South Padre Island Travel Guide

South Padre Island Area information

Embark on a Coastal Getaway with Our South Padre Island Vacation Rentals

Enjoy 300 Days of Sunshine

If the clear emerald water and over 30 miles of sugar-white sands aren’t enticing enough, you’ll discover South Padre Island is packed with activities for the whole family. Gorgeous weather and calm waters make South Padre Island a great place to visit year-round. And with water sports, tandem skydiving, nature walks, cushy spa treatments, and tasty eats, you’ll never run out of things to do here.

A Tropical Getaway in Texas

With Vacation Rentals by Choice Hotels™ in South Padre Island, you can find the type of accommodations you need. Do you want to stay with friends in a house on the beach, enjoy family time at a quaint home on a quiet street or visit the area with your significant other and enjoy an upscale condo with modern, resort-like amenities? No matter which vacation rental you choose, you’ll have access to miles of pristine beaches and endless outdoor activities.

Top Sights in South Padre Island

Schlitterbahn Waterpark

If you and your family are looking for a fun activity everyone will love, head to Schlitterbahn Waterpark’s South Padre Island location. This popular Texas park features water rides, a surfing machine, hot tub bar, giant sandcastle play area and more. There’s also an indoor portion of the park, so kids can still have fun on water slides and in the Pirate’s Cove Kids Area even when the weather outside isn’t cooperating with your vacation plans.

South Padre Island Birding & Nature Center

According to the locals, the best way to experience South Padre Island’s wild side is to walk the Laguna Madre Nature Trail. This boardwalk stretches from the South Padre Island Convention Center to the Laguna Madre wetlands. Go birdwatching at the South Padre Island Birding & Nature Center, which offers a five-story viewing tower and some fun learning experiences. Take your time and discover all the different birds, butterflies, and other wildlife in the area.

Padre Island National Seashore

Padre Island National Seashore is longest undeveloped barrier island in the world, a unique landscape that’s prime for adventures in the sand. The sand dunes north of city limits are perfect if you’re looking for a unique experience on your beach getaway. Drive to the end of Padre Blvd and climb up one of the tall sand dunes to get the most stunning views of the Gulf of Mexico and Laguna Madre Bay.

Top Experiences in South Padre Island

See Some Sea Turtles

If you're looking to catch a glimpse of these fascinating sea creatures up close, Sea Turtle Inc. has you covered. Catch one of their volunteer-run presentations to learn all about marine turtles and conservation efforts to protect them. If you visit this destination the spring, you can watch the process of baby sea turtles being released back into the wild. It’s an experience you and your family won’t soon forget.

Skydive South Padre Island

Skydive South Padre is open year-round, and it features the biggest thrill on the island! Soar up to 11,000 feet and take a flying-leap with one of the professional instructors. Experience the thrill of the ground rushing at you at 120-miles-per-hour, followed by a 5-7 min canopy ride above South Padre Island that ends with a gentle touchdown in the sands.

Go Dolphin Watching

Several large pods of dolphins make South Texas their permanent home, and you can them in their natural habitat! The Original Dolphin Watch cruise brings you right to the area where the dolphins reside, so you can watch them swim, jump, and play in all their natural glory. Trips aboard the 60-foot cruise boat Double Sunshine leave daily from the Sea Ranch Marina. It’s one the most popular things to do in South Padre Island, so be sure to book ahead.

Pet Friendly Places

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Bring the whole family on vacation!

Great for Groups

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Get away for some quality time.

Beach Breaks

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Escape to sun, sand, and surf.

Golf Getaways

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Make tee time your only responsibility.

Adventure Vacations

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Relax, unwind, and let the outside in.

Ski Vacations

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Slide into your winter vacation with ease!