Although the city of Houston does not have its own beaches, the coast can be easily reached in about an hour’s drive. There are a variety of beach options, ranging from popular tourist destinations to more secluded coves and quiet retreats. Some of the beaches offer full services to visitors, while others are little more than empty stretches of sand, perfect for those days when you just want to get away. The Houston area benefits from pleasant weather most of the year, which means the water is warm enough for swimming, water sports, and relaxing in the sun for most of the year.
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Galveston has one of the busiest beaches in the area, which is also one of the closest to Houston. At the eastern end of Galveston Island, you’ll find East Beach, the largest beach in the state. It’s popular with the party crowd and offers a buzzing, high-energy atmosphere pretty much anytime you visit. The beach offers a variety of amenities and facilities for visitors, which are available from March through October. The beach park has a boardwalk, pavilion, and entertainment stage, which often hosts live music and other entertainment during the summer. Summer is also when the beach park hosts the American Institute of Architects’ Sandcastle Competition,
1923 Boddeker Drive, Galveston, TX 77550
Galveston Island State Park
Galveston Island State Park is a true haven located on the western tip of Galveston Island. The park encompasses more than 2,000 acres of wetlands, dunes, estuaries, brackish ponds, and stretches of beach. The park also has a plethora of trails for viewing scenery and wildlife. There are public campgrounds and cabins for those who want to spend the night on the beach or bayside. Other popular activities include fishing, rowing, hiking, biking, and more. The park does not have canoes or kayaks available for rent, but for those who bring their own, there are paddling trails. Park rangers regularly offer educational programs related to the plants, animals, and other features of the park. Things to do in Galveston
14901 Farm to Market 3005, Galveston, TX 77554
Beaches near Houston: Sylvan Beach Park
Sylvan Beach Park is a waterfront park that offers sandy beach areas, a children’s playground, an event pavilion, and a fishing pier. The sandy beaches near the park have somewhat finer sand than some of the surrounding beaches, and are not covered in seaweed. Also, the calm and smaller waves offer a better swimming experience, especially for families with children. There are picnic tables so pack a lunch and plan on staying all day. Fishing is allowed along the fishing pier for a small fee. Every year in the spring, the park hosts the Annual Sylvan Beach Festival Crab Ham which is great fun for the whole family.
636 N Bayshore Dr, La Porte, TX 77571
Families looking for a beach destination near Houston should visit Stewart Beach. This family-friendly beach on Galveston Island is alcohol-free and frequently hosts family events. The beach is located at the intersection of historic Broadway Avenue and the Seawall. There are many amenities for visitors and there are also trained lifeguards on duty for much of the year. The beach park has concession stands, a pavilion, showers, restrooms, chair and umbrella rentals, beach wheelchair rentals, a gift shop, a playground, and more. All of these amenities make for an easy family beach day near the city of Houston.
201 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77550
Beaches Near Houston: Surfside Beach
Surfside Beach is the perfect destination for those looking for a more relaxed beach retreat than some of the other beaches on our list. The beach offers miles of undeveloped shoreline, as well as nearby coastal wetlands, rivers, and bays for even more opportunities to explore. Although the coastline is pristine, it’s no secret to Houstonians that the beach can get a bit crowded on summer weekends. However, visitors can usually still find room to spread out a bit, especially if you start early. Fishing, bird watching, nature photography, swimming, sand play and relaxation are all you need when you visit Surfside.
Surfside Beach, TX 77541