Making waves

Texas fave splashes into No. 1 spot on list of affordable U.S. beaches

Texas fave splashes into top spot on list of affordable U.S. beaches

North Beach Corpus Christi
North Beach boasts the best value in the nation.  Visit Corpus Christi/Facebook

All of us need a respite of one sort or another as our stress levels rise during the coronavirus pandemic, and as businesses, venues, and other places shut down. During these chaotic times, a quiet, relaxing — and relatively crowd-free — trip to the beach might be just what the doctor ordered.

Thankfully, Texas is home to five of the 60 most affordable beaches in the U.S., according to a ranking released February 28 by HomeToGo, a vacation rental search engine. Florida is the best-represented state on the list (21 beaches), followed by California (13), and Texas. Before you make a trip to any beach, give serious consideration to whether you’ll encounter big crowds where you could be exposed you to the coronavirus.

To come up with the ranking, HomeToGo computed the costs of beachside parking, sunscreen, lunch, one beer, and a one-night stay near the coast.

Topping the U.S. list is North Beach in Corpus Christi, where HomeToGo estimates a trip costs $88.36. Highlights of North Beach include the Texas State Aquarium, the USS Lexington Museum, Fajitaville’s Ferris wheel, a one-and-a-half mile sandy beach, a concrete walkway, two fishing jetties, and the Dolphin Park playground.

“Whether you are looking for a place to eat and grab drinks, participate in a family-friendly experience, or immerse yourself in Coastal Bend history, North Beach has something for you,” the Corpus Christi Convention & Visitors Bureau says.

Keep in mind that attractions, restaurants, and other places at North Beach — and at other Texas beaches — might be closed or operating under limited hours due to the coronavirus.

The four other Texas beaches appearing on the HomeToGo list, along with the estimated cost of a beach trip, are:

10. Rockport Beach, $109.88
13. Galveston Island, East Beach, $113.67
30. Port Aransas, $124.08
33. South Padre Island, $124.74