Emma Long Metropolitan Park Review & Rating

Texas Outside Rating: 8.5

Emma Long Metropolitan Park Website
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Emma Long Metropolitan Park Overview:

Review of Emma Long Metropolitan Park

Emma Long is a Texas Outside Favorite Park because it's pretty, has some great sites right on the banks of Lake Austin (which is a very fun lake), and there are lots of things to do in and around the park. It has over a mile of shoreline along Lake Austin for swimming, fishing, or just relaxing by the water. 

There are primitive tent sites and a small number of water and electric sites plus a huge day use area with lots of picnic tables.  Camping is first come first serve and this is a very popular park and gets lots of visitors. 

The park is a little dated so don't set your expectations real high. The shoreline is grass and sand and good for boat parking and swimming (try surfing if there is a lot of boat traffic).  There are two boat ramps and ample trailer parking.

It's a steep, narrow, and windy road into the park. 

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Amenities and Fun Things To Do:

If you like camping on the edge of a lake, Emma Long is perfect - there are 11 (out of 20) water and electric sites within 50 yards of Lake Austin.  The other 9 sites are just across the street and have an excellent view of and easy access to the lake.  The sites are paved and double wide but short - we had to park our 42' RV diagonally and it still ran off the front edge of the site.  Some campers and trailers actually parked sideways to get a better view of the lake.  A few sites have 30 AMP and all have 20 AMP and water hook-ups plus a cement picnic table, fire ring, and grill.  There are also 43 primitive sites that are farther from the water and up against the base of a hill.  All of the sites have some good shade from some huge oak and juniper trees 

The shoreline is suitable for swimming as well as boat parking but you will get a lot of waves from passing boats.

Emma Long Park is dated and some of the facilities could use some work.  There are showers and restrooms near the RV sites and very new restrooms and showers in the day use area.  The day use area is huge with lots of picnic tables along the shoreline. 

Some of the amenities you can enjoy during your stay include:

  • three sand volleyball courts
  • half basketball court
  • fishing pier
  • roped off swimming area
  • 12 miles of hiking and biking trails
  • two one lane boat ramps with adequate trailer parking
  • RV dump station
  • over 150 picnic tables but very few grills
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A Typical Texas Outsider Day:

We come to Emma Long to enjoy the camping on Lake Austin, all that the lake has to offer, and to take advantage of some fun things to do in Austin.  First on our agenda is cruising the lake and enjoying he scenic beauty and all of the huge jaw dropping expensive and beautiful homes that dot the hillside and shoreline. 

On a typical day we'll spend some time boating on Lake Austin:

  • swimming and enjoying the party cove scene in Bull Creek Cove
  • stopping by Ski Shores for burgers and live music on the deck
  • boating to dinner at Hula Hut, Abel's on the Lake, or County Line for BBQ
  • heading to the upper end of the lake for some smooth water (but colder) for tubing, boarding, or skiing

Some of the other things we do during a stay at Emma Long include: a hike on the Turkey Creek Trail; head into Austin for music, dining, or some other fun stuff;  play golf at one of the nearby golf courses; or visit our daughter or friends who live in Austin. 

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Cool Nearby Activities:

In addition to great lake camping, the advantage of camping at Emma Long is that within 15 minutes you can be enjoying all Austin has to offer - museums, sports activities, bike trails, live music, excellent restaurants, and lots more.  Visit our Guide to Austin to find lots to do including our Top Ten Fun Things To Do in Austin.

If you like golf, you've got lots of excellent choices of places to chase that little golf ball around - here is a link to our Austin Golf Course Map to help you quickly find a course, see our course ratings, and read a review.  Also check out our list of the Best Golf Courses in Austin

Got a mountain bike or motorcycle? A couple miles outside the park is an excellent mountain biking and motorcycle park which is fun and challenging.

If you don't have a boat to enjoy the lake, here is a list of Lake Austin Boat Rentals, one of which will deliver the boat to you. 

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Campground Information

Website Link
Locate This Park:
Area Map
Location Map
Texas Outside Favorite Sites: 1 through 11 are waterfront

Campground Rating

Overall Rating:
Scenic Beauty:
Things To Do:

Additional Pictures of Emma Long Metropolitan Park

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Texas Outside Campground Rating System

Texas Outside uses a tough rating scale and it’s difficult for a campground to get a “10”.  Each park is rated on:

  • Scenic Beauty: a campground that is flat with no trees or character gets a “1” and hills, lots of trees, beautiful lake site, and lush ground cover gets a “10”
  • Park Condition:  the cleaner, well kept, and maintained campgrounds receive high scores
  • Amenities: we are looking for lots of amenities like restrooms, dump stations, playgrounds, boat ramps, shelters, concession stand, rental toys, and more.
  • Campsites:  low scores are given for sites that are right next to each other (good for getting to know your neighbors, but not what we’re looking for when we’re camping); have no lantern holder, no water or electricity, no fire pit, no grill, or no picnic table (or it’s rotten wood); have no trees and no view; the ground cover is crushed rock (my bare feet hate that stuff!); and they require a lot of work to get your rig level.
  • Things To Do: Bonus points are given for campgrounds that offer lots of fun things to do at the park or very nearby – this includes: biking, hiking, climbing, boating, entertainment, golf, swimming, fishing, volleyball, horseshoes, and more