Padre Island National Seashore

Sandy beach
20420 Park Rd 22, Corpus Christi, TX 78418, USA
199 miles from Houston, TX
Cleanliness
Water quality
Crowded
Impressions
Overall

Beach amenities

  • Pet friendlyBring your little friends!
  • RV-friendlyRV parking available
  • ShowerPublic showers available
  • RestaurantsF&B places nearby
  • Picnic tablesPicnic benches available
  • Changing roomsDressing rooms on the beach
  • WCPublic restrooms nearby
  • ParkingCar parking nearby

About this beach

Warnings and hazards

There are all necessary facilities at the visitor’s center, but prepare to do without them if you decide to drive further.

Better take your own trash bag, since most of the beach features no trash cans.

Dogs are allowed on a leash only.

No lifeguards – you’re on your own.

The sand can get very hot, so have your footwear on.

This wild 70-mile spacious beach with stunning views and a relaxing atmosphere is definitely a place to visit if you’re in South Texas. Padre Island National Seashore boasts vast serene landscapes and water untypically clear for the Texas coast, without seaweed. You can either park your car at the visitor’s center and follow to the beach area where vehicles are not allowed or you can drive further and find a nice camping spot – a great option for those traveling in their RV. Nevertheless, if you travel past the visitor’s center, get ready for the lack of any shops, eateries, and beach facilities. No businesses, no people – only wild and serene nature. Thus, you’ll get a perfect opportunity to escape from the stressful city setting.

Access, Parking, and RV Camping

You can easily get to Padre Island National Seashore by car. It’s an easy drive from Houston and just 15 minutes from downtown Corpus Christi, through wetlands and sand dunes. You’ll have to pay $10 for entrance or you may buy an annual pass if you’re planning to come again. There’s a free parking lot at the visitor’s center, so you can leave your car right there. Nevertheless, there’s another option – you can go further down the road (a four-wheel vehicle is highly recommended) and drive directly on the beach at a chosen spot. Many people camp their RVs here. If you wish to stay alone, it’s not a problem – find a remote and deserted corner; there are plenty of places.

Seclusion and Tranquility

Padre Island National Seashore is one of the best beaches in the area and it never gets overcrowded. It’s easy to find a beautiful and quiet spot to spend time with your nearest and dearest or alone. If you have a dog, you can take it with you – the beach rules allow dogs, but make sure your pet is leashed and don’t forget to pick up after it.

There are a few hiking trails. The beach itself is perfect for long unhurried walks, during which you can look for shells, or just enjoy the views and the breeze, or watch numerous wildlife species, like hawks, cranes, seagulls, pelicans, crabs, or turtles. The sand is hard-packed and easy to step on, but make sure you have your sandals on, since it gets very hot at times.

Facilities At The Visitor’s Center

Most of the beach is wild, featuring no amenities. Nevertheless, you can find a variety of those, clean and well-maintained, at the visitor’s center. There, you can make use of a free parking lot, picnic area, restrooms, changing rooms, showers, and electric outlets. There is also a museum and a gift shop. The staff is friendly and ready to help. Consult them if you are interested to see the famous turtle release – a special event, which takes place at dawn on scheduled days and is aimed at protecting little baby turtles in their first run to the water. To plan your trip with consideration to that in advance, you can join the center’s Facebook page and check for fresh updates.

Reviewed by:
Phil R.
Download FREE PDF map and directions
photo by Kip Nissenphoto by Josephine Casophoto by James Koskiphoto by Air Icarusphoto by Diane Jalbertphoto by Joey Gottinger

Padre Island National Seashore videos

Saving the Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtle
A catching video by Texas Parks and Wildlife
Padre Island National Seashore
A picturesque drone made video by Kite Aerial Photo

Weather conditions

Current weather at the beach and 3 day forecast
Beach map and directions
The beach is located in Corpus Christi, Texas 20420 Park Rd 22, Corpus Christi, TX 78418, USA (Open on Google Maps)
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