North of Galveston Island lies Pelican Island, a rather undeveloped island that’s home only to two major attractions. The first of these would be the Texas A&M University at Galveston, which you’ll find right after driving across the drawbridge. The second—and more popularly known to both locals and to visitors—is the Galveston submarine museum known as Seawolf Park. While located on a different island, the park is only accessible via a roadway that starts on Galveston; thus, the Park is part of Galveston City.
The submarine museum in Galveston offers a unique mix of activities—it boasts campgrounds, fishing grounds, and old naval vessels that are open to tour. This means it’s got something to offer everyone in the family—hours spent conversing and eating at a family picnic, afternoons (or evenings, or mornings, or entire nights) dedicated to a fine haul of fish, and a chance to explore ships that were once among the most powerful on the ocean—where else could you get a chance like this?
Only a single major road crosses the island, so you could say it’s off the beaten path, but that’s part of its appeal. People come here to get away from the demands of their everyday lives. With not just your office but the very image of a building so far away from you, it’s easy to relax. Sit out on a boat, stay up telling stories in a tent—enjoy whatever simple pleasures you like, without worrying about how much time has passed.
The Famous Galveston Submarine
The sunken naval vessels are a special treat—if you’ve been to see the 1877 tall ship Elissa at the Texas Seaport Museum, come and see the fantastic advances that happened in just sixty-five decades at the American Undersea Warfare Center (AUWC). Reviewers on Google love the experience of entering the World War II submarine, the USS Cavalla. This submarine in Galveston is not only a monument to the hugest conflict in human history, but also a fascinating glimpse at what, at the time, was state-of-the-art technology that helped give America its edge.
The AUWC also hosts the USS Stewart, one of only three surviving U.S. ships classified as destroyer escorts. It, too, was launched around the time of World War II. While parts of this monument are still closed to the public, you can still go aboard and view the artillery and the stern, among other places. Its rare designation as a destroyer escort means it features a unique blend of considerations not found on other warships.
West of Historic Downtown, you’ll find the Pelican Island Causeway. It’s the only bridge connecting Galveston to Pelican Island—take it and continue along Seawolf Parkway to the other end of the island. You’ll be nice and far from the city, perfect for some real relaxation!