10 Best Things to do in Galveston

12 mins read
Things to do in Galveston

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

Are you looking for the best things to do in Galveston, Texas? Find a quick yet detailed guidebook on Galveston and what it has to offer below!

You can enjoy a wide range of thrilling activities, attractions, and things to do in Galveston, Texas, whether you stay for a day, a week, or even longer, this will help you create lifelong memories.

Whether you live in the state or are flying in from another nation, a thrilling Galveston vacation is within your budget.

You owe it to yourself and your family to organize a vacation to the island as Galveston offers so many enjoyable things to do.

Galveston, Texas

Galveston, Texas, is best known for the amazing range of activities they provide. From ancient museums to luxurious cruise ships, one can find almost everything here for entertainment purposes.

There are many underrated places to check out if people desire to experience the best vacation.

Galveston is situated off the coast of Texas, which automatically makes it a prime location for cruise ships.

Due to the island’s rich history as a resort and its beautiful sunny beaches, this is the perfect recommended place for you and your family.

Visitors can enjoy many things to do on Galveston beaches, which are entertaining to explore. This place is full of entertaining and exciting attractions that will fulfill all your two-to-three-day vacation needs.

Galveston is worth exploring for a day or two for a wonderful time. There are truly amazing things to do in Galveston, so check out the whole list of things to do.

Best Things to do in Galveston

There are plenty of different ways to explore Galveston according to your interests and choices. One can experience many things that make it such a special place, even if they have only a few hours to kill.

From amusement parks to loads of historical sites, you will have several options to choose from and explore the best of Galveston.

Whether people are looking forward to delving into the island’s unique history or trying local delicacies, one can indulge in various activities the place offers.

Visitors can enjoy activities in Galveston that are unique to the city, including activities for couples, free activities, historical attractions, outdoor activities, fun in the sun, and attractions for kids.

People can relax in the place’s natural beauty if they like, but there is no wrong way to spend a day in Galveston.

Galveston offers a variety of enjoyable things to do every day and night. So, here are the top recommended 7 sites to visit for your weekend getaway in Galveston:

1. 1892 Bishop’s Palace

This place is a well-preserved mansion with pretty amazing stonework, craftsmanship, and woodwork from the late 19th century. Gresham’s Castle is another name for Bishop’s Palace.

The castle, which Colonel Walter Gresham had built at the turn of the 20th century, is one of the major attractions for tourists in Galveston, Texas.

The Victorian-style house is a designated National Historic Landmark and is accessible to the public every day for visits.

During the tour, guests have the opportunity to explore the house’s numerous historical artifacts and discover more about the state’s past.

The place gives many details about Bishop Byrne, who lived in the house. They also provide information on the architecture of the mansion, along with other interesting facts.

Although it is not as huge as the Moody Mansion, this palace has more intricate and better architectural details, bronze dragon statues, and beautiful stained glass windows.

things to do in Galveston
By Ena Marinkovic/ Pexels, Copyright 2021.

The American Institute of Architects was listed as one of America’s most important buildings. The massive palace offers a peek into the life of the local elite in the early 20th century.

This gigantic historic home now holds a special and interesting spot on the National Register of Historic Places.

One can join a tour inside the palace with luxurious interiors, including a giant fireplace and a 12m tall unique mahogany staircase.

Every month, an amazing basement-to-attic tour is done, which showcases areas of the home that are normally off-limits.

This place offers many activities and things to do in Galveston due to its beautiful surroundings and designs.

The entry fee is $14 for adults. People will love this place if they are into interesting architecture and history as the estate offers self-guided audio tours and takes about 1-2 hours to complete the entire tour.

  • Location:

1402 Broadway Avenue J, Galveston, TX 77550, United States

2. Moody Gardens

Instead of being a garden, Moody Gardens is a 242-acre entertainment complex with a tonne lot offered to its guests.

If you want to take advantage of everything Moody Gardens has to offer, schedule a whole day there.

Although some consider this to be one of Galveston’s more expensive activities, most don’t mind the extra cost because there is so much to see and do for the entire family.

Moody Gardens is an amazing attraction and one of the best things to do in Galveston. One can do many things here, from enjoying the ocean and meeting penguins; one can enjoy many things here.

Kids will love the sharks, penguins, and much more at the Aquarium Pyramid.

Visitors can enjoy authentic rainforest adventures and different close encounters with various animals. These animals are usually macaws, free-roaming monkeys, and other endangered plants and animals at the Rainforest Pyramid.

Tourists can also learn about the multiple mysteries surrounding science at the Discovery Museum.

More than approximately 2,000 exotic animals and plants can be seen in the Rainforest Pyramid home.

Other exhibits that this place offers include endangered Chinese alligators, giant river otters, fruit bats, and other species.

Things to do in Galveston
By Cameron Casey/ Pexels, Copyright 2021.

They also added a new canopy trail where guests get an exclusive bird’s eye view of the entire rainforest. People can spot rare birds or even two-toed sloths and other species that live in and around the whole forest canopy.

The Public Penguin Encounter and Giant River Otter Encounter are two of Moody Gardens’ animal attractions, and guests can swim with their favorite creatures in the Aquarium Pyramid.

Additional attractions and activities include the Reef Rescue Virtual Experience, the Rainforest Pyramid, a Discovery Museum, a ropes course, and a zip line.

There are 3D theatres and 4D theatres where one can immerse themselves. There is also a Colonel Paddlewheel Boat cruise which is unique and fun during summertime in the middle of a lazy river.

Palm Beach is Galveston’s only white sand beach easily accessible from Moody Gardens and worth visiting.

This place also organizes a Festival of Lights, which is a perfect attraction for tourists during vacations.

They provide Moody Gardens Hotel where visitors can make a calm and peaceful stay. Also, a golf course is included if staying in their hotel.

  • Location:

1 Hope Blvd, Galveston, TX 77554, United States

3. The Grand 1894 Opera House

Situated in the middle of the Postoffice Street Arts & Entertainment District, this place is a must-visit.

The Grand 1894 Opera House offers performances throughout the year and features a lot of things. They provide Broadway blockbusters, comedy, dance, music, and many other interesting performances.

When you enter The Grand 1894 Opera House, its enchanted past is concealed by its exquisite restoration and superb design. It’s a custom you should partake in while visiting Galveston.

Having the opportunity to see the Opera House’s majesty is reason enough to purchase a show ticket.

The setting and acoustics will be much more appealing to opera fans. At The Grand 1894 Opera House, every performance is extraordinary.

Catch the Galveston Orchestra Symphony’s spectacular performance on Sunday afternoon. Consider purchasing your tickets in advance because performances with renowned musicians frequently sell out.

Witnessing a play at the Opera House is an intimate experience that you will always remember, regardless of who you watch perform. There are also special activities in Galveston, such as a kids’ camp.

This opera house is also available as a rental and serves as a venue for private occasions, office meetings, and corporate events. It is a premium location for several world premieres and theatre productions.

The Grand Opera House is a unique historic treasure situated in the Gulf Coast region.

This place plays an extraordinary part in the history of the Western community and many locals’ lives. This place holds a prominent spot on the list of best things to do in Galveston holds a prestigious place.

  • Location:

2020 Postoffice St, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

4. Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier

Another interesting thing to do in Galveston is to visit this place. The Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier is situated in the heart of Galveston and is one of the interesting things to do in Galveston.

The Pier was devastated by a cyclone about 40 years ago. It has been restored as a center for entertainment which stretches out from the southern shore and extends till Seawall Boulevard and ultimately overlooks Mexico’s beautiful Gulf.

From spring to fall, throngs of people gather here to enjoy the turquoise waves lapping at the seemingly endless expanse of smooth sand that fronts the ocean.

Spread out into the ocean like a chaotic carnival on colorful stilts, this pier is perfect for a nostalgic feeling.

It can be an ideal spot for a joyful time, from the roller coasters’ colorful structures to the natural sunrise. Visit this place is one of the best things to do in Galveston due to many reasons.

Choose from 15 entertaining rides at the Pier, including the Cyclone, Rock N Roll, Galaxy Wheel, and Iron Shark Roller Coaster. Of course, the kiddie carousel is there for small guests.

Things to do in Galveston
By Sergio Souza/ Pexels, Copyright 2021.

Along this stretch, numerous restrooms may be found at various intervals. The Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier is an iconic and historic dock with a wide range of unique shops, the best restaurants, and different rides.

There are many family-friendly activities and are the main source of entertainment in Galveston by the Gulf Coast.

Bringing the whole family to this dock during a lazy afternoon for games, food, and shopping is the best way to enjoy this place. One can walk along the pier and take amazing photos of the Gulf of Mexico’s aesthetic views and sunsets.

This pier goes into the ocean, stretching approximately 1,130 feet long. The kids usually love the various activities they offer. The different attractions include different thrilling roller coasters and the Iron Shark and the Sky Shooter.

People should try the huge Galaxy Wheel for the best and most picturesque views from the sky. And the Texas Star Flyer will make visitors feel like they are flying over the water.

Visitors can even take toddlers here as the place also offers rides that are suitable for little kids. Visitors also prefer this for enjoying interesting things to do in Galveston.

Visitors also get to choose from the huge range of restaurants that are along the dock. This place is highly recommended to those who like scenic beauty and bright and cheerful surroundings.

  • Location:

2501 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77550, United States

5. The Bryan Museum

This is a historic building that was once known as the Galveston Orphans Home. The museum shows huge historical art and artifacts collections from around 12,000 years ago.

The permanent collection has dealt with almost everything from Native American history to the Spanish Colonial Era.

The Texas Frontier, Spanish Colonial Times, and the Rest of the West are frequently on display at the Bryan Museum. The history of Texas as a state is brought to life through virtual reality.

Throughout the year, the museum also hosts special events that feature guest speakers, exhibits, and other entertaining activities.

More than 6,000 books in the Bryan Museum Library’s collection assist readers to gain a deeper understanding of the history of the state.

The Texas Masters Gallery inside this museum displays the authentic art of different Texas-born artists.

They also present works of people who traveled through the entire region and captured it beautifully on canvas. The whole museum is full of artistic creations by famous artists preserved here for eternity.

Before you go, stop by the Museum Shop to pick up a few trinkets to bring home. Both adults and kids use this display when touring the museum.

  • Location:

1315 21st St, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

6. Galveston Railroad Museum

This is one of the best attractions to try if you are visiting Galveston. People can get up close and look around, studying the engines and cars at the museum.

Also, visitors can take a ride on the infamous Harborside Express, which the museum operates.

Initially built on the former Santa Fe railyard and depot in 1983, the museum has a sizable collection of steam engines from various historical periods, as well as displays and information that are meant to inform and enlighten anybody with a fascination for locomotives.

The museum contains a one-mile track, more than 40 pieces of inventory, and the greatest collection of dining car cutlery in the Southwest.

things to do in Galveston
By Will Breen/Unsplash, Copyright 2021.

In the museum, there is a changing exhibit that elaborates on model trains to encourage visitors’ curiosity.

Visitors can learn more about railroads and their history in Galveston and Texas through both permanent and temporary exhibits.

They also have a gift store that provides plenty of options to take your preferred gift home.

The trips they offer are available every Saturday, and the timing is between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm and lasts for 15-20 minutes approximately.

Visitors get to enjoy the surrounding view with their friends or family as they make their way down the track. Also, be sure to check the museum’s calendar for events that occur in the museum.

All interested visitors can ride the museum’s train on Saturday.

  • Location:

2602 Santa Fe Pl, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

7. Galveston Historic Seaport

This is one of the interesting things to do in Galveston if you are into historical ships and seaports.

At the Galveston Historic Seaport, visitors are greeted by the 1877 ELISSA, a Tall Ship for Texas. Daily encounters with Galveston’s maritime past.

To start restoration work, the Galveston Historical Foundation transported the 1877 square-rigged iron bark ELISSA from a scrapyard in Piraeus Harbor, Greece to Galveston in 1978.

By 1982, GHF employees and volunteers had finished the restoration and turned this remarkable, historic ship into an operational floating museum.

The 1877 Tall Ship is currently Only three ships of her kind are still in service, and ELISSA welcomes more than 40,000 guests each year.

She also represents the historical origins of the Gulf Coast as a bustling waterfront and the Official Tall Ship of Texas.

Galveston Historical Foundation’s Galveston Historic Seaport offers a brand-new experience that brings the city’s illustrious immigration history to life.

Visitors can retrace the steps of early immigrants through Ship to Shore, from the arduous sea voyage with its combination of challenges and wonders to the commotion of arrival in Galveston in the 1880s, one of the busiest ports and booming cities in the United States.

Things to do in Galveston
By Victor/ Unsplash, Copyright 2021.

Galveston Historical Foundation’s Galveston Historic Seaport offers a brand-new experience that brings the city’s illustrious immigration history to life.

Visitors can explore the beautiful decks of this amazing place. This place is also a National Historic Landmark that has also gained fame as one of America’s Treasures by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

  • Location:

2002 Strand Galveston, TX 77550

8. The Strand

Well, no trip to Galveston Island and any list of best things to do in Galveston is entirely complete without visiting Historic Downtown Galveston.

This Galveston’s famous avenue, the Strand, is a historic downtown where one can shop for anything they want.

The Strand Historic District is situated in the middle of a vibrant downtown that offers shopping and dining, museums, entertainment, and amazing nightlife.

The 70+ block historic downtown has a lot to offer, and it’s all within walking distance, so people don’t have to worry about the location.

You may also go out to one of the bars or stop by one of the mom-and-pop restaurants along the Strand, a five-block historic district close to the pier, for a bite to eat.

It costs nothing to stroll along The Strand, and the breathtaking scenery guarantees that you will have a great day. The Strand neighborhood is also home to the 1894 Opera House.

You’ll want to visit a couple of the shops and stops along the Strand because there is so much to see and do there, so be sure to bring some cash and be aware of what is available nearby.

Anyone looking to leave the house and unwind with a variety of things to see and do will find it to be a relaxing 9.

Despite the crowds, which frequently include others who are having the same adventures as you are, the countryside is serene and unhurried.

  • Location:

2100 Strand St, Galveston, Galveston Island, TX 77550-1633, USA

9. Hotel Galvez Ghost Tour

It is worthwhile to stay at Hotel Galvez while visiting Gavelston because of the Ghost Tour. The ghost tour will be fun for everyone, including couples, families, and groups of friends.

Both “Ghost Stories” on the Travel Channel and “Ghost Lab” on the Discovery Channel have featured this trip.

You shouldn’t miss this tour if you believe in ghosts or have a strong interest in the supernatural.

The Ghost Tour, which is held at night once a month, gives a one-and-a-half-hour tour of Galveston, Texas’s most haunted locations, during which you’ll hear many tales that will make the hair on the back of your neck stand.

After the night tour, there are packages available for those who would like to add a three-course supper at the Galvez Bar & Grill.

  • Location:

2024 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77550, USA

10. Schlitterbahn

Last but not least on the list of best things to do in Galveston, one of the most popular tourist destinations in Galveston and a great place to stop on any itinerary is Schlitterbahn.

It is Galveston’s biggest water park and provides a wonderful experience for anyone trying to escape the Texas heat.

Schlitterbahn is one of the top summertime activities in Galveston or the entire state, and it is a summertime tradition for inhabitants of South Texas.

The park is made up of water slides, rivers, and coasters. The Schlitterbahn offers activities for people of all ages. The park also houses Rohr and the MASSIV Monster Blaster, the tallest water coaster in the world!

Visitors to Schlitterbahn like the Wave Lagoon, but there are many other activities available at the park as well.

A few heated swimming pools, a play area for young children and toddlers, the Torrent River, the Soaring Eagle ZipLine, the Torrent Beach, and the Screaming Serpents are among them.

On-site eating options are offered at Schlitterbahn.

  • Location:

2026 Lockheed Rd, Galveston, TX 77554, USA

EndNote: Best Things to do in Galveston

So this was the entire list of best things to do in Galveston, consisting of museums and other historical places.

With the huge amount of activities, people can never get bored here as there are many other things to do in Galveston, so make sure to bring your friends and beloved ones to enjoy fully.

Among all the things to do in Galveston, one can pick any place according to their interest points. Have fun exploring!

Suggested reads: Best Amusement Parks in NC

Best Asian Restaurant in NYC.
As an affilate-driven website, USA Tales earns from qualifying purchases.

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

Verified Content by Experts

USA Tales has content written by niche experts, travelers, students, and those with real-life experience. Our content is also periodically reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure content accuracy and relevancy. Have a question? Email us at team@usatales.com

As an affilate-driven website, USA Tales earns from qualifying purchases.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog

Available for Amazon Prime