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How to Have The Best Family Spring Break Vacation in Galveston

A row of candy-colored houses in Galveston
Having been living near Galveston for quite a few years, I simply cannot imagine a better family spot in Texas than the island itself to spend a spring break vacation. And here’s why.

1. Moody Gardens

1 Hope Blvd, Galveston, TX 77554
If you find yourself on the island, make a beeline for the famous pyramids. There’s just no better way to start a spring escape. The number of attractions you can visit is impressive: Aquarium, Rainforest and Discovery Pyramids; 3D Theater; 4D Theater; and seasonal attractions, such as Palm Beach and Ice Land. Regardless of the attraction you choose or the time of year you visit, you can never go wrong with visiting the Gardens.

Moody Gardens in Galveston

Rainforest Pyramid
Rainforest Pyramid at Moody Gardens in Galveston


2. Schlitterbahn Waterpark Galveston

2026 Lockheed Rd, Galveston, TX 77554

Located right across from the Moody Gardens, it’s one hell of adventure at hand for the whole family. It features more than 30 attractions, including tube slides, three-speed slides, kids' activity areas, a secluded beach, a surfing wave, and the tidal wave river. It opens later in February for Spring Break and stays open through December. 


3. Rainforest Cafe

5310 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77551
While there are many family-friendly options to have a bite around Galveston, it’s unlikely that any of those places can beat this classic cafe right on Seawall for families vacationing with kids. With its coolest jungle decor, trumpeting and roaring animals, fanned out banyan trees, all-time favorite Volcano desert, and a wild ride on a winding river, it’s bound to be the entertainment for the whole family.

Rainforest Cafe in Galveston


4. Magic Carpet Golf

9030 Seawall Boulevard, Galveston, TX 77554
Hours are 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
Cash only. No debit or credit cards accepted.

It rarely makes the list of things to do on the island, but I honestly think it’s one of the hidden gems in plain sight. Its beachfront location with breathtaking views,  two 18-hole courses,  and whimsical sea obstacles  –– a giant seashell, fishes, turtles, pirate ships, and others — is an absolute hit.  With scorching days of the summer are still ahead, visiting in the spring will only make the whole experience more enjoyable. The sea breeze and temperatures feel just perfect to be outside.

Magic Carpet Golf

Magic Carpet Golf in Galveston


5. Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier

Where: 2501 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77550

Leave the world behind as you ride the classic swing carousel and take in the beautiful Gulf views from the Ferris wheel. And if you visit in the morning or during the day, try to go back after dusk for a completely different experience as all rides get lit up and reflected off the water. A sight to enjoy and experience. Consider buying the all-day pass to save on admission.

Seawall Entrance to Pleasure Pier in Galveston, TX


6. Galveston Children's Museum

2618 Broadway Avenue J, Galveston, TX 77550
This is a hidden gem of the island. Located on the first floor of the historic Moody Mansion (talk about the the grandiose Romanesque mansion with more than 30 room!), it focuses on many hands-on activities and creativity targeted for kids ages 2 through 10. What can be better than to stop by the place on a rainy day or scorching afternoon for the kids to burn off some energy. It also hosts special events each month.


7. Tree Sculpture Tour

It’s the island’s most unique experience, for one. After Hurricane Ike hit Galveston in 2008, there was little left intact on the island, including many woody plants. In 2009 the city agreed to turn dead trees into whimsical sculptures — pelicans, dolphins, pets and so many others. Since then local artists have been constantly adding new sculptures to front yards of local residents.

If you feel like wearing your walking shoes to see it for yourself, you can print the map here and embark on a self-guided tour through the most unique part of the island – East End Historic District.

Tree Sculpture Tour


8. East End Historic District

East End Historic District in Galveston


9. Galveston Railroad Museum

2602 Santa Fe Pl, Galveston, TX 77550
With numerous permanent exhibits of locomotives, passenger and freight cars, this is one of the largest railroad collections in the country. And even though this museum was planned with the outdoors in mind, on rainy days you can still visit and enjoy its inside exhibits, such as the people’s gallery, rail history corner, and model train displays.

What’s more!? You can actually take a mile-long ride on the Harborside Express, an open-air caboose.


10. La King's Confectionery

2323 Strand St, Galveston, TX 77550

The sweetest spot on the island that serves more than 50 types of candies, chocolates, shakes, and, of course, perfect hand-made saltwater taffy. Like the old-fashion confectioneries from bygone times, La King’s operates using traditional formulas and equipment to make their treats. Located right across from the Saengerfest Park with its renowned Welcome to Galveston mural and a large outdoor chess set, one cannot wish for a more conveniently-located spot to visit.

With a bit of luck and the right timing, you can also be treated to a delicious demonstration of a candy master making salt water taffies on a 100-year-old machine right before your eyes. The best part?! During the demonstration freshly pulled taffies get thrown to guests by a candy master. The schedule for the taffy demonstration, you can find here.


11. Mural Crawl

Thanks to the proximity and variety of murals around and along The Strand, the mural crawl is something you can easily embark on in between visiting numerous shops and restaurants in downtown. All in all, murals make great photo spots.

Turtle Mural in Galveston Downtown

Locations include:

a. Saengerfest Park 
2302 Strand St, Galveston, TX 77550

An iconic and arguably the most famous mural on the island is the “Greetings from Galveston” sign located in one of the most happening places - Saengerfest Park. Striking a pose in front of this sign is a thing for a bucket list.

Greetings from Galveston Mural

b. Kindness Project
22nd and Postoffice St., Galveston, TX 77550

Another great wall to visit is the Kindness Project. Tucked away in one of the side streets close to downtown, it a series of different murals from colorful fingerprints to a rainy day scene to a larger-than-life flamingo to suit all tastes and ages.

The Rainy Day Scene Mural on Postoffice, Galveston

Flamingo Mural on Postoffice, Galveston

c. I Heart Galveston
2402 Strand St., Galveston, TX 77550

It’s a less known sign than the “Greetings from Galveston,” but it is a great option to take that one-of-a-kind photo.

I Heart Galveston Mural


12. MOD Coffee House

2126 Postoffice St, Galveston, TX 77550
To give your feet a break after the mural crawl, you can plop down on one of the chairs under the lush canopy on the MOD patio. Located right across from the Kindness project on Postoffice, the place is perfect to enjoy a locally roasted coffee in a picturesque part of Downtown.  


13. Turtles About Town

The Turtles About Town is an art project that brings more attention to the protection of sea turtles as a keystone species for healthy oceans and beaches. Turtle Island Restoration Network together with Clay Cup Studios, a local art studio, installed 19 colorful Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle statues around the island earlier in 2019. No two statues are exactly the same!


14. 61st Street Fishing Pier

6101 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77551

Regardless of the season and temperatures that drop to the 60s in the early spring, for many a vacation starts at the beach. With a bit of luck and fair weather, you may have a chance to kick off your shoes and take a dip into the Gulf water to make the most out of your time in Galveston.

When temperatures are considerably cool for an open water plunge, we always enjoy walking a lovely stretch of the beach along Seawall starting at the Galveston's 61st Street Fishing Pier.  In fact, with so many things to do along the beach from a rock stacking to leisurely walk to visiting Pleasure Pier, you can plan your vacation on the island year-round.

61st Street Fishing Pier


15. Drive Along Seawall

Driving aimlessly past candy-colored houses and hearing crashing waves in a short distance is truly my most perfect getaway.  The route along the beach is one hell of a view to marvel at. The drive along Seawall is lovely, but if you keep going you will come upon a very unique landmark – The Kettle House.


16. The Kettle House

14106 Miramar Dr, Galveston, TX 77554

Once abandoned oddity of the island, this newly renovated place seems to become everyone’s favorite to stay. And no wonder why!

The Kettle House in Galveston
The Kettle House in Galveston
Have you been to Galveston before? What did you enjoy most?

Galveston: The Ultimate Spring Break Destination

The Perfect Family Spring Break Vacation in Galveston

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