Goose Island State Park covers 321.4 acres on St. Charles and Aransas straights. It is located in Aransas County, north of Rockport. In 1931-1935, the state obtained land for the recreation area through deeds from private landowners. The state-claimed Goose Island was declared a state park after an official demonstration. During the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed the first park offices. The Big Tree is the largest country, having been awarded State Champion Coastal Live Oak (Quercus virginiana) in 1969. The Big Tree is ancient, with a circumference of 35 feet and a crown spread of 90 feet. The tree stands at the height of 44 feet.
Goose Island State Park is located on the southern extremity of the Lamar Peninsula, in the heart of the Texas Gulf Coastal Bend’s straights and estuaries. It is divided into two sections: the central region and the island.
Live oak/red sound woods with yaupon holly, American beautyberry, coral bean, and wax myrtle make up the core area. A portion of tallgrass grassland, as well as shaggy bluestem and salt grass, can be found here. Life perceptions that aren’t tamed and pictures that aren’t tamed are proliferating. White-tailed deer, raccoons, armadillos, foxes, squirrels, cottontail hares, and over 300 different species of birds are all possible sightings. The endangered outshining crane feeds on berries and blue crabs found in the wetlands near Goose Island State Park’s beach.
A shell edge and wetlands can be seen on the shellfish shell island. Ocean bull eye daisy, wolfberry, ocean purslane, Baccharis, and beach dropseed grass are among the plants found on the island’s shell border. The bog is covered in smooth cordgrass, swamp roughage string grass, Saltgrass, saltwort, and glasswort, and the bayous surrounding Goose Island are filled with seagrass beds and clam reefs.
Wintering grounds for rare and endangered outshining cranes can be found directly across St. Charles Bay from the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge leisure area. In the city of Corpus Christi, the Capano Bay State Fishing Pier, Mustang Island State Park, Fulton Mansion State Historic Site, Texas Maritime Museum, and Texas State Aquarium are all close by.
Things to Do
Camping, fishing, climbing, geocaching, drifting, and seeing and photographing natural life, particularly birds, are all options. We don’t recommend swimming here because the beach is littered with bulkheads, clamshells, mud pads, and marsh grass.
There are 44 campers near the narrows and 57 campgrounds among oak trees, all with water and electricity. There are restrooms and showers in each setting up the camp circle. We also have 25 walk-in tent areas with no electricity and a gathering site for youth meetings.
Anglers can fish from the beach, a boat, or our 1,620-foot fishing pier. A traditional boat send-off is available, and a kayak/kayak send-off (bring your craft). A fish cleaning station is also available. You are not required to own a fishing license to fish from the shore or dock in a Texas state park.
- Fishing Tips for Goose Island State Park
- The Tackle Loaner Program can provide you with fishing poles, reels, and fishing supply containers in the recreation area.
- We occasionally spot crocodiles in the recreation area; read our crocodile safety guidelines.
The Big Tree
Make a point of seeing the Big Tree, which has stood guard on the coast for quite some time. It won the title of State Champion Coastal Live Oak in 1969.
Visitors can study the few miles of trails that wind through Goose Island State Park if the ocean side is too crowded. The paths are easy to use and, for the most part, well-kept, making them an excellent opportunity for family members to learn about nature and observe local wildlife. In any case, be aware that a few unpaved paths, such as the half-mile Turks Cap Trail, will take tourists deeper into the forest, but they are not particularly difficult.
This park provides a wide range of initiatives, including nature climbs, birding excursions, and children’s projects, to name a few. Check the Calendar of Events to see what new is coming up.
Take a look at our Junior Ranger Program! An Explorer Pack includes instruments for getting up and personal with nature. To obtain an identity, receive a free Activity Journal and perform a specific number of workouts.
Civilian Conservation Corps
The CCC got to work clearing land, planting trees, and focusing on the Big Tree. The CCC men built the existing diversion lobby from shell crete made from oyster shells. They also built roadways, additions, and seepage structures. Take a close look at the relationships underneath to get a sense of the CCC’s work.
Campsites in Goose Island State Park
Port Lavaca / Matagorda Bay KOA
The cutting-edge Port Lavaca/Matagorda KOA campsite is halfway between Corpus Christi and Galveston on the Texas Central Coast. The Port Lavaca Bird Sanctuary and the Texas Zoo are great places to visit if you like animals. Electricity, water, and Wi-Fi are all contained in the package. You can also find outdoor tables, fire pits, and grills at some locations. Bathrooms and hot showers, clothing offices, fishing (lure accessible), a fish washing table, store, candy machines, jungle gym, horseshoe pit, and a dog walk are all available in the camping area.
Wooded Area Campground
In the Wooded Area Campground, there are 57 conventional camping spots. These campgrounds, hidden among massive oak trees, are only accessible by reservation and include water and electric hook-ups. Every campsite also has an outside table, grill, and fire ring. Bathrooms are located near the campsite’s main attraction. These camping spaces are larger and more segregated than those in the Bayfront Area, with dense trees separating one campground from the others. There is also a maintenance area adjacent to the lush region campgrounds if something goes wrong. Pets are allowed at this campsite, but they must be kept on a leash at all times, according to Texas State Park guidelines.
On the bayfront, 44 camping spots provide campers with a spectacular view of the water. A few of the locations are located across the street from the straight, while most are located right on the water’s edge. Water and electric hook-ups are available in these camping locations. Visitors can cook up some delectable fare on the barbeque or relax with a relaxing supper beneath the gavel cover or at the campground’s outdoor table. Ground fires are not permitted in the bayfront camps. All campers have access to bathrooms and hot showers. Only a short walk away. Pets are allowed in this camping area, but they must be kept on a leash at all times, according to Texas State Park guidelines. These camping places provide unrivalled views of the ocean and the surrounding untamed life, and guests may fish directly from their sites.
There are 25 tent-only campgrounds available by arrangement for tourists who prefer to spend the night under the stars. These camping spaces are up to 150 yards from the Wooded Area Campground and are in the recreation area where automobiles are not permitted; thus, visitors will be asked to bring all of their equipment and supplies with them. Water hook-ups, a BBQ, an outdoor table, and a fire ring are included in these campgrounds. Pets are allowed at this campsite, but they must be kept on a leash at all times, according to Texas State Park guidelines.
Youth Group Campground
Goose Island State Park is a popular destination for youth meetings because it offers many opportunities to learn and so much space to spread out and have a good time. This camping area is a half-section of the land parcel designed explicitly for putting up camp in a group. Water hook-ups, nine parking spaces, a covered structure, nearby facilities with showers, and a large gathering fire ring, as well as two standard fire rings and two barbecues, are all included in the camping area. The maximum number of campers allowed in this camping area is 64.