What’s better than downing frosty beers on a Texas shoreline? Nothing, really. Unfortunately, as with most public beach areas in this country, coastal spots in and around the Lone Star State have rules and regulations prohibiting the open consumption of alcohol. It’s pretty difficult to fully be able to enjoy the glory of a boozy day on the sand, but luckily, there are a few exceptions that make it totally legal to drink with surf, sun, and sand. That said, here’s a handy cheat sheet of five Texas beaches that allow alcohol.
Enjoy A Drink On These 5 Texas Beaches
Situated on the Gulf of Mexico near the city of Freeport, this small and totally uncrowded beach community is seriously the perfect spot to sit, relax, and to sip on a snazzy bottle of wine in peace and utter quiet.
For those beach-lovin’ travelers who are looking to get far away from the party hard antics of Spring Breakers, head on up the coast to this stretch of sand just south of Galveston. You and the buds will be free to drink on the shore anytime you please, and if you want, you’re also allowed to gallop onto the soft warm sands with a horse any time from November 1 through March 31! It’s a Texas thing, and it’s totally normal. For reals.
Long known with a reputation for being Spring Break Central, SPI has no shortage of oceanside keggers, hoppin’ beach bars (including the largest one in Texas!), as well as beach bums and babes who love to BYOB. Yes, it’s totally and completely legal to drink to your heart’s content on South Padre Island, as well as around the Padre Island National Seashore near the Northern end of the island, which is also open to local boozers looking to escape the heavy crowds back on the main island.
Basically, alcohol of any kind is permitted within the almost 115 mile stretch along the shore—just as long as it’s not consumed in a moving vehicle. So if you’re looking to throw a raging party, this tropical paradise on the Gulf of Mexico is definitely the one for you.
3. East Beach
Photo: Dan Thibodeaux/Flickr
Situated right at the far eastern tip of Galveston Island, this expansive spot for sunning, swimming, live music, and sand castle competitions has been deemed the largest and coolest beach in all of Texas.
It’s famous for the array of awesome festivals and live concerts held throughout the summer months, and is home to a pavilion, boardwalk, and entertainment stage, as well as restrooms, showers, chair and umbrella rentals, concessions, and other amenities. What’s even better is that unlike most area beaches, alcohol is indeed permitted on this mighty stretch of sand—it’s also way less crowded than the other beaches, which is an added plus if privacy is highly valued. Make sure not to miss out on the annual American Institute of Architects (AIA) Sandcastle Competition each June.
Photo: Beth Punches/Flickr
Family owned and operated, this sandy gulf-front beach with parking and concession stands, as well as chair, umbrella, and jet-ski rentals is another select area on Galveston Beach where alcohol is fully permitted. It’s a nice stretch that’s conveniently located, well-kept, and family friendly. Try doing a crab run before unwinding from a fun-filled beach day with an ice-cold beer. Just remember that though alcohol is allowed, it needs to be in a can, as no bottles are allowed on the beach.
It’s known by many as the ‘Chill Beach,’ with its super laid back vibe and easy access that provides all the simplest seaside comforts beach-goers want and expect. Thanks to massive city efforts, Port A’s public area is also amazingly clean, and for a $12 annual pass, you can park on the beach whenever, wherever. What’s even better is that this fun and funky getaway does not tend to attract hordes of unruly crowds like South Padre or Galveston. Plus, as of earlier this year, alcohol is permitted on the beach—though there have been changes to just how late you can drink on the beach during spring break.
Do some relaxing, surfing, fishing, sea kayaking, birding, and partying at the Back Porch Bar or the local Tarpon Ice House. Port Aransas is truly a rad spot to just hang loose and enjoy the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico.
This article was written by Pamela Chan.