Visiting the Texas-side of the Gulf of Mexico any time soon, this list of the top things to do in Corpus Christi will keep you occupied for days!

Corpus Christi is a sea-side Texas town in the Gulf of Mexico region. It is home to beaches, bays, islands, many birds and sea turtles. As far as things to do in Corpus Christi goes, there are all sorts of cool stuff to get into. From aquariums to a retired U.S. aircraft carrier, and several fascinating museums. Whether you're away on business or stopping through to visit Aunt Betsy for Thanksgiving, here is our list of the top 10 things to do in Corpus Christi.

1. South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center

Things to Do in Corpus Christi - South Texas Botanical Gardens

Credit: South Texas Botanical Gardens And Nature Center / Facebook

The South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center is one of the best things to do in Corpus Christi for nature lovers. If you find yourself in Corpus Christi and feel the need to retreat into nature, this is the place to go. The Gardens contain an extensive collection of flowers, plants, trees, and birds. There are have 2,500 individual species of orchids alone.

Volunteers will show you around the gardens via walking trails. If you have children, a chance to feed the parrots is one of the most memorable occasions available at the Nature Center. You can easily spend an hour or two exploring the Gardens. The South Texas Botanical Gardens and Nature Center is rated as 4.0 out of 5 stars by TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

2. Malaquite Beach

If you have never experienced beach-camping, then Malaquite Beach offers up a one-of-a-kind opportunity that you’ll not soon forget. The beach sits on the coast of Padre Island; there are few better spots for beach-going and camping in the region. In the case that you do decide to head to Malaquite Beach the next time you’re in the Corpus Christie area, make sure to check the Malaquite Beach Webcam beforehand to see what the weather is like.

Plan on stopping by the Visitor’s Center as well. There is typically a Park Ranger waiting there to answer questions and give guidance. If you don’t feel like mingling with the crowd, you can always hang-out on one of the observation decks and scan the beach from a short distance. There are also bathrooms, showers, picnic tables, and even swimming pools as well. Malaquite Beach is rated as 4.5 out of 5 stars via TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

3. USS Lexington

Things to Do in Corpus Christi - USS Lexington

Credit: USS Lexington / Facebook

If you are into the Navy or enjoy massive boats, then visiting the USS Lexington is right up your alley. Due to Corpus Christi’s long-standing history with naval aviation and the U.S. Navy, the city was able to acquire the famous ship back in the early 1990s. The “Blue Ghost,” as she is known, has been a happy resident of Texas ever since. Whether you are retired military or haven’t been on a ship before, you will marvel at the size and stature of the USS Lexington.

Commissioned on February 17th of 1943, the vessel was in several raids and battles during WWII. If you are a history buff, it is one of the coolest things to do in Corpus Christi. The USS Lexington has a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating from TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

4. Corpus Christi Downtown Seawall

For those who enjoy the sea, checking out the Corpus Christi Downtown Seawall is an excellent place to spend a few hours. Whether you’re alone, on a date, or with the family, the Seawall is always enjoyable. Joggers, cyclists, and skaters frequent the downtown seawall. It’s one of the nicest places in all of Corpus Christi for simply taking a walk.

There are several boat docks, plenty of fresh seafood and places to eat, as well as the couple miles long wall itself. If you love the water, the seawall is a must see. Photographers will also enjoy the one of a kind photo-opportunities presented at the seawall in the mornings and evenings. The Corpus Christi Downtown Seal has a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating based on TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

5. Texas State Aquarium

Things to Do in Corpus Christi - Texas State Aquarium

Credit: Texas State Aquarium / Facebook

Another of the most unique things to do in Corpus Christi is taking a trip to the Texas State Aquarium. With well over 450 species of aquatic animals to entertain you, the aquarium is home to several thousands of animals. The mission of the aquarium is to engage people with animals, inspire appreciation for our seas, and support wildlife conservation. As one of the most popular tourist attractions in the region, 12 million guests and counting have visited the aquarium.

If you’re visiting the city with kids, they will be awed with the hundreds of different types of creatures and love the aquarium. Discovering the Texas State Aquarium is one of those trips that you’ll remember for a lifetime. The Aquarium as a 4.0 out of 5 stars from TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

6. Padre Island National Seashore

The Padre Island National Seashore is officially the longest stretch of undeveloped barrier island in the world at 70 miles of a coastline.  The seashore of Padre Island separates the Laguna Madre and the Gulf of Mexico. This makes It one of the only hyper-saline lagoons in the world. If you are lucky, you will run into another visitor while you’re exploring the island, the Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle. The island is a protected area for the turtles which use it as a nesting ground. There are also hundreds of bird species inhabiting the region, so you’re sure to enjoy some wildlife you’ve never seen before.

If you love nature, or just totally want to look at a sea turtle in person, considering adding the Padre Island National Seashore to your list of things to do in Corpus Christi the next time you roll through. Oh, yeah, did I mention that the shore is also home to shipwrecks dating back hundreds of years? So, treasure hunting is a real possibility! Other favorite activities at the Padre Island National Seashore include camping, kayaking, educational programs for kids hosted by Rangers, fishing, birding, and much more. The seashore has a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating based on TripAdvisor travel reviews.

7. Whataburger Field

Things to Do in Corpus Christi -  Whataburger Field

Credit: Shockingbird

For sports fans, there is nothing higher on the list of things to do in Corpus Christi than a visit to the Whataburger Field. Home to the “Corpus Christi Hooks”, a local baseball team of minor league status, the field sits near the gorgeous Harbor Bridge. A trip to the field is an excellent past time for kids, and adults, who enjoy sports.

Aside from the baseball, and the lovely view of the ships sailing to and from under the bridge, the Whataburger field offers all-American favorites like hot dogs, burgers and sodas. For baseball addicts, there is little better to do in Corpus Christi than an outing to the Whataburger Field. It is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars via TripAdvisor travel reviews.

8. Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History

The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History has been in operation for going on three-quarters of a century. The museum’s mission is to engage, educate, and serve the public through history exhibits and programming to inspire understanding, curiosity, and an enduring thirst for knowledge. Initially opened in 1952, the facility sits on the harbor in the S.E.A. (Sports, Entertainment, and Arts) district of Corpus Christi. Host to tens of thousands of visitors per year, the history has a focus on various scientific exploration.

The museum is home to thousands upon thousands of unique artifacts from the local area. There are tours, educational programs for children and adults, as well as special events held at the museum. The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History has a 4.0 out of 5 stars rating by TripAdvisor travel reviews.

9. Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge

Things to Do in Corpus Christi - Harbor Bridge

Credit: William Gray

The Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge is the last item on our list of the top 10 things to do in Corpus Christi. And in this case, we saved one of the very best for last. The harbor bridge has six lanes that see over 25,000 passenger vehicles per day. A few years ago the bridge underwent a 2.2 million dollar renovation of its lighting systems.

Today, the bridge has nearly 1,000 light fixtures that make it one of the most beautiful sites to see in all of Corpus Christi. Taking an evening walk along the bridge is perfect for the beginning to a romantic evening as well as for the ending of a night out with the family. If you are in Corpus Christi overnight, the Bridge is a must-see staple. The Corpus Christi Harbor Bridge has a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating based on TripAdvisor travel reviews.

10. Selena Museum

If you were around in the 1990s, you might remember the famous young Tejano singer named Selena. She was on the way up, a sure Superstar by anyone’s standards. Corpus Christi is the site of the young Stars slaying. The president of her fan club at the time is guilty of the crime.

The Selena Museum is a uniquely intimate tribute to the slain performer. It includes everything from memorabilia of the singer to showcases of her albums and awards. The Selena Museum is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars by TripAdvisor traveler reviews.

These 10 things to do in Corpus Christi will give you plenty to do the next time your in town.

From stepping aboard the retired USS Lexington to chilling out at one of the local parks or nature preserves, there is no end to the one-of-a-kind things to do in Corpus Christi. Just about no matter what you’re into, Corpus Christi makes for a fresh and exciting weekend trip for sure. To see a side of Texas you’ve never experienced before, make the trek to Corpus Christi and back!

Speaking of making the trek to Corpus Christi, if you’ve been there and done that we’d love to hear all about it in the comments section below! What was your favorite thing to do?

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