Where is Padre Island? What is the history of Padre Island? Information about the location, climate and life in Padre Island
Padre Island, Texas, on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, extending south from Corpus Christi Bay to Brazos Santiago Pass near the mouth of the Rio Grande. When separated by tides from Mustang Island to the north, it is 110 miles long; when the islands are joined the total length is 130 miles. From 1,400 feet to 4 miles wide, it is separated from the mainland by Laguna Madre, now channeled for the Intracoastal Waterway. The island forms part of five counties and county parks have been developed at the north and south ends, each joined to the mainland by a causeway. South Padre Beach is a resort area. A bill designating an 80.5-mile stretch of beach as a national seashore park was signed by President John F. Kennedy in 1962.
It was named Isla Blanca by Alonso Pineda, who entered Brazos Santiago Pass in 1519. It was then inhabited by the cannibalistic Karankawa Indians, and later was a haunt of pirates. The name was changed to Isla del Padre for a priest, Father Nicholas Balli, who paid Spain $440 for a grant of land in the late 18th century. Confusion in the title was not resolved in favor of the state of Texas until 1945.