- Things to Do
- Food & Drink
- Where to Stay
- Plan Your Trip
When it comes to planning the perfect vacation, it can be difficult to please everyone in the family. However, there is one destination that has something for everyone: Galveston Island.
The historic island town of Galveston offers a wide variety of activities and attractions for visitors of all ages. And best of all, it's just a short drive for nearly 30 million people!
Galveston is rich in history and culture, and there are a number of ways to explore it. Take a stroll down The Strand, where you'll find yourself transported back in time to the city's days as a bustling port town. Visitors love browsing the unique shops and stopping for a bite to eat in one of the many restaurants.
Moody Mansion is one of the island's most popular tourist destinations. The mansion was built at the turn of the century and is one of the oldest mansions in the state of Texas. Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the mansion to learn about the island's history and see what life was like for the wealthy family who once called it home.
For those whose ancestors immigrated to the United States through the Port of Galveston, the Galveston Historic Seaport is a must-see. The museum's Ship to Shore exhibit tells the stories of immigrants who passed through the port and provides a glimpse into what life was like for them during their journey. The historic seaport is also home to 1877 Tall Ship ELISSA, a three-masted barque that is one of the last of her kind. Visitors can take a tour of the ship.
Galveston is home to some of the best seafood restaurants in Texas. Katie's Seafood Market is a local favorite known for its fresh-caught seafood. For something a little more upscale, try Gaido's Seafood Restaurant or Rudy and Paco. For more casual seafood fare, visitors love BLVD Seafood and Fisherman's Wharf.
Seafood isn't the only thing on the menu in Galveston, Texas. You'll find everything from Cajun and Creole cuisine to Tex-Mex and barbecue - and don't even get us started on the desserts!
Galveston Island is a haven for nature lovers, offering a diverse array of ecosystems to explore. From sandy beaches to lush wetlands, visitors can discover a wide range of flora and fauna unique to the Texas Gulf Coast. Whether you're an avid birdwatcher, a fishing enthusiast, or simply love being immersed in nature, Galveston Island has something to offer.
Shelling is a popular activity on Galveston Island, and there are plenty of great spots to find shells. East Beach is a great place to start, as is Stewart Beach. For those who want to bring home a few shell souvenirs, Murdoch's on the Seawall has a great selection of shells and other souvenirs for purchase.
Fishing is another popular activity on Galveston Island, and there are many charter companies that can take you out on the water for a fun day of fishing. If you want to stay closer to shore, Seawolf Park is a great option for pier fishing.
If you want to see the island from a different perspective, take a harbor cruise. Several tour companies offer cruises that will take you around the harbor and give you a chance to see the beautiful homes and buildings that line the waterfront. The Galveston Harbor Tour and Dolphin Watch are provided by the Galveston Historical Foundation, but also consider the Colonel Paddlewheel Boat tour at Moody Gardens. Both were great ways to see the harbor and learn about the island’s history.
You can't talk about Galveston without mentioning the beach. Whether you want to build sandcastles, catch some waves, or just relax in the sun, Galveston's beaches have got you covered. There are 32 miles of beach with a number of different beach parks to choose from, each with its own unique vibe. Click here to find the perfect beach for you!
Stewart Beach is perfect for families with young children, while East Beach is popular with college students and young adults. For a laid-back atmosphere, try Seawall beaches or venture out to the west-end beaches.
This iconic beach attraction spanning out over the water is home to rides, games, food, and fun for the whole family. Nostalgic rides like the Carousel and the Ferris Wheel offer breathtaking views of the Gulf, while thrill-seekers can test their limits on rides like The Iron Shark Roller Coaster.
In case you need a break from the heat (or if you're just not a beach person), there are still plenty of things to do in Galveston!
Moody Gardens is a must-visit, especially for animal lovers. Visit the Aquarium Pyramid to see sharks, penguins, and more! Then head over to the Rainforest Pyramid to see tropical birds, snakes, and plants. For a truly unique experience, check out the 4D Special FX Theater. Visitors can easily spend the day at Moody Gardens and still not see everything it has to offer!
Unlike many other vacation destinations, Galveston is very affordable. There are many free things to see and do and budget-friendly hotels, restaurants, and activities for when you want to save. This makes it easy to stick to your budget while still having an incredible time on vacation.
There's no doubt about it—Galveston is a fantastic place for a family vacation! No matter what your interests are, there's sure to be something for everyone in Galveston! Families can explore unique interests, try new things, and create memories that will last a lifetime. So why not make your next family vacation a trip to this historic island town? You won't be disappointed.
Where the Texas Coast begins.
by J.R. Shaw
by Visit Galveston
by Visit Galveston
by J.R. Shaw