Exploring Texas Cities
Are you the adventureous type who likes to explore Texas cities and find new fun things to see and do? If so, this page will give you a jump start and list some fun things to see and do in Texas cities that Texas Outside has recently visited. Each of these cities are excellent for a weekend adventure or a week long vacation.
Exploring Texas Cities Archives
Current Exploring Texas Adventure
Exploring Port Aransas
Port Aransas was a favorite of pirates in the early 1800s and the notorious Capt. Jean Lafitte and his hearty band of buccaneers spent lots of time on the Texas coast. In fact, Galveston would owe its start to him and Mustang Island was one of his favorite haunts. Today, Mustang Island and Port Aransas are one of our favorite haunts because it is such a friendly and fun loving city with plenty to see and do. This page will give you some ideas on what to do on a weekend adventure or weeklong vacation in Port Aransas. Make sure you check out this links before heading to Port Aransas for a vacation or a fun weekend:
- History of Port Aransas - Wikepedia has a good overview on the founding and history of Port Aransas
- Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce Website - their website has a good listing of things to do, events, lodging, and more
- Port Aransas Map - our interactive map is a good way to locate things on a map that you want to see and do when vacationing in Port Aransas
- Top Ten Fun Things To See & Do in Port Aransas - check out our list of favorite vacation activities in Port Aransas
- Playing in Port A - this article is a good overview of what we do when we visit Port Aransas
Port Aransas Lodging Options
One of the reasons we vacation every year for a few days in Port Aransas is because of the good weather, beach, friendly locals, good restaurants, excellent nightlife, things to see and do, and variety of lodging options. If you're heading to Port A, you have lots of choices for where to stay. If you like to camp, you're in heaven with choices to camp downtown, right on the beach, in the State Park, or in a variety of private RV parks. We've tried them all and each has it own set of advantages or disadvantages. For example, camping on the beach is great for a day or so, but expect sand in your food, no electricity, and plenty of company strolling by your site. The private RV parks are more expensive, some are in town and others are a half block off the beach, and all of them have full hookups. The State Park is a good alternative if you don't mind being a little further out of town. Use this Port Aransas Campground Map to find a campground or RV park and read our reviews of the each of the parks that we have stayed at in Port A.
If you don't want to rough it, then you have lots of excellent options for hotels, condos, resorts, or private homes. For hotels, consider staying downtown in the heart of all the action at the historic Tarpon Inn - you can park the car and walk to great restaurants and nightlife and plenty of fishing charters or tour boats. If you're looking for a big beautiful home that sleeps your entire party and over looks the ocean, or one that's smaller and right downtown, or something in between, VRBO has lots of choices with prices ranging from $70 per night to $500 per night and up. There are lots of condominiums and a couple of resorts, one of which is Port Royal. Bottom line, with a little work and research, you can find a place that fits your budget and will accommodate almost any sized group.
Favorite Things To See and Do in Port Aransas
Some of the above links will provide more detail, but here is a short summary of why we love Port A and what we like to do on our vacations in Port Aransas:
- Fishing - some of our party love to fish and Port A may be the fishing capital of Texas. You can fish off the jetties or the piers, surf fish, kayak fish, or rent a boat, hire a fishing guide to fish the flats and bays or charter a boat for deep sea fishing for the really big trophy fish. Regardless of which way you go, you will most likely catch enough fish for a fantastic fish dinner or maybe a trophy for the wall!
- Biking - we really enjoy parking the car and biking everywhere we go - to the beach, to the restaurants, and the bars. The city isn't real bike friendly so you need to be careful or ride the back streets. You can bike for miles up and down the beach or head over to Charlie's Pasture and ride the trail along the jetty and the boardwalk through the marshes - bring mosquito spray.
- Golfing - one of our favorite courses, Newport Dunes, is a mile outside of town and it's a fantastic course. Or head down to Corpus to play some of their courses, take the ferry and play at Rockport Country Club (it's a fun private track, so check with them to see if you can get on), or head to Portland and play the excellent Northshore Country Club. Use this Port Aransas Golf Map to locate a nearby course and link to our reviews of the courses we have played.
- Nightlife - Port A is well know for it's fun and lively nightlife and you've got lots of good choices to hang with the locals, listen to some good music, or just enjoy a cold drink overlooking the Gulf of Mexico or the marina. Our Port Aransas Map has a few of the options listed. Sharkey's has live music for the younger crowd, Shorty's is always lively, and The Gaff is funky and has power sander races!
- Restaurants - lots of very good restaurants ranging from fast food to excellent fresh fish. You'll find Cajun, Mexican, Italian, and lots of other good choices. This link has some of the best Port Aransas restaurants.
- Beach Time - if you come to Port A, you'll most likely want to spend some time soaking up some rays and enjoying the beach. You can drive on the beach and it's all about the same, so just pick a spot you like. Bring the beach games (kites, darts, football, bocce ball, frisbees, etc.), the lawn chairs, and the grill. For the adventurous, sign up for a kiteboarding lesson with South Coast Kiteboarding, go surfing, or better yet catch the wind with a sunfish, sailboat, or windsurfer.
- Explore the Area - you're really close to Corpus Christi which has some excellent attractions and things to see and do, Rockport and Fulton are fun, and the National Seashore is close by - so spend some time exploring the area and all it has to offer.