What Would it be Like for you to Stay at the KOA-South Padre Island?


At the start of the 2009 hurricane season, I started looking for a campground in West Texas to evacuate to with our 5th wheel. All I found online was outdated one-page websites for campgrounds with maybe one or two old photos that did not give a true or comprehensive idea of what it would be like to stay there. I wished I had more pictures to look at so I could have a realistic idea of what where I would be staying or what it would be like to stay there. I would hate to be one of those travelers who was promised a “fantastic, clean and spacious villa on an island in the Carribean” and it turned out to be a dump – dirty, horribly cramped and filthy. I have actually seen photos of  horrible accommodations that were purported online to be clean and beautiful, yet turned out to the opposite of what the pictures showed. Vacations were completely ruined because the travelers had hopes of a beautiful stay and could not get over their disappointment and anger at being duped by online photos of their “dream villa.”

These photos on Pure Padre are being published so that you get a firsthand account of how exceptionally awesome the grounds are here at the award-winning South Padre Island KOA. These photos were taken in August of 2009 and the grounds are maintained and manicured on a daily basis. The grounds are actually this clean and well-kept. I picked up not even a sliver of trash before taking a picture and moved nothing to “stage” it so it would look nicer in the photo. These photos were taken as-is so that you, the distinctive traveler, can see for yourself what the campground is truly like.

South Padre Island is a tourist destination because of the beautiful beaches, year-round balmy weather and great, authentically-kind and generous people. Many people are very grateful and happy because they realize they live in a tropical paradise and they gladly will share their attitude-of-gratitude for South Padre Island. We have great restaurants that are perfect for every budget, most of which you will see featured here. We have many activities such as horseback riding, the pirate ship, snorkeling, parasailing and other watersports, and an in-depth look into those activities will be found here on Pure Padre, your eye on South Padre Island. All you have to do is type in the name or short description of the business or activitiy you are looking for more information on, and if a story has been done on it, it should pop up.

I want to thank all of the Winter Texans who are passing these stories and pictures around to their friends up north where you gotta be bold to take the cold. I would like to welcome all newcomers and those who are tossing the idea of coming to South Padre Island around in their heads and tell you from someone who lives here – “Do it. The weather is beautiful here. Why waste time (which IS life) suffering through the cold and ugly winter up there?” I have been rubbing and massaging my husband’s hands in the evenings because arthritis is starting to tighten its cold, stiff grip on his hands. It is painful and debilitating. If you are suffering down into your bones from the cold in the winter, why put yourself through more suffering by enduring another cold winter up there? Why not stay here where it is warm and where you will find many fun activities and friends? Let the warmth of the tropical sun gently bathe you in its healing and restorative powers. Feel rejuvinated as you walk along the beautiful beach or as you share good times with friends on South Padre Island. If you have a 5th wheel or mobile home, boy have I found the place for you.


This beautiful blue sky dotted with fluffy white clouds you see in the next two pictures is generally the type of sky you see year-round on South Padre Island, barring the few weeks we have of “winter”. Winter here, by the way, is a tail-freezing 50 degrees. Most probably, this is what it will be like when you come down and stay on South Padre Island this winter. It will be up in the 80’s or 70’s. This is what the KOA campground looks like as far as your site would be.


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I noticed the use of the primary colors and began to see the theme throughout the park.


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The color theme was carried down to the last detail and that showed care.


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I loved how the color scheme was consistent and used on small details 


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all the way up to way larger-scale objects.


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The grounds are immaculate, the streets paved and even the dividers are a garden in themselves.


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These are the actual campsites for mobile homes.



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Some had luxury cars parked outside their homes. 


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Other sites just looked like “home.”


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This home had red, white and blue all over to show their love and pride for their country. 


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 Here you will find friendly and helpful neighbors who are there to lend a helping hand when you can’t figure out how to solve a problem with your camper.


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There is a gift shop on the campground where you can get what you need for grilling steaks, shrimp kabobs, or the fish you catch in the bay right on the campground.


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Warm-up jackets are available for cool morning or evening walks along the paved park streets or the beautiful beach in the cooler fall months.


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There is a wonderful restaurant with a seating area right on the water called “Pier 19” right next to the KOA.  They have a salad bar, affordable meals and a fantastic view of the bay. (Type in Pier 19 and you will see the story I did on that restaurant.)


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There is a playground area for the kids.


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There is even a pet area so your pet can stretch its legs. I have seen everything from a cat to an iguana on a leash on South Padre Island.


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This photo barely shows the expanse of the campground the KOA. Can you see how the blue of the water in the background of the picture is blending in with the blue of the sky? You can’t tell just how far this area goes back because of the lack of depth perception on a photo. You, as the viewer of the photo, are robbed of the beauty and space of being there. The blue sky is endless, the water beautiful and the temperature perfect. You really need to come be here in person to appreciate the true beauty of the area. 


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~ by islandprincess15 on August 26, 2009.

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