7 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Texas

By Ian-Spiegel Blum

7 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Texas

In Texas, birders are spoiled. With over 600 different species of birds to discover, from pristine beaches to lush wildlife refuges, there’s no telling what you’ll see. Discover all the herons, hummingbirds, robins, warblers, and other fascinating rare birds on these best birdwatching hikes in the state. 

1. South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center, Corpus Christi, TX

The South Texas Botanical Garden and Nature Center in Corpus Christi, Texas, has several birding guides separated by season for its guests. Consider taking a paid tour, or branching out on your own on their many nature trails. Birds you might get to see here include pelicans, herons, and terns in the summer, and hummingbirds, robins, and warblers in the winter! 

2. Sargent Beach, Sargent, TX

Sargent Beach in Sargent, Texas, is “one of Texas best kept secrets,” with a community of only 500 residents and excellent access to the Upper Texas Coast Birding Trail. We suggest hiking along the beach before finding the trail and exploring.

3. Palacios Marine Education Center Nature Trail, Palacios, TX

Matagorda County has been number one since 1997 for the North American Audubon Christmas Bird Count, making it a can’t-miss for any birdwatchers in the area. The Marine Education Center Nature Trail has orioles, buntings, sparrows, and much more. 

4. Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, Austwell, TX

The Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Austwell, Texas, is known for its large number of whooping cranes, with “researches from multiple organization working together to track the population.” The Heron Flats trail in particular is one of the most beautiful and provides views of storks, waterfowl, shorebirds, and more. 

5. Riverside Park and Athey Nature Sanctuary, Victoria, TX

Cross an old river channel between the Athey Nature Sanctuary and Riverside Park to catch a view of many different woodland birds. Riverside Park is also worth a visit, with over 562 acres of woodlands and many different nature trails.

6. Brackenridge Park and Campground, Edna, TX

The Brackenridge Park and Campground in Edna, Texas, has a five-mile hike and bike trail that goes along the shore line, providing fantastic access to its many different kinds of birds. The park has an elevated gazebo for birdwatching. Take note: Birds intersect along two migration flyways here.

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7. Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge

The Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge near Anahuac, Texas, is characterized by meandering bayous “cut through ancient flood plains, creating vast expanses of coastal marsh and prairie.” This 34,000-acre refuge includes several wildlife watching and nature trails, but we recommend the Shoveler Pond Auto-Tour Loop. Bird enthusiasts will love seeing the purple gallinule, marsh wren, and others along the loop. 

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