South Padre Island

Travel Guide
South Padre Island showing hiking or walking and a sunset as well as children

Relaxing South Padre Island awaits: its island views, beaches, natural setting, and more!

Discover the seaside city of South Padre Island—island views, amazing beaches, and top sights from South Padre Island Beach to Beach Park at Isla Blanca.

College students and families are drawn to this Texas barrier island for its oceanfront access and unbeatable weather.

Famous for its balmy temperature and oceanfront access, South Padre Island is one of Texas’s most coveted holiday getaways.

The vacation town is located at the southeastern tip of Texas and borders Mexico. As a barrier island, its eastern shoreline is along the Gulf of Mexico and is beloved by tourists for its warm year-round climate. Most of the land is a protected National Seashore, and the town of South Padre Island is relegated to the bottom tip of the island. 

The island is a favored destination for college spring breaks during March, when the town is largely populated by young adults enjoying the lively nightlife. Many families and retirees enjoy visits to South Padre Island during the winter thanks to its yearlong warm climate. Its downtown is filled with resorts, hotels, bars, and souvenir shops. 

Miles of pristine seashore stretches along the coastline, making it a perfect place to soak up the sun, go for a swim, or play beach volleyball. Many visitors take advantage of the horseback riding tours and take a beach ride at sunset. South Padre Island is known for its fishing opportunities and hosts numerous fishing contests and tournaments throughout the year. 

Water sports are the prime activity on South Padre Island and it is not unusual to see dozens of parasailers and kiteboarders enjoying the ocean waves. Dolphin watching is another popular choice, with a wide offering of tours available. Get snorkeling lessons to explore the ocean floor of the Gulf of Mexico. 

If fresh water recreation is more your style, spend the afternoon at Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark where you can enjoy water slides and other attractions that will appeal to visitors of all ages.

Port Isabel is five miles (eight kilometers) away and is home to the Port Isabel Lighthouse, which features stunning views of South Padre Island and the ocean beyond. 

South Padre Island has a slender shape and compact community. Most of the island’s destinations can be reached on foot, but if you don’t feel like strolling, the town also offers The Wave, a free shuttle service. 

Brownsville International Airport is a half-hour drive from South Padre Island, and has daily flights to and from Dallas and Houston. The island is connected to the mainland by Route 100.

Where to stay in South Padre Island

Pearl South Padre
Pearl South Padre
3.5 out of 5
310 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
The price is CA $193 per night from Jun 29 to Jun 30
Stay at this 3.5-star beach hotel in South Padre Island. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and a beach locale. Our guests praise the pool and the restaurant in ...
3.2/5 (1,387 reviews)
"We stayed a couple of nights and really enjoyed it all. The pool is awesome and for being sizable was very clean. The beach is nearby and the access to it very convenient. Great time overall."

Reviewed on Jun. 25, 2022

Pearl South Padre
La Copa Inn Beach Hotel
La Copa Inn Beach Hotel
3 out of 5
350 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $292 per night from Jun 30 to Jul 1
Stay at this 3-star beach hotel in South Padre Island. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 2 outdoor pools. Our guests praise the breakfast and the helpful staff ...
3.9/5 Very Good! (1,808 reviews)
"Hotel was very clean seems they have enough housekeeping staff always clean. Employee are very friendly. My room was very clean."

Reviewed on Jun. 24, 2022

La Copa Inn Beach Hotel
La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham South Padre Island Beach
La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham South Padre Island Beach
2.5 out of 5
7000 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is CA $284 per night from Jun 30 to Jul 1
Stay at this beach hotel in South Padre Island. Enjoy free breakfast, free WiFi, and free parking. Our guests praise the breakfast and the bar in our reviews. ...
3.9/5 Very Good! (1,571 reviews)
"Nice and clean rooms. Staff was really helpful. Perfect location right in front of beach. Easy beach access enjoyed our stay"

Reviewed on Jun. 23, 2022

La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham South Padre Island Beach
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
The Tiki
The Tiki
3.5 out of 5
6608 Padre Boulevard, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
Stay at this 3.5-star beach aparthotel in South Padre Island. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 2 outdoor pools. Our guests praise the pool and the clean rooms ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (600 reviews)
"I didn’t like only one close parking space for a rental of six people. Also only 2 rolls of toilet paper for 5 day stay of six people. Other than that everything was fine."

Reviewed on Jun. 24, 2022

The Tiki
Royale Beach and Tennis Club by VRI Americas
Royale Beach and Tennis Club by VRI Americas
3 out of 5
400 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
Stay at this 3-star beach condo in South Padre Island. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 3 outdoor pools. Our guests praise the quiet rooms in our reviews. ...
3.8/5 Good! (57 reviews)
"When we checked in the gate security and front desk were amazing. They verified my information fast and easy. The room was super clean and cozy. We all fit perfectly since it was 2 bedrooms & 2 bathrooms. Everything in the room was nice the only thing was that we had 2 remotes for all 3 televisions. ..."

Reviewed on May 23, 2022

Royale Beach and Tennis Club by VRI Americas
South Padre Resort Rentals
South Padre Resort Rentals
3.5 out of 5
1000 Padre Boulevard, South Padre Island, TX, 78597
Stay at this 3.5-star beach condo in South Padre Island. Enjoy free WiFi, free parking, and 2 outdoor pools. Our guests praise the pool and the helpful staff ...
4.4/5 Wonderful! (214 reviews)
"Enjoyed stay, nice property, pool small"

Reviewed on May 30, 2022

South Padre Resort Rentals
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top things to do in South Padre Island

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