Pleasure Pier#8 in Best Things To Do in Galveston
Pleasure Pier is a wharf that juts out from the Texas Gulf Coast. Here you'll find amusement park rides, shops and eateries. Pleasure Pier is also a study in resilience: It was originally built in the 1940s, but in 1961 Hurricane Carla completely destroyed it; later in 2008, Hurricane Ike severely damaged it too, and just recently in 2017 Hurricane Harvey battered it with wind and waves. Still, it's up and running once again.
Recent visitors said visiting Pleasure Pier is a great activity for the whole family, though they also caution that the rides and businesses along the boardwalk are overpriced. If you're not interested in the rides or games, reviewers still recommend Pleasure Pier for its people-watching and Gulf Coast views. Plus, you'll find plenty of places to sit along the boardwalk.
You can't miss Pleasure Pier, as its amusement park rides are major parts of the Galveston skyline. Hours of operation vary based on the day and season, so it's best to check the website before visiting. An all-day pass for those 48 inches and taller costs $26.99 while a pass for those shorter than 48 inches is $19.99. You can also buy ride tickets a la carte, starting at $4 per ride, but you'll still need to purchase a pier pass in order to walk on the pier: It's $10 for those 48 inches and taller, $8 for those 48 inches and shorter and $7 for seniors. If you purchase an all-day ride pass, you'll automatically gain entrance to the pier and do not need to pay an extra fee.
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#1 Stewart Beach
Stewart Beach is one of the most popular strips of sand in Galveston, and with its host of beachside amenities, it's no wonder. There are lifeguards, restrooms, showers, concession stands, chair and umbrella rentals – and even a playground for kids. Recent visitors appreciated this beach's large parking lot and loads of amenities, as well as the beach's proximity to Pleasure Pier.
Stewart Beach sits where Broadway Avenue and the Seawall intersect. From March through May and during September and October, parking costs $10 between Monday and Friday and $12 on the weekends. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, parking costs $12 between Monday and Friday and $15 on the weekends. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the beach welcomes visitors from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. during the week and from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the weekends. From March to May and September to October, beach bums are welcome to visit between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. during the week and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the weekends. Keep in mind that this family-friendly beach prohibits alcohol. For more information, visit Galveston's convention and tourism website.
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