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Top 13 Things To Do In Corpus Christi, Texas - Updated 2020

things to do in corpus christi texas
Catherine
Catherine
Updated

This city is one of the most visited tourist destinations in Texas, known for its array of tourist spots from beautiful sandy beaches, a unique museum, to breathtaking attractions. The city, which means “Body of Christ” in Latin, was named by the Spanish explorer Alonso Alvarez de Pineda after discovering the bay on the Catholic feast day of Corpus Christi. Also known as the “Sparkling City by the Sea”, this city truly deserves its nickname for being able to preserve its untouched beaches making its way to being tagged as a must-visit destination in Texas. If you’re planning to tour the place, there are plenty of vacation rentals and even some pet-friendly hotels if you need one. With that in mind, keep reading for the best things to do in Corpus Christi, Texas.

1. Visit USS Lexington

USS Lexington Corpus
Source: Photo by user Liveon001 used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Also known as “The Blue Ghost”, this Corpus Christi attraction might seem a little bit familiar if you watched the famous film Pearl Harbor in the year 2000, as this museum was also part of the set. USS Lexington was commissioned in 1943, a performer of its kind in the Pacific War during World War II, was converted in 1992 into a naval aviation museum with the intention to enlighten the public with the history and its roles as an aircraft in the national defences. Being one of the top attractions in the city, discover the amazing history aboard with the guided tours available which make you have a closer look into numerous vintage aircrafts, the command deck and quarters, and the chance to be the captain and take control of the ship in their Virtual Battlestations, on the main Hangar Deck, or be a pilot and take over a fighter jet in the Flight Simulator.

USS Lexington

Address: 2914 N Shoreline Blvd, Corpus Christi, TX 78402, USA

Website: USS Lexington

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

2. Walk along the shore of Padre Island National Seashore

Padre Island National Seashore
Source: Photo by Flickr user NPS Natural Resou... used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

Being one of the prides of the city’s famous attractions, this seashore is known for being an untouched barrier island that stretches around 70 miles (112 km) from end-to-end and the world’s longest barrier island. A great location on the Central Flyway, this place is a birder’s paradise that houses over 380 different bird species. Feel relaxed for a few hours or have a good night’s rest with an overnight camping trip. This place is also a shelter for marine life and helps with the conservation, to save some of the most endangered species such as Kemp’s ridley sea turtles.

Padre Island National Seashore

Address: 20420 Park Rd 22, Corpus Christi, TX 78418, USA

Website: Padre Island National Seashore

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

3. See Texas State Aquarium

The Texas State Aquarium
Source: Wikimedia

If you are stumped and don’t know what to do in Corpus Christi then head to Texas State Aquarium! This non-profit attraction situated on North Beach, where some of the most visited attractions are located, aims to promote environmental conservation as well as rehabilitation of marine’s wildlife biodiversity in the Gulf of Mexico. Learn and see the shows of different animals with their different talents. One of the most popular animal exhibits is Dolphin Bay, which shows four Atlantic bottlenose dolphins namely Liko, Schooner, Shadow and Kai on an educational dolphin presentation for the visitors to know more about conservation and protecting the world’s oceans. With the aquarium’s attractions, you will not run out of sights to see and shows to watch and have a close encounter with your favorite marine animals. Now that’s a fun and educating way to finish the day!

Texas State Aquarium

Address: 2710 N Shoreline Blvd, Corpus Christi, TX 78402, USA

Website: Texas State Aquarium

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

4. Go nature tripping in South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center

Rose Garden Pavilion photo 1
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Phil Slattery used under CC BY-SA 3.0

You may be asking yourself, ‘What is there to do in Corpus Christi?’ Well, this city is not only known for its sandy beaches and conservation areas but is also a home of rich flora and fauna. Formerly known as Corpus Christi Botanical Gardens and Nature Center, this place hosts gardening programs from time to time. A public garden situated on South Staples Road, this nature center was established in 1987 as a recreational and educational resource for the residents in the city. This place will not only be enjoyed by adults, but also by the kids who love and respect nature.

South Texas Botanical Gardens & Nature Center

Address: 8545 S Staples St, Corpus Christi, TX 78413, USA

Website: South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

5. See Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History

Corpus christi museum of science history
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Larry D. Moore used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Located in the museum district, this attraction was established in 1957 to motivate and encourage people, most specially children of all ages, to be more interested in the world of science and discovery. The museum exhibits a collection of the weirdest but most stunning artifacts for more than 50 years of age. If you are staying long in the city, you can try fun and fascinating activities and educational programs in the museum, such as workshops and summer camps including excursions to the neighboring countryside and wildlife haven.

Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History

Address: 1900 N Chaparral St, Corpus Christi, TX 78401, USA

Website: Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

6. Visit Texas Surf Museum

Texas Surf Museum
Source: Photo by Flickr user Jay Phagan used under CC BY 2.0

Surfing enthusiast? Visit this one of a kind museum which shows the history of, of course, surfing. Established in 2005, visitors; surfers or non-surfers, will surely find something interesting and captivating inside this museum. Did I just mention that the benches inside are made from surfboards? Cool, right? You can even watch a surfing film in their projection theater. It’s a very nice spot if you want to learn more about surfing in the Lone Star State or just surfing in general.

Texas Surf Museum

Address: 309 N Water St, Corpus Christi, TX 78401, USA

Website: Texas Surf Museum

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

7. Go shopping at La Palmera

Inside shopping center
Source: Needpix

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Have a quick break from all the information and history and splurge that pocket money in the shopping mall in Corpus Christi. One of the popular premiere shopping destination is La Palmera, and an indoor and open-air shopping mall located along Staples St. It is the largest retail shopping in the mall with over 130 retail stores and choices of restaurants. The mall also has a movie theater, food court and 3 anchor stores namely Dillard’s, JCPenney, and Macy’s (formerly Foley’s). The best place to do some shopping and buy that bag as a souvenir for yourself!

La Palmera Mall

Address: 5488 S Padre Island Dr, Corpus Christi, TX 78411, USA

Website: La Palmera

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

8. Ride a horse on the beach

Beach horse riding
Source: Pexels

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

The city is known for its beautiful coastal setting which makes the beach one of the must-visit attractions. Plus, hearing the waves of the ocean is the nicest thing to do if you want to feel relaxed after long days of historical information and discovery. Not only that, you can also see the whole wonderful scenery of the beach during the long ride along the way, without hurting your feet! To fulfill that dream, be sure to check the availability and make a reservation at Horses on the Beach, located on the beach side of the highway in the beautiful South Padre Island. Services offered are horses riding lessons and the rental of horses. Even residents like this activity, so be sure to try it!

Horses on the Beach

Address: 16499 S Padre Island Dr, Corpus Christi, TX 78418, USA

Website: Horses on the Beach

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

9. Visit the wonderful Selena Museum

Selena
Source: Photo by Flickr user hellboy_93 used under CC BY-ND 2.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

This Corpus Christi tourist attraction is perfect for Selena fans. Doesn’t ring a bell? Well, she is just an American singer, songwriter, spokesperson, model, actress and fashion designer who started drawing at the early age of 15. Dubbed as the Queen of Tejano music and “The Mexican Madonna,” she’s one of the most famous Mexican-American artist from the late 20th-century. Luckily, there is a museum in Corpus Christi that is dedicated to the singer of the popular album and song “Dreaming of You”. The museum shows the achievements of Selena and her life as an artist. With just 3 USD, you will be able to see some of her iconic outfits, fashion concepts, her dolls, her one and only Grammy award and her red Porsche. So fab!

Selena Museum

Address: 5410 Leopard St, Corpus Christi, TX 78408, USA

Website: Selena Museum

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

10. Try the Hurricane Alley Waterpark

Wavepool
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Jerrick Mata used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Photo is only for illustrative purposes

Still can’t get enough of the beach? One of the best family-friendly things to do in Corpus Christi is to buy a ticket to this water park that has lots of attractions to choose from! Experience their wave pool, lazy river, slides and the most favorite, thrilling rides. I’m sad to say, they only open seasonally, so you better check their website to see their opening times and schedule. Don’t forget to pack your favorite swimwear!

Hurricane Alley Waterpark

Address: 702 E Port Ave, Corpus Christi, TX 78401, USA

Website: Hurricane Alley Waterpark

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

11. Go windsurfing at Laguna Madre with Worldwinds Windsurfing

Laguna Madre, Texas
Source: Photo by Flickr user eutrophication&hy... used under CC BY 2.0

Those who are fans of water sports, especially windsurfing, will be happy to know that there’s an opportunity to indulge in this activity at Laguna Madre. One of the largest hypersaline lagoons, Mother Lagoon is a popular choice for those who love being in the water. Worldwinds Windsurfing offers lessons, rentals, and gear so if you’re completely new to the sport you can request lessons from a certified instructor.

Worldwinds Windsurfing

Address: Bird Island Basin Rd, Corpus Christi, TX 78418

Website: Worldwinds Windsurfing

Opening hours: Fri - Tue: 11am - 5pm (closed on Wed & Thu)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

12. Snap a touristy photo at Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge

LED-Bruecke Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge
Source: Photo by Flickr user SmartLightLiving used under CC BY 2.0

An iconic landmark in Corpus Christi, you can’t pay a visit to the city without taking a touristy photo of the bridge. Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge is over 60 years old and more than 20,000 vehicles cross it on a daily basis. A monthly event called the BridgeWalk takes tourists and locals on an invigorating trek across the bridge. If you’re planning your trip to the city, best make sure your schedule can squeeze in this activity, which typically starts at eight in the morning, so you don’t miss out on unbeatable skyline views.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

13. Check out the permanent collection at the Art Museum of South Texas

Art  Museum of South Texas - 1984
Source: Photo by Flickr user Jay Phagan used under CC BY 2.0

Established in 1972, the Art Museum of South Texas is home to a permanent collection of artifacts, fine art, and photography, many of which were gifted to the museum. Works by American realist artist Alexandre Hogue and painter Otis Dozier are just a few pieces you can expect to see here. They also host changing collections, so if you’re planning to visit then be sure to check their website for current exhibitions and events.

The Art Museum of South Texas

Address: 1902 N Shoreline Blvd, Corpus Christi, TX 78401, United States

Website: The Art Museum of South Texas

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 10am - 5pm; Sun: 1pm - 5pm (closed on Mon)

Price: 4 - 8 USD

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US and also compare the prices with Vacation Rentals in Corpus Christi, Texas Gulf Coast, US

Corpus Christi, Texas - a one-stop shop

When you plan to visit the city, make sure to bring a lot of energy because there are so many activities to try. The place basically has everything to do for different types of tourists! The city is filled with learning, discovery and of course - fun! Being in this place is a blend of relaxation and adventure, a perfect spot if you are seeking for both. Have a blast and enjoy all these things to do in Corpus Christi, Texas!

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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Just a small town girl living in an ecstatic world. Loves to travel be it a hatch or spontaneous. For me, life is full of surprises if you just open your eyes and explore things unknown. I always...Read more

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