Fun People and Families at Surfside Beach, Texas Discover Surfside Beach
Only 58 miles south of Houston, Texas
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With its unspoiled shoreline, Surfside Beach, Texas is the perfect retreat for people who want to relax in a fully furnished beach house.

Surfside Beach

Things to do (Most of these activities are FREE)

Affordable family outings Museums
Bird watching Numbers to know
Boating Pedestrian Beach
Brazos Bend State Park Play in the sand (or snow)
Brazosport Art & Science Center Running / Marathons
Children playing at the beach San Luis Pass / Treasure Island
Church Scuba diving / Flower Garden
Crabbing Sea Center Texas
Dolphins / Whale Sea Shell Searchers
Fishing Sea turtles
Galveston Island Shopping
George Observatory Stahlman Park Conference Center
Golf courses Stephen F. Austin Statue
Grocery stores Surfside's East Beach
Jetty Park Varner-Hogg Plantation

Playing with family
Playing with family

Playing with Friends - Click to enlarge
Playing with Friends

Visiting with Grandparents - Click to enlarge
Visiting with Grandparents

Crabbing
Crabbing

Playing with Dad
Playing with Dad
(click to enlarge)
Worn out with dad
Worn out with Dad
(click to enlarge)
Discovering
Discovering

A very special, affordable family outing

Children love the beach. Whether they’re playing in the sand or splashing in the water, they, and you will love it. And, if you are up to it, they love having friends come with them.
  • There are plenty of fun things for kids to do at the beach that are FREE

    • Looking for shells and other “treasures”
    • Playing in the sand
    • Catching crabs
    • Playing with Mom or Dad

  • Swinging on an old fashioned Porch Swing

  • Crabbing enthralls young children and is fun for adults. It involves dangling a baited bit of string into the water and pulling up hungry, scrambling crabs.

    • The addition of a crab net and/or a ring net trap adds to the expense but you’ll catch more crabs.
    • Surfside Fishing Jetties and across from Stahlman Park are usually productive.
    • For more, go to Crabbing—It’s fun, and, it’s easy.

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red fish caught from beach
43 lb Red Fish
Caught from beach

red snapper
Red Snapper
Caught offshore

Tuna & red snapper - click to enlarge
Tuna & Red Snapper
Caught Offshore
(click to enlarge)

Texas' best sports fishing

  • 14 miles of freely accessible shorelines
    • You can usually find good fishing from the beach right in front of your house
    • Redfish this size are common in the fall, but the legal keep size is 20”-28”. With a license you can keep two oversized fish per year. The man pictured caught nine, and he released them all
    • But, they’re delicious either grilled or blackened
  • Deep sea fishing
    • Surfside is only a short boat ride from some of the best fishing areas on the Gulf Coast
    • Many varieties of Snapper, Grouper, King Mackerel, Amberjack, Ling, Dolphin (Dorado), & Tuna are caught
  • For more, go to Saltwater Fishing at Surfside Beach
    • Basics for newcomers
    • Expectations and fishing licenses
    • Fishing guides and boat charters
    • Surfside Jetty County Park. FREE
    • Surfside boat ramp – easy access to the open Gulf. FREE

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Watch dolphins playing

dolphins

Surfside has several pods of dolphins that can often be seen frolicking in the surf. These dolphins were photographed playing about 60 yards offshore in front of one of our houses.

Find a whale on the beach

whale

Whales are rare in the Gulf of Mexico. But in February, 2013 this 15 foot juvenile Minke whale was found stranded on our beach. After a couple of hours the whale was pushed back out into deeper water and he (or she) swam away.

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Egret


Sea Gull


Rosette Spoonbill

Enjoy one of the Audubon Society's favorite birding site locations in America

Brown Pelicans
Brown Pelicans
blue heron
Blue Heron
Spoonbills & Herons - Click to enlarge
How many can you identify?
(click picture to enlarge, and for answers)
  • Southern Brazoria County has ranked #1 in the North American Christmas Count four times in the last 20 years.
  • During this time over 326 species have been sighted.
  • An additional 50 migrant bird varieties converge during the Spring migration period from March to mid-May.

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Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle
Kemp’s Ridley Sea Turtle

 



Green Turtle Release
Wildlife staff released this Green Turtle back into Gulf
  Wildlife staff collect eggs
Wildlife staff collect eggs
(click picture to enlarge)

Discover a rare sea turtle’s nest

One of the joys of the beach is discovering what has washed (or crawled) ashore. Earlier this year a family staying at one of our houses found both a Green Turtle and a Kemp’s ridley sea turtle’s nest. In 2007 a guest in another house discovered a Kemp’s ridley sea turtle that was still on her nest. Both families called the turtle hot line (866-TURTLE-5) and U.S. Fish & Wildlife personnel came and carefully collected the eggs. The eggs will be incubated and released back into the Gulf.

The Kemp’s ridley sea turtle is the rarest sea turtle in the world. It was once the 12th most endangered species in the world (fewer than 1,000 nests in 1985), but it is now recovering and dozens of nests are found each spring along the Texas coast.

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Smooth Sailing
Bridge Harbor Marine Center & Yacht Club

Buccaneer
San Luis Pass
Minutes from Gulf or bay

 

Recreational Boating

  • Surfside is directly on the Gulf of Mexico
    • Fastest access to blue water in the Houston/Galveston area
    • Only a short boat ride to some of the greatest fishing areas on the Gulf Coast
    • Repair shops, dry stack marinas, and free public boat ramps
    • Home of Bridge Harbor Marine Center & Yacht Club
  • One of our houses is set up with the boater in mind
    • The 4-Bedroom Buccaneer is at San Luis Pass
    • The Buccaneer has a concrete parking slab under the house and access to a private boat ramp

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Sea Center Texas


Touch Tank
(click picture to enlarge)


50,000 Gallon Saltwater Tank
(click picture to enlarge)

Sea Center Texas

  • $13 Million, state of the art fish hatchery and Visitor Center
  • World's largest hatchery for red drum (also known as red fish) and spotted sea trout
  • Produces and releases 25,000,000 1¼ inch long fingerlings per year
  • Guided tours of hatchery are available, call 979-292-0100
  • 50,000 gallon salt water aquarium.
  • Two 12-foot Touch Tanks--touch and feel blue crabs, hermit crabs, starfish, urchins, clams, snails, and anemones
  • 5,000-gallon jetty exhibit + 5,000-gallon artificial reef + 2,200 gallon Coastal Bay aquarium + 1,000-gallon salt marsh exhibit
  • ADMISSION IS FREE
  • Open Tues—Sat. 9 AM—4.PM, Sun. 1PM—4 PM. Closed Mon. and holidays

HOW TO GET THERE: Sea Center Texas is in Lake Jackson at 300 Medical Drive. To get there from Surfside, take Texas 332 toward Lake Jackson for 10 miles. Take Plantation Drive exit (there’s a Randall’s and large Buc-ee’s on west side of highway). Turn left on Plantation Drive and it dead ends at Sea Center Texas.

Call 979-292-0100 to confirm hours and for additional information
website: www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/visitorcenters/seacenter/

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Brazosport Center for the Arts and Sciences

Brazosport Planetarium

 

 

 The Clarion at Brazosport College

Brazosport Center for the Arts and Sciences

Generously endowed by Dow and other local benefactors, this is a remarkable collection of resources. Rated one of Top Ten Museums in Texas by Frommer's Travel Guide and in 2004 was chosen BEST in category of “Best Attractions/Museum” by the Texas Travel Counselors.

  • Brazosport Center Stages
    • Oldest theatre group on the Texas Coast
    • Teen summer programs
  • Brazosport Planetarium
    • NASA scientists train here
    • Planetarium shows most Tuesday evenings
    • Can be reserved for private group showings
  • Brazosport Art League
    • Local and traveling exhibits
    • Art classes for adults and kids
  • Brazosport Museum of Natural Science
    • Largest sea shell collection in the southern United States
    • Wildlife and fossil exhibits
  • Affiliated Groups: Visitors are welcome
    • Brazosport Archaeological Society
    • Brazosport Birders
    • Sea Shell Searchers of Brazoria County
  • The Clarion at Brazosport College
    • 600-seat concert hall
    • Several concerts each year
HOW TO GET THERE: The Brazosport Center for the Arts & Sciences is in Clute at 400 College Blvd. To get there from the stoplight in Surfside, take Texas 332 toward Lake Jackson. In 6½ miles take the ramp to the right and go north on TX-288B toward Clute & Angleton. In 3 miles you’ll come to a stop light at College Blvd. (there’s a McCoy’s Lumber on the left). Turn left for 1/4th mile. The Brazosport Center for the Arts & Sciences and Brazosport College are on the right.

For more information, call 877-265-7661 (toll free)
website: www.bcfas.org

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Churches

  • Good Morning Surfside Church
    Sun. 9:00 am
    610 Beach Drive

  • The Anchor Church of Surfside Beach
    Sun. 10:30 am Wed. 7:00 pm
    111 Surf Dr. (one block North of Beach Dr.)

  • First United Methodist Church
    Founded in 1836 979-798-2220
    409 Lazy Lane, Brazoria

  • B’Nai Israel Church
    Founded in 1868 409-765-5796
    3006 Ave. O, Galveston

  • St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church
    979-233-5271
    1019 West 6th St., Freeport

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Lake Jackson Historical Museum

  • Dozens of video presentations, hands-on exhibits and interactive displays.
  • World’s first composite airplane that was "invisible" to radar. Precursor to the Stealth Aircraft.

Call 979-297-1570
website: www.lakejacksonmuseum.org

 

Fort Velasco Historical Museum

  • Since being discovered by the Spanish in 1528 Surfside has played a pivotal role in Texas’ history.
  • This small, FREE museum in on the second floor of Surfside’s City Hall at 1304 Monument Drive.
For more, go to Historical Events

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damsel fish
Damselfish & Coral
115 miles offshore
(click picture to enlarge)

Dive the beautiful Gulf of Mexico "Flower Gardens" Reef

  • Located 115 miles offshore, the Flower Garden Banks are the northernmost living coral reefs on the continental shelf
  • Each August the waters of the Flower Gardens explode with an effervescent white glow as the coral reefs begin spawning
  • The Stetson Bank is closer and is worth diving, but it does not have coral reefs

website: www.flowergarden.noaa.gov

Underwater Expeditions 979-285-0600
HydroSports Scuba 979-285-0600

 

Dive Mammoth Lake
(click picture to enlarge)

 

Dive Mammoth Lake

  • 70-feet deep dive lake + indoor diving pool
  • Authorized PADI classes & dive shop
  • Tank fills
      Call:  979-266-9771
      Website: http://www.mammothlakescuba.comm

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elaborate playing
Elaborate playing
(click picture to enlarge)

simple playing
Simply playing

Play in the Sand

Whether you build something elaborate or quite simple, there is something wonderfully relaxing about playing in the sand.

It’s FREE. And, adults enjoy it just as much as kids.

snowman
Christmas 2004

 

Play in the Snow

Because of the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, Surfside Beach is normally warmer than Houston during the winter (and cooler during the summer).

But, in a once in a lifetime happening, Surfside Beach had several inches of real snow for Christmas, 2004.

Since this is the first time we have ever had a white Christmas, we cannot promise that it will happen again.

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Surfside Beach Marathon

Surfside Shufflle

Running Medal

Run on the beach

Whether jogging for a half a block or running several miles, a run on Surfside Beach will be more enjoyable than your regular route. Plus, the well packed sand is easier on your legs.
  • “Best run you’ve probably never done.” Roberta Macinnis, Running Columnist, Houston Chronicle
  • The Surfside Beach Marathon and Half Marathon for 2014 is February 1st. This run is quite popular so it’s best to register early.
  • The Surfside Shuffle 5K/10/K and Kid’s Run is January 4th, 2014 All kids 12 and under finishing their 300 or 1000 meter run receive medals and t-shirts.
Websites: http://thedriven.net/surfsidemarathon/?id=2 and http://www.surfsideshuffle.com/

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Pedestrian Beach
Pedestrian Beach
(No cars allowed)


Pedestrian Beach

Pedestrian Beach. Located on the west side of Surfside Beach. This area has been set aside for beach visitors to enjoy the beach without any interference from vehicles. It is perfect if you have small children. Off-beach parking is permitted adjacent to the beach.

A number of our beach houses are located on this car-free beach.

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Surfside’s East Beach
Surfside’s East Beach

Surfside’s East Beach

Surfside’s East Beach. Most of Surfside’s larger houses are on this section of the beach. It is located about 2½ miles east of Surfside’s only stoplight.

We have several houses clustered near each other on this beach in case you want to have additional family or friends stay near you. All of our houses on the East Beach are beach front.

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 Galveston Aerial view
Aerial view of Galveston
(click picture to enlarge)

Galveston Island

Because we have so much less traffic than Galveston, it is often more relaxing to stay at Surfside Beach and drive over to Galveston if you want to do something over there.

Galveston Beach Houses. Galveston has a number of very nice beach houses. Although most of the houses on the first row at Galveston are privately owned and not available for vacation rental, there are beachhouses in Galveston a few streets back from the beach that can be rented.

Some of the fun activities on Galveston Island:

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San Luis Pass
San Luis Pass

Buccaneer
Buccaneer

 

San Luis Pass/Treasure Island

San Luis Pass links Galveston Bay with the Gulf of Mexico. It is spanned by a mile long bridge ($2.00 toll) and forms the back entrance to Galveston Bay. San Luis Pass is ten miles east of Surfside Beach (13 miles from the stop light).

Treasure Island is on the Surfside Beach side of San Luis Pass. It has the beaches, fishing, and reduced traffic of Surfside, but is ten miles closer to Galveston. One of our houses, the Buccaneer is at Treasure Island.

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Varner-Hogg Plantation Manor

Varner-Hogg Plantation State Historical Park

In 1824, Martin Varner, one of Texas' original 300 colonists started his sprawling plantation on the Brazos River. Governor James Hogg purchased it in 1901, and his daughter Ima Hogg donated the property to the state of Texas in 1958.

Majestic ante-bellum home with many Hogg family heirlooms, period furniture and historic documents

For more information: www.visitvarnerhoggplantation.com/index.aspx?page=19

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Interesting site on the way to Surfside –
Stephen F. Austin Statue

Stephen F. Austin Statue - Click to enlarge Stephen F. Austin Statue - Click to enlarge Stephen F. Austin Statue - Click to enlarge Stephen F. Austin Statue - Click to enlarge
(Click on pictures of statue to enlarge)

A 72-foot tall cement likeness of Stephen F. Austin, the father of Texas, stands on the east side of Highway 288, midway between Highway 35 and the north edge of Lake Jackson. The huge sculpture was designed by sculptor David Adickes who also designed the 67-foot tall statue of Sam Houston near Huntsville, Texas.

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Brazos Bend State Park

Brazos Bend State Park

4,897 acres and 3.2 miles of Brazos River frontage provide some of the state’s most magnificent hardwood bottomland. Good possibility of seeing a few alligators. Brazos Bend State Park is in the area of Stephen F. Austin's first colonial land grant from Mexico and Texas’ first Anglo colonization.

For more information, visit www.tpwd.state.tx.us/state-parks/brazos-bend or call 979-553-5101.

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George Observatory

George Observatory

Located in the Brazos Bend State Park. It is home to one of the country’s largest telescopes, the 36-inch Gueymard Research Telescope — similar to NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope — as well as two smaller domed telescopes. A satellite facility of the Houston Museum of Natural Science.

For more information, visit www.hmns.org/observatory or call 713-639-4629.

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Lightning Whelk
The Texas State Shell

Coquina
A Sea Gull delicacy

Sea Shell Searchers of Brazoria County

Did you know that Texas has a state shell? It is the beautiful Lightning Whelk.

Anybody interested in the collection and study of sea shells found along the Texas coast is invited to participate in regular programs, field trips and a newsletter. The group meets every month on the first Tuesday.

For more information: http://bcfas.org/museum/SSSBC/SSSBC.html or call 979-265-7831.

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Grocery stores

  • Surfside has two “seven-eleven” type grocery stores. Both carry a reasonable assortment of groceries and drinks.

  • Walmart has a full sized grocery store on the north edge of Lake Jackson. Off of Highway 288, take the Oyster Creek / 332 West exit. Go west one block to 121 Hwy. 332 West, Lake Jackson, 77566.

  • Handy Shopping Triangle
    • Baywood Foods, Good assortment for a small town grocery store. Address: 301 So. Brazosport Blvd., Freeport. 979-231-1307
    • Cap’t Marks, Fresh fish and shrimp. Notice the large shark on wall that jumped into one of their offshore fishing boats. Address: 603 2nd St., Freeport. 979-2336-0555.
    • Buc-ee's, Crushed ice--20 lbs. for $1.49. Address: 4231 Highway 323 (on right coming from Lake Jackson toward Surfside).

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Shopping

Surfside Beach is a relaxed, casual beach resort. But on the north edge of Lake Jackson at the intersection of Highway 332 and 288 is Brazos Mall. In the Mall and immediate neighborhood are several large stores, including:

  • Dillard's
  • Penny's
  • Academy
  • Target
  • Wal-Mart
  • Sears
  • The mall also has a fourteen-screen movie theater and several casual restaurants.

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    Columbia Lakes


    The Wilderness

    Golf at several 18-hole golf courses

    Course Pro Phone
    Columbia Lakes Resort – West Columbia Jeff Bietz 800-231-1030
    Freeport Municipal – Freeport Pinkey Hartline 979-233-8311
    Riverside Country Club – Lake Jackson Neal Ermies 979-798-9141
    The Wilderness – Lake Jackson Kit Thomson 979-297-GOLF
    West Brazos Golf Center – Brazoria Larry Monte 979-798-4653

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    Numbers to know

    Emergencies – 911

    Non Emergencies
    Surfside Police – 979-239-1151 or 979-239-1152
    Surfside Fire Dept. or EMS – 979-233-5926
    Brazoria County Sheriff – 979-265-3910
    Brazosport Regional Medical Center – 979-297-4411
    US Coast Guard – 979-233-3801

    Hospital – Brazosport Memorial Hospital in Lake Jackson is a well equipped, full service hospital. It has an Emergency & Minor Care entrance.

    HOW TO GET TO THE HOSPITAL: From the stoplight in Surfside, take Texas 332 toward Lake Jackson. In 12 miles you will come to a stop light at Oak St. Turn left and go 3/10th mile to first stop light. Brazosport Memorial Hospital is on the left. Address: 100 Medical Dr., Lake Jackson, 77566. Phone: 979-297-4411

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    fishing
    Fishing Jetties

    Surfside Jetty County Park

    • 1,500-foot flat-top surface over granite boulders
    • Puts the casual, or serious fisher person within easy reach of moving tides and feeding fish
    • Volleyball courts and small playground

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    Stahlman Park Conference Center
    Stahlman Park
    (click picture to enlarge)

    Stahlman Park Conference Center

    The Stahlman Park Conference Center was completely rebuilt after the popular pavilion was destroyed during Hurricane Ike. The pavilion is located on the beach front, can be reserved for private events, and is quite nice.

    For more information: Stahlman Park Conference Center
    To reserve, call the Village of Surfside Beach: 979-233-1531.

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    If you have any questions about vacationing at Surfside Beach,
    or if you would like to reserve one of our houses,
    please call us at 713-995-6111, or go to Contact Us.

    Beach Front Properties
    Quality beach houses since 1981
    www.BeachHouses.com

     

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