Family Vacations in Texas

Family Vacations in Texas: Padre Island National Seashore

Padre Island National Seashore is comprised of dunes of fine white sand, grasslands, saltwater marshes, and wildlife.

The pristine beaches, wind-sculpted dunes, and saltwater marshes of Padre Island National Seashore stretch for 80 miles along the Gulf of Mexico. It's the longest span of undeveloped beach in the United States and the longest undeveloped barrier island in the world. A major migratory bird flyway is found here, making this area one of the prime bird-watching regions in the world. A boardwalk stretches over a section of wetlands where kids can observe some of the many bird species that occupy the seashore.

Padre Island National Seashore is a fishing enthusiast's paradise. It offers speckled trout, black drum, redfish, and flounder. The saltwater lagoon between the island and the mainland is a perfect place to learn to windsurf -- it's only three to five feet deep with a soft, sandy bottom. Pack a picnic and watch one of the world-class windsurfing competitions held throughout the year.

On the next page, find out about other beach activities, such as the American Institute of Architects Sandcastle Competition, hosted in Galveston.

Padre Island National Seashore Information

Address: 20402 Park Rd. 22

Corpus Christi, TX

Telephone: 361/949-9951

Hours of Operation: Dawn to Dusk

Admission: $10 per vehicle or $5 per person

To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:

  • Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
  • Texas State Guide: Learn about Mobil Travel Guide-rated hotels and restaurants in Texas, as well as other recreational activities.
  • Scenic Drives: For those who think that getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the country.