Sylvan Beach is a nice little man-made beach with fine sand and a long fishing pier within a quick and easy drive from Galveston or Houston. A very family-friendly place with free entry, where alcohol is prohibited and the police patrols through the area are frequent. Among the visitors, there are always many families with kids, and no wonder – the beach is equipped with two modern shaded playgrounds to the delight of the little ones. The beach park offers plenty of beautiful grassy spots for a picnic or barbecue. Bring your food, drinks and have lunch with your family or friends in the fresh air! You can also take your dog on a leash. The beach is clean and features such facilities as restrooms and showers to make your stay more convenient.
Access and Parking
The beach is close to living neighborhoods and everything you may need is located within walking distance. The entrance is free – so is the parking, which is close to the beach. The parking lot is spacious; nevertheless, you’d better arrive as early as possible (around 7 a. m.) on holidays and summer weekends, since the beach can get overcrowded very quickly these days.
Facilities and Food Outlets
There are an ice-cream stand and a snack bar as well as restaurants nearby. However, you might prefer to bring and eat your own snack or have a picnic since the snack bar isn’t always open and the prices at the local restaurants are rather high and not always corresponding to the food quality.
Sylvan Beach features such amenities as restrooms and rinse showers. The restrooms are clean and generally okay though a bit shabby, sometimes lacking toilet paper or soap. A few showers in the area are often reported to be out of order and not usable so you’d better prepare for such a possibility.
Sylvan Beach boasts fine white sand and water cleaner than in many other places along the coast. Yet, it is still port water, so don’t expect it to be crystal clear with different tints of blue and turquoise. The plus is there’s no seaweed. If you decide to swim, beware of small jellyfish; otherwise, the swimming conditions are great for children: the water is calm and overwatched by lifeguards. The beach itself is clean and well-maintained, with trash cans throughout the area.
There’s a very long pier, which is a place of choice for local as well as out-of-town fishermen. You can stroll or fish there if you pay a few dollars for entrance. If you don’t, they will demand via a loud-speaker that you have to leave the pier and, after that, you’re likely to have an unpleasant talk with a police officer. As has been said, the police patrols keep the area safe, but, unfortunately, they are not always polite, so you’d better not violate the rules. The same refers to drinking alcohol, which is strictly prohibited on Sylvan Beach.
Apart from swimming, sunbathing, playing with kids, strolling, or fishing off the pier, Sylvan Beach is a nice place for having a picnic, either on one of the shaded picnic tables or directly on the grass in the parking area. Beware of numerous birds though since they may get quite impertinent once they see food.