With passengers returning to the sea, this Texas port is likely to return to its busier times of nearly 300 cruise ships carrying over 2 million vacationers per year. Come prior to embarking or stay after debarking to enjoy our top five fun things to do near the Port of Galveston.
Step back in time at this National Historic Landmark district once called “The Wall Street of the South.” It is located right next to the Bay of this iconic seaport. Amongst the hundred-year-old buildings, there are antique shops, galleries and a variety of restaurants serving delicious seafood and cultural fare.
While there, take a tour of the 1877 tall ship, Elissa. This square-rigged iron sailing ship is “one of only three of her kind in the world to still actively sail.”
Galveston Island State Park
Book a stay on the island to explore both the bay and Gulf at this location. There are four miles of trails and boardwalks over the nature habitats at this 2,000-acre preserve. Paddle on water trails and try your luck at some beach and surf fishing.
Trout, black drum, flounder and more await. This is also a popular birding area with over 300 species spotted here. There are raccoons and marsh rabbits, too. The nature center shares information about the park and the flora and fauna.
For a walk upon history of storm management, stroll along this structure designed to shield the city from damage. Started in 1902, it now spans 10 miles along the coast – “making it the longest continuous sidewalk” in the country.
Some of the city’s best beaches are here, along with shops, restaurants and attractions. Be sure to grab a meal at Gaido’s Seafood Restaurant. They have been serving some of the best and freshest meals from the sea since 1911.
Then, travel a few blocks inland to see an exceptional collection of Western and Native American artifacts at The Bryan Museum. Onsite, there are over 70,000 items in the 20,000-square-foot exhibit space. These include saddles, firearms, folk art, fine art, portraits and rare maps.
Perched out over the Gulf is a pier full of fun! Get the adrenaline pumping on the Iron Shark and Cyclone rollercoasters; hold onto your hats on the spinning rides; fly over the water on a couple of amusements; and, let the little kids enjoy rides, too.
Take a 5D (virtual) theatre “ride” into “The Mysterious Underworld” and hold your breath during “Shark Attack.” Then, try your luck at a host of traditional Midway games – ring toss, balloon pop, guess your age and more.
Galveston Railroad Museum
Spend the day at this museum filled with exceptional exhibits and railroadiana. Find a number of rail cars including locomotives, passenger cars, freight cars and the iconic caboose – tours are available. Also, see a permanent Santa Fe Railway calendar collection; learn about Pullman Porters; and, walk through an authentic re-creation of a 1932 depot, complete with life-sized statues in period dress.
Angela is a professional freelance travel writer and published indie author – AngelaMinor.com