Fun things to do in Galveston

  • Mardi Gras
    by msbrandysue
  • Don't forget our lakes!
    Don't forget our lakes!
    by RandyKing
  • Texas has some beautiful beaches
    Texas has some beautiful beaches
    by RandyKing

Most Viewed Things to Do in Galveston

  • 5 Awesome Things to do in the Texas Summer

    by RandyKing Updated Jun 9, 2014

    Texas has some beautiful places to go during the hot months of summer, but many visitors (and even residents) may need a few tips on how to keep cool and have a blast during summer vacation.

    Beach time

    There’s nothing more quintessential summer than spending a day at the beach. In the summer, there’s no shortage of activities, including tanning, surfing, collecting shells, wind surfing, swimming, volleyball, body boarding or walking the boardwalk. Texas has hundreds of miles of coastline, so you could hit up a new beach every weekend. Remember, the further down you go on the Gulf Coast, the clearer the water gets!



    Tubing down the River

    Nothing excites native Texans more than a weekend of floating down the Guadalupe River in an inner tube. Not only will you be in the Hill Country, but you will be participating in a Texas tradition. The Hill Country Rivers have cold, refreshing waters and the current drifts you downstream slowly and gently. Tie a cooler into one of the inner-tubes and find a group of friends and enjoy the Texas heat in a river.



    Deep Sea Fishing

    Saltwater fishing in Texas is world-class, every year we get hundreds of out-of-state anglers who are eager to take advantage of the saltwater fishing. There are a variety of exotic salt-water fish in the Gulf coast. There are a variety of deep sea fishing charters that offer day, overnight, and multi-day passes to experience a true Texas tradition. If you're a beginner or an experienced fisher, many fishing charters will customize your fishing trip to fit your needs.



    Swimmin’ holes

    Texas has some beautiful swimming holes to help overcome Texas sun. These natural and man-made swimming holes are open to the public and absolutely wonderful to experience. Check out Hamilton pool preserve in Travis county, one of the most beautiful swimming holes in Texas. There is a limit on how many people can be allowed into the preserve at a time, so try to make it out there early in the day before the waiting line starts. Travis county has up to date alerts on the condition of Hamilton Pool and any information you may need, such as hours of operation and directions.



    Enjoy the Lake

    Texas has plenty for the water sport enthusiasts, including skiing, jet skiing, snorkeling, diving, swimming, boating. The lakes in Texas are popular vacation spots for water fun and wildlife. Many lakes have vacation homes to rent or buy. Check out Texas Lake Finder for information regarding over 100 lakes.

    Texas has some beautiful beaches Don't forget our lakes! Go deep sea fishing Hamilton pool preserve is beautiful and refreshing
    Related to:
    • Water Sports
    • Diving and Snorkeling
    • Beaches

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Saint Mary's Cathedral Basilica

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    Saint Mary's Cathedral Basilica was established in 1847 and is considered the "Mother Church of Texas". The very impressive building, was completed in 1848 using the Gothic Revival style of architecture by Charles G. Bryant. The building has been added on to several times over the years; including the addition of a transept tower by noted local architect Nicholas J. Clayton and the addition of the statue of Saint Mary (called "The Star of the Sea") in 1878. During the great hurricane of 1900 and several times since, natives of Galveston have looked to the statue of Saint Mary for guidance and comfort. The church was designated a "minor basilica" in 1979 and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1968.

    Saint Mary's Cathedral Basilica
    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Eaton Memorial Chapel

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    The Eaton Memorial Chapel was designed by noted architect Nicholas J. Clayton, who also designed St. Patrick's Catholic Church and was dedicated to the founding rector Reverend Benjamin Eaton in 1882. Half the funding for the chapel was provided by Henry Rosenberg and the other half by the Ladies' Parochial Society.

    Eaton Memorial Chapel
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    B'Nai Israel Synagogue Building

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    his pretty synagogue was built in 1870 and long served as the religious and cultural center for Jewish people living in Galveston. The number of Jewish immigrants into the United Staes increased greatly in the late 1800s as Russia and Eastern Europe began to see a wave of anti-Semitism. Most of these immigrants settled in New York and other big cities along the east coast which quickly started getting overcrowded. Thus began an initiative to resettle some of the Jewish immigrants into other parts of the United States. This included the "Galveston Movement". The first ship containing Jewish immigrants arrived at Galveston harbor in July 1907 and was greeted by Rabbi Henry Cohen of the Reform Synagogue B'Nai Israel. Many of the almost 10,000 Jewish immigrants that came through Galveston harbor were given train tickets to other towns in Texas and other nearby states that needed their skilled labor. Some stayed here in Galveston. This synagogue became a Masonic Temple in 1953.

    B'Nai Israel Synagogue Building
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Family Travel
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Sacred Heart Catholic Church

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    The Sacred Heart Catholic Church is another very pretty church, and this one is connected with Galveston's "soldier priest", Father Marius Chataignon. "Father Chat" as his parishioners knew him came to the U.S. from France in 1907. He attended seminary in 1910 and was appointed Assistant Priest at St Mary's Catholic Church in Galveston. He served as a chaplain in the U. S. Army in World Wars 1 and 2. He was appointed the pastor of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in 1924.

    Sacred Heart Catholic Church
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    St Patrick's Catholic Church

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    This parish was established in 1870 by Galveston Bishop C. M. Dubuis to serve the west end of Galveston Island. A wood church was built here and designated St. Patrick's (the patron saint of Ireland) by the mostly Irish congregation. That church was destroyed by a storm just days before the Parish Priest arrived. The very impressive, current church, was completed in 1877 using a Gothic style design by architect and church member Nicholas J. Clayton. The church survived the great hurricane of 1900 and as per instructions from the U. S. Corps of Engineers, was raised 5 feet onto a new foundation.

    Saint Parick's Catholic Church
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Tree Sculptures

    by Basaic Written Apr 19, 2014

    Too many places, when they suffer devastation from a hurricane, just plow down the old and dead and replace it. Galveston is one of the places that took many of the dead trees lost to the storm and made art like this sculpture of a mermaid. These tree statues are found all through Galveston and are a unique attraction worth seeing. You can pick up a guide to these statues at the visitors centers.

    Tree Statue of Mermaid
    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Arts and Culture
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Silk Stocking and East End Historic Districts

    by Basaic Updated Apr 18, 2014

    Two other very interesting historic districts in Galveston are the Silk Stocking Historic District and the East End Historic District. The Silk Stocking Historic District housed some of the richest people in town and contains many fine examples of Queen Anne style architecture. It is just a bit east of "The Strand". Continuing east is the East End Historic District which consists of a wide variety of architectural styles and covers a wider period of time that the silk stocking district.

    One of the best homes in the area was the a home built in the East End District by former mayor John Syndor in 1857. It was later vastly expanded into a 4 story "castle" complete with a tower and turrets, by Samson Heidenheimer. Unfortunately, it burned down in 1973. There is a nice bed and breakfast there now. One of my favorite homes still standing in the district is the John C. Trube House which was built in 1890 by architect Alfred Muller. The home was designed after castles in Trube's native Denmark.

    Both districts are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

    John C. Trube House, East End Historic District Site of Heidenheimer's Castle
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Family Travel
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Historic Homes and Buildings

    by Basaic Written Apr 7, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    There are at least 5 historic districts and many, many buildings in Galveston listed on the National Register of Historic Places. They are in the five districts and scattered all through town. Many of the nicest ones are along Broadway. You can get guides, maps and info on these buildings at the visitors center.

    Beautiful Home on Broadway
    Related to:
    • Road Trip
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Texas Monument

    by Basaic Updated Apr 7, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Officially, I guess, this very impressive monument was donated to Galveston by local philanthropist Henry Rosenberg (who also donated a magnificent library and many other things) to honor the heroes of the Texas Revolution. It points across the bay to the San Jacinto Battlefield where the Texans won the last battle of the revolution and their independence. Some historians and locals in Galveston, though, have said that Rosenberg also meant the statue to honor the independent spirit of the common men, women, and children in Texas. Whatever the truth is it is quite impressive and worth seeing. The monument is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

    Texas Monument
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Baywatch Dolphin Tours

    by Basaic Updated Apr 7, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of the neat things to do in Galveston is to go on a dolphin watching tour with Baywatch Dolphin Tours. This is a 45 minute ride through the harbor where you can watch the dolphins at play. The tours go out on the hour between 10 AM and 5 PM 7 days a week (depending on the weather). The price is $10 for adults and $5 for kids 12 and under ("infants" and pets are free).

    Baywatch Dolphin Tours
    Related to:
    • Sailing and Boating
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Rosenberg Library and Museum

    by Basaic Updated Mar 22, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Rosenberg is the oldest library in the state of Texas. This one is housed in a building completed in 1904 added to the west wing of the old Central High School. During the days of segregation, Central High was a school for African-Americans. This is a follow-on to the Galveston Mercantile Library opened in 1871. The man responsible for starting the library was Herny Rosenberg a Swiss native who moved to Texas and became a very successful investor in banking, real estate and transportation. Rosenberg was very grateful to his adopted home of Galveston and donated lots of money and items to various causes. Today this is more than a library it is also a museum with an impressive collection of art and rotating displays. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

    Rosenberg Library/Museum Rosenberg Library/Museum Statue of Rosenberg
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Museum Visits
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast

    by Basaic Updated Mar 22, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast tells the stories of Jean Lafitte and other pirates who roamed the Gulf of Mexico in bygone days. Good interactive displays and stories; but no bottle of rum ;-( The gift shop has souvenirs for pirate fans (these pirates not the baseball kind) and the kids can get tattoos (temporary of course). Hours change often so check the website. Admission is $10 for adults and $6.75 for kids 5 to 13. The Haunted Mayfield Manor is next door and you can buy a combo ticket for both attractions.

    Pirates!  Legends of the Gulf Coast
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

  • Basaic's Profile Photo

    Haunted Mayfield Manor

    by Basaic Written Mar 22, 2014

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Haunted Mayfield Manor is occupied by ghosts, ghouls, and other things that go bump in the night (and day). If your interest runs to the macabre you may want to check out this attraction in the "Old Strand Historic District". Hours seem to change frequently so you may want to check out their website before you visit. A general admission ticket in $10. The Pirates! Museum is next door. You can get a combination ticket which will give you a discount on both attractions.

    Haunted Mayfield Manor
    Related to:
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • Bunsch's Profile Photo

    Hop on the ferry!

    by Bunsch Updated May 22, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    In the 1930s, the State of Texas began running a free ferry service from Galveston to Port Bolivar, across the Houston ship channel. A fleet of ferries make the crossing about every twenty minutes; the transit takes roughly half an hour, during which you get a nice view of Galveston and plenty of fresh sea air. The ferry runs 24/7 (unless weather conditions are such that safety would be compromised). Anyway, it sounded like a lark that I shouldn't miss.

    I found out about this from reading a guidebook which provided information on drives across country, but it assumed you'd approach from New Orleans headed west, not from Houston headed east, so I was a little unclear on where exactly I'd be once we landed. On the upper deck, surveying the vanishing Galveston shoreline (and incidentally seeing Seawolf Park with at least one submarine, and a number of dolphins frolicking), I asked a woman if she knew where we were going. "Port Bolivar," she replied, only she made the explorer's name sound like Gulliver. "Is that in Louisiana?" I asked. "Oh, no," she told me. "You've got about another four hours to go to get to Louisiana."

    Well, not really. But if you're using the ferry as a means to get from Galveston to Lake Charles, be advised that you've got about 90 minutes of pretty boring Texas driving ahead.

    Our ferry awaits
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Budget Travel
    • Road Trip

    Was this review helpful?

Galveston Hotels

See all 55 Hotels in Galveston

Latest Galveston Hotel Reviews

Holiday Inn Club Vacations Galveston Beach Resort
253 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 7, 2014
Beachfront Palms Hotel
32 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 2, 2014
Hotel Galvez
1273 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 8, 2014
Flagship Hotel Over the Water Galveston
6 Reviews & Opinions
Commodore On The Beach
255 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 9, 2014
Ramada Limited Galveston
238 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 6, 2014
Hawthorn Suites at The Victorian Resort
294 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 6, 2014
Moody Gardens Hotel
582 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 7, 2014
Silverleaf Seaside Resort
69 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 6, 2014
Hilton Galveston Island Resort
743 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 8, 2014
The Galvestonian
183 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 6, 2014
Gaido's Seaside Inn
165 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 8, 2014
Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort Galveston Beach
59 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 8, 2014
Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Galveston West - Seawall
158 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 8, 2014
Holiday Inn Galveston On The Beach
419 Reviews & Opinions
Latest: Jul 7, 2014

Instant Answers: Galveston

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

91 travelers online now

Comments

Galveston Things to Do

Travel tips and advice posted by real travelers and Galveston locals.
Map of Galveston