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5 historical and iconic places you will want to visit when you are in Galveston, Texas.

5 places you should visit in Galveston

As it so happens October 7th is my wedding anniversary. Since this year is me and my darling hubby’s 10th anniversary we wanted to do something special.

So, we took a few days off from work and hopped in the car. Driving 8 hours to Galveston, Texas.

Galveston Island

Galveston is an island city on the Gulf Coast of Texas and just outside of the Houston metro area. Full of rich history and iconic sites, Galveston is a great place to visit for a romantic getaway or a family vacation.

Top 5 Places to Visit

While there are lots to do and see, I’ve put together a list of my top 5 places to visit in Galveston.

It was hard to narrow the list down. However, I compiled this list from the standpoint that you only have a weekend to a few days to visit Galveston (as we did this past weekend).

So, here are 5 the places you should visit:

Seawall Urban Park

Seawall Urban Park - Galveston, TX

Along the iconic Seawall is Galveston’s Seawall Urban Park. This free park offers over 10 miles of beach along with sidewalks and access to restaurants, resorts and other attractions.

To access the park you can walk over from your beachfront hotel or park along the Seawall. Parking is paid by phone and varies from $1 an hour to $8 a day.  

The Seawall is always my first stop in Galveston. We park the car and rush out to the water, it’s great!

Galveston State Park

Because the Seawall Urban Park is conveniently located and free, save for parking, it can get very crowded very fast.

Galveston State Park - Galveston , TX

If you are looking of slightly more room to spread out and a little more family friendly you might consider heading over to the Galveston State Park.

Entry to the state park is $5 per person with children under 12 free. There is no alcohol allowed on the state park nor is there a lifeguard on duty. However, the state park offers a little more seclusion from the Seawall Urban Park.

The Galveston State Park also offers several fun free nature exploration events for kids. There is also on site camping and great picnic pavilions.

Port Bolivar Ferry

Port Bolivar ferry - Galveston, TX

If you get tired of surfing the waves or sun bathing on the beach; I suggest taking a ferry ride. The The Port Bolivar ferry carries travelers between Galveston Island and the Bolivar Peninsula.

The ferry runs 24 hours with two ferries running after 6:30 am. The wait to board can take anywhere from a few minutes to 30 minutes, depending on the time of day. The slowest wait times will be earlier in the day.

The ferry ride is free and you can choose to drive your car on and across or park your car and walk aboard.

Akram Taghavi-Burris in Galveston, TX

Once the ferry is in motion you’re allowed to exit your vehicle and roam around the ship.  The upper deck has some great views. Though I suggest getting up and close to the front of the ship. It’s a great place to spot dolphins, if you don’t mind getting wet.

Murdoch’s Bathhouse

If you don’t have a lot of time for hitting the local shops, I do suggest you make a little time to visit Murdoch’s Bathhouse.

Murdoch's Bathhouse - Galveston , TX

Murdoch’s is conveniently located on along the Seawall Urban Park and was originally built in the 1800’s as a bath house.

Over the years Murdoch’s has been rebuilt following devastating storms of 1901, 1909, 1915 and 2008. With each reconstruction Murdoch’s was slightly transformed into what is now a massive gift shop.

If you aren’t keen to combing the island for seashells Murdoch’s has you covered. It has the largest collection of seashells I’ve seen, along with great island decor, gifts and apparel.


Gaido's - Galveston, TX

There are lots of options for dining along the Seawall in Galveston, all with excellent seafood. However, I suggest you visit Gaido’s at least once.

Gaido’s like Murdoch’s is an historic icon in Galveston. In fact Gaido’s first opened in 1910 as part of the newly reconstructed Murdoch’s Bathhouse.

Following a storm in the 1930’s the Italian family owned Gaido’s relocated to it’s current location on Seawall Boulevard.

The restaurant is still family owned and features a high dining experience at a reasonable price.

My favorite part of Gaido’s is the atmosphere. The restaurant decor and service is reminiscent of  classic Hollywood days. There are historic photos on the walls and throughout the restaurant you can hear the music of the classic crooners such as Sinatra and Martin.  

Plan your Visit

Galveston, TX

Galveston will always be a special place for me, after all it is where we got engaged.

There is so much to see and do in Galveston that one weekend doesn’t seem to quite do it justice. Still it is nice to know that there is a beach within a few hours drive from us.

If you liked to learn more about Galveston I suggest taking a look at Gavleston.com for more vacation tips and information.

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Akram Taghavi-Burris

designer, writer, educator, tech nerd, crafter, baker, sewer and vintage collector, who Brings Creative & Crazy Ides to Life.

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