South Padre Island Activities
What to Do
With so many state and world records set in our bay and gulf waters, South Padre Island has a world class reputation among fishermen. Half day and full day trips in the Laguna Madre Bay and the Gulf of Mexico cost as little as $14 or as much as $1000, depending on your prowess, your pocketbook, and how far offshore you venture. The list of species is as long as the gulf is deep: whiting, drum, flounder, trout, redfish, kingfish, wahoo, tuna, marlin, and sailfish are a few.
A convenient way to check on conditions and to find out more about booking a trip is to contact Jim's Pier (956-761-2865), Fisherman's Wharf (956-761-7818), Sea Ranch Marina (956-761-5493), Fish Tales (956) 943-3185, Deep Sea Fishing "Osprey" & "Osprey II" 956-761-6655.
Golf the Gulf
The South Padre Island Golf Club winds along the placid Laguna Madre bay with spectacular views of the Island. It's no wonder that it was selected as one of the Top 20 news courses in America by Golf Magazine when it opened in 1997. Each hole offers unexpected challenges just minutes from South Padre Island in Laguna Vista. The 18-hole, par 72 course is complemented by a 385-yard driving range, putting and chipping greens, pro shop and clubhouse. Call 956-943-5678 for tee times.
The Rio Grande Valley offers great golfing for handicappers of all levels. Keep in mind that our temperate climate allows golfers to tee off twelve months a year. The closest courses are in Brownsville (25 minutes) and Harlingen (40 minutes) but don't overlook championship play throughout the Valley including McAllen (90 minutes). A few of the closer courses are:
Valley Inn & Country Club
Located south of FM 802, between U.S. Hwy. 77/83 and U.S. Hwy. 281 (956)548-9199. An 18-hole, par-70 golf course measuring 6,538 yards.
Cottonwood Creek Golf Course
1001 S. Ed Carey Dr., (956)428-0766. An executive nine-hole, par-3 golf course measuring 2,100 yards. Claims to have some of the finest greens in the Rio Grande Valley.
Whispering Winds Golf & Learning Center
2524 W. Spur 54 (956)423-2010. A nine-hole, par-3 golf course measuring 1,306 yards. Lessons available. Lighted driving range.
Harlingen Country Club
5500 El Camino Real (956)412-4110. A private 18-hole, par-72 championship golf course measuring 6,541 yards. Home to the "Life Begins at Forty" Golf Tournament.
Tony Butler Municipal Golf Course
Half a mile south of "M" St. (956)430-6685. A 27-hole golf course. Measuring 6,320 yards, the first 18 holes are par-71 and have a U.S.G.A. rating of 69.1. Pro shop. Practice range.
Treasure Hills Country Club
3017 Treasure Hills Blvd. (956)428-0351. Opened in 1991, this Robert Trent Jones-designed golf course features terrain very different from that found in the rest of the Valley. It’s an 18-hole, par-72 course measuring 6,960 yards from the championship tees. Closed Mondays.
Rancho Viejo Country Club
1 Rancho Viejo Dr., Rancho Viejo. Located west of U.S. Hwy. 77/83, three miles north of Brownsville city limits. (956)350-4000, ext. 620. Two 18-hole, par-70 championship golf courses. "El Angel," measuring 6,518 yards, has a rating of 71.5. "El Diablo," measuring 6,847 yards, has a rating of 73.7. Full golf practice facilities. Winter instructional sessions with the John Jacobs’ Golf School of Scottsdale, Arizona.
South Padre Island's sunny days make for perfect play - regardless of your skill level. All of the major hotels and condominiums feature tennis courts which are available to their guests. The staff at the South Padre Island Visitors Center (1-800-767-2373) can also offer suggestions on private and group lessons.
The Laguna Madre Bay separates South Padre Island from the Texas mainland and is recognized as one of the world's top windsurfing destinations. The sailing season off South Padre runs from September through May. Water depth varies from three to five feet, daytime winds average 18 mph, and the average yearly temperature is in the 70's.
Novices and pros come to sail the bay, the Jetties, Boca Chica, and the Ditch, site of some of the fastest windsurfing speeds in North America. For complete information on conditions, accommodations, equipment, and rentals, contact Windsurf Inc. on the Bay (956-761-1434 or 1-800-880-5423) or Windsurf the Boatyard (956-761-5061).
Kiteboarding is fast becoming the hottest new water sport and South Padre Island offers year-round, world-class kiteboarding conditions. consistent winds offer beginner to expert riders near perfect flat-water conditions to hone their skills. Advanced kiteboarders will enjoy riding the Laguna Madre and the waves of the Gulf of Mexico. Experienced, certified instructors are available to teach you about this exciting sport. For the fun of it call South Padre Kiteboarding (956)761-1434 or 1-800-880-5423, South Padre Island Kiteboarding, Inc. (956)245-8343, or WorldKites.com (956)778-2380.