Goose Island State Park Overview:
If you want to pier or shore fish then Goose Island State Park is an excellent place to stay. From the sites that are on the edge of Aransas Bay you can sit in your site and cast a line into the Bay. Or a short walk will from some of the sites will take you to a lighted 1620 foot long fishing pier. In addition to the water sites, there are interior sites set under the trees for trailers, motorhomes, or tents.
Goose Island State Park was built in the 30's by the Civilian Conservation Corp and as such it is a little dated but the Park staff is doing a good job of keeping the Park clean. There is no swimming area in the Park and the shoreline is comprised of concrete bulkhead, oyster shell, mud flat, and marsh grass.
Drive carefully as you enter the Park and drive through the Park - some of the roads are narrow and tree lined with low or overhanging branches.
Goose Island State Park is known for two celebrated residents, one of which is the "Big Tree" which is an enormous 1000 year old coastal live oak that has survived prairie fires, Civil War battles, and hurricanes. The other resident is the rare endangered whooping crane that returns to the park every winter.
Amenities and Fun Things To Do:
If you want views of the bay or a site right on Aransas Bay, then select sites 1 to 45 which are on an island surrounded by Aransas Bay and St. Charles Bay. All of these sites are a few yards from the concrete bulkhead along the bay. Each site has water and electric and a covered picnic table (the Park calls them "open cabanas"). Some of the sites may present a challenge getting level, but the sites are marked so you can park you rig at a number of different angles - either side or in front or back of the covered picnic table. You can cast your pole from your picnic table and you'll have a beautiful sunset from these bayfront sites. The sites are side by side and don't offer much privacy. The only protection from the sun is the covered picnic table.
If you want some shade, then the majority of sites 101 to 225 are very spacious heavily treed sites. Most of the sites are very isolated from other sites and surrounded by trees. Most of the sites are very spacious and include water and electric, a grill, lantern holder, and picnic table. There are a number of tent sites with water and electric as well as a group camping area.
Several bathrooms with showers are located in each of the camping areas as - all are dated but clean. Some of the sites are short and won't accommodate some of the big rigs and all sites are back-in. Some of the other amenities at Goose Island State Park include:
- small Park store with ice, souveniers, and wood
- 1620 foot lighted fishing pier
- playground and picnic area
- recreation hall which is also home to educational and interpretive programs
- dump station
- boat ramp, bait shop, and fish cleaning stations
- hiking and biking trail
- bird watching area
A Typical Texas Outsider Day:
If you are into birding, fishing, crabbing, or oystering then Goose Island State Park may quickly become your favorite Park. The Park has over 300 recorded species of birds and even has a bird watching area with bench seats. For fishing, you can't beat fishing from your waterfront site or anywhere along the 1620 foot lighted fishing pier. The boat ramp is well protected and there is a fish cleaning station at the end of the ramp. You can fish for speckled trout, redfish, drum, flounder, and sheephead. The area is also good for crabbing and oystering.
We enjoyed biking the short (.66 miles), level, and crushed oyster shell walking/biking path. It's through the trees and along the trail are a number of plaques explaining the local fauna and vegetation.
We also like to explore Rockport and Fulton - both areas have some good restaurants, some small shops, a few attractions, and some fun nightlife. Take your bikes into town and explore Rockport by bike. Biking through Key Allegro is fun - huge beautiful homes on the water and channels plus an excellent restaurant and deck overlooking the marina. For lunch, bike over to Moon Dogs and sit outside and watch boats - good fish sandwich! If you like golf, it is well worth the time it takes to cross the ferry to Port Aransas and play Newport Dunes - a fantastic links course in excellent condition. Click here
to read our review of Newport Dunes Golf Course.
Cool Nearby Activities:
Rockport and Fulton are about 15 minutes away and they have a number of good restaurants, a Wal Mart, fun and lively bars, and some attractions - check out our interactive map
to find some things to see and do.
Port Aransas is about 30 minutes away and offers lots of fishing and birding options, excellent waterfront restaurants, plenty of fun nightlife, a good beach area, and an excellent golf course. Here is a link to our Port Aransas map to find something to do. Corpus Christi is about 45 minutes south west of Goose Island State Park and has lots of fun things to see and do.
- Overall Rating:
- Scenic Beauty:
- Things To Do:
Additional Pictures of Goose Island State Park
Texas Outside uses a tough rating scale and it’s difficult for a campground to get a “10”. Each park is rated on:
- Scenic Beauty: a campground that is flat with no trees or character gets a “1” and hills, lots of trees, beautiful lake site, and lush ground cover gets a “10”
- Park Condition: the cleaner, well kept, and maintained campgrounds receive high scores
- Amenities: we are looking for lots of amenities like restrooms, dump stations, playgrounds, boat ramps, shelters, concession stand, rental toys, and more.
- Campsites: low scores are given for sites that are right next to each other (good for getting to know your neighbors, but not what we’re looking for when we’re camping); have no lantern holder, no water or electricity, no fire pit, no grill, or no picnic table (or it’s rotten wood); have no trees and no view; the ground cover is crushed rock (my bare feet hate that stuff!); and they require a lot of work to get your rig level.
- Things To Do: Bonus points are given for campgrounds that offer lots of fun things to do at the park or very nearby – this includes: biking, hiking, climbing, boating, entertainment, golf, swimming, fishing, volleyball, horseshoes, and more