The Popular Hill Country of Texas

Texas is a very big state, and as such, has an extensive — if not total — assortment of topography. From rugged mountains to beaches and almost everything in between, you can find it in Texas, which includes the beautiful "hill country." The green rolling hills in the middle part of the state don't instantly come to mind when you think about Texas, but the region certainly deserves some attention for its magnificence and culture.

The hill country is probably one of the greatest regions in the state to hike, ride bikes, or just hang out. The assortment of lush greenery and the occasional granite outcropping make it a great environment for sightseeing. One of the most recognized landmarks in this part 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 center of a park detailed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a fantastic place for hiking and picnicking.

For those who like hiking and scenery, Lake Georgetown is a key destination. The lake is nearly fully 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 un-level. But for individuals who can handle the trails, there are great sights of the lake waiting at different spots along the way. Cactus and cedar trees border 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 latest park, Berry Springs Park and Preserve. This park is set up to support 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 far more skilled walker. The main pathway goes both east and west from the parking lot, with "turnarounds" at each end for individuals who want a workout without the adventure. 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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