One of our annual summer traditions is a trip to Granbury City Beach Park! Granbury has created a really wonderful beach on the shores of Lake Granbury, within walking distance to the historic courthouse square! Opened in 2008, what makes the beach unique is the white sand that was imported from South Padre Island, so you can actually build a sandcastle! Passing boats on the lake create small waves in the slightly salty water of the lake, a residual effect of the Brazos River’s run through the salty plains of West Texas. You won’t find seashells or crabs running along the shore, but you will find a near perfect beach day, 300 miles north of the Gulf coast, and that’s good enough for me.
Did I mention that it’s FREE? A city park, there is no charge for access to the beach, or parking, or the adjacent spray park. Shouldn’t every city offer something like this?
Wake the kids, pack the lunches and sunscreen, but before you go, check out the Mommy Tips I’ve collected from numerous visits to Granbury and the City Beach Park.
Know Before You Go
The Park is FREE and open 7 Days a Week.
If possible, visit Granbury City Beach Park on a weekday, when the crowds are smaller, the beach is cleaner and the atmosphere is much more relaxed.
Pack a life jacket for your kids, and make them wear it. There are no lifeguards on the beach, and even if there were, young children still need to wear a life jacket.
As much as I love squishing my toes in the sand, wear water shoes! The sand is just HOT, so is the boardwalk, flip-flops get lost and there are a few sharp rocks in the water, especially when the water level is lower than normal.
Dogs aren’t allowed on the beach.
Grills, or any open flames, are not allowed on the beach.
Day Use Only, there is no camping on the beach.
I’m a sucker for water toys, and each spring I get excited searching for big floats and the latest toys to enhance time at the lake! Floats are great because they give kids something to hold onto, too! I like ones with ropes that they can grab!
If you get a big one, consider bringing a rope and “anchor” to keep it in one place while the kids jump and play on it!
Tell your kids up front that if a float or ball ever floats away, just to let it go! Don’t risk getting tired swimming out after a float that just always stays a few feet out of reach!
The lake isn’t as much fun without the water.
Check the lake level and conditions with the Granbury Visitors Bureau at 817-573-5548.
During summer months, when Lake Granbury is competing for their water with Possum Kingdom upriver, Squaw Creek downriver and the evaporation effects of the sun, the lake level can vary quite a bit.
The lake bottom is sand with a few mixed rocks and sticks, which is why water shoes are recommended. I think the sand in the middle of the beach is the best.
Tiki Thatched Tables
There are 7 pagodas with picnic tables and cute little thatched roof. They are available on a first come, first serve basis, so get there early! Another reason why it is better to visit during the week! On our most recent visit, the cute roofs were down, but I was assured they are being replaced.
The sand is very deep, and it’s almost impossible to roll a wheeled ice chest. Bring a smaller one you can carry to your table.
The pagodas do not have electricity.
If you have a beach umbrella or pop-up shelter, like an EZ-Up, take it, just in case you can’t get a shaded table.
Play in the Sand
We found this amazing sand sculpture one evening during a visit to the beach. I tried, but we never found out who the artist was that created it! Don’t forget your sand toys, and make your own sand kingdom, or challenge your friends to a castle competition!
Restrooms and shower
Located right next to the parking lot is a nice restroom and outside shower, where you can leave SOME of the beach sand at the beach!
There is a changing table in the ladies room.
Coolers are welcome at Granbury City Beach Park. You can’t bring charcoal grills, alcohol or glass. Attendants on site will ask to look in your bag, so just leave it in the car.
Just down the street there are a lot of cute restaurants, crowded around the Hood County Courthouse.
Splish Splash Pad
After swimming in the lake or playing in the sand, it’s so nice to have another option, a fun little splash pad for the kids to run and play!
Each morning the city puts up a volleyball net, and takes it down each evening. Bring your own volleyball!
Just because you can’t fish on the beach or the boardwalk doesn’t mean you have to leave your fishing pole at home. You can fish from the bank on the OTHER side of the boardwalk, away from the beach. You can also walk along the sidewalk down past the Hilton Garden Inn, and fish under the bridge and over by the boat ramp. There is no telling what you might catch, but if you are 17 or older you will need a fishing license to catch it!
Beachside Toys and Take-Out offers concession stand type food, as well as beach rentals.
We were able to just walk up and get an SUP on a weekday, but they do get busy on weekends. Reserve one in advance to be sure you have one available.
They do accept credit cards.
The staff was great at taking us down to the water and showing us how to hold the paddle, turn in the water, and even get up and down!
We originally only did an hour rental, just to let everyone try it out, but the kids enjoyed it so much that we added on an hour, which was easy!
There are lots of fun places to explore around Lake Granbury by kayak! These open kayaks are easy to handle, too!
Just down the street from Downtown Granbury, you can rent a bike to go exploring the town!
Hilton Garden Inn
Next door to the Granbury City Beach Park is the Hilton Garden Inn. Many of the rooms have lake views, and there is an indoor swimming pool, too! Click HERE to visit their website.
If the lake gets a little too warm, take a break and visit the cute antique stores just across the street.
Historic Downtown Granbury
The Downtown Courthouse Square has great shops, restaurants and even a theater. I’ve taken the Granbury Ghost and Legends Tour so many times that I can probably do the tour myself, but it’s a fun tour and one of my favorite recommendations, which like most ghost tours, is more history than ghost!
Ketzler’s Schnitzel Haus & Biergarten
Moved to a larger location on the square. They plan to open a new fish and chips restaurant at their former location.
We stumbled on this fun little restaurant in the Granbury courthouse square in 2014, after spending all day on the beach! HFitTS isn’t a foodie blog, but I do love to tell you about fun patios, and we loved this biergarten in the back of the restaurant! If our sandy feet and still damp hair bothered the super friendly staff, they never let on to us! It was a perfect way to relax, listening to the kids playing and the sound of the little waterfall. By the way, the food was very authentic and yummy, too! Click HERE to visit their website, and see their menu!
Make a day of it
We like to plan our visits to Granbury City Beach Park on Fridays, so that we can visit the Brazos Drive In in the evening, which is only open Fri – Sun. It makes for a long day, but it’s always fun!
More Things To Do in Granbury
Revolver Brewing. Doesn’t sound very family friendly, but on Saturdays from 12 – 3 they offer a tour, beer, live music and games scattered around for the kids!
Rent a house on Lake Granbury through VRBO! Click HERE to visit their website of over 40 listings!
Granbury City Beach Park
505 East Pearl, Granbury
Click HERE to visit their website.
Keep Having Fun in the Texas Sun!
Having Fun in the TEXAS Sun is on PINTEREST! Use it as a quick resource to find activities in different Texas towns! Click HERE!
© Having Fun in the Texas Sun, 2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Having Fun in the Texas Sun with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.