South Padre Island Travel Guide

USA  #1 in Best Beaches in Texas
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Best Times to Visit South Padre Island

The best time to visit South Padre Island is from September to February. Unless you are planning to join in on the spring break fun — rowdy partying at all hours of the day — you'll find this tiny town rather unbearable in March. However, during the other 11 months out of the year, SPI exudes a relaxed aura perfect for sun-seekers and families. Plus hotel rates are reasonably low compared to other beach destinations. Just be advised that if you're planning a summer trip, there's a slight chance you'll encounter some unfriendly hurricane weather.

March-May

It's no wonder why South Padre has become a spring break haven: Average spring temperatures range from the mid-60s to the mid-80s. As the ice and snow begin to thaw and mid-terms come to an end, countless numbers of college students flee south for some much-needed R&R. And because many college students squeeze upward of 10 people into one room, the hotels are forced to jack up their rates to turn a profit. So if you're looking to save, now is not the time. May, however, offers a tiny sweet spot for visitors: The college kids have come and gone and the hurricane season has yet to arrive.

Key Events:

  • Spring Break (March-April)
  • Buc Days (April-May)
June-August

Summers in South Padre are hot: Average highs hover in the upper 80s making the beach and water-centric attractions like Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark seem even more inviting. You'll find plenty of bargain-priced hotel rooms, but make sure you prepare for the heat. Pack plenty of sunscreen and make sure to drink lots of water. It's also a good idea to keep an eye on the weather. Although it's rare, South Padre has been known to experience hurricane weather during this season.

Key Events:

September-November

As temperatures drop back into the mid-80s, it becomes much more comfortable to explore South Padre (and the historical sites across Laguna Madre in Port Isabel) on foot. However, make sure to bring an umbrella. September is known as the rainiest month — although this tiny town still sees limited amounts of precipitation — and the threat of hurricane weather (albeit slight) still prevails. But don't let that deter you from visiting. October and November are particularly great: You'll have missed the summer heat and the winter vacationers will have yet to arrive. Plus, there are plenty of fun and family-friendly events that take place during these months.

Key Events:

December-February

Winter might be a little too chilly to dive into the bay — average temperatures rest in the 50s and 60s — but the weather is perfect for a stroll along the Laguna Madre Nature Trail, a picnic in Isla Blanca Park or a dolphin cruise. There are also several special events held during this time. However, SPI is a popular winter getaway spot for northern Texans, so make sure to book your hotel room at least a few weeks in advance.

Key Events:

Popular Times to Visit South Padre Island

Average Tourist Volumes

Ttourism volume is estimated based on in-market destination search query interest from Google and on travel.usnews.com in 2015-2016. Hotel prices are sourced from a sample of U.S. News Best Hotels rates through 2015-2016.

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