Medina River Natural Area is the 511 acre “Jewel of The Southside!” Its mission is to protect native plants and animals while also providing low-impact recreational, educational, and volunteer opportunities for visitors. Ten miles of hike and bike trails wind through a variety of landscapes from riversides with towering pecanand bald cypress trees to uplands lined with cactus and honey mesquite. The Medina River Greenway is an integral part of the natural area’s trail system: 2.91 miles of the Greenway trail lie within the natural area boundaries and an additional 3.73 miles traverse neighboring property managed by the non-profit Land Heritage Institute. The trails have varying levels of accessibility ranging from concrete to natural surfaces. Please see the trail maps section of this website for more information about our trail system.
At Medina River Natural Area you can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities! Ride your bike, walk your dog on a leash, or take a slow hike through the natural area’s serene habitat. Bird watchers enjoy excellent birding opportunities, with specialties such as green kingfisher and painted bunting.
Excellent fishing opportunities are available at designated fishing sites along the Medina River. (A fishing license is required; fishing line recycling containers are provided at every fishing site).
Swimming in the river is prohibited. Horses, skateboards, and motorized vehicles (excluding wheelchairs) are not allowed on the trails.
A large covered pavilion, with six picnic tables, is available for use and may be reserved. The Natural Area also features a group campground with six tent pads, a large barbecue grill, potable water, and composting toilets. No electricity is available. There is a 0.52-mile trail to the river for campers (not available for use by the general public). The campground is available by reservation only. Reservations may be made in person at the Ron Darner Headquarters building (5800 Old Hwy 90 West).