South Padre Island is any family’s dream holiday destination.
You don’t have to travel miles to experience a fun activity plus there’s always something happening on the island, even for young kids!
I shared a few of my family’s favorite activities, for little ones, in the travel feature- Fun things to do with young kids in South Padre Island. I can’t help but share a few more must-dos your kids will enjoy when you visit the island next.
South Padre Island CVB invited my family on an expense-paid weekend at South Padre Island. All opinions, in this travel feature are my own.
More fun things to do with young kids in South Padre Island
1. Visit the turtles.
South Padre is home to an amazing sea turtle rescue, rehabilitation, and conservation center. Sea Turtle Inc. invites visitors to walk through the center, all through the week, to learn about, meet and observe rescued sea turtles.
Travel Tip #1: Plan your visit to the center around 2 pm. The kids will get to watch the enrichment feeding routine and at 3 pm watch Gerry, one of the large, friendly, resident sea turtles enjoy a leafy snack from a member of the staff. Travel Tip #2: If your plans to visit South Padre take you to the island during the summer, keep checking for hatchling release updates on the Sea Turtle Inc. Facebook page. Little ones will love getting to see palm-sized baby turtles up close and watch them waddle off to their big new adventure from the beach to the ocean.
2. Take an eco-cruise and spot playful dolphins in the wild.
The hour-long cruise to the Laguna Madre Bay may seem like a long time to be on a boat with little ones, but rest assured. The team from Osprey Cruises ensure kids of all ages have a great time from start to finish. The Dolphin Watch Cruise begins with trawling of a net behind the boat to bring up sea life for the eco-tour part of the cruise. No cruise is ever the same as the net brings up a variety of sea life and yes, kids get to touch, feel and hold creatures from the sea before they’re gently released back into the bay.
The highlight of the cruise, without a doubt, is being able to spot dolphins playing in the wild. We were blessed to have a pod swim close to the boat, follow alongside and play a mere few feet away.
Posted by Mommy Snippets on Saturday, August 12, 2017
Travel Tip: If you’re worried about your child experiencing sea-sickness, have him wear a motion sickness band, rub some peppermint essential oil on his temples, choose the top deck over the lower and/or give a Dramamine for Kids chewable tablet about an hour before you take the cruise. (All four remedies work!)
And yes, the boat does have an air-conditioned cabin, a restroom, and concessions for sale.
3. Meet a band of swashbuckling buccaneers on a pirate cruise.
Arena shares a wonderful report on her son’s fun experience aboard the pirate ship. This is a hit with all pirate lovers, young and old!
Travel Tip: Keep in mind you will need to travel over the bridge to get onboard Osprey’s pirate cruise at Port Isabel. Make sure you reach Port Isabel at least 30 minutes prior to departure as the preshow is not one to be missed and your child will get to meet the pirates up close.
4. Explore the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center.
If your child loves birds and butterflies, the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center is a treat especially as Fall sets in. Home to more than just a few migratory and resident birds and butterflies, this is a recommended must-visit when the center opens first thing in the morning.
The center has several activities for young children, most weekends. (When we visited the kids played an educational game of Bird Bingo and won SPI Nature Center t-shirts, which made for a sweet souvenir from our visit.)
Travel Tip #1: Carry lots of water, apply sunscreen and have those sunhats/caps ready prior to the walk down the boardwalk. If your little ones are like mine, a quick walk down the boardwalk can stretch to a few hours once the kids start spotting the various birds on their scavenger hunt list and want to feed the birds! (Bird food can be purchased from the gift shop inside.)
Travel Tip #2: Exploring the boardwalk first and then exploring the center inside before later walking next door to Sea Turtle Inc., is highly recommended to beat the heat.
Ready to start making those travel plans to South Padre?
Check out the first half of this post– Fun Things To Do With Young Kids on South Padre Island.