Surf's Up in the Lone Star State

By: Texas Tourism
With more than 600 miles of coastline, Texas hosts endless possibilities when it comes to relaxing beach getaways. With its mild weather year-round, every season is beach season in the Lone Star State. Dolphin-watching excursions, deep-sea fishing, bird-watching and relaxing strolls on the beach are just a few of the activities found along Texas’ Gulf Coast. 
Port Aransas
coastal village, port aransas, texas

coastal village, port aransas, texas

Photo by: Olga Melhiser Photography/Moment Open/Getty Images

Olga Melhiser Photography/Moment Open/Getty Images

Visitors will discover the best-kept secret on the Gulf Coast in Port Aransas, a fun and funky island getaway where you can truly have it all. This beach town provides a first-class seaside vacation with plenty of shopping, dining and entertainment, all at pocket-pleasing prices. For the fishing trip of a lifetime in the fishing capital of Texas, anglers can take deep-sea excursions, fish the bays and channels, or cast a line in the surf from one of the public piers. After your offshore adventures, be sure to take advantage of Port Aransas’ other activities, including beachside horseback riding, eclectic boutique shopping, surfing, kayaking and more. 

Corpus Christi
texas state aquarium, corpus christi, texas

texas state aquarium, corpus christi, texas

Photo by: Phillip Lange/iStock/Getty Images

Phillip Lange/iStock/Getty Images

For a fun-filled family adventure, Corpus Christi, one of the top kite-boarding destinations in the world, is a must-see. The Sparkling City by the Sea is among the most-visited vacation destinations in the Lone Star State and is known for its miles of pristine beaches. Let your imagination run wild during a tour of the USS Lexington, which was the oldest working aircraft carrier when it was decommissioned in 1991, after serving in 21 battles during World War II. While aboard the “Blue Ghost,” the sights and sounds are so real, you'll feel as if you've been transported back in time. To immerse yourself even further into the deep blue sea, take in the sights at the enchanting Texas State Aquarium. Located on North Beach, this stunning complex is home to fascinating sea creatures of all kinds, and it recently broke ground on the Caribbean Journey expansion, the largest addition in the aquarium’s history.

beach, galveston, texas

beach, galveston, texas

Photo by: Kenny Braun

Kenny Braun

Visitors ready to relax island-style will love historical Galveston, which boasts 32 miles of shoreline. The town offers everything from soft, sandy beaches to one of the largest and most historically significant collections of 19th-century buildings, with more than 60 structures listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Those looking for thrilling excitement will enjoy Schlitterbahn, a water park perfect for visitors of all ages, with waterslides, torrent rivers, wave lagoons, multiple kids’ areas and more. Another popular attraction is Moody Gardens, home to a discovery museum, a 3-D theater, a rain-forest pyramid, an aquarium pyramid and a ropes course. Rounding out the island’s beach experience are the sights and sounds of Pleasure Pier, a waterfront destination that includes midway games, tasty treats, roller coasters and a Ferris wheel overlooking the coast. For visitors interested in paranormal activity, Galveston’s ghostly history as the site of the deadliest storm in US history makes it a top destination for haunted travel. Those who dare can take a ghost tour of the island’s harbor, cemeteries and historic mansions, as well as visit the haunted Hotel Galvez or Mayfield Manor to meet some of the beach town’s resident spirits.  

South Padre Island
boats, fishing, south padre island, texas

boats, fishing, south padre island, texas

Photo by: Kenny Braun

Kenny Braun

The ever-popular South Texas beach destination of South Padre Island is home to festivals, fishing tournaments, fireworks, dolphin-watching, concerts and more. The island’s year-round moderate temperatures make any season an ideal time to visit the 34 miles of uninterrupted beach, and an array of activities make it a delightful vacation spot for the family. Children will enjoy seeing turtles released into the ocean at Sea Turtle Inc., taking sand-castle lessons, swimming with dolphins, learning to surf and visiting the Schlitterbahn South Padre water park. While the kids play, adults can relax on white-sand beaches, bird-watch at the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center, or shop at the many locally owned island boutiques. Adventurous vacationers will get their thrills parasailing over the Gulf of Mexico, horseback riding along the shore or exploring the island’s many sand dunes in an ATV. Sun, sand and surf ensure a good time will be had by all in South Padre Island. 

Whether for a family vacation, a romantic getaway for 2, a fun-filled trip with friends or a winter escape, look no further than the Texas coast. No matter which beach you visit, you will find delicious seafood, clear water, soft sand and never-ending fun. For more on all there is to see and experience in Texas, visit and find us on Twitter (@texastourism), Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram

Next Up

South Texas, the Hidden Gem of the Lone Star State

For unexpected adventures, vibrant culture and a sub-tropical climate year-round, look no further than the Rio Grande Valley region of the Lone Star State. 

Creepy Urban Legends From Each State

When there's something strange in your neighborhood ...

National Dive Bar Day: Is There a Portal To Hell In Memphis?

National Dive Bar Day is July 7, and a small Memphis joint may be pulling double duty as a dive bar and a portal for dark energy.

11 Twin Peaks Locations You Can Visit in Real Life

Where to find a damn fine cup of coffee and more.Keep in mind: Price and stock could change after publish date, and we may make money from these links.

11 Things Not to Miss in San Francisco

Christine Williams and Jules Hatfield from Don't Forget to Move, tell us how to do San Francisco right, on  a shoestring budget.

Who Knows NYC Best?

Man v. Food’s Casey Webb matches wits (and appetites) with Food Network’s Vivian Chan to find out who has the real 411 on their home city in Man v. NYC. Ready to judge their throwdown?

3 Must-Do Outdoor Activities in the Great Smoky Mountains

There's nothing like a challenging hike with a rewarding view.

Cuba, a Country of Contrasts

One writer reflects on her trips to Cuba, a country of contrasts.

6 Fun Day Trips from Washington, D.C.

There’s a lot to do in our nation's capital but sometimes you just want to get out of town. Here are six fun day trips.

How the 1906 Earthquake Changed San Francisco

Disaster leveled "the Paris of the West" a century ago — and its aftermath echoes through the city today.


Trending Now

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.