Saturday, March 21, is International Day of Forests. The holiday was created to bring an awareness and appreciation of the world’s many wonderfully tree-canopied spaces.
If you feel like getting out a bit, take some time to visit a forest or natural space near your home. The fresh air and sunshine might be just what you need.
Here are some resources for Georgia and Texas to help get you started:
NOTE: Georgia’s state-run and national parks remain open, though facilities and programs have been shut down temporarily due to COVID-19.
Tallulah Gorge State Park (Tellulah Falls)
Tallulah Gorge State Park boasts one of the most impressive canyons in the eastern U.S. And if you’re lucky, you might catch site of a rare and protected green salamander or a monkey-face orchid—both are residents at the park.
Laura S. Walker State Park
At 626 acres, the Laura S. Walker State Park, located on the north edge of the Okefenokee Swamp, is sure to fulfill your quest for nature. It has hiking trails, playgrounds, boardwalks and three large lakes for boating, canoeing and kayaking.
Black Rock Mountain State Park
Enjoy majestic views over Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains at Black Rock State Park, one of the highest places in the state—up to 3,640 feet in altitude. The park features several hiking trails that wind up and around the mountain past waterfalls, streams and pristine forest.
Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area
Arabia Mountain is famous for its lush red monadnocks, a rare plant that begins to bloom late March and April—now is the perfect time. The heritage area features several trails through different nature presrves.
Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park
From the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement, experience nature and a part of the state’s history at Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park.
NOTE: Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park remains open, though the visitor’s center and park programs have been temporarily shut down.
NOTE: Texas state-run and national parks remain open, though facilities and programs have been shut down temporarily due to COVID-19.
Brazos Bend State Park
Just outside of Houston, Brazos Bend State Park contains 5,000 acres of coastal prairie and forest. It’s a great place to see birds, alligators and an array of flowering plant life.
Lake Tawakoni State Park
About an hour East of Dallas, visitors to Lake Tawakoni State Park can enjoy hiking through the parks 376-acre oak forest, or swimming, boating and fishing on the lake itself along 5 miles of lakeshore.
Palmetto State Park
Relatively close to Austin and San Antonio, Palmetto State Park offers a “little bit of the tropics.” Hike through shaded trails amid a sea of dwarf palmettos. Or catch fish, swim and canoe on the mild San Marcos River.
Fort Davis National Historic Site
Fort Davis is a national park located on the southern end of Texas, between El Paso and San Antonio. From 1854 to 1891, the fort served as an important strategic location during the Indian Wars. Visitors are sure to get a dose of Texas history exploring the grounds and trails of the park.