If you think you have to hop a plane to experience that island life, let it be known that your palm-tree fix doesn’t require a trip through airport security.
Port Aransas — or Port A, as the locals say — is the quintessential summer vacay spot, with 18 miles of sun-kissed beaches, cool sea breezes, and a completely relaxed vibe. You’re still in Texas, but you'll feel worlds away.
Here are five ways to love this island getaway:
1. Soak up your version of coastal fun
Whether you want to dig your toes in the sand with a book in hand, boogie board with the family, fish on the pier, paddle-board in a warm lagoon, tear across the waves on a jet ski, or head out to San Jose Island and hunt for seashells, there’s a beachy activity to anchor anyone and everyone in Port A.
2. Savor Texas’ island flavor
After a day at the beach, Port A’s eclectic town makes for a fun night out with a dining scene that excels in fresh-caught seafood, palm-covered palapas, and waterfront patios.
Many of the restaurants — including Roosevelt's at The Tarpon Inn, Trout Street Bar, and Castaways Seafood and Grill — will even prepare whatever catch you bring in from your fishing trip for a unique sea-to-table experience.
There are plenty of quirky-fun places, too, like Lelo’s Island Bar and its signature tiki drinks and specialty burgers.
3. Drive in style
Golf carts are the wheels of choice on Port A, and yet another reason to love this place. Cue up your favorite summer tunes and roll right up to the beach with zero need to search for traditional car parking.
4. Go beyond the beach
If you’re beached out for the day, head to Farley Boat Works to learn about the handcrafted boats that helped shape what Port A is today. You could also head to the Port Aransas Community Theatre or take the fam aboard a cruise on the Red Dragon Pirate Ship.
5. Get in touch with nature
Sure, the beach is a natural beauty, but Port A also boasts four nature preserve sites with hiking and bike trails, boardwalks, and wildlife observation areas. Take a trail walk, beach comb, or learn about sea turtles and marine birds at the Animal Rehabilitation Keep. In addition to the preserves, nearby parks are another outdoorsy option.
Texas beach life never looked better. Learn more about how to create the perfect summer vacay and live on island time here.