Beyond the Beach: Coastal Texas

A popular Spring Break destination and beach getaway, our coastal Texas resorts offer much more than sand and surf. When you start looking past the allure of the beach, you will find that Global Discovery Vacations hotspots Galveston and South Padre have more to explore.

If you want a change of scenery or just aren’t a beach person, there are still several reasons to spend a week on Texas’s Gulf Coast.

Galveston, Texas

Galveston sits on a slim island off the coast of Texas, hence the area’s impeccable sunsets and 32 miles of shoreline. But within this gorgeous vacation hotspot, tourists have entertainment options galore.

Moody Gardens

The unmistakable glass pyramids are home to a wide array of wildlife, with one of the largest aquariums in Texas, as well as replica rainforests of Asia, Africa and the Americas. The gardens are an easy way to spend a day with the kids, as you can also check out their 3- and 4-D theaters, zip-line, ride a paddlewheel boat and more.

Bishop’s Palace

Moody Gardens. Photo credit: Galveston Island Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Galveston’s classic appearance may come as a surprise to first-time visitors, but there are few places more exemplary of its Victorian roots than Bishop’s Palace. You can tour this wondrous mansion and marvel at its iconic colored stone, stained-glass windows and dragon statues.

The Strand Historic District

Navigate the streets of downtown Galveston and take note of the Victorian-style façade during your stay. This architecture made The Strand a National Historic Landmark, which you can learn more about in the surrounding museums and landmarks. And, as you can expect from any other downtown area, you’ll find an array of restaurants and shops, along with a few other attractions.

More Points of Interest:

South Padre Island

The beautiful sands of South Padre Island share more with the Caribbean than they do with the rest of the Lone Star State. But while visitors come to the beaches throughout the year, you can find new experiences within its array of wildlife and aquatic transportation.

Sea Turtle Inc.

Sea turtles are one Earth’s most precious and endangered species, and this organization is doing its part to protect these magical creatures. Stop by to learn more about sea turtles and contribute to the cause.

Osprey Cruises

Photo credit: South Padre Island Convention & Visitors Bureau.

The water isn’t just for looking. Hop on one of Osprey’s boats and choose your adventure: Feel the wind on your face on a 50-mile-per-hour speedboat, find the catch of the day deep-sea fishing or spot some dolphins on a more leisurely look-out tour.

South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center

When birds migrate during the spring and fall, South Padre Island is one of their main stops. Birding doesn’t get much better than here. The nature center provides viewing towers, wildlife exhibits, nature trails and many more opportunities for nature lovers.

With as many activities as Texas adds to its already bustling beaches, there’s no limit to how much you can do!

What’s your favorite thing to do on the Texas coast besides gaze out at the Gulf?

Top photos credit: Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Corey is a writer from Overland Park, KS, and has been with Global Discovery Vacations since September 2013. Once a sportswriter, he traveled the country and became proficient in airport security line etiquette and leaving items in hotel rooms.