Why Galveston is a Top Winter Snowbird Destination

What is winter on Galveston Island like?

While we do get the occasional cold front, Galveston’s winter months are mild in temperature ranging from the upper 40s to the 60s and many locals are guilty of wearing their shorts year-round. And, what does this mean for you? It means this time of year is still a great time to visit and here’s why:

Great Coffee

While it might be trivial to some folks, finding a great spot for a hot cup of joe is critical to some when it’s chilly outside. And, Galveston now has several fun options for that coffee fix beyond Starbucks.

Great Coffee

MOD Coffeehouse, serving Galveston for over 15 years, is located at the corner of Postoffice and 22nd Street in the historic Postoffice District of Galveston. They serve handcrafted beverages and treats in a Victorian building with a touch of midcentury modern charm.

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Great Coffee

Galveston Coffee Roasters is a local Mom & Pop Shop selling a multitude of coffees we fresh roast ourselves. We offer various Custom Blends featuring coffees from around the world and also a wide selection of flavored coffees. If you find yourself on Galveston Island please stop by our outlet store where we have FREE samples all day.

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Great Coffee

Red Light Coffee Roasters is a small-batch coffee roaster that’s housed in a building that dates to 1862 and served as a bordello at one time.

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Gumbo Time

Seafood should be on the menu during any visit to Galveston Island. And, during the winter months, gumbo is a must. Several locally-owned restaurants have their spin on their recipe and, of course, the roux is critical.

Gumbo Time

The original Galveston restaurant for true "Boat-to-Table" dining, BLVD Seafood offers fresh, local Gulf Wild seafood and daily specials. Try "The Jobber," a Gumbo full of shrimp, blue crab, andouille sausage over white rice - you will NOT be disappointed!

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Gumbo Time

Bringing expertise in steam kettle cooking, Little Daddy's Gumbo Bar offers dishes such as traditional gumbos, seafood stews, and cioppino.

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Gumbo Time

Alongside a delightful gumbo, you can enjoy Po’ Boys, the Strand Salad, Phoenix Salad, Crab Cake Sandwich, and Fish Tacos and more at Shrimp N' Stuff - a local favorite!

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Gumbo Time

Walking into Maceo Spice & Import Company is like taking a step back into an old-world charm. From the second you enter the front doors, your senses will be flooded with the wonderful smell of fresh spices and herbs. Be sure to pair your shrimp and crab gumbo with their famous muffaletta.

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Gumbo Time

Katie's Seafood House is committed to serving the freshest Gulf seafood on the coast. Their seafood comes right from the boat to your plate - or in this case, to your bowl with their Seafood Gumbo packed with fish, shrimp, crab, oysters and anything else we can think of.

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Gumbo Time

Offering a casual dining experience right on Galveston's Seawall, Benno's on The Beach is the perfect spot to enjoy grilled, fried, and boiled seafood. Definitely sample the gumbo, red beans and rice, crawfish etouffee and jambalaya.

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Lower Lodging Rates

Like many beach destinations, spring break and summer are the busiest time of year to visit Galveston Island. If you book your stay during the winter months you’re going to enjoy a lower room rate on your hotel room, vacation rental, or condo. And, generally, weekdays are cheaper than a weekend rate.

Remember, Galveston is Houston’s playground making it a popular weekend destination for residents of the fourth largest city in the United States. Another tip is if you’re looking at a hotel, always book direct. This way, if you have a change a plans it’s much easier to rebook or cancel your stay.

Fewer Crowds at Attractions

Galveston’s major attractions are open year-round and a visit during the winter months eliminates any delay. If you’re staying downtown, the Galveston Railroad Museum is a fun stop. If you enjoy history and ghosts, then definitely check out Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast and Haunted Mayfield Manor which are housed in the same building on The Strand.

For history buffs, we recommend a stop at the Texas Seaport Museum, home of the 1877 Tall Ship Elissa, and the adjacent Pier 21 Theater. You’ll also want to tour The Bryan Museum, Bishop’s Palace, and Moody Mansion. Look for Ocean Star Offshore Oil Rig Museum at Pier 19.

Further down the island is the popular Moody Gardens complex which offers a Rainforest Pyramid, Aquarium, 3D IMAX Theater, and Discovery Museum.

Galveston Island Pass

If you haven’t been to Galveston lately, now is the perfect time to experience some of the island's unique attractions – at a price you can't refuse. The Galveston Island Pass is your key to adventure and savings while exploring the numerous attractions that make Galveston so special.

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No Wait at Restaurants

A great meal is an essential part of any trip. And, Galveston has no shortage of delicious, locally-owned restaurants. Of course, you’ll see your favorite chains like Joe’s Crab Shack, Rainforest Cafe, and Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. but you’ll also be pleased with the variety of local spots.

At some restaurants, like Rudy & Paco’s, owner Paco Vargas is often there to greet guests with his trademark greeting “Welcome Back Baby.” You can enjoy the view from harborfront restaurants at Pier 21 and beachfront restaurants on the Seawall with no wait for a table. And, of course, Galveston’s downtown is filled with choices.

La Kings Confectionary Galveston
Winter Texans
Sweet Treats

Since life is better with desserts, we thought we should share some favorites on the island including some off the beaten path. Most people know Sunflower Bakery for their breakfast and lunch menu but make sure you check out their desserts display. Just a few blocks away is PattyCakes Bakery. While cakes are their specialty, you’ll love their scones, pies, and cupcakes.

Another neighborhood choice is ShyKatz Cafe and Bakery on 15th and Avenue L. The desserts are always changing and you can even give them your recipe and they’ll make it for you.

Make sure to also add La King's Confectionery, Gypsy Joynt and Hey Mikey's to your sweet treat to-do list!

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Author

Christine Ruiz Hopkins Guest Blogger

Christine is a proud BOI, meaning she was “Born on the Island.” She was born and raised in Galveston and began working in the island’s tourism industry when she was 15 years old as a water slide attendant at the now-demolished Sky Rapids Water Slide at Stewart Beach.

For more than 25 years, she has worked in travel and tourism, promoting Galveston. Her tourism background makes her a bit of an expert on Galveston Island. She is the co-author of the newly released “100 Things to Do in Galveston Before You Die,” published by Reedy Press. Before the book, she has written more than 300 blogs on Galveston offering travel tips on what to see and do. Over the years, she's given hundreds of tours for visiting travel writers showcasing the sites on the island. Currently, she’s a Galveston guide for ToursByLocals.com.