Most people come to South Padre Island for the beaches and the beautiful weather, so you might be surprised at the great shopping opportunities it offers. There are small, locally owned businesses where you can find unique gifts for loved ones back home. The island's farm and craft markets are a fantastic showcase for local growers and artisans.

    Want to stop in as many shops as possible? Hop on the Wave, a free shuttle bus that zips up and down Padre Boulevard and Gulf Boulevard every 30 minutes. Read on for our list of shops you must visit when you come to South Padre Island.

    1

    Padre Boulevard

    South Padre's main thoroughfare for shopping, drinking, and dining

    • Shoppers
    • Food

    South Padre's main street, Padre Boulevard features shops, cafes, restaurants, and bars. Stretching the entire length of the island, it's a pleasant walk or a drive along the broad avenue that’s lined with palm trees and colourful buildings.

    Shops are typical of a seaside town – think buckets and spades, beach towels, and everything you need for surfing or diving. There are also homeware shops full of nautical interior decorations, as well as jewellery and bead shops with a hippie vibe. Souvenir shops in Padre Boulevard boast the usual colourful printed t-shirts and trinkets crafted from seashells.

    Location: Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

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    2

    Sea Turtle Inc

    Shop for gifts and support a good cause

    • Shoppers
    • Families

    Sea Turtle Inc is a conservation centre that rescues and rehabilitates sick and injured sea turtles on South Padre Island. It’s also a place to go for turtle-themed paraphernalia, such as calendars, tea towels, wooden ornaments, T-shirts, and hoodies. The kids' section is fantastic, ranging from flipbooks about the ocean to cute stuffed toys.

    Sea Turtle Inc also sells cute turtle keyrings, badges, and pens, and a variety of eco-friendly items like reusable bags and stainless-steel straws – great for reducing waste and keeping the oceans clean. When you've finished shopping, stop by to say hello to the recuperating turtles and see the excellent work funded by your purchases.

    Location: 6617 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Open: Tuesday–Sunday from 10 am to 3.15 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 956-761-4511

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    3

    Ocean Palm Shopping Center

    For beach essentials and souvenirs

    • Shoppers
    • Families

    Ocean Palm is a wonderful place to stock up on clothing, beach accessories, and anything you may have forgotten at home. A handy shopping centre in the middle of South Padre, you can find brightly coloured swimwear, T-shirts, and hoodies with the island's logo, plus beach towels and sun hats.

    If you're spending the day at the beach, Ocean Palm offers paddleboards, pool noodles, buckets and spades, water guns, and other fun stuff to keep the kids entertained.

    Location: 2500 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

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    4

    Treasure Trove Consignments

    Spend a few hours hunting for quirky souvenirs

    • Shoppers

    Treasure Trove Consignments lives up to its name, housing a hoard of offbeat and eccentric pieces. The store has an impressive collection of seaside-themed ornaments and decorations. You can find everything from glassware and lamps to Hummel figurines and vintage rocking horses. It also sells framed prints and paintings by local artists.

    If you need to keep the kids (or adults!) entertained, check out Treasure Trove Consignments’ assortment of books, CDs, puzzles, and games. The sporting goods area has interesting vintage collectable firearms, and there's a wonderful array of Mexican curios from across the border.

    Location: 5504 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Open: Tuesday–Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm (closed on Sundays and Mondays)

    Phone: +1 956-761-4557

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    5

    South Padre Island Farmers' Market

    A fresh, colourful market with tasty local food

    • Shoppers
    • Food

    South Padre Island Farmers' Market plays host to dozens of different stallholders on Sundays. Among the array of fresh produce, you can find everything from seasonal fruit and vegetables to cheese, raw honey, and homemade jams. A variety of stalls have home-grown herbs, and you can even buy sea salt harvested from the seas around the island.

    Drinks on offer include kombucha tea, freshly squeezed fruit juices, homemade lemonade, and an ice pop stand with dozens of fruity flavours. You'll find vegan-friendly and keto-friendly food, too. There are gardening stalls where you can pick up interesting native plants and flowers.

    Location: 8605 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Open: Sunday from 11 am to 1 pm

    Phone: +1 956-761-0044

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    6

    Paragraphs on Padre Boulevard

    A well-loved independent bookstore on South Padre Island

    • Shoppers

    Paragraphs on Padre Boulevard is beloved by locals of all ages, as the hub of South Padre's literary scene. Poetry readings, book clubs, writing workshops and 'meet the author' sessions are all frequent, and they also host local charity events.

    Browse the extensive catalogue of new and used books carefully chosen by the owners or ask the staff for a personalised recommendation. The bookstore also sells colourful postcards and art by local artists. The peaceful atmosphere, squishy armchairs and free Wi-Fi are great for a little quiet reading. There's also a pretty courtyard if you want to enjoy South Padre Island’s warm weather.

    Location: 5505 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Phone: +1 956-433-5057

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    7

    KIC's Seashell Emporium

    The biggest collection of seashells in South Padre

    • Shoppers

    KIC's Seashell Emporium is a charming gift shop specialising in everything related to seashells. It carries dozens of local and exotic seashells from all over the world, as well as miscellaneous seaside items like dried cholla wood. Decorate your home with a seashell nightlight, seashell mirror, or kitsch seashell-covered cross.

    There are also scented candles and keyrings decorated with polished seashells. You can even make your own necklace by choosing from a choice of pierced seashells. KIC's Seashell Emporium stocks a range of sunglasses, straw hats, swimming trunks, and cosy hoodies bearing 'South Padre Island' logos.

    Location: 5200 Padre Blvd Suite 105, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Open: Friday from 1 pm to 8 pm, Saturday from 1 pm to 9 pm, Sunday–Thursday from 1 pm to 7 pm

    Phone: +1 956-772-7333

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    8

    Laguna Boulevard

    Everything you need for sailing or fishing

    • Shoppers

    You can find a scattering of shops and restaurants on peaceful Laguna Boulevard. A wide variety of South Padre's fishing shops, sailing shops and boat charters dot the area here, so it's a good place to stock up before you head out on the water.

    Check out Jim's Pier, a fishing store selling bait, tackle, snacks, and beer, and staffed by friendly locals happy to offer fishing tips. Fishing charters along the street include SPI Fish On, Danny B Fishing Charters and the amusingly named Always A Catch. You can grab a drink with an ocean view in one of the cocktail bars at the south end of the street.

    Location: Laguna Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

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    9

    SPI Convention Center

    Local arts, crafts, and creative knick-knacks

    • Shoppers

    On weekends, SPI Convention Center becomes an eclectic market featuring all kinds of local crafts and produce. This is the place to come for unique items of clothing, handmade jewellery, or organic beauty products and perfume on South Padre Island.

    Home décor by local artisans include vases, bowls, and all kinds of kitchen gadgets. Local painters often show their latest pieces, so it's worth stopping by if you're looking for something to decorate your walls. There are tempting food stalls where you can try local dishes or grab a gourmet treat.

    Location: 7355 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

    Open: Friday–Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm, Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm

    Phone: +1 956-761-3000

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    10

    410 Market Place

    A welcoming shopping mall on a petite scale

    • Shoppers

    410 Market Place is a compact shopping mall with a good combination of chain stores and locally owned boutiques. You can find fashion, interiors, and sports gear, plus an assortment of inviting restaurants and a cafe that does tasty tropical smoothies.

    Pop into Tuesday Morning for pretty mirrors, vases, cushions, and craft supplies, as well lots of beauty products. Coast to Coast Beachwear has sunglasses, bikinis, beach bags, straw hats, and everything you need for a day at the beach. Island Style Surf Sports has a variety of useful gear, from water canteens to eco-friendly sunscreen.

    Location: 410 Padre Blvd, South Padre Island, TX 78597, USA

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    Victoria Hughes | Contributing Writer

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