Sam Houston National Forest is really a little over an hour from Houston. Entry, parking and hiking are all free. It's a beautiful place that is covered with pine trees. Ten feet into the hiking trail you'll feel as if civilization is a million miles away. There are many types of hikes available. My husband and I took our three year old son for an easy, fairly flat hike. We had to cross a wooden, tilted bridge which he loved. For more information and pictures about the Sam Houston National Forest click here.
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