Are you looking for a seaside break to escape the Texas heat? Find five fun Dallas Beaches you absolutely must visit!
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Coming from Long Island, New York, the beach is part of my soul. Living more than fifteen minutes from the beach was foreign to me…
And when we moved to Dallas, one of my first concerns was are there even any beaches in Dallas? You know I made it my personal mission to find the best lakes, shorelines, and beaches in Dallas and the surrounding suburbs.
It turns out, lake life isn’t so bad. Of course I miss the Atlantic crashing on the dunes of the Long Island, but I’ve grown to love the warm, calm lake waters at our favorite Dallas beaches.
Discover the best lakeside beaches for swimming, where we love to have a picnic lunch, and which Dallas beaches have trails, playgrounds, and more nearby.
A Quick Look at Our Favorite Beaches in Dallas:
- White Rock Lake
- Little Elm Park
- Stewart Creek Park
- Meadowmere Park
- Cedar Hill State Park
What Should You Know About Beaches in Dallas
First, when we say Dallas beaches, know that most are actually outside of Dallas in the suburbs, along nearby lakeshores. When we first began our hunt for our favorite beaches, we found most articles recommended beaches that were upwards of four hours away. Not exactly a day trip.
We’re focusing on beaches that are actually near Dallas, and not more than an hour and a half away.
Since Dallas is landlocked, you should also know that all of our beaches are lake beaches, not coastal. Lake beaches tend to have rocky and/or clay-like terrain, rather than soft sand. Many are man-made, as well.
You’ll find very calm, shallow waters at lake beaches, in comparison with ocean beaches. If you’re heading out with young children, you might find this more manageable.
Lastly, lake life is a thing. Bring floats, rent kayaks, go paddle-boarding… it’s a way of life in Texas. Families typically set up for an entire day when heading out to the lake, or camp out for a long weekend.
What Should You Pack for a Day at the Beach
You should know that the Texas heat is intense. Make sure you pack to keep cool and safe, as temperatures can reach in the 100s even in September!
We Recommend Packing These Beach Items for a Day Out at the Dallas Beaches:
We always pack a lunch, plenty of snacks for the kids, and more water than we think we’ll need…because we always need it!
Consider the Texas State Parks Pass
Lastly, we highly recommend the Texas State Parks Pass. You’ll read on to see that many of the beaches in and around Dallas are at state parks. At $7 per person over the age of 13, per trip, it’s easy to see how the pass pays for itself in a few visits.
This also gives you the freedom to explore state parks in other areas of Texas.
The Texas State Parks Pass is $70 for the year. Learn more here.
5 Dallas Beaches You Must Visit
Admittedly, White Rock Lake is the only beach on our list that’s actually in Dallas. As we said above, most Dallas beaches are going to be just outside the city limits.
You should also know that swimming is prohibited at White Rock Lake. With two toddlers, however, White Rock is perfect for days I’m not really into carting all of our stuff to the beach.
Bring a picnic lunch and walk part of the path around the lake. With docks, a dog park, and small pockets of sandy coastline, there’s always something with a beach feel…without getting wet and messy!
Other Amenities at White Rock Lake:
- 9.33 miles of trails
- Dog park
- Lookout points
- Water recreation
- Picnic areas
- White Rock Lake Museum
- Nearby Dallas Arboretum
Address: White Rock Lake Trail, Dallas, TX 75214
One of Dallas’s not so best kept secrets is Little Elm Park. The most popular of the north Dallas beaches, Little Elm sits on Lewisville Lake and draws dozens of daily visitors.
Along with tons of other amenities that can fill an entire day, Little Elm has one of the largest designated swimming areas and sandy shorelines. Personally, I think Little Elm has the most beach-y feel, especially if you’re used to sandy ocean beaches, of all the beaches in Dallas.
More Amenities at Little Elm Park:
- Large playground and toddler playground
- Tent camping
- Boat ramp
- Athletic Fields / Volleyball Court
- Johnny Broyles Nature Trail
Cost: $10/vehicle on Saturdays and Sundays, Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend
Address: 701 W Eldorado Pkwy, Little Elm, TX 75068
Overlooking a marina on the shores of Lake Lewisville, discover one of our seaside loving family’s favorite beaches in Dallas. Our perfect Sunday afternoon consists of heading to Stewart Creek with a packed lunch, a few hours of swimming by the rocky shore, and a quick walk on the trail.
More Amenities at Stewart Creek Park:
- Pirate themed playground
- Tent and RV camping
- Short trail hike
- Boat ramp
- Grassy fields
- Barbecue pits
Cost: $15/vehicle ($10/vehicle for residents of The Colony) Annual passes also available
Address: 3700 Sparks Rd, The Colony, TX 75056
On Grapevine Lake, you’ll find the 288 acre Meadowmere Park, one of the most popular beaches in the Dallas area. Meadowmere Park is home to the largest floating obstacle course in Texas and a designated beach just for swimming.
More Amenities at Meadowmere Park:
- Kayak and surf rentals
- Barbecue pits
- Children’s playground
Cost: $5/car or $1/pedestrian or bike
Address: 3000 Meadowmere Ln, Grapevine, TX 76051
Along the shores of Joe Pool Lake, Cedar Hill State Park boasts one of the prettiest Dallas beaches. Though the current designated swimming area is closed until 2020, other areas of the lake are permitting swimming.
Cedar Hill State Park itself is hilly and full of nature trails and wildflowers. We love to spend a full day at Cedar Hill, enjoying the trails, pioneer farm, and of course, the lake.
More Amenities at Cedar Hill State Park
- Electric campsites
- Nearby Cedar Ridge Preserve
- Foot and off-road biking trails
- Junior Ranger program for kids
- Penn Farm Agriculture Center
Cost: $7/person 13 and older
Address: 1570 FM1382, Cedar Hill, TX 75104
Even More Beaches in Dallas…
About an hour north of the DFW Metroplex sits Ray Roberts Lake. With multiple swimming areas, trails, hiking trails, and a kids’ fishing pond, Ray Roberts is one Texas beach we look forward to exploring.
Situated on Lake Texoma (on the Texas Oklahoma border), Eisenhower State Park boasts of high bluffs, a swimming cove, and four miles of trails where you can find Texas wildflowers and ancient ocean fossils.
Situated in Fort Worth, Burger’s Lake is a haven for summer fun. We look forward to checking out the two beaches, water trapeze, six diving boards, water slide, and inner tubes for rent, along with grills and volleyball courts.
Are you looking for a Texas beach escape? Have you visited any of the lakes or beaches in Dallas? Which are your favorite?
Did we miss anything? What beaches and lake parks would you add to our list? And let us know if you visit some of our favorite beaches in Dallas.