Galveston and the Texas Coast
Galveston is an island off the Texas coast about one hour away from the city of Houston. Parking is almost always available, and there is no time limit! You can bring your drinks, food, and beach chairs. You can even drive your car onto some of the beaches, such as the San Luis Pass.
I mainly go to the local beach on the west point in Sea Isle because it is closest to my beach house ( many houstians have these or condos).
Galveston's shipping port was an integral part of the Gulf Coast and has since been used as a gateway to the South. This shipping port played an integral role to ship oil and other goods. In the past, the Galveston shipping port was primarily used to export cotton, making it the second most prosperous port in the United States. It is also where many cruise ship launches to go down to the Caribbean. The most notable is Carnival Cruise Line.
Galveston itself has a vibrant community and beautiful dark sand beaches.
The island's historical past with the Great Hurricane of 1900 depicts the resilience of the island. This hurricane became the deadliest natural disaster in the United States History. Most Texas students are required to read the book Isaac Storm in high school about this disaster. Between 6,000 to 8,000 people (estimated 10,000-12,000) died in the storm due to the inability to predict hurricanes. This was also due to the nice weather before the days following the hurricane. Many people were enjoying the beach in the daytime, and it was at night when the hurricane hit the island ( bring a 15.7 foot storm surge about 5 meter tall!). This was a massive wave of water and debris. It is hard to believe that the beautiful beaches can be so deadly when standing on the sand. Yet, the community resilience shows with the bustling, vibrant small towns as hurricane season returns every August through September. I have personally been a hurricane and it was very scary!
I highly recommend the seafood and especially the "Strand," a section of the old 19th century Galveston, but I will talk about the beaches for now.
The island has dark sand beaches due to the beach's shallowness and the fact that the rivers' nd sediment can not settle on the seafloor. Thus, making the water a brownish color.This color is why some Texans consider Galveston an "ugly" beach compared to the white sand beaches of states like Florida.
I feel connected to Galveston because of its proximity to Houston ( about an hour car ride). Therefore, it was the closest beach to the city, and having a mother that comes from Florida, we would often go to the beach instead of extracurricular activities. We would learn to surf and build sandcastles, which would ultimately get destroyed by the waves. We would also fish on the beach.
In the summer months of Texas, the sargassum seaweed drifts upon the sand. We, locals, call it "red seaweed." This seaweed comes from the North Atlantic to the Gulf of Mexico. This seaweed is integral to the beach life and environment of Galveston. It is here that lifting the seaweed from the sand; you will find small baby fish, shrimp, seahorses, and crabs. It is truly a feast for the Segals, birds which depend on eating little fish. One of my favorite activities is taking a piece of seaweed and shaking it into a bucket filled with saltwater and sand. It is fun to discover what is one the seaweed.
However, my favorite time of year in Galveston is in the winter months of Texas (January through March), it is here that you can walk among the sand in old jean shorts enjoying the 70-degree to 80 degree weather.
I have learned to admire the muddy waters of the beach.
See pictures below:
-Please note that the dog running in the pictures is my dog named , “Mickey.” He loves the beach and the driftwood.