As the second largest state in the United States, Texas is known for many things, but the best kept secret is possibly that Texas beaches are among the best in the world. The southern border of the state is on the Gulf of Mexico Coast, with over 600 miles of soft sandy shoreline.
The water is warm and clean and can be enjoyed year-round. South Padre Island, Port Aransas, Bay Area Houston, Galveston Island, Beaumont and Port Arthur have not only some of the best beaches is Texas, but in the entire country.
When you aren’t surfing, kayaking, swimming or enjoying the water in some way, there are a wide array of other things to do in the immediate areas that you will need more time in your vacation to do it all!
Below is a partial list of some of the beaches in Texas that you will want to be sure to check out. While this list is very short, each one of them should be on any travelers list to visit at least once.
1. Padre Island National Seashore
Padre Island National Seashore is one of the Texas attractions that you will not want to miss. When you cross the causeway from the large metropolitan area of Corpus Christi you enter another world.
With almost 75 miles of some of the most remote shoreline, this is the longest stretch of undeveloped barrier island beach in the world.There are no modern facilities along the way, other than a few picnic shelters, which makes this one of the quietest, most serene places in the world.
2. Stewart Beach
Stewart Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Texas. Located near the city of Galveston on the northeast side of Galveston Island, it is very convenient for everyone to make it a full day of fun in the sun.
It is a very family-friendly beach with many amenities that cater to the youngest of visitors as well as beach goers of all ages. There is a children’s play area where the kids can play for hours on end while the adults sunbathe nearby.
3. East Beach
East Beach is another one of the Texas beaches located on Galveston Island, and as the name implies it is located at the east end of the island. It is also a very family-oriented beach, with many events such as concerts and festivals going on all summer.
The annual Galveston sandcastle building competition is held here each year, where you can see some spectacular works of art – or enter the competition yourself and show them how it is done!
Related: The 10 Best Beaches in California
4. Galveston Island State Park
Galveston Island State Park is one of the many Texas attractions you will want to see while you are enjoying the beaches of Galveston Island. It covers an expanse of over 2,000 acres and includes such amenities as campsites, both primitive and those with water and electricity.
Many trails for hiking and mountain biking are here, with a wide range of difficulty levels so everyone can enjoy them.There is plenty of swimming, fishing and playing in the water with paddle boards, kayaks, boats or many other water sports.
5. Mustang Island
Mustang Island, located on the northern-most end of Padre Island near the town of Port Aransas, is one of the very best beaches in Texas. It is 18 full miles of soft sand, warm water and uninterrupted public shoreline that will take your breath away. With this much shoreline, you will be able to easily carve out for yourself a secluded and quiet section.
Enjoy the water with great surfing, paddle boarding, kayaking, jet skiing, parasailing or any other water sport you can think of. Snorkeling and scuba diving are prime here as well, with many guides in Port Aransas that are more than happy to take you to the best diving locations.
6. San Jose Island
San Jose Island is one of the amazing Texas beaches that is located across from Port Aransas. It is a private, undeveloped island but you can take the ferry, or Port Aransas Jetty Boat as it is called, from Port Aransas several times a day from several different locations.
This is certainly one of the best beaches in Texas for that quiet, secluded getaway for the day where the only “noise” you will hear, besides other beach-goers, are the many species of birds in the area. Bird-lovers from all over love to come to this piece of heaven to spot some of the magnificent feathered friends from some of the best vantage points.
7. Boca Chica Beach
Boca Chica Beach is another of the Texas beaches that are more secluded and primitive that is among the best for anyone that loves to get away from the crowds. Located just east of Brownsville and across the Brazos Santiago Pass from South Padre Island, it lies further south than any other Texas beaches, and is separated from Mexico only by the Rio Grande River.
It is a sandy peninsula that has some of the cleanest shoreline and the amazingly clear, warm turquoise water of the Gulf of Mexico are so inviting. The entire surroundings are considered the tropics, which makes it so beautiful with a very wide array of wildlife, bird and plant species. Any nature lovers or bird watchers will be thrilled by spending a day or more enjoying all that this area has to offer.
8. Bay Area Houston
Bay Area Houston is one of the best beaches in Texas for that ideal extended vacation where you can have the luxuries and excitement of a big city combined with the relaxation and fun of the sea.
Located just 30 minutes south of Houston, the beautiful sand lined with palm trees and tropical foliage and the warm water of the Gulf make for a splendid respite from the big city all year around.Enjoy some of the best surfing around as well as any other water sports you care to do, or relax and sunbathe while watching others play in the sea.
Beaumont has got to be one of the best beaches in Texas for anyone looking for a unique atmosphere. Very near the Louisiana border, it is a great mixture of everything Texas with a touch of Cajun flair.
The town has great Cajun restaurants and entertainment that you won’t find anywhere else. The beach itself is magnificent and the perfect place to enjoy the sand, sun and surf. The beach is surrounded in magnificent landscape that ranges from dense forests to cypress swamps and everything in between.