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Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
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Cover 07/10/2013

Beaches Be Trippin': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Photo: Photo by Callie Enlow, License: N/A

Photo by Callie Enlow

Not a bad view in Port A


Food: Wake up to blueberry pancakes at the breezy Beach and Station Street Grill and visit Shell’s for a more upscale lunch or dinner. Truthfully, the island dining can be pretty hit-or-miss, so utilize your kitchen if you have one. Try Port A Seafood Co. to pick up fresh fish to cook yourself, or their steamed to-go options. On the way home, hit up Snoopy’s Pier in Corpus Christi for fried fish and ice cream.

Nightlife: Catch live music on the water Thursday-Saturday at the Back Porch Bar, in town with the locals at the Tarpon Ice House, or hop the channel to Corpus Christi for a more urban option at House of Rock.

Rockport: The Romantic Beach

The drive to Rockport from SA clocks in at a shade over two-and-a-half hours, which is just long enough not to get into an epic fight with your beloved. Just kidding, I’m sure you two crazy kids are gonna make it, whoever you are. Five bucks will get your love bug into the calm, clean Rockport Beach Park, where you can snuggle under a cute palapa-style umbrella. Downtown Rockport has a cluster of more than 60 indie shops and several art galleries for purchasing tokens of affection. You can indulge Downton Abbey-on-the-Gulf fantasies with a tour of Fulton Mansion, constructed in the 1870s by George W. Fulton with a fortune largely made off his wife Harriet’s land inheritance, which he turned into a cattle tallow and hide empire. How romantic! Cap your evenings with strolls along the 1,500-foot lighted jetty pier at the end of Rockport Harbor.

Sleep: Check out comfy, cozy Lighthouse Inn on the waterfront, where each of the 78 rooms offers a private balcony or patio with rocking chairs to relax and watch the sunset. Ballers can look into the ritzy romance package, complete with fresh flowers, wine, and a stay in the Captain’s Suite. Couples on a budget can still aspire to royalty at Hunt’s Castle, which keeps guests entertained with live music three nights a week, plus kayak and fishing pole rentals.

Food: Hands down the best place for a romantic dinner is Glow, which makes excellent use of fresh, local seafood and produce, complemented by house-made bread and craft cocktails in its charming boathouse location. If you’re in town mid-week, inquire about the restaurant’s Wine Wednesdays class, which informs a small group about the wine of the week as well as offering tastings and canapés. A deal at $35 per person.

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