Things To Do

The Strand Historic District

The Strand Historic District is located in downtown Galveston with a variety of buildings adapted for use as shops, restaurants, antique stores, museums and art galleries. This National Historic Landmark district consists of the business district of 19th-century architecture very close to the city’s wharf and Cruise Ship Terminal.

During the 19th century, Galveston was one of the largest ports in the United States and an important commerce center. For a time, it served as the capital of the Republic of Texas. The 1900 Galveston Hurricane devastated the Island, but a number of the Strand buildings survived this horrific storm.

Now, the Strand Historic District is small enough to walk it in entirety and runs along Galveston Bay. Events are hosted on the Strand year long, including Galveston’s Mardi Gras festivities and Dickens on the Strand.

The street named “The Strand” originally was platted as Avenue B. Shop owners at the time changed the name to Strand, as that word in various languages means beach.

Around the district are nightclubs, hotels and restaurants and many nearby attractions.

On one end of the Strand is the Galveston Railroad Museum, housed in the former Santa Fe Railroad station. The Museum has many hands-on exhibits suitable for both children and adults with full-sized train cars, models, and memorabilia.

The Texas Seaport Museum and the Tall Ship Elissa are located near Pier 21 on Galveston Bay. The 141-foot ship was built in 1877 and has been restored so that it can still sail on regular voyages. Visitors watch a movie about the Elissa and then board the ship to see both above and below deck.

Another unique experience in the Strand Historic District to see is the Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig and Museum. Texas was built upon oil exploration, and visitors learn about oil production through both exhibits and going on an actual oil rig.

Visitor Tips

Want souvenirs? Just about every gift shop imaginable is on the Strand from tee-shirt and beachwear shops with vast inventory to arts and jewelry stores.

Perhaps the most unique shop on the Strand is La King’s Confectionery. Generations have visited this recreation of an old-fashion confectionery located in one of the Strand’s historic buildings. Inside, visitors can indulge in unique ice cream and candy treats difficult to find in modern stores.

Parking can be difficult directly on the main part of the Strand, but there are both parking garages and surface lots nearby.

The Strand Historic District
2100 Strand
Downtown Galveston
Galveston, Texas 77550

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