Salty Air and Smiling Faces – 20 Things to Do in Galveston with Kids

Things to Do in Galveston with Kids

Things to Do in Galveston with Kids

The Best Things To Do in Galveston with Kids are Adventures at Moody Gardens, Thrilling Rides at Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier, Sun-kissed fun at Galveston Beach, and Imaginative Play at Galveston Children’s Museum!


Things To Do in Galveston With Kids – Based on Interest


Quick Hit Summary of the Best Things To Do in Galveston with Kids 

Ahoy, mateys, and landlubbers alike! Planning a swashbucklin’ adventure in Galveston with your little buccaneers? This island paradise has buried treasure for every kind of adventurer, big and small!

Thrill Seekers: Conquer the world’s tallest water coaster at Moody Gardens, scream your way through rides at the historic Pleasure Pier, or zip through the air like playful dolphins. Feeling budget-conscious? Galveston Beach beckons with endless sandcastle possibilities and refreshing waves – all for free!

Nature Explorers: Hike through the lush trails of Galveston Island State Park, spot dolphins frolicking offshore, or build epic sandcastle empires on the sun-kissed shores. The Moody Gardens Aquarium Pyramid promises dazzling encounters with exotic creatures, while the park itself offers free birdwatching and wildlife spotting galore!

Creative Crew: Unleash imaginations at the vibrant Galveston Children’s Museum! Climb pirate ships, create masterpieces in art studios, and explore diverse themes through hands-on exhibits. The Strand Theatre offers a classic cinema experience for a rainy day adventure, while charming shops downtown are perfect for souvenir hunting. And guess what? Most museums in Galveston have free admission days, so check their websites before you set sail!

Animal Buddies: No Galveston trip is complete without meeting some friendly animals, the Galveston Island State Park offers opportunities to spot diverse bird species and other fascinating wildlife, all at no cost!

So pack your beach towels, and adventurous spirits, and get ready to create unforgettable memories in this magical island paradise!


Nature and Outdoor Lovers

Galveston Beach

Salty Air and Smiling Faces - 20 Things to Do in Galveston with Kids

Image Credit: Sandy C Photography IG (Galveston Beach)

Sun, sand, and smiles for all!

  • Ages: Toddlers building sandcastles to teens spiking epic serves, everyone’s welcome!
  • Time: 2-4 hours of splashing, sunbathing, exploring tide pools, or building empires – your choice!
  • Family Bonding: Relaxation, laughter, and memories that last a lifetime.
  • 4.5 Star Gem: Clean shores, gentle waves, and family-friendly fun.
  • Insider Tips: Arrive early for prime spots, pack sunscreen & snacks, check tide charts, rent chairs & umbrellas, and watch for playful dolphins!
  • Location: 6285 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77551
  • Hours of Operation: Open 24 hours
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: FREE

Galveston Island State Park

Hike nature trails, relax on pristine beaches, and birdwatch in diverse ecosystems.

  • Ages: Perfect for all ages, offering various trails and activities for different interests.
  • Time: Spend a few hours or a full day exploring the park’s natural wonders.
  • Nature’s Playground: Discover coastal wetlands, dunes, and unique wildlife.
  • Insider Tip: Pack binoculars and comfortable shoes, check tide charts for beachcombing, and consider camping for a full immersion in nature.
  • Location: 14901 FM3005, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Open Daily 7:00 am – 10:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Child 12 Years and Under: FREE | Adult: $5/Daily

Galveston Island Nature Center

Learn about the local ecosystem through interactive exhibits, guided programs, and hands-on activities.

  • Ages: Suitable for all ages, with engaging programs for young minds and curious adults.
  • Time: Spend 1-2 hours exploring the exhibits and participating in programs.
  • Environmental Discovery: Learn about coastal habitats, conservation efforts, and local wildlife.
  • Insider Tip: Check the center’s website for upcoming programs and special events, and pack a picnic lunch for a relaxing break in the nature play area.
  • Location: 14901 FM3005, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation:  Open Daily 7:00 am – 10:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Not Stated

Dolphin Watching Tours

Embark on a boat tour and witness playful dolphins frolicking in the Gulf of Mexico.

  • Ages: Perfect for all ages, a delightful experience for the whole family.
  • Time: Tours typically last 1-2 hours, offering scenic views and educational commentary.
  • Marine Encounters: Learn about dolphin behavior, conservation, and their role in the ecosystem.
  • Insider Tip: Book tours in advance, especially during peak season, and choose early morning or late afternoon trips for calmer waters.
  • Location: Pier 22 Suite, 8, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation:  Tours are 1 hour and Depart at 10:15, 11:30, 1:30, 2:45, and 4:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Adult & Children (6 & up) – $18 | Children (5 & Under) – Free

Rent bikes and explore the seawall

Enjoy a scenic ride along the coast and take in the ocean views.

  • Ages: Suitable for all ages with bike options for everyone.
  • Time: Enjoy a leisurely ride or a full-day adventure.
  • Fresh Air & Exercise: Stay active and explore Galveston at your own pace.
  • Insider Tip: Rent bikes near the Historic Downtown for easy access to shops and restaurants.
  • Location: 6026 Seawall Blvd f, Galveston, TX 77551
  • Hours of Operation: Not Stated
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Not Stated

Things to Do with Kids in Galveston – Animal Encounters

Moody Gardens Rainforest Pyramid

Pyramid kids summer camp

Image Credit: Moody Gardens Facebook Page

Immerse yourselves in a lush rainforest!

  • Ages: Fun for all explorers!
  • Time: 2-3 hours of immersive experience.
  • Exotic Encounters: Discover diverse animals & plant life, and learn about rainforest conservation.
  • Insider Tip: Arrive early to avoid crowds & consider the “Coolest Summer” evening program.
  • Location: 1 Hope Blvd, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Sunday – Friday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm | Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starts at $55 for One Day Value Pass

Galveston Island State Park Bird Tower

Observe feathered friends & enjoy bay views!

  • Ages: Perfect for birdwatchers of all ages.
  • Time: 1-3 hours of nature adventures.
  • Hike & Spot Wildlife: Explore trails, and participate in guided programs for an extra enriching experience.
  • Insider Tip: Pack binoculars & comfortable shoes, check the park website for program schedules.
  • Location: 14901 FM3005, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Hours are subject to change.
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: $5 per person

Souvenir shopping at The Strand

Discover unique treasures and local crafts in charming shops and boutiques.

  • Ages: Fun for all ages, perfect for finding gifts or keepsakes.
  • Time: Browse at your own pace, and explore hidden gems and local artwork.
  • Shopping Adventure: Find everything from souvenirs to home decor and fashion.
  • Insider Tip: Look for locally-made items and support small businesses.
  • Location: 2201 The Strand, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Not Stated
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Not Stated

Creative Things To Do in Galveston With Kids

Galveston Art League

Unleash your inner artist!

  • Ages: Classes & workshops for all ages & skill levels.
  • Time: Varying session lengths, check the website for current offerings.
  • Fun & Creative Outlet: Explore different mediums & express yourselves together.
  • Insider Tip: Consider family workshops or themed events for a unique bonding experience.
  • Location: 2117a Postoffice St, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Monday – Wednesday CLOSED | Thursday – Sunday 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Membership:
    • Individual – $ 40.00
    • Student – $ 10.00Family – $ 60.00
    • Professional – $ 100.00
    • Professional Family – $ 150.00
    • Sponsor – $ 200.00
    • Lifetime – $ 500.00

Galveston Children’s Museum

Ignite imaginations & play all day!

  • Ages: Ideal for ages 2-10.
  • Time: 2-3 hours of hands-on activities & discovery.
  • Rainy Day Fun: Perfect for less-than-sunny days, and annual memberships for frequent visits.
  • Insider Tip: Pack a lunch & enjoy the designated picnic area for a budget-friendly break.
  • Location: 2618 Broadway Avenue J, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Monday & Tuesday CLOSED | Wednesday – Saturday 9:30 am – 5:00 pm | Sunday 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: 
    • Members: Free
    • Infants: Free
    • 2+ Years: $10
    • Seniors: $8
    • SNAP/Medicaid: $3
    • Military: $8

Make your own Sandcastles

Galveston Spring Break - East Beach

Image Credit: Galveston Beach

Galveston Beach awaits your masterpieces!

  • Ages: Free fun for all ages!
  • Time: Unlimited creativity & sandcastle building.
  • Simple or Elaborate: Let your imaginations run wild on the shore.
  • Insider Tip: Pack buckets, shovels, & sand molds for extra sculpting fun.
  • Location: 6285 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77551
  • Hours of Operation: Open 24 hours
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: FREE

Galveston’s Spooky Delights That Older Kids Can Enjoy (seasonal)

Haunted Galveston Tours

Embark on spine-tingling ghost walks and hear chilling tales of Galveston’s haunted past.

  • Ages: Best for older kids and teens who enjoy spooky thrills.
  • Time: 1-2 hours of eerie exploration and storytelling.
  • History & Haunts: Learn about local legends and historical mysteries.
  • Insider Tip: Dress comfortably for walking and consider booking in advance for popular tours.
  • Location: Check the link for the location
  • Hours of Operation: Open Daily 9:00 am – 10:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: $ 25 for Adults | $15 for Kids under 12 | 4 and under FREE | ALL ACTIVE MILITARY FREE with I.D.

For the Foodies

Galveston Island Historic Downtown

Savor delicious seafood, Tex-Mex fare, and international cuisine.

  • Ages: Something for every palate, from kid-friendly options to gourmet delights.
  • Time: Enjoy leisurely meals or grab quick bites on the go.
  • Foodie Paradise: Explore diverse restaurants, charming cafes, and waterfront dining.
  • Insider Tip: Try fresh local seafood and check out happy hour specials for budget-friendly bites.
  • Location: Check the link for the map location
  • Hours of Operation: Not Stated
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Not Stated

La King’s Confectionery

Salty Air and Smiling Faces - 20 Things to Do in Galveston with Kids

Image Credit: lakingsconfectionery.com

Indulge in decadent chocolates, homemade ice cream, and vintage candy.

  • Ages: A sweet treat for everyone!
  • Time: Pop in for a quick scoop or linger over a sundae.
  • Chocolate Heaven: Satisfy your cravings with handcrafted chocolates and nostalgic candies.
  • Insider Tip: Grab a souvenir box of chocolates or try their famous banana splits.
  • Location: 2323 The Strand, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Sunday – Thursday 11:00 am – 6:30 pm | Friday 11:00 am – 8:00 pm | Saturday 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Depends on the chocolate you will buy

Moody Gardens Festival of Food & Wine (seasonal)

Experience culinary delights from around the world.

  • Ages: Best for older kids and adults, offering gourmet tastings and live music.
  • Time: Spend a day or an evening indulging in culinary adventures.
  • Global Flavors: Discover international cuisines, local wineries, and craft breweries.
  • Insider Tip: Purchase tickets in advance, consider designated driver options, and wear comfortable shoes for exploring.
  • Location: 1 Hope Blvd, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Sunday – Friday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm | Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starts at $55 for One Day Value Pass

Things to Do in Galveston For Kids – History Buffs

Galveston History Museums

Dive into the city’s rich past through exhibits and programs.

  • Ages: Suitable for all ages, with engaging displays for different interests.
  • Time: 1-2 hours per museum, explore multiple museums for a deeper dive.
  • History Comes Alive: Learn about pirates, maritime history, and cultural heritage.
  • Insider Tip: Check museum websites for special exhibits and family-friendly activities.
  • Location: 2310 Sealy Ave, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Saturday, Monday, Friday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm | Tuesday – Thursday 9:00 am – 8:00 pm | Sunday CLOSED
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: FREE

Tall Ship Elissa

Step aboard this restored 19th-century sailing vessel and experience maritime history firsthand.

  • Ages: Fascinating for all ages, especially history and nautical enthusiasts.
  • Time: 1-2 hours exploring the ship and learning about its story.
  • Sail the Past: Discover the life of sailors, explore the decks, and imagine voyages of old.
  • Insider Tip: Combine your visit with a harbor tour for a complete maritime experience.
  • Location: Pier 22 Suite, 8, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Monday CLOSED | Tuesday – Sunday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing:  Adult – $16 | Youth (6-18) – $10 | Children (5 & Under) – Free

Galveston Seawall Murals

Take a stroll and admire vibrant murals depicting the city’s history and culture.

  • Ages: Perfect for all ages, enjoy a free and open-air art gallery.
  • Time: Explore the murals at your own pace, and snap some photos for memories.
  • Public Art Trail: Discover hidden gems and learn about local artists and stories.
  • Insider Tip: Start your walk at Pier 21 and follow the seawall for a comprehensive mural experience.
  • Location: 301 Seawall Blvd., Galveston, Texas 77580
  • Hours of Operation: Not Stated
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: FREE

Movies at the historic Strand Theatre

Enjoy a classic cinema experience in a beautifully restored landmark.

  • Ages: Fun for all ages, perfect for rainy days or a relaxing evening.
  • Time: Movie duration, grab some popcorn, and settle in for the show.
  • Historic Charm: Experience the grandeur of old Hollywood in a unique setting.
  • Insider Tip: Check the theatre’s website for special events and family-friendly screenings.
  • Location: 2317 Mechanic St, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Depends on what is showing or playing at the theater
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starts at $30

Thrilling Things to Do in Galveston For Kids 

Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier

Scream your way through thrilling rollercoasters, freefall rides, and classic carnival games.

  • Ages: Best for older kids and teens who love the adrenaline rush.
  • Time: Spend a day conquering rides and enjoying boardwalk vibes.
  • Classic Thrills: Ride the iconic Ferris wheel, test your bravery on haunted houses, and grab cotton candy for a sweet reward.
  • Insider Tip: Purchase wristbands for unlimited rides and visit on weekdays for shorter lines.
  • Location: 2501 Seawall Blvd, Galveston, TX 77550
  • Hours of Operation: Saturday 12:00 pm – 9:00 pm | Sunday 12:00 pm – 9:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starting at $9 for Entrance only

Skydiving Galveston

Experience the ultimate adrenaline rush with a breathtaking skydiving adventure over the island.

  • Ages: For daring individuals 18 years and older, tandem jumps are available for beginners.
  • Time: 3-4 hours for the entire experience, including training and preparation.
  • Unforgettable Views: Soar through the sky and witness panoramic vistas of Galveston and the Gulf Coast.
  • Insider Tip: Book your jump in advance, especially during peak season, and wear comfortable clothing and sneakers.
  • Location: 9020 Stewart Rd, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Open Daily 7:30 am – 6:30 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starts at $209/WeekDAY Group 10k Skydive

Paddleboarding or Kayaking

things to do in galveston tx with kids

Things to Do in Galveston TX with Kids | Image Credit: Galveston Paddleboard Center

Explore the hidden coves and waterways of Galveston Bay at your own pace.

  • Ages: Suitable for all ages and fitness levels, with rentals and lessons available.
  • Time: Enjoy a leisurely paddle or a full-day adventure, depending on your preference.
  • Nature & Serenity: Spot dolphins, admire coastal birds, and soak in the tranquility of the bay.
  • Insider Tip: Choose calm weather conditions for paddling, wear sunscreen and a hat, and consider guided tours for beginners.
  • Location: 6026 61st St, Galveston, TX 77551
  • Hours of Operation: Open Daily 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Not Stated

Mini Golf at Moody Gardens

Putt-putt adventure for the whole crew!

  • Ages: Two themed courses for all skill levels, family competition & laughter guaranteed!
  • Time: 1-2 hours of friendly competition, best enjoyed in cool evenings.
  • Fun & Challenge: Test your skills and enjoy the camaraderie.
  • Combo Tickets: Consider pairing with other Moody Gardens attractions for savings.
  • Insider Tip: Arrive early to avoid crowds and grab some snacks for the course.
  • Location: 1 Hope Blvd, Galveston, TX 77554
  • Hours of Operation: Sunday – Friday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm | Saturday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
  • Admission Fee/Pricing: Starts at $79.99

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