Blake Walsh

15 Free Things to Do in Texas City, TX

  • Published 2022/12/29

Texas City is a bay area city in the state of Texas, part of Galveston County.

Texas City overlooks Galveston Bay, which acts as one of the many tourist attractions that shares with its much more popular neighbor, Galveston City.

While Galveston is more known for tourism, Texas City still has a lot to offer, such as various beaches and Moses Lake—one of the bigger lakes under Galveston County.

Because Texas City is full of residential areas thanks to its strong local manufacturing industries, the city has plenty of public parks as well.

To get you started in your adventure, here’s a list of the free things to do in Texas City, Texas:

Enjoy the Galveston Bay at Dike Beach

The waters of Dike Beach

Johnerick Cintron /

Dike Beach is one of the most iconic tourist attractions that you can enjoy for free in Texas City.

A beach at the southern tip of the city, Dike Beach spans several miles along the narrow Dike Road.

The beach is the city’s farthest land area that stretches to Galveston Bay which is connected to the Gulf of Mexico—offering fantastic bayside views.

People at Dike Beach

Patrish Jackson /

Don’t expect any fine white sand when you go to Dike Beach.

Instead, you’ll have a more rustic experience because of its stony shores, which also feature huge rock formations.

At the end of the beach, there’s a fishing pier as well that’s famous as a hotspot for anglers and those who try to observe marine life activity.

Play at Texas City Disc Golf Course

If you’re a big fan of disc golf, there’s a free course in Texas City just a few minutes from Bay Street Park.

Texas City Disc Golf Course offers a great bayside experience while you play their 18-hole disc golf course.

Because of its location, this course can get quite challenging due to the strong winds and several water hazards, making this a fun game for serious enthusiasts.

Large compared to the usual disc golf courses in the country, Texas City Disc Golf Course can also double as another scenic place for you to enjoy the bay.

There are walking trails here that make it a popular spot for locals to jog or just take a pleasant stroll.

Visit the Propeller of the SS High Flyer

Located along Dike Road between Dike Beach and Bay Street Park lies a historical relic that’s a must-see if you’re a big fan of aviation history.

Propeller of the SS High Flyer features an actual propeller from a 1947 plane that exploded while docked in one of the cargo ships in Texas City.

The explosion was caused because the plane was close to ammonium nitrate fertilizer, causing a reaction that resulted in the death of 550 people, 27 of which are firemen.

You can learn more about it when you go see the Propeller of the SS High Flyer, which also makes for a great photo opportunity due to its aged aesthetic.

Free and easy to see, the Propeller of the SS High Flyer is a must-visit during your trip to Texas City.

Go Fishing at Moses Lake Floodgate

Moses Lake is the primary lake of Texas City, flowing out to Galveston Bay from the city’s northern end along Beach Drive.

There are many free ways to experience Moses Lake, but fishing is the most popular activity here.

Brimming with all sorts of aquatic life, you can catch all sorts of large fish here at the Moses Lake Floodgate, right along the mouth of the lake that flows to Galveston Bay.

Sand trout and black drums are some of the most popular kinds here, and you can even take out your own kayak if you want to go further in the waters.

Even if you’re not an angler, you can visit Moses Lake Floodgate, as it has beautiful, unobstructed sunset views far from the hustle and bustle of Texas City.

Take a Breather at the Scenic Bay Street Park

Aircraft on the grounds of Bay Street Park

Alan Wilson from Stilton, Peterborough, Cambs, UK, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Bay Street Park is another popular tourist hotspot in Texas City, renowned for its beautiful walking trails that make it a fun, family-oriented place to visit.

You can also get beautiful views of Galveston Bay here, this time replacing the rugged terrains of Dike Beach with well-maintained grass fields and park amenities such as benches, gardens, and a gazebo.

A sizable park, Bay Street Park is also a fantastic option if you want to do some scenic cycling along the shorelines of Texas City.

It’s also a great place to observe birdwatching and marine life, as many animals live here because of its tranquil atmosphere.

Bay Street Park can be accessed along Bay Street North at the eastern end of the city.

See Various Art Sculptures at Texas City Memorial Park

Texas City Memorial Park is one of the more interesting parks in the city because of its several art sculptures.

Only a small park, this place is a fantastic area to just quickly explore as you read up on the various sculptures and monuments here.

Its centerpiece is a large water fountain with a large angel statue, but it’s mainly known for commemorating the 1947 disaster involving the SS High Flyer.

Besides several large statues, you can find information boards here that also talk about the city’s history, including the disaster.

Texas City Memorial Park can be found along 25th Avenue North.

Experience History at Texas City Museum

Texas City Museum is a must-visit because of its great collections, highlighted by its railroad exhibit, found in the busy areas of 6th Street.

Free to enter, this museum also has plenty of additional information about the historic tragedy involving the SS High Flyer.

Because Texas City played an integral role during World War II as it is a port city, you can find various WWII artifacts here, most prominently an actual WWII cannon.

Still, whether you’re visiting with children or not, it’s hard not to get excited with its expansive railroad dioramas.

A small museum that won’t take you more than two hours to explore, Texas City Museum is a must if you want to maximize the free things you can do in the city.

Check out Texas City’s Art Festival at Charles T. Doyle Convention Center

Texas City holds many public events throughout the year, and one of the most highly anticipated ones is their Art Festival.

Typically hosted during the first or second week of April, Texas City’s Art Festival features various exhibits from many local artists.

Some artworks will eventually be critiqued since this event has prizes for winning artworks.

Beyond the event, the venue, which is Charles T. Doyle Convention Center, is also an attraction on its own because of its beautiful facade that features a lovely garden and water fountain.

Even if you’re not going during the city’s Art Festival, give the convention center a quick visit as well as it makes for great photo opportunities.

Art Festival at Charles T. Doyle Convention Center can be accessed through 21st Street North, at the heart of Texas City.

Take Photos of the Halfmoon Shoal Lighthouse

Exterior of Halfmoon Shoal Lighthouse

amy71465 /

Halfmoon Shoal Lighthouse can be easily accessed during your trip to Bay Street Park, as it’s just across the bay, found along Skyline Drive.

One of the historical landmarks of Texas City, Halfmoon Shoal Lighthouse is a beautiful, solitary architectural marvel that overlooks Galveston Bay.

You can enter the lighthouse for free, but note that there is a parking fee if you’re parking here.

There are a lot of information boards present at Halfmoon Shoal Lighthouse, discussing the history of the structure along with the bay itself and its ecology.

There’s not a lot of urbanization in the area, making this one of the best places for landscape and scenic photography.

Bring Your Pooch to Texas City Dog Park

Texas City Dog Park is a fantastic addition to your itinerary if you’re a passionate fur parent who’s looking to unwind with your dog for a couple of hours.

Found on 29th North Street in the heart of Texas City, this dog park is a convenient and walkable trip if your accommodation is nearby.

The park features spacious and well-maintained grassy fields that are properly fenced to ensure your dog’s safety when you let them loose.

There are two areas here, one dedicated to large breeds and the other for small ones.

There are a couple of obstacle items here to stimulate your energetic pooch and a couple of benches for you.

Easily the most famous dog park in the city, this place is also a fantastic area to socialize and get to know a few locals.

Immerse in Texas City’s Community at Carver Park

Speaking of locals, if you want a busier park where many locals congregate to do all sorts of fun family activities, you may want to check out Carver Park.

Larger than the Texas City Dog Park, Carver Park has several amenities like playgrounds, a pond, a splash pad, and a basketball court.

There are also baseball fields and plenty of shaded areas where you can do picnics.

Plenty of events happen at Carver Park year-round, so check them out if you have some downtime.

Carver Park can be found along Carver Avenue and Park Avenue.

Drive Along Palmway Highway

While Texas City is primarily known as a port city because of Galveston Bay, its rich local economy has made it a bustling city with all sorts of interesting establishments.

If you want to see the busiest urban districts of Texas City, driving along Palmway Highway is the best place to sightsee.

Palmway Highway is the city’s main thoroughfare connecting various avenues and main streets.

You’ll see lots of various places here, such as local restaurants, malls, schools, parks, and historical places.

This is also the best route to take if you’re coming or going to another renowned neighbor of Texas City—Houston.

Other Free Things to Do Nearby

See the Gulf of Mexico Along Galveston Seawall

Sunset over the Galveston Seawall

Yinan Chen, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Galveston Seawall is perhaps one of the best free things you can do near Texas City, taking only a 25-minute drive by car to reach.

While the views you get of Galveston Bay at Texas City are beautiful, Galveston Seawall’s views of the Gulf of Mexico are even prettier.

Spanning 10 miles long, this seawall is both an architectural and historical landmark for the city of Galveston.

This is the perfect place to just do some early morning jogging or even just drive by along the beautiful coastline.

If you want to experience the gulf first-hand, several beaches here are free and make a great place to swim or sunbathe.

Go Boat-watching at Fort San Jacinto Historic Point

Battery at Fort San Jacinto Historic Point

Patrick Feller from Humble, Texas, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Fort San Jacinto Historic Point is located at the northernmost end of Galveston, which you can reach via a 28-minute drive.

It’s one of the best places to do boat-watching, as it’s directly facing the inner channels of the gulf where you can see Port Bolivar on the other side.

Tons of ships of all kinds pass by here, so bring your camera for some awesome photography.

Beyond the ships, there’s also a bit of historical information about Fort San Jacinto Historic Point.

One of the best places to relax and just take a break put this as a must-see area during your Galveston County trip.

Do Wildlife Observation at East End Lagoon Nature Preserve

Sunset reflecting on the waters of East End Lagoon Nature Preserve

magraphy /

Just a few minutes from Fort San Jacinto Historic Point lies East End Lagoon Nature Preserve, which takes you about 30 minutes to reach by car from Texas City.

A small oasis in Galveston County, you can do all sorts of outdoor activities here, primarily boating and wildlife observation.

The lagoon is picturesque, making it a popular place for paddle boarding and kayaking.

There are also several nature trails where you can explore the rich mini wilderness home to various small mammals and birds.

Not many nature preserves are found in this area of Texas, so give East End Lagoon Nature Preserve a go if you’re raring to be close to nature.

Final Thoughts

While Texas City may be overshadowed by its more famous neighbors, such as Galveston and Houston, the city is still packed with all sorts of free things to do.

It’s a bustling urban city that’s great for a road trip, especially if you visit its coastal zones, such as Dike Beach and Bay Street Park.

If you’re planning to use the city as your cheaper way to enjoy nearby Texas attractions, plenty of city parks make for a great addition to your itinerary.

Revisit these 15 free things to do in Texas City, Texas, for the ultimate budget-friendly hack when visiting the Lone Star State.

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