Areas & Neighborhoods in South Padre Island
Though the island of South Padre is roughly 30 miles (48 km) long, the developed and inhabited region runs only 6 miles (9.7 km) from north to south. This area is primarily made up of the resort district, which booms with hotels, restaurants, shopping, and entertainment. To the north and south, you can also find the Andy Bowie and Isla Blanca parks, both of which offer RV sites and an abundance of waterfront recreational facilities.
The resort district is broken up into 3 areas, Beachside to the east, Bayside to the west, and Inner Island in between. All 3 offer a wide range of lodging and dining options, with everything from high-end hotels and 4-star eateries to modest motels and grab-and-go cafes. If shopping is your thing, you can find tons of boutiques selling everything you need for a day on the beach, from bathing suits and surfboards to sunglasses. And of course, with the widest point of the island being only a half-mile (.8 km), you’re always just steps away from the sand. Work on your tan, or choose from an awesome array of watersports and the other beach activities, including windsurfing, paddleboarding, and kayaking.
Come nightfall, the city is just alive as it is during the day. Hit the town to uncover any number of beachside bars or bustling nightclubs. If you’re visiting from April through September, make sure not to miss the fireworks shows that are held every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night at various locations on the island.
What to See on South Padre Island
Gaze out upon the sparkling expanse of the Gulf of Mexico from a spot on the beach on the east side of the island. For adventure-seekers, you can also take in the views from two other perspectives—high in the sky and deep below the surface of the water. Feel the rush of adrenaline as you skydive above the island, freefalling at up to 150 miles per hour (241 km/h), or get close to dolphins, sea turtles, and shipwrecks on a scuba-diving excursion in the “Texas Riviera.”
Sightseeing in South Padre Island
For Outdoor Adventurers
With its white sand, warm water, and tropical landscape, South Padre Island boasts a wide variety of activities for lovers of the outdoors. Take a surfing lesson, rent a jet ski, or soar like Superman on a thrilling Flyboard. Fisherman will particularly enjoy chartering a boat for an afternoon trip into the deep sea of the Gulf. You can catch popular fish like red snapper and tuna, which local restaurants are happy to fry up for a small fee.
South Padre’s dreamy atmosphere provides plenty in the way of activities for couples. Pamper yourselves with side-by-side massages at any of the spas that can found across the island, or set off on horseback for a romantic ride as the sun sets below the horizon.
Beaches, wildlife, and adventure parks turn South Padre Island into a child’s playground. Kids will love learning how to build sandcastles like a pro or making friends with the furry creatures at the Island Adventure Park petting barn. Wilder fun awaits on the 13 slides at Schlitterbahn Waterpark, while mini-golf and go-karts are just a few of the offerings at Gravity Park.