Texas Travel

Galveston’s Pleasure Pier Lights up the Coastline Again

By Chuck Cox 3.6.13

The “Coney Island of the South” is back. After Hurricane Ike devastated Galveston in 2008, the island has risen up from the rubble to reclaim its standing as one of the coolest places to visit in Texas. And a big reason for that is the sparkling new Galveston Pleasure Pier.

The shopping, dining, and entertainment spot is one of four pleasure piers in the United States. Chicago’s Navy Pier, Coney Island’s Luna Park, and the Santa Monica Pier are the other three. And all four of them have a rich history.

Galveston’s pier was originally constructed to be a recreational facility for United States military during World War II. It became a huge tourist destination, featuring concerts, movies, and fishing, until it was severely damaged by Hurricane Carla in 1961. Renovations to the pier began in 2011, as Landry’s, Inc., announced plans to build an amusement park that would bring the pier back to its roots as a family destination.

The pier opened in May 2012, and has carnival rides, midway games, shopping, and restaurants. Ride hours are seasonal, so check before you go.

I need to get back to see Galveston anyway. But if I can ride a roller coaster while checking out the new place, I’m thinking that’s going to happen a lot sooner than later.

Can’t make it there just yet? Be there in spirit with the pier’s live web cam.