GOLIAD, Texas — If it were a ranch today, it would easily be the biggest ranch in Texas! Mission Espiritu Santos was, at one time more than one and a half million acres with more than 40 thousand head of cattle roaming its land.
The first thing you see when you turn into Goliad State Park is the mission itself, restored to what it looked like almost 300 years ago. Other than the land itself, it is the only thing that looks like it did.
Now the Park has more than 60 campsites, where you can rough it by pitching a tent or enjoy the finer luxuries in a motorhome or modern camper, complete with electricity and running water.
There are miles of hiking and biking trails, or you can bring your own kayak or canoe and paddle along the same river that runs through San Antonio. Then just a few minutes down the road are two more significant pieces of Texas history.
General Ignacio Zaragosa's boyhood home has been rebuilt to look like it did when his family settled in the area in the 18th century. And right across the street from it stands Presidio La Bahia, also restored.
These three important pieces of Texas history are a two-hour drive from San Antonio and make a wonderful day trip, where kids can learn an enormous amount how we became who we are...and what it took to get here.
If you would like to check out Goliad State Park, Zaragosa's birthplace or Presidio LaBahia, click on the link here: https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/goliad