While Rockport and Fulton are technically two separate towns, together they pack a coastal combo punch unlike anything else in Texas. Both face the beautiful, brackish water of Aransas Bay and make the perfect place to dive into the food, culture, and history of the Texas coast.
Rockport's Historic Main Street
The Texas coast has a vibe and history all its own. Its culture covers everything from the historic homes to the dive bars to the harbor bait stands. You can also find it on Rockport’s Historic Main Street — which is actually Austin Street — that’s full of shops and restaurants. Grab a coffee from the Daily Grind, read a book at Lori’s Book Nook, enjoy the photos at John Martell Photography or pick up a kitschy souvenir at Treasure Islander…because you know you need another coconut pirate head.
Aquarium at Rockport Harbor
Sadly, due to Hurricane Harvey, the Aquarium at Rockport Harbor has permanently closed since we filmed this episode. Marley the Moray Eel, who was a resident and celebrity in these parts, is now at home in the Texas State Aquarium in nearby Corpus Christi.
You know you’ll be craving fresh seafood, and this town has some of the best in Texas. For an AMAZING po’ boy, find Alby’s Seafood, a mom-and-pop seafood market with a small carry-out window on the side serving up fried oyster and shrimp po’ boys. You can dine on one of their picnic tables or carry it to Fulton Harbor and eat just feet from the water.
For stepped-up, casual seafood, you can’t go wrong with Charlotte Plummer’s, a local institution that’s located in a building that’s been serving fresh seafood for over 100 years. They are famous for their “crab tower” which is a 6-inch tall tower of lump crab meat, pico de gallo and avocado, topped with a creamy sauce. DELICIOUS! Make sure to check out the blackboard where the owner posts the freshest fish of the day that you can have prepared any number of ways.
Rockport Beach Park
If you’re in this part of Texas you’re probably looking for some salty fun. While this city faces the bay and not the Gulf of Mexico, Rockport Beach Park makes an awesome place for a dip. It’s especially great for kids as it’s sandy, shallow and without the pummeling waves of the coast.
Copano Bay Fishing Pier
Unfortunately, the Copano Bay Fishing Pier was demolished in 2020.
Aransas Bay National Wildlife Refuge
Wildlife is also a big draw in the area. If you are going coastal in the colder months, you’ll have a chance to travel to Aransas Bay National Wildlife Refuge to see some feathered winter Texans – the endangered whopping cranes. This is the largest bird in North America and there are only about 300 left in the wild. They come to Texas every winter to munch on blue crabs and train their young. Hop aboard a tour with Rockport Birding and Kayak Adventures and you’ll have the best shot at snapping some priceless pictures.
Goose Island State Park
A great place to enjoy the outdoors and one seriously HUGE local resident is across the bay at Goose Island State Park. This is the home of “Big Tree” a 1000 year-old coastal live oak whose truck is 35 feet around and branches span out an impressive 90-feet wide. It’s awesome to stand before a living thing that was around 500 years before explorers arrived in the New World. Other attractions of Goose Island State Park include birding, RVing, and enjoying “Stinky Beach,” which is seriously smelly due to dead sea grass that washes ashore.