We are looking for lodging in Galveston for May 27th. What would you recommend for our group? We initially wanted to stay near the beach but now think it would be good to be closer to the harbor. We would like to leave our car at the hotel and could take a taxi if needed.
GALVESTON IS A DESTINATION ALL UNTO ITS SELF. IF YOU DO HAVE THE TIME TO SPEND IN GALVESTON, MOODY GARDENS IS A MUST SEE. YOU CAN EXPERIENCE THE TROPICAL GARDENS, AQUARIUM, I-MAX THEATER. A PRIVATE BEACH. ALL OF THIS IS PART OF MOODY GARDENS. ITS A GREAT PLACE TO VISIT AND CHILDEN REALLY LIKE THE AQUARIUM. THERE IS A HOTEL AT MOODY GARDENS AS WELL. WE HAVE BEEN TO MOODY GARDENS MANY TIMES, BUT NEVER STAYED AT THE HOTEL. WE LIVED ONLY A FEW MILES FROM GALVESTON SO THERE REALLY WAS NO NEED.
GALVESTON IS RICH IN HISTORY. THERE ARE TOURS FOR THE HISTORICAL SITES, CENTURY OLD HOMES DATING BACK TO THE PIRATE DAYS. AND LOTS OF INFO REGARDING THE GREAT HURRICAINE.
Another must see is Johnson Space Center. This center is for everyone, children and adults. Many of the exibits are interactive. There are displays of actual Astronaute suits, a space shuttle you can walk thu, objects that were found on the moon (rocks and such) that was brought back for display. It really is amazing.
I second that lol. We loved Galveston - I have never met such friendly people. My favourite sites were the fabulous old homes - the architecture is amazing. I must have taken 200 photos. The cemetaries are really interesting as well - many of the headstones and monuments are real works of art!
And we loved the Space Centre in Houston - truly a one of a kind experience.
We stayed at the Harborhouse Hotel at the pier for three nights in January, 2006 and it was wonderul. We walked to the ship on embarkation day. From the hotel you can easily walk to the Strand District and to many of the antique shops in the area. We even walked down to Broadway to see some of the historic homes, but this is a good 1/2 hour walk - alternatively, you can hop on their trolley to explore the island further although they don't seem to be on schedule much. The hotel is in great condition, seems quite new and they have an adequate continental breakfast as well. Don't expect too much in the lobby area, it is small with just one check-in clerk, but provided all the service we needed.
A good place for a quick meal was Joe's Crab Shack next door. Also next door to the hotel is the "Great Storm" movie which covers the hurricane of 1900.
I've heard more than one person mention walking to the pier to embark from Harbor House. My question is, is it really close enough to walk WITH LUGGAGE? We will of course have rolling suitcases, but still... I pulled my rolling suitcase to the cruise parking in San Pedro last October and thought my hand was gonna fall off! The Harbor House sounds like fun, and it would be great to see the ship first thing in the morning, especially because our daughter works on the ship and would be able to get off and find us easily that morning. I just want to make sure it will be practical for the four of us, my 12 and 16 year old daughters are pretty wimpy, and I don't wanna be stuck carrying all their luggage !
Well, yeah, I know it looks really close from the web cam on top of the hotel, but has anyone walked it carrying their suitcases and carryons? I read one review where one of the parties drove over and dropped off their luggage and then came back, parked, and the whole party walked over. But we will not have a car with us. I was just hoping someone would post and say they had walked it carrying (or rolling) full size suitcases and that it was no big deal. It really sounds like a great place to stay, I just don't want to be starting off my cruise with sore arms! I seriously had to stop about four times on our way back to the 7 day parking from the RCI cruise terminal in San Pedro (L.A.) It looked really close but was a PITA pulling my full size suitcase. And I am in pretty good shape, work out regularly, don't weigh too much, etc. Thanks for the info, I'm really thinking it would be fun to stay there and see the ship first thing in the morning.
Yes, we did actually walk with our luggage (wheeled, one medium and one carryon bag each) from the Harbor house to the ship. We were greeted by a porter at the very edge of the terminal who took our bags from there, so I guess we saved a bit of effort. Keep in mind that our ship (the Grand Princess) was the ship docked closest to the hotel, so if yours is docked further down, it might be a bit of a problem - I don't think you would be able to find out their exact docking location.
In our case it worked out very well, it was definately less of a hassle ( and cheaper)than ordering a taxi for what is really only a one or two block walk. Mind you, we have also travelled with teenagers and are familiar with the whining that can occur so I guess that should factor in to your decision. It is quite doable, though.
ehogan: Thanks so much for the response. We actually went ahead and booked Harbor House a few weeks ago, so it's good to hear walking to the ship is doable. My understanding is that Carnival (Ecstasy) also uses the closest dock. Although I've never looked at the web cam when more than one ship was docked. I usually check it the days when Ecstasy is there. We are getting really excited, made our final payment two days ago. We are still trying to decide whether to book transfers through Galvestonlimo or get two one-way car rentals. There will be four of us, so trying to get there as inexpensively as possible. We get into Houston at 4:00 the day before, so it would be kind of nice to have a car in Galveston that evening, on the other hand it sounds like there are tons of places to shop and eat within walking distance of Harbor House, so still trying to decide.
Even though this posting is older, I will post this in response. We had a car in Galveston and stayed at the Harbor House. On cruise day, we placed the luggage into the car, drove to the terminal, unpacked and left the luggage with a porter and drove back to the hotel. Parking was much cheaper there. We then walked back to the terminal and got onboard. See our review of the Ecstasy, June 12, 06.
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I would stay away from the flagship Hotel, me and The Family Stayed there Two Years ago and it was terrible, Elevators didnt work good, no Breakfast or Coffee, No help with your Luggage or any Carts! Hard to get a Taxi! The Owner has also been charged with Fraud and in Trouble! The only positive thing about it is the View! Now we Stay at The New Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort On seawall Blvd. It has a Balcony that faces the ocean, get on the 4th. or 5th. floor! They have a lot more Hotels along The seawall Blvd., but the Holiday Inn suits us fine, It has a Fenced in Parking Lot in the Rear and a Electric Gate to enter and you can leave your car there if you Drive down! We eat at Landrys On Seawall Blvd, also Fishermans Wharf at Pier 21 is good, its close to the cruise ships, also Willie G's is Good as well! Theres a lot more but these are the main ones for us! Also go on the Ferry to Bolivar Island If you have a car, Check out Crystal Beach its nice to just walk along the Beach, Theres a State Park 5 Miles west on the left hand side of the Road, Itll Cost you a entrance fee! Or just park along seawall Blvd. and walk down to the Beach! We Go Down Two Days Early so we can enjoy The Island! Good Luck! Happy Cruising! :