Situated in the heart of the Lone Star State, Goliad may be small in size, but it’s large in character and charm. With a population of around 1,700 residents, this tight-knit community exudes a warm and welcoming atmosphere, making you feel like you’ve found a home away from home.
Goliad is steeped in history, and its historical significance dates back to the early days of Texas. Known as the “Birthplace of Texas Ranching,” Goliad played a vital role in shaping the state’s cattle industry.
The town’s storied past comes to life as you wander through its historic streets, where well-preserved buildings and monuments stand as testaments to its proud heritage.
One of the most iconic landmarks in Goliad is the Presidio La Bahía, a Spanish colonial fort that serves as a living museum, offering a glimpse into the region’s turbulent past.
It was here that the famous Goliad Massacre took place during the Texas Revolution, a tragic event that continues to be remembered and honored by the local community.
Goliad is also a place of natural beauty, nestled along the banks of the San Antonio River and surrounded by picturesque countryside.
So, whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or simply seeking a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, Goliad welcomes you with open arms.
Let’s explore together the best and most fun 15 things to do in Goliad, TX:
1. Explore Goliad State Park and Historic Site
The park encompasses over 188 acres and is home to a diverse range of ecosystems, including woodlands, prairies, and the tranquil San Antonio River.
At the heart of Goliad State Park lies the reconstructed Mission Espíritu Santo, a significant historical landmark. Founded in 1722 by Franciscan missionaries, the mission played a crucial role in the Spanish colonization of Texas.
Today, visitors can step back in time and explore the mission’s chapel, granary, and workshops, gaining insights into the daily lives of the early Spanish settlers and Native American converts.
2. Tour the historic Presidio La Bahía
Originally constructed in 1749, the Presidio La Bahía was a critical outpost for the Spanish military, safeguarding the region from foreign invasions and Native American conflicts.
The fort’s strategic location along the San Antonio River made it an essential link in the chain of Spanish missions and presidios that stretched across Texas.
One of the most poignant chapters in Presidio La Bahía’s history is the Goliad Massacre during the Texas Revolution. In 1836, Mexican forces executed over 300 Texan prisoners of war here, sparking outrage and galvanizing the Texan independence movement.
3. Visit Goliad Brewing Company
For those seeking a taste of Texas craft beer, a visit to Goliad Brewing Company is a must. Located in Goliad, Texas, this brewery boasts a rich history and a passion for producing exceptional brews.
Founded in 2011, Goliad Brewing Company takes its name from the nearby historic town, paying homage to the region’s cultural heritage. The brewery’s founders envisioned a space that not only crafted high-quality beer but also embraced the spirit of community and camaraderie.
The brewery features a welcoming taproom where visitors can sample a diverse selection of craft beers, ranging from traditional ales to creative seasonal brews. Goliad Brewing Company’s commitment to sustainability is evident in its use of locally sourced ingredients and energy-efficient practices.
4. Shop for unique crafts, antiques, and local products at Goliad Market Days, a monthly outdoor market in downtown Goliad
Goliad Market Days is a vibrant outdoor market held monthly in downtown Goliad, Texas. This beloved community event is a treasure trove for those seeking one-of-a-kind crafts, antique finds, and locally sourced products.
With rows of colorful stalls lining the streets, Goliad Market Days showcases the talents of local artisans and vendors. From handcrafted jewelry and artisanal pottery to vintage treasures and homemade goods, the market offers an array of unique and delightful items to peruse.
5. Admire the stunning architecture and historical charm of the Goliad County Courthouse
Prepare to be awestruck by the grandeur of the Goliad County Courthouse, a stunning architectural masterpiece that stands as a symbol of Goliad’s rich history and enduring charm. Completed in 1894, this majestic courthouse is a prime example of Victorian Second Empire architecture, with its intricate detailing, elegant clock tower, and distinctive red brick facade.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Goliad County Courthouse has been meticulously restored to preserve its original splendor. As you approach the courthouse, you’ll be greeted by beautifully landscaped grounds and a sense of reverence for the past.
6. Enjoy a peaceful kayak or canoe trip along the San Antonio River on Goliad Paddling Trail
Escape to nature’s tranquility with a peaceful kayak or canoe trip along the scenic Goliad Paddling Trail, a serene waterway that meanders along the picturesque San Antonio River. This 6.6-mile trail offers a captivating journey through the heart of Goliad’s natural beauty and lush landscapes.
The trail is known for its peaceful ambiance, providing an ideal setting for relaxation, birdwatching, and quiet reflection. Keep an eye out for historical landmarks, such as the ruins of Mission Rosario, which offer glimpses into the region’s past as you traverse the waterway.
7. Pay tribute to Texas history at the Fannin Battleground State Historic Site
Take a poignant step back in time as you pay tribute to Texas history at the Fannin Battleground State Historic Site, a hallowed ground that commemorates a pivotal chapter in the state’s struggle for independence.
Located near Goliad, Texas, this historic site marks the location where the Battle of Coleto Creek unfolded in 1836 during the Texas Revolution.
Led by Colonel James Fannin, a group of Texan soldiers bravely fought against Mexican forces, but unfortunately, they were outnumbered and eventually forced to surrender. The aftermath of the battle was marked by the Goliad Massacre, a tragic event in which hundreds of Texan prisoners of war were executed by Mexican forces, further fueling the desire for Texas independence.
Here you can explore the Fannin Battleground State Historic Site and gain insights into the valiant efforts and sacrifices made by the Texan soldiers.
8. Visit the infamous Hanging Tree
Located within the town, this historic oak tree witnessed a series of hangings during the mid-19th century, serving as a stark symbol of justice and punishment during those tumultuous times.
The Hanging Tree stands as a solemn testament to the region’s past, offering visitors a chance to connect with the haunting stories of the past. While the sight may evoke a sense of unease, it also serves as a reminder of the progress made in the pursuit of justice and fairness
9. Browse through Goliad Emporium
Goliad Emporium is housed in a beautifully restored historic building, adding to the ambiance of the shopping experience. The emporium’s curated collection of antiques reflects the city’s rich heritage, while its contemporary offerings cater to the tastes of modern shoppers.
Goliad Emporium is more than just a shop; it’s an experience that transports visitors to bygone eras while celebrating the present.
10. Spend a day fishing, boating, or picnicking at Coleto Creek Park and Reservoir
With its crystal-clear waters and scenic surroundings, Coleto Creek Reservoir offers an abundance of recreational opportunities. Fishing enthusiasts can cast their lines in search of largemouth bass, catfish, and crappie, while boaters can explore the expansive waters, taking in the breathtaking vistas of rolling hills and lush landscapes.
For those seeking a peaceful retreat, the park’s shaded picnic areas provide a perfect setting to savor a delicious meal amidst nature’s splendor.
11. Tee off at Goliad Golf Course
For golf enthusiasts, Goliad Golf Course presents a challenging yet rewarding experience amidst the region’s scenic charm. Nestled in the rolling countryside of Goliad, Texas, this 18-hole golf course offers a picturesque setting for players of all skill levels.
Designed to blend seamlessly with the natural landscape, Goliad Golf Course features well-manicured fairways, challenging bunkers, and meticulously maintained greens. As you make your way through the course, the panoramic views of Texas’ countryside create a delightful backdrop to your golfing adventure.
12. Learn more about the town’s history and heritage at Goliad Historical Museum
Housed in a historic building, the museum’s exhibits and artifacts offer a comprehensive glimpse into the region’s evolution from its Native American roots to its pivotal role in the Texas Revolution.
Stepping into the Goliad Historical Museum is akin to embarking on a time-traveling adventure, where the town’s history comes alive through engaging storytelling and interactive exhibits.
13. Hunt for treasures and one-of-a-kind finds at La Bahía Antique Shop
From classic furniture pieces and elegant décor to vintage clothing and collectible trinkets, La Bahía Antique Shop boasts an array of offerings that cater to various tastes and interests.
La Bahía Antique Shop promises a delightful journey through the past, where hidden treasures await to be discovered and cherished.
14. Savor a variety of wines in a peaceful setting at Hanging Tree Winery
This family-owned winery invites visitors to savor a diverse selection of wines amidst the backdrop of scenic vineyards.
The winery’s dedication to producing high-quality wines is evident in every sip. From robust reds to crisp whites and everything in between, Hanging Tree Winery offers an array of flavors to suit different palates.
Hanging Tree Winery offers a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
15. Take a short drive to the nearby Berclair Mansion
Constructed in the late 1800s, Berclair Mansion boasts an exquisite blend of Victorian and Greek Revival architecture. With its stately columns, ornate details, and sprawling grounds, the mansion exudes a sense of timeless beauty and sophistication.
Today, the mansion is open for guided tours, allowing visitors to step into the lives of the wealthy families who once called this estate home. As you explore the lavishly furnished rooms and ornate décor, you’ll be transported to an era of grand balls, lavish parties, and opulent living.