Everything You Need to Know about Matagorda Beach

Matagorda, Texas has approximately 58 miles of beach. 23 miles of the beach east of the Colorado River is open to vehicles. The remaining 35 miles of beach is west of the Colorado River and only accessible by boat, kayak, canoe or other watercraft. For those willing to walk a few miles or more West Beach has the best beachcombing since it is isolated from the heavier traffic on the other side of the river. The beach is public property in Texas, but all the land behind the vegetation line is private on the west side. Do not venture off the beach or you could be arrested for trespassing or more likely you could run into dangerous wildlife. You can rent a kayak from LCRA if you want to get to West Beach and paddle across the river or out and around the west jetty on a calm day.  On the East side there are trash cans on the beach for the first 3 miles. The first 8 miles of beach beyond the dunes is private property. After 8 miles, it is state property behind the dunes and there are lots of trails you can explore. Watch out for rattlesnakes if you are walking in the dunes and grasses. Driving in the dunes and damaging the native grasses is illegal so stay on the established trails or the beach. Check out the Emergency Info page before you go.

Directions

There are two entrances to Matagorda beach. To get to the main beach entrance from Matagorda, go south on FM2031 for approximately 7 miles. Turn left onto the public beach access road (there is a sign). Drive until the road ends at the beach. You can drive onto the beach or park at the bathrooms. To get to Jetty Park, continue straight on FM2031 past the beach access road. FM2031 dead ends into Jetty Park next to the Matagorda Nature Park. There is a beach entrance on the west side of the parking lot. To access the beach east of Jetty Park you can drive under the Pier when the tide is low enough. Watch your clearance when you go through.

Camping on Matagorda Beach

Camping on the beach is welcomed in Matagorda and there are no additional fees to camp. You can camp anywhere on the beaches in Matagorda county including Jetty park and west beach for up to 72 hours. Tents and RVs are permitted but beware of the soft sand if you are bringing an RV. See below for information on parking areas if you do not or can not drive onto the sand.

Driving on Matagorda Beach

You will need an annual $10 Matagorda County Beach Vehicle Permit in order to drive onto Matagorda Beach. You can buy one at most local merchants or at the beach entrance during the summer. The sand on Matagorda Beach can be very soft so drive with caution. If you do not have a 4×4 vehicle you are cautioned against driving onto the beach at all most of the time although the county does grade the beach entrance during the summer. Yield to traffic headed off the beach and anyone with their hazards on – they could have an emergency. The beach is a state highway and all normal driving regulations apply. The speed limit on the beach is 15mph. Do not drive in the dunes. It is illegal and damages our island causing beach erosion. You are permitted to follow an established trail through the dunes and into the marsh area, but stay on the trail and do not damage the native grasses. Beware of the Matagorda mud back there. It can be deeper and thicker than it looks and could take a tank to get you out. Check out our page on beach driving tips before you go. See the Emergency Info page for towing info if you get stuck on the beach. It is expensive to get a 4×4 tow truck to Matagorda Beach. Make sure to check out the beach rules & regulations before you go.

Swimming

Matagorda beach is a great place to go swimming, but you should check the conditions when you get there. Swimming near the jetties, piers and passes is dangerous due to the currents in that area. Mitchell’s Cut and the mouth of the Colorado River often have very swift currents. Most drownings on the beach occur in these areas and are preventable. When the waves are large on the beach, the riptides will get stronger. Stay in shallow water when riptide warnings are in effect and swim sideways to escape a rip current if you get caught in one. It is always best to have someone on the beach to call for help if you do get in trouble. If you have any doubts or questions about the conditions, ask a local. The people in Matagorda are very friendly and will happily give you advice.

Parking Areas

Jetty Park Arial PhotoIf you don’t want to drive onto the beach there are a couple of parking areas within walking distance. The first and best area is Jetty Park at the end of FM 2031. This is a County Park and there is no usage fee. There are bathrooms, outdoor showers, and covered picnic tables as well as a walking pier and the Colorado River Jetties. Beware of rip currents near the jetties and pier. Swimming is prohibited in these places. The second location is next to the bathrooms off Dunes Drive at the main beach entrance. Make sure not to park on the road or you may be towed or ticketed.Matagorda Beach Bathroom Parking Area

You can find information on Hotels, Motels, RV Parks, Vacation Rentals, Restaurants & Shopping at the Matagorda Chamber of Commerce website.

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We are currently working on raising funds to purchase equipment for mass removal of trash on Matagorda County beaches.  We think this will be the only major mechanized cleaning operation run by a non-profit in Texas.

Comment on Facebook

They need to maintain the beach more often than just twice a year

When we were there last month the hubs took the dog on the beach every day & took a trash bag & filled it every day.

We’ve been using Amazon Smile for a while to benefit Tropical Maniac Foundation. We should all promote that link more.

Big shell cleanup on pins uses equipment to clean

Finally they are trying to do something. It needs maintaining more often! Good to see that someone is trying to keep it clean!

Long overdue!

Where do the beach pass funds go? My vote would be to this cause as well.

Pack it in pack it out people!

How much is needed for the equipment?

Where can we donate?

Will this be for all Matagorda County beaches? Or just Matagorda? In other words will this include Sargent?

You all are AWESOME!

👏👏👏👏👏 Yessssss! Baywash has an easy “not even lifting a finger” to raise money fundraiser. Message me if you want me to set it up!

The Popo 👮‍♀️ needs to start giving out tickets

Who is responsible for the jetty and pier? People need to pick up after themselves and quit leaving their trash behind. I wish there was better enforcement of this issue.

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Comment on Facebook

look forward to your reports.

Love this reports😁

Love your reports 👏👏

Thank you!!

Great

Thanks for sharing😊

Great

Awesome

!!

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Did you know that a 2017 marine survey concluded the Gulf of Mexico has one of the highest concentrations of marine trash reported worldwide? Another Study in 2019 found that Texas gets 10 times as much debris on our beaches as the other gulf states. We are at the crossroads of a major crisis and an opportunity to take action and make a noticeable impact on our environment, wildlife and local tourist economies.

Upsetting isnt it? Well dont despair. Together we CAN make a difference! Follow us & visit our website to find out how to help.

Comment on Facebook

It is really easy to put your trash in a bag and take it with you... makes you wonder what their house must look like.

I always loved Matagorda Beach we lived there in the 80s while the Nuclear plant was being built but there was many days we would pull wooden pallets or barrels and other junk out of the water and take with us to the dumpster my guess at the time was the wind blowing stuff off of the offshore rigs but I loved MB many family memories there I remember a guy who had a BIG 4x4 back then with a huge long rope and he made extra $$ pulling us people out of the loose sand before we figured out gotta keep it in the wet lol good times though

I can't stand that! My husband and I were married on that beach and have grown up on it. We make a point just to go and pick up metal and garbage on the beach. YOU WOULDN'T BELIEVE IT

I’ve been walking this beach since 1957. We all love our beach.. I’ve started keeping trash bags in my truck... when I walk instead of picking up shells I pick up trash. I agree perhaps we need a trash fee... more dumpsters.. awareness ... anything we can do to help our beach will save our beach.

I would be more than happy to participate in several beach cleanups this year!!!! Every time we come, we pick up all the trash in our area, even stuff that is semi buried in the sand...we try to get all that we see

A lot of the trash on the beach is washed up trash. It is hard to educate or change those people from foreign countries, we can pick their stuff up in order that we may enjoy the beach as it should be. But it is really upsetting to see trash like in your picture, that was simply left by people. Why cant they understand that if we don't pick up after ourselves eventually someone may say, you cant use the beach anymore.

It's super bad with the summer crowds, been fishing there for 35 years and every year it gets worse.

What laws are there to combat this? I'm a native Texan and don't recall these kind of issues on Texas beaches when I was a child. It's gotten progressively worse in the last 10 - 15 years. My family visited Hawaii 2 years ago and there was not a bit of loose trash ANYWHERE. What they DID have were plentiful signs displaying the fines for littering.....and they were steep.

My husband and I reaped much benefit from cleaning the lumber that washed in from the last 2 hurricanes. We made trip after trip to pick up all that we could, cleaning and repurposing much of it.

I didn't see anything on the website, do you have a link?

Preston Streun

Every time we camp on MB we pick up trash and bag it up with ours then put by the cans on our way out. I don’t understand why the powers that be don’t see the need for more dumpsters or larger than the existing ones!

That doesn’t look like washed up trash. More like asshole generated trash.

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