Great things to do in Brazosport, Texas, for everyone!
If you’re looking for a less crowded, family-friendly Texas beach, the answer is Brazosport. The Brazosport area encompasses Clute, Freeport, Lake Jackson, Quintana, and Surfside Beach. Here’s what you need to know about things to do in Brazosport, Texas, for the whole family.
Brazosport is about 65 miles South of Houston, about a 4-hour drive from San Antonio, making it a manageable destination for a Texas road trip from many locations. Your family will have a great time with a moderate climate, fun in the sun, and many family activities you can do together. A Texas family weekend in Brazosport is all you need.
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Things To Do In Brazosport, Texas
Many outdoor activities include walking on the different beaches, bird watching, and searching for wildlife (alligators). But one of the best things to do in Brazosport, Texas, is visiting the uncrowded beaches. While there’s undoubtedly more to do in the Brazosport area than go to the beach, the proximity to the water is the big draw for most visitors.
If you’ve been to Port Aransas and South Padre Island already but want something more secluded this time, try Brazosport’s beaches.
There are four beaches in the Brazosport area: Surfside Beach, Follet’s Beach, Quintana Beach, and Bryan’s Beach. We visited Surfside Beach and Follet’s Beach. Surfside Beach was directly in front of our hotel. We walked to the water in the mornings and evenings to look for shells, dipped our toes in the surf, and checked out sandcastles during our stay.
We went to Follet’s Beach at the suggestion of a local. The big draw for us was free parking. There is a fee to drive your car on Surfside Beach. It’s not a lot of money – $12 for an annual pass, so it’s worth spending the money if you go more than once. Not paying for beach parking appealed to us since we were in the area briefly. The four beaches in Brazosport have their own set of rules.
Build A Sand Castle At The Beach
If your kids like to build sandcastles, they will love Surfside Beach. Be sure to bring small beach supplies like a pail, a play shovel, and the kind to help them build their masterpiece.
Playing On The Beach
We visited Sunday through Tuesday and noticed more people on the beach on Sunday – no surprise there – but nothing ever felt crowded. The beaches were clean, and there was a very family-friendly vibe. There are not a lot of stores or concessions around the beaches, and I saw no beach service stands for chairs or umbrellas, so you need to plan what you’ll need for your beach day and bring it. We did meet the ice cream truck on Follet’s Beach, which was a pleasant surprise.
Kayak At The County Beach
Fish, kayak, and roam this 13-mile stretch of public access beach seems like the best thing to do here. Follett’s Beach (County Beach) is a prime location for visitors to enjoy swimming and camping along the beach year-round. It’s free to park on this beach.
Check Out Brazosport National Wildlife Refuge
If your kids are bird enthusiasts, they will enjoy San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge and Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge. They can integrate their science classes by identifying ducks, pelicans, egrets, and other birds. And, if you’re lucky, you all may spot an alligator!
Freeport Wetlands Observation Deck
Climb to the top for excellent wildlife viewing year-round. Watch for ducks and geese flying overhead. Be careful because this is the bird’s deck, and they will not move for you.
Varner-Hogg Plantation State Historic Site
Visit the Varner-Hogg Plantation State Historic Site in West Columbia, TX. I was highly impressed as this was our first visit to a Texas State Historic Site. This site was once a working plantation that housed a sugar mill. In a short visit, you can learn a lot about Texas history and get a detailed look into the lives of enslaved persons. Some exhibits are relatively graphic, so talking to your kids about slavery is good.
You can go into some of the buildings and see the artifacts, and there’s a small museum in the visitor’s center. The grounds are lovely, with a picnic area, restrooms, and water fountains. There are self-guided tours and guided tours available.
Sea Center Texas
Another attraction not to miss is Sea Center Texas, run by Texas Parks and Wildlife. This is a great place to learn about the gulf’s fishing industry and sea life and how the ecosystems of salt marshes, gulf waters, and nearshore waters work together. Sea Center Texas has several aquariums, a touch pool, and a boardwalk extending over the marsh – you might get lucky to spot a turtle or an alligator.
Travel Pro Tip: Admission is free. Closed Mondays.
Center for the Arts and Sciences Museum
After visiting the beach and the wildlife refuges, you may want to go inside to cool off. If so, check out the Center for the Arts and Sciences. The center includes the Art League, Center Stages, and Museum of Natural Science.
Where To Stay In Brazosport
If your main interest is staying at the beach, I recommend staying close to the water. Many vacation rentals are available if you have a large group (or a large budget). Most of these are for multi-family use, hence the higher per-night prices. There is so much I love about a vacation rental versus a hotel (kitchen facilities, privacy, being able to spread out), so I recommend investing some time searching for a rental that meets your needs.
We stayed at the Ocean Village Hotel on Surfside Beach. We chose this hotel because of its waterfront location. It’s a no-frills hotel but very comfortable and clean. We stayed in a double queen room with a small balcony overlooking the gulf. The hotel seemed pretty full, but we heard zero noise in our room. The pictures online look like outside corridor rooms, but most are inside the corridor. The website lists suites and kitchenette rooms if you need more space. There’s an on-site restaurant, the Seahorse Bar & Grill, with patio seating.
Travel Tip: Call them if you are interested in staying here, and the website lists no availability.
Staying In Lake Jackson And Clute
There are fun things to do in Lake Jackson and Clute, and if you want a franchise (Hilton, Marriott, or similar) hotel, both have many choices, but it’s about a 15-20 minute drive to the beach. Lake Jackson also has a more extensive selection of places to eat and shop.
Restaurants In Brazosport Area
The Brazosport area has excellent restaurants for families who like American food, Cajun, Chinese, German, Greek, seafood, and more. Here are our favorites.
On The River – Freeport
Taqueria Los Gallos – Lake Jackson
Surfhorse Bar & Grill – Surfside Beach
Be sure to pick up a brochure at the visitors center for a complete list of places to eat and special events happening all over the area.
We hope you like these things to do in Brazosport, Texas, and that you’ll visit soon!