10 Reasons to Visit Galveston This Summer

In case you’re looking for a little extra motivation to get on Island Time, here are 10 excuses to head to Galveston Island this summer.

While you don’t need a real reason to head to the coast during the Texas summer – the cool breezes and sparkling Gulf waters are usually enticing enough. But if you need a little guidance, we're here to tell you why Galveston Island is the place to be this summer.

pictured: Pleasure Pier

What's New at Schlitterbahn Galveston?

Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark is your go-to island attraction for a wet and wild time. In 2022, the park underwent nearly $3M in off-season enhancements.

The waterpark is home to the award-winning World’s Tallest Water Coaster, MASSIV, and the next generation, award-winning Transportainment® river system that combines three unique rivers into one endless floating adventure.

Schlitterbahn Galveston Schedule

Schlitterbahn From Social

While Seawall beaches are open year-round, the island’s largest public beach parks – Stewart Beach and East Beach – open seasonally. The annual beach season kicks off in March, offering a variety of special amenities. Visitors to the beach parks can take advantage of restrooms, showers, beach chair rentals, volleyball courts, snack bars and other concessions.

Outdoor Recreation
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Popular Attractions

At Moody Gardens, visitors can experience a living rainforest with free-roaming animals at the Rainforest Pyramid, and one of the largest aquariums in the state at the Aquarium Pyramid, and a golf course are among numerous other attractions.

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Popular Attractions

Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier is one of the few spots in the world that has this many rides over water! You'll be flying over guests on the Pier, soaring over the Gulf of Mexico and anticipating your next ride!

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Popular Attractions

The island’s many historic mansions and museums, such as The Bryan Museum and Bishop’s Palace, are also open throughout the season.

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Beach Activities

Attention budding builders – sandcastle builders, that is. Galveston is hosting a free, family-friendly event to help beachgoers create spectacular sandcastles with guidance from a pro. Locations and days vary. See our events calendar to find the next upcoming event.

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Beach Activities

This challenge transforms a portion of the beach into a gigantic obstacle course, allowing families to compete in life-size versions of classic favorites like giant Jenga and dominoes, sack races, and more. Don't forget the monetary incentives for winning!

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Vacation Rental or Resort?

With thousands of beach houses and vacation rentals available on Galveston’s 32-mile coast, booking a remote stay may be closer than you think.

If you’re looking for a vacation rental, the island offers everything from beachfront mansions and waterfront condos to historic cottages and luxury high rises. For information, visit our Galveston vacation rental page.

If you’re more of the resort sort, you can choose among seaside, bayside or downtown hotels (from historic to modern) to make your summer getaway special.

The Birthplace of Juneteenth, Galveston Island holds a special place in the United States and African American history.

The richness of this island's history goes well beyond celebrating Emancipation. From being home to the first African American high school and public library in Texas to being the hometown of World Heavyweight Champ Jack Johnson, Galveston has long fought to preserve the knowledge of African American accomplishments and heritage on the island, holding dear the many historic sites and monuments that live on to tell the story.

The Galveston Downtown Cultural Arts District, an official cultural district designated by the Texas Commission on the Arts, offers an intriguing selection of theaters, shops, restaurants, and museums that are well worth visiting.

The Victorian architecture of Strand Street, widely known as The Strand, makes for a charming stroll as you shop for unique finds or grab sweets at LaKing’s Confectionery. Saengerfest Park at 23rd and Strand is a free family park home to a life-size chessboard, Insta-worthy selfies in front of an iconic Galveston mural and regular live entertainment.

Be sure to also check out the district’s 20-plus art galleries, displaying fine art, sculpture and photography in beautifully restored historic buildings. Many can be found on Postoffice Street.

Summer Activities

There’s no need to spend an arm and a leg when you visit Galveston Island this summer. There are plenty of free and inexpensive things to do both on and off the beach. Click here for a few of our favorites.

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Sometimes you just want to hop in the car and head to the beach, right? Hauling your chairs, canopies, umbrellas and other beach items can seem like a hassle. Here along Galveston Island's 32-miles of coastline, you can find ample vendors ready to make your beach experience as relaxing as possible!

Beach Amenities

East Beach Cantina and Rentals offers beach fare food and drink as well as beach-side food and beverage service, chair, umbrella and cabana rentals. They also have all of your beach must-haves like sunscreen, boogie boards and more available for purchase.

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Beach Amenities

SUP Gulf Coast offers stand-up paddleboard rentals, sales, lessons and classes here on Galveston Island on 29th street as well as free delivery on the island! Reservations required!

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Beach Amenities

Take advantage of Galveston’s rental options to make the most of your next outdoor adventure.

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Galveston Island provides visitors with a special passport to adventure and savings with the Galveston Island Pass. The pass allows visitors to experience multiple Galveston attractions on one ticket and save 40% off regular admission prices.

Claim Your Galveston Island Pass

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Visit Galveston

Visit Galveston is the official destination marketing organization for Galveston Island, Texas.