"Island Living, Texas Style!" Top 5 Page for this destination Galveston by H-TownJourneyman
Galveston Travel Guide: 314 reviews and 683 photos
Galveston, the small yet historic island town located on the shores of the Gulf of Mexico, is less than 50 miles southeast of Houston. Growing up in Houston, Galveston has always been the place for me to go for a quick escape from the hustle & bustle of the big city. Whether it is for good fishing, great festivals, or just a day at the beach & some fresh seafood, Galveston has always been like a second home to me, although I am not a true B.O.I. (Born On the Island). :) There is much to see & do on the island; everything from the obvious, i.e. miles of beaches & many seafood restaurants; to it's interesting historical sites & museums and family friendly recreational parks. Galveston is a great place to visit, whether it's just a day trip down from Houston, or a multi-day vacation to experience all the island has to offer!
The city of Galveston is located on the eastern end of Galveston Island. The island is one in the string of natural barrier islands that stretch from the northeastern coast of the U.S., all the way down to the Mexican coast along the Gulf of Mexico. Like all barrier islands, the erosion of beaches here is a natural process that occurs, despite efforts to replenish the beaches with new sand every year. Ever since the city was founded, Galveston has had an unrelenting battle with mother nature against this, and everytime a tropical storm or Hurricane comes ashore, years of deposited sand is washed away in a matter of hours. An interesting fact though: Every year after Christmas, the city uses hundreds of old Christmas trees to bury beneath the sand to help prevent erosion! The battle against the Gulf is constantly being waged here, and I guess we'll see much further down the road how it turns out! :)
Galveston has a rich and deep history, dating back to pre-Columbian times when the island was inhabited by Akokisa & Karankawa tribes of Native Americans. The island itself takes it's name from Galveston Bay, which was named for the spaniard Bernardo de Galvez, one time governor of the territories of Louisiana and Cuba, and viceroy of New Spain, during Spain's colonial reign over these areas. Pirate Jean Lafitte used the island as a base for several years in the early 1800's, and his treasure is still believed to be buried here! After Texas gained it's independence from Mexico, Galveston prospered greatly, becoming it's chief port city, and having Texas' first post office, first gas & electric lighting, and still having the state's oldest daily newspaper. Galveston is also the unfortunate location for the United States' deadliest natural disaster, when a devistating hurricane crushed and flooded the city in 1900, killing over 8,000 people. The hurricane marked a turning point for the city, as it never regained it's economic status & importance following the catastrophe. But the tragedy gave birth to the tough spirit and proud heritage that can be found on the island to this day.
The Texas Crab Festival, which is actually held in Crystal Beach on the Bolivar peninsula, is an annual event held on... more travel advice
The most eastern point of Galveston Island is a nice place to go and check out some views that are unlike any elsewhere... more travel advice
Written Mar 5, 2006
The Great Christmas Snow of 2004
Written Aug 12, 2006
Galveston Mardi Gras!
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