While it may be a bit too chilly for swimsuits in most parts of the country — including the Lone Star State — it’s never too early to start thinking about warmer weather. Take a look at the best spots to soak up the sun and feel the sand beneath your toes, come springtime, in the great state of Texas.
It’s a no-frills favorite with the locals that is often less crowded and has more parking … score! However, places to stay are somewhat limited, with mostly rentals and a few hotels to choose from. If you’re not content to just sit in your beach chair and catch some rays all day, take advantage of the opportunity to get up close and personal with some other friendly mammals through a dolphin encounter.
For the city mice that want the best of both worlds, Galveston is your answer. While there’s certainly a ton of sand (30 miles of the stuff), restaurants, shopping, and an old-fashioned boardwalk offer plenty of distractions for a brood that bores easily. Bring the whole crew to Moody Gardens, which is an experience in itself. This massive amusement park and aquarium is as fun as it is educational, with exhibits, activities, and rides that are designed to teach visitors about wildlife and conservation. There’s even a hotel on site!
This spot might be synonymous with spring break, but SPI has so much more to offer than drink specials and college co-eds. That being said, if you’re seeking a super kid-friendly spot, you’d be wise to look elsewhere. There are variety of lodging options, ranging from resorts to old-fashioned motels and condo rentals, that cater to all visitors. Stop by Sea Turtle, Inc. and say hello to some of the cute creatures that have recently been rescued. Popular places to grab a bite include Chillito Pikin, Wanna-Wanna Beach Bar & Grill, and Liam’s Steakhouse & Oyster.
Lovebirds flock to Rockport, a quaint town that offers numerous art galleries, boutiques, and attractions in addition to a beautiful beach. One of the most popular stops for visitors is the Fulton Mansion, which offers a peek into the past through self-guided tours of the 19th-century estate where engineer, entrepreneur, and inventory George Fulton lived. The Aquarium at Rockport Harbor and the Texas Maritime Museum are fun for kids and parents alike.