Want to experience South Padre Island like a local? Start your morning off with a fresh-from-the-oven cinnamon roll at Yummie’s, a popular local choice for breakfast. If sweet treats first thing in the morning aren’t your thing, give the breakfast tacos at Benny’s by the Bay a try. After you’ve checked off the most important meal of the day, it’s time to hit the beach for some kiteboarding. The season begins in March, and AIR Padre Kiteboarding is a great place to rent your gear and get all set up for extreme adventure in the Gulf’s warm, calm waters. Lunch brings you to Capt Roy’s for some amazing ceviche, or, if you’d like a beachfront lunch, look no further than Palm’s Cafe on the Beach, where you’ll be treated to still-warm homemade potato chips.  

You’ll spend the afternoon on the beach, but not just any beach — use access points at Isla Blanca Park, Wanna Wanna, 6 on the North, or Boomerang Billy’s to get away from the tourists. Soak up the sun and don’t let a tell-tale sunburn brand you as a newbie. Dinner at the Padre Island Brewing Company will find you mingling with the locals; try the pizza, salads, tuna steaks, and the ice cold beer. Looking for a family friendly dinner? Try Pizza Joint for some pepperoni-covered pies, made even more fun by live entertainment from The Piano Man. If it’s seafood you crave, give Dolphin Cove Oyster Bar a try — it’s one of the top seafood dives in the country, and you can even watch the dolphins from your table on the sun deck. Don’t miss the gorgeous sunsets; no matter how long you’ve lived on South Padre, the brilliant colors and fading light never get old. If you’re staying up late, you’ll definitely want to hit up Louie’s Local Bar for karaoke, live bands, and good vibes (try the Charlie Cherry if you’re drinking).

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