There are two main beaches within Corpus Christi city limits, but Corpus Christi is the gateway to some the best-known beaches in Texas: Padre Island National Seashore and Mustang Island. Those beaches are covered elsewhere; here are the beaches within Corpus Christi and on North Padre Island (but outside the national seashore).
Corpus Christi Beach
Corpus Christi Beach is on the north side of the ship channel, connected to Downtown Corpus Christi by the Harbor Bridge. It's known to most longtime residents as "North Beach," but its official name is Corpus Christi Beach.
Corpus Christi Beach is home to the Texas State Aquarium and the USS Lexington Museum. The beach itself is one of the less-trafficked in the area, but is very convenient to all of Corpus Christi.
McGee Beach is a very small beach along the Corpus Christi Seawall, between the Holiday Inn on Shoreline Boulevard and the first T-head in the city marina. Concrete jetties jut into Corpus Christi Bay and serve as breakwaters.
This beach is packed on holidays, and many days you can find families with young children. It's a good beach for younger kids because the water is very shallow here - and because it's a small area, making it easy to keep track of the kids.
Padre Balli County Park
Padre Balli County Park is on North Padre Island. It's the home of Bob Hall Pier, a well-known local landmark, and is about 15 minutes south of Corpus Christi. The pier is a popular fishing spot, so swimmers and surfers should steer clear of it while in the water.
J.P. Luby Surf Park
Speaking of surfers, J.P. Luby Surf Park is also on North Padre Island, about 2 1/2 miles up the beach from Bob Hall Pier. The pier here was built specifically to generate waves for surfers, although Texas Gulf Coast waves are generally just 2-3 feet high, at most. Something for families to keep in mind: the Surf Park has a reputation as a destination for partiers. It's usually pretty crowded, too.
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