Don’t let a little rain dampen your vacation. There are plenty of ways to enjoy your time on the island even if it’s raining.
If you are staying downtown; you are in luck. There are several options within walking distance to keep your family entertained.
• Binge watch documentaries at Pier 21 Theater-Pier 21 Theater offers three documentaries as part of its schedule (closed Tuesday). Catch The Great Storm at 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. This multi-image documentary tells the story of The 1900 Storm which remains the deadliest natural disaster in US history. Learn about the infamous Jean Laffite during The Pirate Island of Jean Laffite at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. And, finally Galveston – Gateway on the Gulf, a documentary on immigration originally aired on PBS, is shown at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Plus, the theater has a great gift shop.
• Step Aboard the Ocean Star Offshore Oil Rig & Museum-While it might be a little chilly on the walkway, once you arrive aboard the Ocean Star at Pier 21 you’ll enjoy the fascinating exhibits on oil exploration and drilling aboard a retired jackup drilling rig. The museum features three floors of models and interactive displays explaining the science of offshore oil and gas from seismic technology to exploration and production. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Choose between pirates or a haunted house or do both-Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast and Haunted Mayfield Manor share a lobby and offer a combo ticket or individual attraction tickets. You’ll find the entrance off Saengerfest Park, 23rd & Strand. Both offer a fun way to spend the afternoon. Check their website calendar to confirm hours of operation.
• Step aboard an actual railcar-The Galveston Island Railroad Museum offers a history of the early days of steam and rail transportation in Galveston’s historic rail depot. The museum offers an audio tour that covers 22 stops throughout the museum. Step aboard actual rail cars and see a model railroad.
If you don’t mind driving...
• Tour The Bryan Museum-If you enjoy history and art, you’ll love this museum. Take a guided tour or explore on your own. The Bryan Museum opened June 2015 in the 1895 Galveston Orphans Home and offers one of the world’s largest collections of historical artifacts, documents and artwork relating to Texas and the American West. Check out the saddle collection… The Museum is open Thursday through Monday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and located at 1315 21st Street.
• Visit Galveston’s Broadway Beauties-Moody Mansion & Museum, 2816 Broadway, and the 1892 Bishop’s Palace, 1402 Broadway, offer a stunning escape from the cold. These homes give you a snapshot of how Galveston’s wealthiest families lived. Both homes offer an audio tour. If this is a family trip, Moody Mansion is also home to the Galveston Children’s Museum. Both historic house museums are open daily from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Explore Moody Gardens-You can explore a tropical rainforest or see penguins in the artic at Moody Gardens, One Hope Blvd. The Rainforest Pyramid takes guests through the rainforests of Asia, Africa and the Americas while The Aquarium explores the South Atlantic, North Pacific, South Pacific, Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico. Allocate a good hour for each pyramid. Bonus: There’s a covered walkway between the Aquarium and the Rainforest. Both museums have experienced a major upgrade in recent years and are open daily.
• Relax in the Spa- Forget the rain, forget the world, and pamper yourself with a day at The Spa at the Hotel Galvez, 2024 Seawall Blvd (entrance on 21st Street). Packages are available offering combinations of services or you can plan your day a la carte. Arrive early and sit in the steam room for 10 minutes followed by some meditation in the relaxation lounge, sip champagne as you receive a pedicure, relax with a deep-tissue massage, and try to decide between a facial and a trip to the Salon. Call 409.515.2100 to schedule an appointment.
Where to Stay:
• For a beach view with history, stay at Hotel Galvez & Spa. The hotel provides a courtesy shuttle to transport hotel guests downtown and is a block away from a Seawall Trolley stop.
• For a stay in The Historic Strand District, book your stay at The Tremont House. The city trolley stops on the same block as the hotel.
• Or if you want to enjoy of view of the harbor, consider Harbor House Hotel & Marina at Pier 21.