and cut across the park.

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