Galveston Beach

Galveston vs South Padre Island- QUICK TIPS

Galveston or South Padre? That is the question! Which would you prefer? Both are equally relaxing, close to home, and have great beaches. Both are wonderful places to hang out with friends or go for a week trip with your family. But does one stand out more than the other?

For me Galveston is much better and more family oriented and here are the three “F’s” as to why.


Who doesn’t love to eat?  I know I do!  Galveston offers a plethora of diverse restaurants to indulge in for breakfast, lunch or dinner. From Mexican to Italian to traditional American, Chinese, Indian and Greek you will be able to find it all on the island.

And don’t forget the endless choices of seafood restaurants.  Some of our family favorite restaurants are Mario’s Seawall Italian Restaurant, Bronco Burritos, Black Pear Oyster Bar and Restaurant, and the Spot.


Obviously, other than the beach, Galveston has other fun things to do. Pleasure Pier is one of my all-time favorites!  It is an amusement park on a pier full of rides like roller coasters, Ferris wheels, go carts, and much more. It’s a fun, thrilling place to hang out with friends or family members that has midway games, food and retail shops.

Also, there is a beach right next to it, so when you’re done enjoying the rides, you could go swimming or surfing in the ocean. Or you can just relax on the sand to listen to the ocean waves.


For me, Galveston has become a place to enjoy family time and relax.  It offers several family friendly tourist attractions throughout the year. Schlitterbahn or Moody Gardens are my top two.  Schlitterbahn is a water park filled with fun water slides, pools and even a cozy lazy river.  It is enjoyable during the summer months as something to do other than going to the beach.  Next on my list is

Moody Gardens. It is a popular hotel which is also a nonprofit organization that uses nature to excite people of all ages about animals in the wildlife. Moody has to pyramid attractions that you cannot miss when driving in to Galveston.  The first pyramid is an aquarium where you can see sea animals like fish, sharks, seals, stingray, and even penguins. The second pyramid is the rainforest that allows guest to experience animals like giant amazon otters, various species of birds and Saki monkeys.

Doesn’t that sound like fun?

Moody Gardens also has a few theatres that are amazing quality. They have an MG 3D theatre and a 4D special effects theatre. The Mg 3D theatre has the first ever giant screen 4k 6-primary laser projection system. At the 4D special effects theater you become part of the movie along with the.  It has 3D projection, leg ticklers, wind, and seat sensors to give you the ultimate movie watching experience. Can you tell that’s one of my favorites?

There are also many other things you could do at Moody Gardens like go to Palm Beach which is similar to Schlitterbahn where you can ride water slides, go on the wave pool, or just relax on the lazy river with your friends.

During December Moody offers an amazing Festival of Lights that lasts through the holiday season.  My most favorite thing to do in Galveston is surfing!  This is a fun activity to enjoy with family if they are up for the challenge.

Now don’t get me wrong, South Padre has some advantages as well. For example, the ocean water in South Padre is cleaner than in Galveston. South Padre has lots of tourist shops if you are looking to get a nice souvenir for yourself or a friend.

The one other advantage that South Padre has is that it has much more nightclubs if you enjoy the nightlife.  South Padre also has a Schlitterbahn as well, and Gravity Park which includes go carts, mini golf, bungee jumping and much more.

It’s nice, but not as great as Pleasure Pier in Galveston. South Padre also has a few museums and light house tours. In my opinion, I am not very interested in touring museums or light houses. Even though some views from the light house were amazing, it still did not compare to the activities in Galveston.

In conclusion South Padre and Galveston are both wonderful places to visit for vacation or Spring Break, but I still believe that Galveston is better than South Padre.

Which one do you think is better?