South Padre vs Padre


South Padre is not Padre Island

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We want you to know that there is a MAJOR difference from Padre Island to South Padre Island.  The difference is approximately 160 miles.  Padre Island used to be 150 miles long many decades ago.  It stretched from Corpus Christi, TX.  south to Port Isabel, TX.  Approximately 4 or 5 decades ago a ship channel was cut through the barrier reef island approximately 36 miles north from the south tip of the island.  This cut is now called Port Mansfield, TX.  This allowed ship access to the inter-coastal waters.  There was NOT a bridge constructed over this channel.  The isolated south tip of Padre Island was now renamed “SOUTH PADRE ISLAND.”  Padre Island was reduced in length to approximately 120 miles long.


The reason I am attempting to explain this is due to conversing with folks.  They would say where do you live?  I would say South Padre Island.  They would say I love that place we ate here and we stayed at this hotel, etc.  I would look at them oddly because the places they mentioned I had not heard of.  I would then say you were at Corpus Christ, TX. right?  They would say Right!  I would then explain to them that they were NOT on South Padre Island.  You were on Padre Island!  South Padre Island is 160 miles south about 24 miles from the Mexican border at Port Isabel, TX.  They would look at me with eyes full of enlightenment and say Ohhhh! 

This has been a point of confusion to many vacationers.  People have made reservations on planned vacations on Padre Island thinking they were going to South Padre Island.  If they would have only looked at a map and followed Padre Island down to the south they would have plainly seen South Padre Island.

So don’t be confused.  Look at a map and get your facts straight.  Don’t say, don’t confuse me with the facts!  Have the facts!  I hope this clears up the distance between the two Islands.  They are most definitely two separate places many miles apart and that is about a 2 ½ hour drive! 

Another good point in checking the location out is if you fly into Corpus Christi, TX airport you are arriving to vacation at Padre Island.  However, if you fly into McAllen, Harlingen or Brownsville, TX than you are vacationing on South Padre Island.  This depends on what airline you fly.  Mc Allen which is the furthest from South Padre Island has  3 airlines servicing that airport.  Harlingen which is the next closest airport to South Padre Island is serviced by Southwest and Continental Airlines.  The Brownsville-South Padre island International airport, which is the closest airport to South Padre Island, is serviced by Continental airlines only.  They also provide a shuttle service Check this service out.

It’s easy to remember that Padre Island is located at Corpus Christi, TX.  South Padre Island is located across the bridge from Port Isabel, TX.  Always check your map! 


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