Visiting South Texas - Gulf Area

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Hi,  for my birthday later this month i thought i would drive down south to the coast.  Port Arthur is closest but people tell me i should go to galveston instead.  It only takes about 4 hours from here so i thought i would drive down early in the morning, spend the night and then come back the next day.  I wont be taking the RV ill just grab a motel for the night.

But i have no idea what there is to do in the area or what to see.  I will be on a budget, i did think about the water park there but there is a water park not too far from me here in canton so maybe ill do something else. 

Houston makes me a bit nervous because of all the crime there so i would like to just go around houston. 

Does anyone live in the area or anyone been to that part of the gulf that can give me some ideas of what to do.    Siteseeing, museum, visit the beach, other stuff.

Anyone been to seawolf park, there is a WWII sub there, sounds cool.


Thanks :)
 

Alpena Jeff

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Dec 7, 2014
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Up North - Michigan
Ah, Port Arthur. Home of the late great Janis Joplin. On our trek west this coming winter we pass close enough to maybe spend a night. Is her home a landmark? I'm a big fan if you didn't pick up on that.
One of many that passed too young.
Sorry for the hijack.
 

prfcdoc

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Feb 5, 2014
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462
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Livingston, TX,
I grew up in Port Arthur.  Janis was 2-3 years ahead of me at Thomas Jefferson High. Jimmy Johnson (ex Cowboys coach) was there at the same time. I didn't have any idea that either person existed.
Port Arthur is a town of swamps, good seafood, refineries and mosquitoes. The beach is about ? hour drive from there and you'll go through Sabine Pass, with the San Jacinto Monument and the Battleship Texas. Sabine Pass has always had one or two restaurants that serve barbecue crabs, a delicacy that is unique to the area, and, in my opinion, delicious.
Unfortunately, I can't give you any current advice on restaurants because I haven't been back there in years.
Bob
 

Rene T

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Farmington NH
prfcdoc said:
Unfortunately, I can't give you any current advice on restaurants because I haven't been back there in years.
Bob

They must have a Mickey Dee's or a BK.  :eek: ::) :)( ;D ;) 
 

darsben

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Central NY in summer beautiful Casa Grande AZ in w
If coming from the west I always take the gulf front road (Bluewater Highway)from Seaside beach to Galveston.
If you decide to take the opportunity to drive this way drive onto the beach and see the RV's boondocking there.
There is also a nice state park with water and electric that you should check out for future trips. (ask attendant at gate if you can drive through and scout). They have one side on the gulf and the other side on the bay.

There is a toll bridge on the route not expensive
Moody gardens is worth a look and the Sea Wolf park for sure.
Most of the beach in Galveston is down some stairs because of the seawall, if you have a hard time with stair this could be problematic

Take the ferry to the Bolivar peninsula (free) and check out the Bolivar flats for camping. Camping is allowed anywhere on the beach on the Bolivar peninsula but look at Bolivar flats. It is reached by  taking Rettilon Road off Hwy 87.  The beach is very wide and there are no houses. You have to buy a beach pass for about $20.00 a calendar year
Info can be found at  https://crystalbeach.com/
 
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Guest

Guest
Thanks, all good info...

Thats a great idea since ill only be there for a short period.  I could just drive the bluewater highway and take in the sights and smells of the ocean. 

Ill check the carry laws but does anyone know offhand if Texas state parks allow conceal carry or not?  Ill be carrying in my truck i just need to know if i should secure it if i go to a state park.

Update:  Yes you can carry concealed (with valid permit) in many Texas state parks (unless they are leased from the federal gov).  They are very strict however that you may not show or display or fire the weapon at any time.

From
https://texreg.sos.state.tx.us/public/readtac$ext.TacPage?sl=R&app=9&p_dir=&p_rloc=&p_tloc=&p_ploc=&pg=1&p_tac=&ti=31&pt=2&ch=59&rl=134


(d) Arms and Firearms. It is an offense for any person to display or discharge an arm or firearm in a state park, unless:
  (1) the person is participating in a public hunting activity within the state park that has been authorized by written order of the director so long as the person is in compliance with the applicable public hunting rules and regulations;
  (2) the person is fishing by means of lawful archery equipment or is participating in an authorized, supervised recreational or educational activity;
  (3) the person is licensed to possess and carry a handgun under Government Code, Chapter 411, Subchapter H, and is in possession of and/or carrying the handgun in compliance with applicable law, including, but not limited to, applicable regulations adopted pursuant to Government Code, Chapter 411, Subchapter H; or
  (4) the person has been authorized by written order of the director.




 

BigLarry

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Bryan, TX
You won't find any major restaurants in Sabine Pass today.  The Hurricanes of the '80's destroyed hwy 87 between Sabine Pass and Winnie.  As a result, it was too far out of the way for folks to go there to eat and Sartins at Sabine Pass closed.  Its now located on Hwy 365 in Port Arthur. 

If you have limited time, I would recommend Galveston.  Lots more to see.  There isn't much Gulf of Mexico views below Port Arthur. If you like to watch ships and barges, take the 5 mile road down to the end of the Texas City Dike.  It'll take you to the intersection of the Inter-coastal Canal and the Houston Ship Canal.  Lots of ship and barge traffic. 
 

Isaac-1

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SW Louisiana
My suggestion if staying on a budget is to drive down hwy 146, after crossing the Fred Hartman Bridge over the ship channel take 225 over to Independence parkway and go see the battleship Texas and the San Jacinto battlefield / monument (across the highway from each other).  The Texas is a unusual museum ship as it is the only surviving battleship to have served in both WW1 and WW2.  Then if you like seafood, and if they are open you might try Monument Inn Restaurant http://monumentinn.com/houston-seafood-restaurant-menu/  food is good, and prices are reasonable for seafood, it is located just north of the battleship park, maybe 1/2 mile or so.  Then get back on 146, and take it down to I45 and across to Galveston.  If your budget allows it I would certainly suggest checking out moody gardens, the aquarium there is world class though at $30 per person for the aquarium only or $65 for  full day pass it can be a bit pricey running on a budget.  Another more economic option in Galveston is the railroad museum, at $10 per person, it is located at the end of the strand in downtown, the Strand itself is a bit of its own attraction.  It has been several years since I last went to the railroad museum, and the last time I was there they had just reopened after being close for over a year due to storm damage from one of the hurricanes, so were still in recovery phase then.  Leaving Galveston for the return drive I would suggest taking the ferry across the to the bolivar peninsula and drive on up through High Island and Winnie.
 
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Guest

Guest
Awesome thanks all... :) 


I will be going from east texas tyler area and driving south.  I think i figured out a good loop there and back.. really appreciate the info :) 

I wish i could take the ferry but that means ill be in LA and i dont want to risk conceal carry in LA.  Too many people tell me too many things about the fact that the actual law and LE have different points of view on me being legal or not depending on who you talk to and i really dont want the hassle.  So ill stay in TX this trip. 
 

Isaac-1

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The ferry at Galveston does not cross into Louisiana.  Also Louisiana considers vehicles to be extensions of your domicile, so you can carry a gun in a car without any type of permit, as long as you are legally allowed to own one.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Isaac-1 said:
The ferry at Galveston does not cross into Louisiana.  Also Louisiana considers vehicles to be extensions of your domicile, so you can carry a gun in a car without any type of permit, as long as you are legally allowed to own one.

Thanks for the info..  Awhile back i looked up the law and it showed that LA recognized NM permit but then just to be sure i called the LA state police and he told me they did not recognize NM.  Rather than go back and forth in the conversation back then i just decided to stay out of LA.  But thanks for the info that helps alot, at least i can have it in my truck if i ever go there.
 
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