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The Gulf of Mexico is famous for being responsible for gorgeous beachfronts in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and of course, the Great State of Texas. Here is your guide to Texas Gulf Coast beaches – from remote nature preserves to sizzling Spring Break destinations
Galveston Island State Park
Found within the barrier island ecosystem of the Texas Gulf Coast, Galveston Island State Park is located near Galveston within the Houston metropolitan area. The beach on Galveston Island is ideal for sand castles, picnics, and beach lounging. And attention anglers, Galveston Island State Park is surrounded by spotted seatrout and sandtrout, plus redfish, black drum, croaker, and flounder.
Padre Island National Seashore
For a more secluded beach experience, Padre Island National Seashore is found along the central Gulf Coast near Corpus Christi. Covering over 130,000-acres and spanning over 65 miles, PAIS offers great beach lounging and windsurfing on the Laguna Madre, plus bird and even sea turtle watching. Other PAIS include the usual swimming, picnicking, beachcombing, and biking.
Mustang Island State Park
Set on nearly 4,000-acres, Mustang Island State Park is found on the Gulf Coast near Port Aransas. Featuring a five-mile shoreline, Mustang Island offers awesome barrier island activities like beach lounging, swimming, sand castle construction, and picnics. Other recreational opportunities include hiking, biking, fishing, and of course, bird watching thanks to the Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail.
Sea Rim State Park
Set in east Texas in Sabine Pass, near Beaumont, Orange, and Vidor, Sea Rim State Park spans 4,000-acres on the Texas Gulf Coast. Beach activities include swimming and combing, plus fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. But swimmers and boaters beware; this is a heavy stomping ground for the American Alligator. Dry activities include the Gambusia Nature Trail, waterfowl hunting, and bird watching.
South Padre Island
Known for its Spring Break atmosphere, South Padre Island is located in southeastern Texas near cities like San Benito and Harlington – and neighbors the border with Mexico. Anticipate a bustling beachfront, plus Gulf boating, fishing, kiteboarding, and even dolphin sightings. SPI also hosts annual fishing fests like the Ladies Kingfish Tournament, the Hooters Tournament, Redfish Rodeo, and the Texas International Fishing Tournament.