Places To Go

2 hikers looking a park map while on a trail in the woods.
Know where to go! Get a free park map from the visitor center.

NPS Photo / Ian Kessler

Many Places, One Preserve

With over 113,000 acres of public land, Big Thicket National Preserve is yours to enjoy and explore. We invite you to experience the preserve's special places.

Wooden horizontal sign, reading Visitor Center, sits on two wooden posts about 2 feet off the ground amidst a garden of yellow flowers.
Get info, maps, and much more at the visitor center.

NPS Photo / Scott Sharaga

Visitor Center

Any trip to Big Thicket National Preserve should start at the visitor center. Centrally located in the Big Thicket region, it has information, maps, exhibits, a film, and much more. Park rangers there will answer your questions and can recommend things to see and do in the preserve.

Units of the National Preserve

Unlike most national parks, the preserve is composed of 15 separate sections of parkland called units. These units range in size from 552 to 24,828 acres and are spread over seven southeast Texas counties. A look at the park map will help you locate each unit.

Developed units offer hiking trails, restrooms, picnic areas, and other facilities. Some offer backcountry camping.

Primitive units don't have any hiking trails or facilities, and can be challenging to access. Waterway corridor units can be considered primitive but they offer recreation on the water. Some primitive units offer backcountry camping.

Visit the page for each unit to learn more about what to see and do there:


Developed Units

  • A fly crawls on lip of open cavity of green, tubular plant
    Turkey Creek Unit

    Here you'll find many of the Big Thicket's scenic highlights, from carnivorous plants to cypress sloughs.

  • A wide, wooden boardwalk path squeezes between green low bushes and extends into the woods.
    Hickory Creek Savannah Unit

    Explore a lush longleaf pine forest and look for carnivorous plants.

  • Tall trees with red and orange leaves reflect their images in a large blue lake.
    Beaumont Unit

    Just minutes away from Beaumont, see the bayou on paddling trails and at picnic areas.

  • Fuzzy, green algae climbs and black & white splotches of lichen paint a smooth tree trunk.
    Beech Creek Unit

    Explore a forest of beech trees on the Beech Woods Trail.

  • Dozens of lily pads float on the calm surface of a forest pond.
    Big Sandy Creek Unit

    From longleaf pine uplands to flooded bottomlands, this unit has a wonderful mix of scenery and trails.


Primitive Units



visitor center icon of stick person with hat standing in front of building with flag.

Ranger Recommendations

  • Visiting the Big Thicket for the first time?
    Check out the Kirby Nature Trail in the Turkey Creek Unit. It's near the visitor center and gives hikers the chance to experience a variety of Big Thicket environments, such as a baygall and cypress slough.
  • Enjoy different forms of outdoor recreation?
    Try the Big Sandy Creek Unit. You can hike, bike, horseback ride, camp, hunt, fish, and more in this part of the preserve.
  • Want to see carnivorous plants?
    The Pitcher Plant Trail in the Turkey Creek Unit and the Sundew Trail in the Hickory Creek Savannah Unit are your best bets.
  • Looking to paddle a kayak or canoe?
    Visit the Beaumont Unit or one of the waterway corridor units.

Visit our THINGS TO DO page for more information on outdoor recreation in the Big Thicket.

Last updated: February 18, 2022

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

6044 FM 420
Kountze, TX 77625



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