Crystal Beach, Texas
Crystal Beach, originally known as Patton, stretches about seven miles along Texas 87 on Bolivar Peninsula. Patton was a railroad stop until the trains stopped operation in the early 1940s. At that time, the name was changed to Crystal Beach. It's the largest residential and commercial community on the peninsula. Its main industry is shrimping and oystering, and tourism. Summer visitors swell the population where miles of sandy beaches offer many recreational activities. Birding is exciting during the springs and fall migrations. The fields, bushes, trees and marshes are alive with colorful and rare species. Many northern species winter here. Ferries operate every 20 minutes between Galveston and Port Bolivar, Texas 87. The ferries are part of the Texas transportation system, operated toll-free by the Texas Department of Transportation. The old Bolivar Lighthouse, after 61 years of service, still stands near Texas 87. Although it is not open to the public, it is a symbol of mariner history along the Texas coast.