If you love the great outdoors, you can't be upset about living in Texas. We've got everything from beautiful beaches to massive canyons; beautiful deserts and never ending forests. Which is why I'm shocked that Texas has a paltry number of national parks.

If you're wanting to visit a national park in Texas, be prepared to drive.

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First, Texas Only Has Two National Parks

This is an important distinction to know. There are plenty of places in the Lone Star State that are managed by the National Park Service, but only two have the distinction of being a National Park.

In the panhandle, we have a National Monument and a National Recreation Area.

Our two National Parks are Big Bend National Park, and Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Neither of which is remotely close to Amarillo, so you'll want to make some travel plans.

How Far Is Big Bend National Park From Amarillo, TX?

Big Bend National Park is insanely gorgeous. There is plenty to see, and tons to do. Big Bend is in the southwestern part of the state near the border with Mexico. A couple of the big highlights are the ability to check out the Rio Grande, and the hot springs.

If you're wanting to go check out Big Bend from Amarillo, it's going to take you 7 hours or so to drive there.

How Far Is Guadalupe Mountains National Park from Amarillo, TX?

Guadalupe Mountains National Park is in the far western reaches of the Lone Star State near El Paso. There's a lot to take in once you're there.

You have the namesake mountains, caves, and canyons to explore. There are several historical sites. It's also home to the fossil reef.

Yes. Apparently, at one point, part of this area was under a tropical ocean. It was a very, very long time ago.

The trip to Guadalupe Mountains National Park is a little easier to stomach at around 5 hours and 30 minutes give or take, depending on the route.

The Texas Panhandle's National Sites

In the Texas panhandle we have the Alibates Flint Quarries, which is a National Monument. We also have Lake Meredith which is a National Recreation Area.

Palo Duro Canyon is a State Park, not to be confused with its National counterparts.

All of these are well worth visiting, and offer a unique experience.

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June 18 was National Wanna Get Away Day, and it got us to thinking of where Texans can get away from it all this summer and have a great time without breaking the bank.

Take A Quick Look Inside One Of Palo Duro Canyon's Caves

Check Out These Photos Of The Hidden Cave In Palo Duro Canyon.

The Blue Hole in East Texas

This beautiful, privately owned lake, is located deep in the piney woods of Jasper County.

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