The San Angelo Park system was created in 1903. The city currently has 32 parks with over 375 acres of developed land. The department maintains a 33 acre municipal golf course along the river, 25 playgrounds and 25 sports practice fields. The "crown jewels" of the parks departments are the parks that make up the 10 miles of river frontage on the Concho River winding through downtown and beyond. The parks feature many plazas, public art displays and numerous water features. The city is home to the International Water Lily Collection. The park contains over 300 varieties of water lilies, one of the largest collections in the world. The San Angelo Nature Center features over 120 live mammals, reptiles and amphibians native to West Texas. It provides an opportunity to see native West Texas wildlife and native flora. The city also provides several municipal parks on Lake Nasworthy, one of three lakes surrounding the city, which include Twin Buttes Reservoir and O.C. Fisher Reservoir.
San Angelo is also home to San Angelo State Park. The 7,677 acre park is owned and maintained by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. It is located on the shores of the O.C. Fisher Reservoir. There are many activities available within the park, including camping, picnicking, and swimming, as well as hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding on over 50 miles of developed trails. The park is home to 350 species of birds and about 50 species of mammals, showcasing the Official State of Texas Longhorn herd.
Historic Fort Concho, a National Historic Landmark, is maintained by the city of San Angelo. It was founded in 1867 by the United States Army to protect settlers and maintain vital trade routes. It frequently experienced skirmishes with the then hostile Comanche tribe. Today, the restored site is home to several museums, and is open to visitors Tuesday through Sunday.