Pet Friendly Galveston Island

Dog Puppy Pet with a Beach View - Dog Friendly Galveston IslandSo, you’re planning your Galveston Island vacation, scrolling through options on your tablet…and you find it! The perfect beach house for your summer escape!

You check the bedrooms – yes! teens in a loft for the win! – then glance over to show it to your partner and, it happens. You catch the eye of your loyal canine companion. (The one you slip pieces of bacon to when no one’s watching.) Aaaand, there it is- those killer puppy dog eyes! The ones that say “you’re leaving me, aren’t you? To go frolick in the waves, sniff the sea air and chase the seagulls…”

Frantically, you scroll back up…searching…searching…ah HA! 

You’re out of the dog house! With over over 50 pet friendly vacation rental options here at Sand `N Sea, we’re sure to have a pet friendly beach house your whole family will love!

Now that you’ve eased your conscience (and added “dog treats” to your packing list), we have a few tips to help you and your dog have a great time at the beach:

Dog with Beach Towel - Pet Friendly Vacation Rental on Galveston Island• Be sure to have plenty of fresh water available for your pup to drink – at least 2x as much as usual. It’s hot at the beach and your dog will drink more than normal.
• Don’t let your dog drink salt water. It can cause him/her to get sick.
• Remember the leash laws. Galveston Island City ordinances require dogs to be on leashes at all times.
• Arrange for a shady, protected place for your dog to rest after a romp in the sun and surf. (Beach canopies, umbrellas, or just a towel draped over 2 chairs to make a little pup tent work perfectly for this!)
• If you leave your dog leashed in the shade, be sure to leave plenty of water nearby.
• Pets get sunburned too! Use sunscreen on exposed areas, like on noses and ears.
• If the sand is too hot for your feet, it is probably too hot for your dog’s foot pads.
• Don’t throw sticks or Frisbees far out into the water and expect your pup to retrieve them. The undertow can be strong and unpredictable, capable of carrying your dog out to sea before you know it. So play on the sand and near the water’s edge.
• Each day, rinse the salt water off your pup with fresh water. (The outdoor shower at your pet friendly vacation rental is perfect for this!)
• Watch for heat stroke and over exposure on sunny days, especially from noon to four o’clock-the hottest part of the day.
• Snakes! Do not leave your dog unattended in the yard. There have been snake sightings.
• Galveston has several restaurants that welcome pets. We’ll give you the list at check-in.
• In case you need help while on the island, Sand `N Sea has a list of recommended vets.

Be sure to ask about our special swag for your beach-going pet at check-in! We look forward to seeing you and your V.I.P. (very important pet) at a pet friendly vacation home on Galveston Island soon!

Thanksgiving Week Activities on Galveston Island

turkey in galvestonIf you’re anything like us, by now you’re on your 6th iteration of “The Holiday Menu” – complete with vegan options, too-many-pies-to-count, and a growing confusion about how “gluten free”stuffing could possibly be a thing.

Once the post-turkey/tofurkey fervor has died down next week, escape the confines of the kitchen and enjoy one of these fun, family-friendly activities happening here on Galveston Island:

Friday, November 24 – Hotel Galvez Tree Lighting Celebration festivities begin at 6 p.m. and include a special appearance by Santa Claus, live holiday entertainment including the Galveston Ballet, and the lighting of the hotel’s 35-foot Christmas Tree on the front lawn. During the event, the hotel collects donations for the Salvation Army of Galveston County.

artwalk fall in galveston txSaturday, November 25, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. – ArtWalk takes place inside existing art galleries (both commercial and non-profit) and other spaces such as cafes and shops that showcase rotating art exhibits in the heart of Galveston’s historic district.

moody gardens festival of lights galveston txMoody Garden’s Festival of Lights is a mile-long walking trail with more than one million lights and lighted scenes. Enjoy the area’s only outdoor skating rink, concession areas with hot chocolate and festive food, holiday buffets, live entertainment and more. (Through January 7, 2018)

moody gardens ice slide galveston txICE LAND: Rainforest Holiday showcases the work of a skilled team of master ice carvers. Journey through the rainforests of the world to see monkeys, beautiful birds, incredible butterflies, colorful orchids and more!  A giant ice slide takes you from the tree tops through to the forest floor, ancient ruins and rivers edge. (Through January 7, 2018)

Thanksgiving Dining on Galveston Island

Is anyone else still struggling to believe it’s already November!?! Whew! 2017 has certainly flown by, and we are sure we aren’t the only ones ready for a day off with family, friends and an excuse for eating copious amounts of delicious food!

We are looking forward to welcoming all of our Thanksgiving holiday guests to the beach in a few weeks! Holidays at the slower pace of Island life are ideal no matter your age and you don’t have to worry about meeting that “in-law/grandmother clean” standard when everyone travels to a beach house instead – it’s a win-win!

Galveston has some great local dining options if you want to make it a TRUE holiday and let your family chef(s) relax too! Check out some great local Thanksgiving dining options here. We’ve highlighted a few of our favorites below:

The San Luis Resort Champagne Brunch
10:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
$65/adult, $30/children

Moody Gardens Thanksgiving Day Buffet
11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
$59/adult, $29/children

ShyKatz Deli & Bakery – Take & Bake
Preorder by 3:00 p.m. on Monday, 11/20
Pickup by 12:00 p.m. on Wednesday, 11/22

Mosquito Cafe – Take & Bake
Preorder by 12:00 p.m. on Tuesday, 11/21
Pickup 10:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, 11/22

thanksgiving dining on galveston island tx cornucopia

Free Summer Events on Galveston Island

Let’s be honest, everyone loves free stuff, right? Free music, free food, free movies (surely we aren’t the only ones that think theater prices are just a little outrageous – whew!)…anyway, if it’s free you can pretty much assume we’re going to at least try it!

Thankfully, our little gem of an island is jam-packed with awesome FREE events all summer long!

Movie Nite on The Strand  the first Saturday of every month brings a different cinematic adventure to the outdoor screen at Saengerfest Park. Films begin at dusk. Don’t forget your lawn chairs and movie snacks!
June 3Earth to Echo (2014)
July 1National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
August 5The Secret Life of Pets (2016)

Galveston Tree Sculpture Tour – take a walking tour and see all of the beautiful sculptures made from oak trees that fell victim to Hurricane Ike in 2008.

red galveston island historic trolley Ride the Trolley along Seawall Boulevard and into Downtown Galveston. This free transport is a great way to see the East End if this is your first time to Galveston! (There are also several stellar local tours  if you prefer sometimes-weird tales & quirky facts that you can then pull out at random times to share with unsuspecting friends & family! Rates are reasonable, but book your tour time in advance!)

galveston island seawall beachfront fireworksBeachfront Fireworks Show – every Sunday night at 9 p.m. at the intersection of 37th Street & Seawall Blvd.  A great way to cap off an evening stroll along the Gulf!

Bucket Brigade Tours – hosted by Artist Boat, these 45 minute tours are offered at various locations and times along the new seawall beach. Check at the closest lifeguard station for daily tour times, or meander down any part of our 32 miles of beaches at your own pace with their Seek & Find Guide.

painting of two pink birds featured at galveston art walk galleryArtWalk – happens every six weeks, and is a fabulous excuse to get out and mingle on Saturday night. Wander through Historic Downtown Galveston and stop by the unique galleries, coffee houses and “other walls” that showcase some of the regions best talent. Many venues offer light hors-d’oeuvres too (score!). (June 3, July 15, August 26)

Hopefully you get to take advantage of some/all (for you vacation itinerary overachievers) of these great, family-friendly Galveston events!

FREE night on Galveston Island!

Summer vacation is almost over ? but warmer temperatures aren’t going anywhere, apparently!

We want to help you cool off (and sneak in one more weekend on the sand before school starts!) and we’ve got a hot deal to help make it happen! Take advantage of Mid Season rates AND enjoy a FREE* night at a beach house with a minimum two-night stay from August 15 – 29, 2016.

What could be better than extra time at the beach we ask you?! Not much! Well, unless it were extra time at the beach with a frozen lemonade & our favorite paperback, or time at the beach surf fishing while a pod of dolphins chased only the largest fish to our hook, or…well, you get the idea! The beach has it!

chairs in the sand on galveston beach

*Valid for new stays only, between August 15 and 29, 2016. Stays must be completed by August 29. Minimum 2 paid nights. Not valid with other promotional offers. Not all properties are eligible for this promotion.

Shorter Summer Stays in Galveston

Can’t escape for a full week at the beach this summer? We’ve got the answer… ::drum roll:: … a Shorter Summer Stay! We just released a great selection of vacation homes for stays as short as 3 nights in June. (If you’re part of our mailing list then you found out this awesome news yesterday – ahem!).

beach weekend getaway in galveston txCheck-in and check-out days are totally flexible, and we’ve got beachfront, beachside, and canal front homes with available dates – so there’s bound to be something that works for you! Big houses, cozy cottages, pet-friendly homes, homes with unobstructed Gulf views, hot tubs, you name it! Check out the current list of homes and available dates online.

Can’t book just yet?  Don’t worry! We’ll be adding more homes and more dates as the summer progresses, so as the beach keeps calling your name more insistently be sure to check back!

Shorter Spring Break Getaways on Galveston Island

sun cartoon with thumbs up advertising galveston island vacations Happy Friday!!!  Have you heard? We are now accepting reservations for as few as 3 nights for Spring Break 2016 on Galveston Island!

AND (wait for it…..) we just added several gorgeous new homes to our vacation rental program! Check out some of the highlights below, then visit their pages on our website to reserve one for your Spring Break getaway!

Bay Escape – Bayfront, Sleeps 14, & a Private Pool
Azul Seahorses – Beachfront, Sleeps 10, & a Pool Table

Be among the first guests we welcome to these beautifully-appointed properties – or search our whole inventory by amenity, location, and size!

Winter on Galveston Island

sand snowman winter on galveston island

Are we right?!?  As “Snowmageddon” is getting ready to turn the East Coast into a big pile of snow, we can’t help but rejoice as we grab our pullover, throw on our flip flops (because, seriously, they are an all-year wardrobe piece – no matter what our mother says) and be SO happy we get to call this Gulf Coast island home!

Even though it’s not quite sunbathing weather, there is still plenty to do!  Today was a great day for shell collecting with the wind blowing the water out and opening up wide stretches of beach. Or, grab a wetsuit and your surfboard for the days with great swells out along the Seawall.

Stop by one of our local restaurants for some warm comfort food, then walk it off while hunting for the perfect treasure in one of the kitschy little shops along The Strand. The Galveston Historical Foundation is hosting a free (with RSVP) winter lecture series that dives into Galveston’s nautical past.  The Grand 1894 Opera House continues its season of awesome programming with the Oak Ridge Boys this weekend.  We are especially intrigued by the Wellington International Ukelele Orchestra of New Zealand performing next month…

There are great programs offered at Galveston Island State Park that is free with park admission, cooking classes at The Kitchen Chick, Winter Texan deals at the Moody Gardens Golf Course, plus…well, you get the idea!

We freely admit that winter is one of our favorite seasons on the island – the weather can still be gorgeous and, without the crowds that summer brings, you get a chance to soak in the beauty at your leisure!

Galveston Vacation Planning – Go!

galveston vacation planner guide 2016

2016 Sand `N Sea rental brochures are hitting mailboxes this week!

You know what that means… it’s time to grab that “timely and productive” New Years resolution by the horns and get on 2016 vacation planning!  With 15,451 brochures going out to our guests you need to get your family and friends together soon to get your first choice of vacation rental this summer.  Looking for a large beachfront escape?  We’ve got several!  A cozy canal front spot where the fish are biting?  We’ve got that too.  Pet-friendly homes, homes with hot tubs, neighborhoods with pools…we’ve got ’em!

Did you draw the short straw at the holidays and get assigned family reunion planning?  Never fear!  We have a whole page of homes that work together to make it easier for you!  There’s sure to be a combo that Great Aunt Mavis and Cousin Joe can agree on. 😉 We also have several pages with local attraction information, birding tips and spots, and more!

Keep an eye on your mailbox this week and next for this go-to guide for planning your 2016 Galveston Island Vacation!