Cruising Pelicans at Mustang Island State Park
The name “Mustang Island” came about from the wild horses that once roamed the island for hundreds of years. No one is sure how the mustangs got here. Spaniards may have brought them, or they may have swam from a shipwreck.
In the 19th century, ranches began infringing on the mustangs’ habitat. By the late 1800s, the herds of wild mustangs had disappeared from the island. In 1972 Texas Parks and Wildlife Department bought the 3,954 acres that now make up Mustang Island State Park from private owners. The park opened in 1979.
With over 5 miles of coastline Mustang Island State Park is one of many features that guests enjoy visiting while staying on the island. There are so many reasons to visit Mustang Island State Park including, swimming or surfing in the Gulf, building a sandcastle on the beach, camping, picnicking, mountain biking, kayaking, bird watching (especially during spring and fall migrations) and geocaching. Fishing is always a favorite activity among locals at Mustang Island State Park. The jetties offer a great opportunity to land the catch of a lifetime but you also have access to the brackish water on the flats just behind Mustang Island State Park as well. Rent a canoe or kayak, pack a cooler and take a fishing rod with you to try to land a nice trout, redfish, flounder, black drum or one of the many other species the Island has to offer.
The two old jetties are a central attraction of Mustang Island State Park. On any given day you can find surfers, fisherman, kayakers, photographers or those in search of an epic seashell on or around the jetties! You can also enjoy the Mustang Island State Park Paddling Trail which is made up of three segments that follow the western shoreline of the island in Corpus Christi Bay. The 20 miles of trails pass through some of the best shallow-water fishing areas in Texas as well as close-up views of coastal birds.
A common praise of the park from locals and visitors is that it’s less crowded in comparison to other local beaches, making this an ideal beach for families with young children. For those looking to leave the more crowded beaches behind, Mustang Island State Park is ideal! The park offers visitors outdoor recreation and programs on the nature and history of the area as well. Admission to the park is $5 per adult and children under 12 get in free.