Glorious Galveston Getaways

For a seaside getaway, go to the Texas shoreline for some of the prettiest beaches along the Gulf coast. In particular, Galveston, with its 30-plus miles of beachfront, is a good location to go because of the selection of things to do. There are several beaches that accommodate different activities and age groups, so whether you're going out with a group of friends or the family, Galveston has something to offer.

The key beach on Galveston Island is a fantastic day visit. The beaches are clean, peaceful and extensive, so they can maintain a lot of visitors without feeling crowded. If you go to this beach, there are a handful of details you should know. First of all, no one can remain on the beach overnight. Campfires and alcohol are not allowed. Pets must be on a leash. Walking on sand dunes is strictly not allowed. Security guards are scattered around the area watching for lawbreakers.

Although this may seem like a lot of rules, they are in place to make this beach a peaceful, relaxing day at the water and not a party-laden, litter-strewn college spring break environment. For those who go to the beach to read a book, get some sun, and take a rejuvenating dip in the water, this is the place to head to.

If you need to drink alcohol while you're on a beach, then go over to the east end of Galveston Island to East Beach. This is the biggest beach by area in Texas, and set up with the party crowd in mind. There is a bar sitting on the beach, you can rent umbrellas for shade and there’s a volleyball court set up in the summer months. There are also fresh-water showers so you can rinse the salt off your body before heading back.

For the family with smaller children, Steward Beach is your vacation spot. It is set up similar to East Beach but with a kids play area and no bars. Drinking is not allowed on this beach. Parking and access to this beach is free also. Keep in mind, though, that there are no public restrooms here, so prepare appropriately. If you want sand and sun in a kid's setting, this is the beach for you.

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