Updated: Dec 30, 2021
There a few things that Texas coastal towns have in common: beaches, marine activities, and delicious seafood :D Here is a guide to towns on the Texas coast and the exciting activities that make them different:
Galveston is a fun island full of history, character, and fun! It's a great place for a weekend getaway or family vacation. With beaches, historical sites, and fun activities, you're bound to have a good time!
Also known as Galveston's 'downtown', the Strand is home to restaurants, shops, museums, hotels, and entertainment! Get a scoop of ice cream and watch the saltwater taffy demonstration at La King's Confectionery and then adventure around the Strand and do a bit of shopping! There are so many different kinds of stores with unique items!
Completed in 1892, Bishop's Palace is a beautiful home with ornate architecture and stained-glass windows. Visitors can go on self-guided tours throughout the stunning Victorian house. There is also a special tour that will take you to parts of the mansion that aren't seen on the self-guided tour!
The ELISSA is an 1877 tall ship constructed in Scotland and sailed to different European countries before it was purchased by the Galveston Historical Foundation in 1975. The ELISSA made its way to Texas in the 1980s and currently serves as a museum in Galveston.
Moody Gardens is a fun place to learn all about nature! They have 3 different pyramids: one with a rainforest, one with an aquarium, and one with a 3D theater and a 4D theater. The aquarium has penguins, jellyfish, and so many other animals and sea life! The rainforest has river otters, monkeys, different types of birds, and endangered plants. They even have animal encounters!
A quaint fishing town, Port Aransas is a great place to visit if you're searching for a small town feel in a seaside town!
Fishing on the Texas coast is a must! One of my favorite things to do in Port Aransas is fish and then go to a restaurant that will cook your catch! I recommend going with an experienced guide, that way you are sure to catch some fish! You can catch anything from redfish and speckled trout to flounder and red snapper.
Now a state park, Mustang Island got its name from the wild horses that inhabited the island in the 1700s and 1800s. Karankawa Indians also inhabited Mustang Island (first recorded sightings of the hunter-gatherers was by a French explorer in the early 18th century). Today, you can spend some time on the beach, try your hand at fishing, bird watch, kayak, and more at Mustang Island State Park!
In my opinion, everyone who visits Corpus should go to the Whataburger by the Bay and the Selena statue, but there are also so many other things you can do!
The USS Lexington is an aircraft carrier that was used for combat in the Pacific during World War II. After serving for 48 years, the ship made its way to Corpus where it is now a naval aviation museum! When you visit, you will learn so much about the ship and the USA's military!
Fun Fact #1: The flight deck is the size of 3 football fields!
Fun Fact #2: I spent the night on the aircraft carrier! It was really cool, but also creepy 😂
Texas State Aquarium has so many different marine species and other animal & bird species! You can see bottlenose dolphins, different kinds of fish, sharks, sea turtles, sloths, river otters, flamingos, and so much more! All species are from the Gulf of Mexico or the Caribbean Sea and there are special opportunities to feed fish or meet a sloth!
Padre Island National Seashore is the world's longest stretch of undeveloped barrier island! With miles and miles of beautiful beach and prairies, Padre Island is home to well over 300 species of birds and it is a nesting ground for sea turtles! On the island you can fish, windsurf, kayak, camp, or enjoy the beach!
South Padre Island
With beautiful blue water, South Padre Island has some of the best beaches in Texas! Here are a few things to do on SPI:
Ecology and dolphin watch tours are a super fun/cool! You're able to see bottlenose dolphins in their natural habitat and you can see other marine species in the wild!
Built in 1852, the 72-foot tall Port Isabel Lighthouse is right across from SPI (on the mainland). It has amazing views of beaches, South Padre, and some of the prettiest water along the Texas Coast!
Now that you know more things to do along the Texas coast, you can go on a Texas Gulf Coast road trip or take weekend trips to each place! In addition to all of the activities mentioned, these places also have some of the best beaches in Texas! So pack your bags (don't forget a swimsuit) and head to the coast!