As a barrier island located on the Gulf of Mexico, there are plenty of places to experience the “magic hour,” when day transitions to night. While it would be nice to watch the horizon fill with marvelous colors from one of the many high-rises, many of us can’t afford that luxury. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for the most magical and dramatic place to watch a sunset on South Padre Island, read on.
With the Gulf of Mexico on one side and the Laguna Madre (Mother Lagoon) on the other, South Padre Island is naturally positioned in one of the most stunning locations in the U.S. In short, with 34 miles of wide and flawless white sand beaches, there’s a reason tens of thousands of people vacation here each year visit to enjoy this pristine island paradise.
The raw beauty of South Padre Island, along with its relaxed atmosphere, and a plethora of fun things to do make it one of the best vacation destinations in the country. Furthermore, the warm turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico make for the ideal setting to enjoy a wide range of water-based activities including swimming, fishing, sailing, windsurfing, and dolphin watching.
Tip: Don’t forget to book the 90-Minute Dolphin Watch Tour ahead of time. It’s one of the best and most affordable ways to get out on the water during sunsets.
SPI’s Unique Transition From Day to Night
As day transforms into night, tourists slowly flock from the east part of the island to the west, to take in the sunset. Many enjoy visiting one of the many restaurants along Laguna Blvd to sip on cold drinks, munch on fresh seafood, and listen to live music while watching the big orange ball sink into the water.
A few of the most sought-after restaurants/bars to take in a sunset include:
While it can be fun to hit up these lagoon-side restaurants, it also can get a bit overcrowded and noisy. Therefore, for folks looking to experience the beauty of nature and the most spectacular sunset on the island, there’s only one place to go—to the ‘end of the road.’
Best Place to Watch a Sunset on South Padre Island
Many visitors to South Padre Island don’t realize that if you drive north on Padre Blvd, the main thoroughfare of the island, eventually the road comes to a dramatic dead end, about 8 miles north of the strip. It’s here, at the ‘end-of-the-road,’ that’s the best place to watch a sunset on South Padre Island.
How to Reach the ‘End-of-the-Road’
Upon leaving the hustle and bustle of the strip, just past the South Padre Island Birding And Nature Center, continue north on Padre Blvd. Upon reaching the city limits, the road turns into Ocean Blvd.
As drivers get closer to the dead-end, the road fills with sandy patches from the wind blowing the dunes from one side of the road to the other. Also, motorists will pass the South Padre Island Adventure Park and Skydive RGV South Padre, both on the west side of the road, warning them that they’re getting close.
While many visitors to the area end up on the east side of the road, where the Gulf of Mexico meets the shore, few walk up the dunes to view the sunset—this means you can enjoy a private sunset in the most magical location!
What to Bring
Sitting on top of one of the dunes with the Gulf of Mexico on one side and the Laguna Madre on the other is the perfect location to celebrate a special sunset in South Padre Island. After all, it’s at this magical hour that the sun fills the sky with a warm, golden gleam and the most brilliant colors.
There are, however, a few things that you won’t want to forget to make the adventure extra memorable because ultimately this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Below are a few items to consider bringing:
Best Hotels With Balconies to Watch the Sunset
For those travelers that don’t feel like making the journey to the ‘end of the road,’ or simply desire to enjoy sunsets from the comfort of their accommodation, selecting the ideal hotel is paramount. Visitors should seek out lodging that has at least a fifth-floor view with partial or full views looking west, over the lagoon, and spacious balconies. Below are the three best accommodations with balconies to watch the sunset:
- Courtyard by Marriott – North/south balconies allow guests to enjoy both partial ocean and sunset views.
- Isla Grand Beach Resort – Highrise with crazy views all around.
- 3 Bedroom Condo Retreat – Located in the tallest skyrise on SPI, features both ocean and lagoon views!
Whether you decide to watch a sunset on South Padre Island from the comfort of your hotel or the stunning dunes near the ‘end-of-the-road,’ the ideal spot is whatever you make of it. Just be sure to stop and savor the moment to fully enjoy it!