Big Thicket Visitor Center

the front of the visitor center as seen from the parking lot
Begin your Big Thicket adventure here.

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Information, Exhibits, & More

Start your trip here! The visitor center, in the middle of the Big Thicket region, is the best place for information about the preserve. Swing by to grab some maps before you hit the trail or stay awhile and watch our park film. We're here to help you make the most of your Big Thicket trip.

Getting Here

The visitor center is located about 7 miles north of the city of Kountze at the intersection of US 69/287 and FM 420.

Address: 6102 FM 420, Kountze, TX 77625
Hours: 9:00 am–5:00 pm, 7 days a week (closed Thanksgiving, December 25, and January 1)
Phone: 409-951-6700

pitcher plant exhibit inside visitor center
Have a peek inside to see what the pitcher plant recently ate.

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What Can You Do at the Visitor Center?

  • Get free trail maps and information. Park rangers are available to answer your questions.
  • Become a junior ranger. It's free! All ages are welcome to complete an activity booklet and earn a badge.
  • Explore our exhibits—look out for the giant insect-eating plant!
  • Watch a 16-minute film about the Big Thicket in our theater. You can also watch the film online.
  • Browse the park store for unique souvenirs. Collect your national park passport stamp!
  • Have a picnic under a shelter in our native tree forest.
  • Pick up a free permit for backcountry camping or hunting (depending on seasonal availability).
  • Borrow or donate a book at our Little Free Library.
woman reading a book from little free library
Enjoy a book from our Little Free Library during your visit.

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Visitor Center Amenities

  • Wheelchair accessible
  • RV, trailer, and bus parking
  • Restrooms
  • Water fountain with water bottle filling station
  • Covered picnic area
  • Bike rack

Nearby Trails

While no trails begin directly at the visitor center, many trailheads can be reached following a short drive. The Kirby Nature Trail begins 2.6 miles east of the visitor center on FM 420.

group of people sitting a picnic table in the visitor center's picnic area
Have a picnic with friends and family at the covered picnic area.

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a small theater with many rows of chairs, with a bright lens flare coming from the projector.
Watch the Big Thicket park film in the air-conditioned comfort of our theater.

NPS Photo / Scott Sharaga

Last updated: April 8, 2023

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

6044 FM 420
Kountze, TX 77625



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