Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast? Our home is there, so that’s one good reason already, but there are so many more. You don’t have to book a glamorous beach hotel, an expensive offshore or coastal fishing charter, or even a guided tour to enjoy the Texas Gulf Coast. If you love nature and the outdoors, this is the place to be whether you are traveling in your RV, car, plane, or boat. Trips by train, not so much.

Quintana County Beach Park

330 5th Street
Quintana, TX 77541

We thought it would be a fun adventure to take the RV and spend a few days at Quintana Beach County Park. After three nights at Quintana, we would meet friends and continue together to Anahuac and then Louisiana. What a great adventure we had.

Quintana County Beach Park is just an hour’s drive from home, making it an easy getaway spot. Steve and I have great memories from our many camping trips at Quintana in our pop-up camper and then in our travel trailer, but it had been several years since we’ve camped here.

The Park was heavily damaged in the “Texas Blizzard of 2021,” and the bathhouse and laundry room are currently closed. This information is posted on the Park’s website, so it will not surprise visitors, but it was really not a problem.

Quintana County Beach Park has all the things we love about the Texas Gulf Coast

The Park covers 52 acres and is a top-rated day-use Park as well as an RV Park. The Park has a great playground, many picnic tables and grills, and even a fishing pier. A $5 fee is charged per vehicle for day-use. RV camping costs are very reasonably priced, from $20 to $32 per night.

It was fun to watch the huge ships a the Freeport LNG plant that is practically next door to the park. We also enjoyed watching boat and ship traffic passing through the nearby jetties.

The RV park is attractive, well-maintained, pet-friendly, affordable, has full hookups, large RV sites, is close to but not in town, and is a mere 300 yards away from the beach. Small palapas and benches are placed along the beach, but it is as natural a beach as you can find. Mosquitos are the original residents here, so be sure to have repellant with you.

The beach

Steve and Tank walking on the beach

We spent a lazy afternoon walking on the beach with Tank and Lilly. Tank enjoys chasing the waves, but he is afraid of them at the same time. He’s pretty funny to watch. We ended our afternoon by sitting on one of the benches looking at the water and listening to the birds. We were there mid-week, and it was not at all crowded. I know the place is much busier on weekends, though.

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

Lilly and me relaxing on the beach

Quintana Neotropical Bird Sanctuary

A small neotropical bird sanctuary is just around the corner from the County Park. It is small but boasts a great viewing tower, park benches, a pond with a fountain, and even a few trails. I remember being nearly eaten alive by mosquitos here many years ago. None were around for this visit, though, thank goodness.

There are a million and 32 steps to the top! At least that’s what my knees said.

Unfortunately, we also did not see many birds. Still, we were noisy and did not stay at the sanctuary very long. In past years I have sat and observed many migratory birds here.

The City of Freeport

Freeport’s beautiful park area right in the middle of downtown.

In 1957 the separate communities of Freeport and Velasco were joined to become one town named Freeport. An interesting bit of history is that Velasco was once the temporary capital of the Republic of Texas.

Freeport gets its name from the Freeport Sulphur Company, but Freeport’s economic boom came when Dow Chemical Company was constructed. Dow is still the city’s largest employer.

Freeport, Texas, a coastal port city, is located directly on the Intercoastal Waterway, about 40 miles from our house. We have often traveled the hour or so by boat to Freeport to go offshore fishing. Deepwater and excellent offshore fishing are only a few miles from the Intercoastal Waterway in Freeport.

Freeport Historical Museum and Visitors Center

311 E. Park Street
Freeport, TX 77541

During one of our days in Quintana, we drove through Freeport and ended up in the downtown area where their local county museum is located. We were the only visitors on that weekday afternoon and took our time wandering through the rooms.

The museum was created in 2009 and is full of models and some original artifacts that portray 300 years of history in Freeport. The most remarkable part of the museum for us was the cozy but extensive library/research center at the museum’s back.

On the River

919 W. 2nd Street
Freeport, TX 77541

This restaurant is a landmark in Freeport and has been a favorite of the locals since 1988. On the River serves excellent and reasonably priced food, including delicious seafood, of course, in a casual atmosphere with great service.

We love the Texas Gulf Coast.
We love the Texas Gulf Coast.

The jalapeno cornbread – oh my goodness! We thought the small cast-iron skillet full of cornbread was a cute and pleasant way to serve bread to our table. Then we tasted it! What a savory delight it turned out to be.

We love the Texas Gulf Coast.

Sorry, the plate is half-finished but “someone” could not wait for a photo.

We love the Texas Gulf Coast.

We were delighted with our fried shrimp and fish dinners accompanied by coleslaw and turnip greens. Our service was also pretty terrific. Our waitress, Hope, left this sweet note on our ticket for us.

Steve and I have both been here before, but it was many years ago. This restaurant is not so far from home that we can’t drive down for an afternoon, and I expect we will return here one day soon as part of an afternoon outing for a good meal.

Back to Frascone Winery

We love the Texas Gulf Coast

Our Quintana Beach County Park stay ended, but we weren’t quite ready to end the trip. We did drive home, briefly, to meet our neighbors, Annette and Mac, who traveled with us in their motorhome to Frascone Winery in Anahuac. It was not so long ago that we visited this winery for the first time. We had such a great time we wanted to share it with our friends. You can about our first visit to Frascone Winery here.

We love Anahuac on the Texas Gulf Coast too!

We parked our rigs, walked over to the winery for a wine tasting and a sample of their delicious gator rolls. We were disappointed to discover the owners Jim and Katy, were out of town but had left their winery in competent hands with great people. It was interesting to see the number of customers at the winery purchasing wine. This is a popular place!

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

This time around, we did a wine tasting, sampling six different wines. We discovered and purchased a bottle of the Oak Island Red that we liked as much as the Biker’s Blood wine we’d purchased on our last trip.

The city water was shut off!

We planned to drive a short distance to a nearby restaurant for dinner. However, the water services were shut off to the entire community by someone, and the restaurant had to close. We never did learn why the water was off, just one of those things.

We were the fortunate ones that evening. The community water being shut off did not affect either of us, other than not being able to go to the restaurant because we have our water tanks onboard our motorhomes.

L’auberge du lac Casino

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

Once upon a time, long ago at the Lake Charles L’auberge du lac casino (Pennies).

After our peaceful night’s sleep at the Frascone Winery, we decided to spend just one more night out and about. We drove short two hours east to the L’auberge du lac Hotel and Casino, parked our rigs at the back of the enormous parking lot, and went inside the casino to spend a few hours.

Pizza delivery in a casino parking lot?

None of us are huge gamblers, and after spending our allotted gambling budget, we were all soon back at our rigs. Several excellent restaurants are at L’auberge and the nearby Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino. However, we decided to order pizza!

I have to tell you, I have never had a pizza delivery to a motorhome in a casino parking lot before. It was just a fun thing to do, and the pizza and wings were pretty tasty. Thank you, Pizza Hut.

Smith Oaks Rookery – High Island

2205 Old Mexico Road
High Island, TX 77623

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

The following morning, we started our journey home. We had one more stop to make, though, at the beautiful High Island Rookery. We’ve been to the Rookery at High Island many times. I even published a post about our visit last year. Read about that visit here.

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

We are early this year, just as last year. The birds were nesting, but no chicks had hatched yet. Still, it was a beautiful sight to see. A day pass costs $8 here and can be paid on-site, credit cards accepted. Last year a walkway was being built. The beautiful new Kathrine G. McGovern Canopy Walkway is finished making it an easy walk to the Rookery area where the birds are nesting.

Claybottom Pond, where thousands of waterbirds make their nests each year, is a small portion of the 177 acres that make up the Smith Oaks Sanctuary.

Home by way of Galveston / Bolivar Ferry

High Island is less than 30 miles from the Galveston / Bolivar Ferry terminal, but it requires about an hour of driving and then, in this instance, an hour’s wait at the ferry terminal in line before boarding. We expected this wait and were all comfortable in our motorhomes while we waited.

This was Tank’s first ferry ride, and he had a terrific time. I opened all the shades and windows because we have to leave the engine off while on the ferry. Tank was able to see all the other cars, the people, AND the water. He raced back and forth from window to window during the entire trip.

These are only a few reasons we love the Texas Gulf Coast

We really love the Texas Gulf Coast, especially the little piece of the world we call home. We love the sea, the birds, the sunshine, sunsets, and how near we live to so many unique nature experiences. It’s a great place to live.

If you find these stories interesting or informative, please share them with others who might also be interested. I would really like to hear about your stories and experiences at some of these same locations or other locations in the area.

As I finish this post, I am already wondering where we are going next.

Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

4 thoughts on “Why do we love the Texas Gulf Coast?

  1. I hope Jason and I get to travel like you guys when we retire! What fun adventures. ❤️

    1. I hope you do too! We are having a grand time.

  2. Great adventure, and sorry I couldn’t be a part of it. I definitely plan to go back to the Rookery.

    1. It was a great adventure. The Rookery should be full of birds hatching soon too!

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