Day Trips: Life’s a Beach, Corpus Christi

The islands across the causeway offer sun, sand, and surf all summer long

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Day Trips: Life’s a Beach, Corpus Christi
Photos by Gerald E. McLeod

Life's a beach, and few places on the Texas coast have a better concentration of sand and surf than the barrier islands across the JFK Causeway from Corpus Christi.

• Mustang Island State Park, with more than 5 miles of pristine sand, is one beach that has it all – swimming, fishing, camping, plus restrooms and showers. The park is 5 miles north of the intersection of Park Road 22 and TX-361 (all distance given from the traffic signal at the intersection).

Day Trips: Life’s a Beach, Corpus Christi

• Padre Balli Park comes a close second with amenities, plus a fishing pier and seaside restaurant. Two miles south off Park Road 22, it has a long stretch of beach, RV park, showers, and restrooms.

• J.P. Luby Surf Park/North Packery Beach is run by the city and requires a $12 parking permit. Only half a mile north on TX-361 at Zahn Road, it attracts a younger crowd. The park has 5 miles of beach before it runs into the state park.

• Padre Island National Seashore has 65 miles of beach on the longest undeveloped barrier island in the world. Call 361/949-7163 to find out when the next turtle hatchlings will be released. There is a $10 per vehicle fee to enter the park 10 miles south of the intersection.

Day Trips: Life’s a Beach, Corpus Christi

Other Beaches

• Seawall Beach, 2.5 miles; go south to Whitecap Boulevard and park at the end of Windward Drive.

• Whitecap Beach, 1.5 miles; at the end of Whitecap Dr. off Park Road 22.

• Natural Beach, 3 miles; go south to Access Road 6. Nothing except sand and surf, but isn't that what you're looking for?

For more information on area beaches and attractions, go to or

1,347th in a series. Collect them all. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 40312, South Austin, TX 78704.

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More Day Trips
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Gerald E. McLeod, Feb. 26, 2021

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Texas beaches, Corpus Christi, Mustang Island State Park, Padre Balli Park

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