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True Texas

The Great 8: ​State Parks of East Texas

Despite his job as a Texas photographer and writer, Laurence Parent hadn’t visited many of East Texas’ state parks in years. In 2016, when University of Texas Press asked him to revise his 2008 guidebook, Official Guide to Texas State Parks and Historic Sites, he seized the opportunity and hit the road. The experience was a bit like renewing old friendships; he not only saw things he remembered from previous visits but also found new surprises. Here are some highlights from his East Texas favorites. Text: Laurence Parent. Cover image: @i_justinisaac via Instagram

  • 1.

    Martin Dies, Jr. State Park

    Martin Dies, Jr. State Park

    Your go-to camping destination for all ages.

  • 2.

    Village Creek State Park

    Village Creek State Park

    A lush and varied terrain to explore.

  • 3.

    Daingerfield State Park

    Daingerfield State Park

    Fall colors and summer fun.

  • 4.

    Caddo Lake State Park

    Caddo Lake State Park

    A unique landscape not to be missed.

  • 5.

    Mission Tejas State Park

    Mission Tejas State Park

    Explore Texas history and life in the woods.

  • 6.

    Fort Boggy State Park

    Fort Boggy State Park

    A true getaway to quiet camping and nature.

  • 7.

    Cooper Lake State Park

    Cooper Lake State Park

    Camping, hiking, fishing, biking, and sunset-watching.

  • 8.

    Tyler State Park

    Tyler State Park

    A favorite destination for outdoor fun.

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