It’s Island Time! Ways to Enjoy a 5 Galveston Getaway

Galveston Island’s Historic Pleasure Pier.

Located just an hour’s drive south on I-45, Galveston is Texas’ most visited beach destination. With
sparkling Gulf waters, entertainment, shopping and one of the largest and well-preserved concentrations of Victorian architecture in the country, there is plenty to see and do. Is a road trip to Galveston in your summer plans? Before you load up the car, scan these possibilities and guarantee a tropical, Island-style vacation you won’t soon forget!

1. Adventure Through the Great Outdoors

Galveston may be best known for its sandy beaches, but there’s far more to do than work on your suntan. Experience the world’s fastest growing sport – stand up paddle boarding – and catch a few waves as you take in a view of Seawall Boulevard. Admire the beauty of the Texas Gulf Coast as you kayak through the marshes and bayous of Galveston Island State Park. Craving an adrenaline rush? Soar 500 feet in the air during a parasailing tour, or for the ultimate heart-pounding experience, go skydiving. When you need to catch your breath, find a shady spot on the beach and let the cool sea breeze wash over you.

2. Experience the World’s Tallest Water Coaster

With multiple drops and turns, Schlitterbahn Galveston Island’s MASSIV delivers an incredible ride. Photo by Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts.

From your starting point 81 feet above ground level, you have just enough time to look down the steep green and white tube. Suddenly, your world becomes a blur of sound and color as you’re soaring down ramps and through sense-shifting curved tubes. You may be breathless at the end, and for good reason. You’ve just conquered Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark’s MASSIV, the tallest water coaster in the world. Ride MASSIV once and you’ll be hooked, but don’t overlook all of the other thrill and leisure rides at Schlitterbahn.

3. Visit Historic Pleasure Pier

If you don’t want to get wet, ride the tallest swing ride in Texas at the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier. Originally built in the late 1940s as a recreational facility for the military, the Pier was turned over to the City after World War II and named Pleasure Pier. The approximately 1,130 foot pier extends over the Gulf of Mexico at 25th Street and Seawall Boulevard and is home to Texas’ first Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. restaurant, a number of shops, entertaining midway games and 16 rides, including gentle rides for young visitors and exhilarating coasters for thrill seekers.

4. Peruse a Multitude of Memorable Museums

Did you know that Spanish explorer Cabeza de Vaca once shipwrecked on Galveston Island or that pirate Jean Lafitte established a colony on the island that at its peak numbered about 1,000 people? Pay a visit to The Bryan Museum to browse the largest collection of southwestern artifacts in the world, and step inside beautifully restored locomotives at the Galveston Railroad Museum. Climb aboard the legendary World War II submarine USS Cavalla and one of the last destroyer escorts in the world, the USS Stewart, both of which are housed in Seawolf Park. Then, step onto a retired offshore oil rig at the Ocean Star Offshore Energy Center, where you can learn the ins and outs of oil and gas production and its impact on the Texas Gulf Coast.

5. Let Your Imagination Run Wild at Moody Gardens

Observe swimming sharks and playing penguins, get up close and personal with monkeys and macaws and discover the natural wonders of the world without leaving Galveston Island. These are just a few of the things you’ll see and do in the three glass pyramids at Moody Gardens. Then, take on the five-tier Sky Trail Ropes Course and soar on the zip line, play a round on the championship golf course and enjoy a cruise on a replica 1800s paddlewheel boat.