Texas summer days can mean highs in the triple digits, which has us craving time in and around water. We scoped out three Round Top area lakes that offer camping and recreation opportunities for cool summertime fun for everyone. 

Here’s your guide to greater Round Top’s best lakeside escapes: 

Lake Fayette

Just 15 minutes away, Lake Fayette is the closest body of water to Round Top. Oak Thicket Park is the primary campground associated with Lake Fayette. Oak Thicket Park boasts 20 RV sites, six screened shelters, and eight cabins. There is a covered picnic pavilion and freestanding tables and barbecue grills, some situated under the generous shade of the live oaks that dot the open grassy area sloping down to the water’s edge. 

The wind coming off the lake is refreshing, but the best ways to enjoy Lake Fayette is to get out on the water. Boating and fishing – especially bass fishing – are popular here, and easy parking and ramp access make getting your boat in and out of the water a breeze. For more information about Oak Thicket, visit here.

Lake Somerville

Nails Creek State Park is one of two state parks on Lake Somerville. The other is Birch Creek State Park. At a half-hour’s drive from Round Top, Lake Somerville offers camping, birding, and hiking spots along its vast shores. 

Lake Somerville Trailway is a 13-mile network of trails to explore on foot, by bike, or on horseback. The park has ample equestrian facilities and campers can arrange horseback trail-riding (day rides or overnight camping trips) through Clint Cannon of Cowboy Country Life, here

Birding enthusiasts should visit Flag Pond, a habitat for migrating birds with a 1.7-mile hiking loop along the shore. 

Whatever your fancy – birding, horseback riding, boating and fishing, or just a simple picnic in the shade atop Picnic Hill – Lake Somerville truly has so much to offer. For more information and to book a reservation, visit here

Lake Bastrop

Lake Bastrop has two park areas: North Shore and South Shore. Both are about 45 minutes from Round Top. Over nine miles of hiking trails connect the two park areas. The North Shore trail is the smaller and quieter of the two. 

North Shore offers traditional campsites as well as five 25-foot Airstream Flying Cloud campers, each with its own patio, picnic table, propane grill, and fire pit. Visit here to reserve. There are also fully equipped cabins on-site, managed through Airbnb, here.

Hiking, canoeing, fishing, and swimming are possibilities at both North and South Shore parks. The drive between the two is about 15 minutes. The route to the west of the lake will take you into the historic town of Bastrop, where we recommend stopping off at Neighbor’s Kitchen & Yard for some pizza, beer, live music, and a great view of the Colorado River from their riverside deck.

Meanwhile, South Shore Park is bustling with activity. It offers nearly 40 tent and RV sites and nearly twenty cabins, most of which are waterfront. Osprey Point Hall – available by reservation for larger parties – is situated close to the fishing pier, swimming area, mini-golf, and a large picnic area. 

The Schwarzer Bird Viewing Area is in a quiet corner of South Shore Park near a second fishing pier. This park is lush, green, and wooded. Evergreens, oaks, and cedars abound – making it an ideal spot to do some summer camping or indeed, just spend a day outside. 

Ready to book a summer lake escape? Camping reservations can be booked online for the three area lakes featured. Day use passes are available at park entrances. Fees are usually around $5 for adults. Children 12 and under are free.