Are you on the hunt for a sunny, sandy spring break location? Why not head down to one of the many islands in Texas for a spring break that will trump most others.
From March to May, the cold USA winter is broken in Texas by warmth, longer days of sunshine, and the most wonderful wildflowers blooming.
There are plenty of opportunities to enjoy yourself in the state, but even more so on one of the seven barrier islands of Texas.
So let’s dive deeper into these islands, find out which are best for Spring Break, and what they have to offer you.
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- 3 Best Texas Islands to Spend your Spring Break
- 1. South Padre Island – Spring Break Paradise
- 2. Galveston Island
- 3. Mustang Island
- Visit One of the Islands Off the Coast of Texas This Spring
3 Best Texas Islands to Spend your Spring Break
While these barrier islands in Texas are most popular with college students looking for a sunny break from school, there are spaces for families on spring break, as well as couples, and older adults too.
Each one has its own pros and cons, but each offers a memorable spring break in Texas.
1. South Padre Island – Spring Break Paradise
Often known as the party island in Texas, South Padre is definitely popular among the younger generations.
There is so much happening here during Spring Break, including live performances, events at the local bars and clubs, and tons of seasonal specials.
But outside of the Spring Break resorts, there is still more than enough space for families and quieter travelers to enjoy their getaway.
There are quieter beaches and bars, as well as hotels that are not swarming in 18- to 20-year-olds.
The island is child-friendly, but also welcomes well-behaved and vaccinated pets, so this truly can be a vacation for the whole family.
Things to do in South Padre Island:
While visiting South Padre Island, you can discover the island yourself, or book one of the many tours. Here are just a few of the things you can look forward to:
- Dolphin watching
- Surf lessons
- Learn about the sea turtles and other marine life
- Discover the island’s art and sandcastle trail
- Boat cruises
- Find Port Isabel Lighthouse
- Visit the South Padre Island Birding, Nature Center & Alligator Sanctuary
Where to Stay in South Padre Island:
Choosing your accommodation will rely heavily on knowing what kind of Spring Break you’re after.
For students, there are lively resorts where all the action happens. For families, something more removed from the throngs of young people is perhaps best.
If you’re somewhere in between, there’s a hotel for that too.
- Ramada by Wyndham & Suites South Padre Island – Popular with Spring Breakers, there is enough activity going on nearby to keep you entertained your entire stay.
- Isla Grand Beach Resort – See a few younger guests, the stunning pool is a great place to come together with a cocktail and some live music.
- La Copa Inn Beach Hotel – A little quieter and offers family rooms. Pets are also welcome at a small charge.
2. Galveston Island
For many years, Galveston has been a Spring Break destination. Today, it might not be as energetic – or as busy – as South Padre, but it has its own charm, that’s for sure.
This island is still fun and lively, with crowds of people each spring. But it’s not as much of a party island as South Padre is known for.
Galveston caters to all kinds of visitors, so again, a mix of students, families, and solo travelers can be found here.
While the island is busy and bustling at this time of year, there are quieter beaches, lesser-known restaurants, and family-focused accommodations to choose from.
In fact, if you are traveling as a family, Galveston Island may just be the better option.
Things to Do in Galveston Island:
This island has all the same outdoor and water-based activities as South Padre, but with a little added family feel.
There are numerous large events and festivals that take place, and plenty of cultural activities to take the young ones to.
- Take part in the Galveston Family Beach Challenge
- Explore Galveston Island State Park
- Discover Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier
- Go horseback riding
- Browse a museum
Where to stay in Galveston Island :
You’ll find no shortage of spring break hotels in Galveston. Whether you’re after location, value for money, or atmosphere, there’s something for everyone.
- Moody Gardens Hotel Spa and Convention Center – Although this hotel is a little pricey, it’s a great place to be with kids over spring break. Plus, the spa is a welcomed treat over any vacation.
- TownePlace Suites by Marriott Galveston Island – A great place to stay if you prefer a little independence. The kitchenette allows for self-catering, but breakfast is provided. It’s also pet-friendly.
3. Mustang Island
You’ll find Port Aransas right on the tip of Mustang Island. This town was once a quaint little fishing village, but it has become a popular Texas spring break destination.
If you’re not up for South Padre’s crowds, and even Galveston is too busy for you, then Port Aransas may just be your cup of tea.
Of course, it’s still busy. Parking is limited and there is usually a waiting list for restaurants – but you’re likely to find a calm spot on the beach easier.
Travel Tip: A few properties in Port Aransas have an age restriction on renting/booking (you must be at least 25 years old) so this deters some of the college crowds. If you’re looking for a more mature vacation, this is ideal.
Things to do in Mustang Island:
The beach is the most common activity here, but there are a few other must-sees:
- Visit the community theater
- Go on a deep-sea fishing excursion
- Check out Mustang Island State Park
- Discover Port Aransas Museum
Where to stay in Mustang Island:
To seal the deal on your Mustang Island spring break trip, pick one of the cozy and welcoming accommodations on offer.
- Best Western Port Aransas – Most loved for their hearty breakfast, this is an ideal place to come back to each night of your stay.
- The Place at Port Aransas – This spot is located perfectly for exploring the town and making the most of your spring break.
Visit One of the Islands Off the Coast of Texas This Spring
When you first think of a Texas spring break, beach and booze are often the top things that come to mind. But in truth, spending this warm and colorful season in Texas offers much, much more.
Go surfing, swim with marine wildlife, or simply laze on the beach. And if it’s a party you’re looking for, there’s one around almost every corner.
These are the closest you’re going to get to tropical places in Texas, so why not take full advantage of them.