Fun, Sun, and Sand at Galveston Island

For a seaside getaway, head to the Texas coastline for some of the most beautiful beaches alongside the Gulf coast. In particular, Galveston, with its 30-plus miles of beachfront, is a good location to go because of the assortment of things to do. There are a number of beaches that accommodate diverse activities and age groups, so whether you're heading out with a group of friends or the family, Galveston has something to offer.

The main beach on Galveston Island is an excellent day visit. The beaches are clean, quiet and wide, so they can maintain a lot of tourists without feeling crowded. If you travel to this beach, there are a few things you should know. First of all, no one can remain on the beach overnight. Campfires and alcohol are prohibited. Pets must be on a leash. Walking on sand dunes is strictly prohibited. Security guards are scattered around the area looking for lawbreakers.

Although this may sound like a lot of guidelines, they are in place to make this beach a quiet, stress-free day at the water and not a party-laden, litter-strewn college spring break environment. For those who come to the beach to read a book, get some sun, and take a refreshing dip in the water, this is the location to head to.

If you must drink alcohol while you're on a beach, then head over to the east end of Galveston Island to East Beach. This is the largest 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 prior to 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 prohibited on this beach. Parking and entry to this beach is free also. Keep in mind, though, that there are no public restrooms here, so plan appropriately. If you desire sand and sun in a kid's setting, this is the beach for you.

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