port aransas

Shorty’s in Port Aransas Is a Blast From the Past

March 8, 2024 | By John O. Lumpkin

Catch a Wave in Port Aransas

February 29, 2024 | By TH Staff

A Father and Daughter Find Healing in the Songs of Jimmy Buffett

September 6, 2023 | By Katey Psencik Outka

Go (Almost) Under the Sea at the Patton Center of Marine Science Education in Port Aransas

March 24, 2023 | By Melissa Gaskill

Inside a sofa-size aquarium, a black-and-white striped sheepshead and a small school of shiny Gulf menhaden swim above a southern flounder lying like a plate in the sand.

‘Oldest and Friendliest’ Bar in Port Aransas Makes a Move

February 9, 2023 | By John O. Lumpkin

A bit of Port Aransas history has moved—literally.
The final section of Shorty’s, the beach city’s oldest bar, was towed late last month from its historic location next to Port A’s marina to a vacant lot a half-mile away.

Sip Local Brews Near the Beach at These Port Aransas Pubs

October 26, 2022 | By Melissa Gaskill

Port Aransas Bids Adieu to a Favorite Fishing Outfitter as Locals Seek to Balance Growth and Preservation

August 30, 2022 | By By John Lumpkin

Winds of change are blowing in Port Aransas, the once-sleepy Texas beach town that’s been a favorite Gulf Coast getaway for generations, as new developments are displacing some old favorites.

From Garden Gnomes to Willie Nelson’s Likeness, the Sculptures of Port Aransas Sandfest Never Disappoint

April 7, 2022 | By Sallie Lewis

Every year as temperatures rise, friends and families from across the state descend on the long, wide beaches of Port Aransas on Mustang Island.

The Texas Travel Industry Is Making A Comeback

October 28, 2021 | By Michael Hardy

In New Tours, University of Texas’ Marine Science Institute in Port Aransas Features Aquatic Creatures

August 11, 2021 | By John Lumpkin

A venerable loggerhead turtle named Barnacle Billie, a roseate spoonbill named Boomerang, and other rehabilitated aquatic and shore creatures are on display this week for the first organized public tours of the Amos Rehabilitation Keep—ARK for short—at the University of Texas Marine Science Institute in Port Aransas.

Farley Boat Works, a historic link to Port Aransas’ tarpon fishing heyday, is expanding into a maritime museum

June 14, 2021 | By John Lumpkin

A vision 10 years in the making is becoming reality as construction begins this month for the Port Aransas Maritime Museum, an ambitious expansion of the Farley Boat Works division of the Port Aransas Preservation and Historical Association.

Port Aransas Beach Camping Gets Exclusive During the Offseason

November 19, 2020 | By Joe Lanane

After months of quarantining, my wife and I finally bought an RV.
We knew exactly where we wanted to take our 19-foot Class C RV: Port Aransas.

The Chapel on the Dunes Endures In Port Aransas

October 29, 2020 | By Sallie Lewis

What Happens When the “Port Aransas Sandcastle Guy” Can’t Go to the Beach?

July 30, 2020 | By Paul Brown

For the past 13 years, Mark Landrum has been known as the “Port Aransas Sandcastle Guy.” The sand artist teaches lessons on how to build sandcastles, but is also commissioned to create custom works for marriage proposals, businesses openings, family greeting cards, and more. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, Landrum has had to face the ultimate challenge to his way of life: How do you work with sand when you have limited access to the beach?

Small-Town Dispatches: After Finally Bouncing Back From Hurricane Harvey, Port Aransas Faces a More Unknown Foe in COVID-19

April 25, 2020 | By John Lumpkin

Hurricane Harvey invaded Port Aransas less than three years ago with the subtlety of a neutron bomb, wasting neighborhoods, destroying beloved venues and wrecking its close-knit citizens’ lives.

Texas Highways Editors Share Their Favorite Coastal Destinations

June 6, 2019 | By Emily Roberts Stone, Executive Editor

Share your favorite coastal memories and photos using the hashtag #myTXcoast for a chance to be featured on our social media accounts.

Aransas Pass Makes a Perfect Summer Weekend Getaway

June 4, 2019 | By John Lumpkin

Could there be a better way to experience a town comprised of at least 70 percent saltwater than to get to the water as fast as you can? With 41 square miles of Redfish Bay inside its city limits, Aransas Pass offers just that—
a self-described “Saltwater Heaven” building on its revival after Hurricane Harvey’s destruction in 2017.

An Epic 367-Mile Road Trip Reveals the Best of the Texas Coast

May 31, 2019 | By Clayton Maxwell

From Port Arthur to Port Isabel, navigating the best of Texas’ bays, beaches, and bards

The Daytripper’s Top 5 in Port Aransas

May 30, 2019 | By Chet Garner

When the Texas summer starts cooking, my favorite form of relief is to dive into the largest body of water I can find, which is often the Gulf of Mexico. This is where Port A comes in—with its near-endless beaches, historic appeal, and laid-back attitude. Port Aransas is one of my favorite places to hit the Texas coast, and with its ongoing recovery from Hurricane Harvey, it’s got more Texas grit and personality than ever.

SandFest Takes Over Port Aransas This Weekend

April 22, 2019 | By Pam LeBlanc

Incredible sculptures, delicious food, and fun times to be had April 26-28

Top Stories of 2018 – Editors’ Picks

December 31, 2018 | By TH Staff

Texas Highways Editors share their favorite stories of 2018.

Port Aransas Inn’s Beach Funkiness

October 30, 2018 | By

The three-story “pink palace,” as regulars call it because of its pink stucco exterior, sits a block from the Gulf of Mexico, but it’s very much worth the short walk to stay in a highly affordable room (starting at $80) festooned with fake safari trophies or Asian tapestries.

Opportunities to Fish Abound in Port Aransas

October 30, 2018 | By

Fishing is intrinsic to Port Aransas. What would you expect from a town that was once named Tarpon because the fish were so bountiful that even President Franklin D. Roosevelt was drawn to these waters? Over-fishing reduced the tarpon population years ago, but this year’s anglers will find ample opportunities to cast for flounder, kingfish, shark, mangrove snapper, ling, and Spanish mackerel.

How Phoenix Restaurant and Bar in Port Aransas Got its Caribbean Flair

October 22, 2018 | By

The Worsham clan’s enthusiasm for Mouttet’s food motivated Worsham to start her culinary apprenticeships as soon as she graduated from high school. It also influenced her preference for piquant dishes and reinforced her choice in hiring Omar Brown, the Phoenix’s current sous chef who grew up in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.

Where to Stay in Port Aransas

October 4, 2018 | By

Port Aransas Seafood Eatery Phoenix Restaurant and Bar Bounces Back After Being Destroyed by Hurricane Harvey

September 19, 2018 | By

The question of whether The Phoenix Restaurant and Bar in Port Aransas would reopen after Hurricane Harvey was not “if” but “when.” In the aftermath of the devastating storm, the eatery’s namesake became more relevant than chef Tiana Worsham and co-owner Vanessa Brundrett could have imagined when they founded it a decade ago.

Find Lodging and Businesses in Port Aransas, Rockport-Fulton, and Aransas Pass That Have Re-Opened After Hurricane Harvey

July 18, 2018 | By

Anticipation grows as you roll down the window and drive onto the Port Aransas ferry to cross the narrow channel to Mustang Island. Salty air invades the senses, and sunrays glint on the shifting waters where dolphins play. As you disembark into the heart of this historic fishing town, brown pelicans skim the water for dinner or perch on weathered piers. Fishing boats rock gently in the harbor, rigged for their work in nearby bays or the open ocean.

Special Report: Texas Coastal Comeback

May 24, 2018 | By

We’ve been tested time and again, from despotism to depressions, oil busts to dust bowls—and now by Hurricane Harvey. But as in past trials, Texans have found a way to turn obstacles into opportunity and seize the chance for renewal. Consider Lee Roy Hoskins, owner of Port Aransas’ venerable Tarpon Inn, who labored for months to rebuild after the hurricane. “We had a lot of things we needed to work on anyway,” Hoskins says with a smile.

5 Texas Cities Where You Can Discover Your Inner Science Geek

May 24, 2018 | By Melissa Gaskill

The Texas Gulf Coast, where the North American continent descends into the Gulf of Mexico’s salty waters, harbors a steamy mix of marshes, bays, beaches, and ocean. Over the years, scientific institutions and conservation groups gravitated to this rich environment to establish laboratories, preserves, rescues, and aquariums dedicated to studying and protecting its diversity of life. We know most travelers escape to the coast to while away time on the beach, but we also know that such experiences take on greater meaning with a little educational insight. Here we’ve put together a science-by-the-sea road trip—a syllabus for discovering the most scintillating of salty facts.

Port Aransas to Beachgoers: Come on Back

May 23, 2018 | By John Lumpkin

Anticipation grows as you roll down the window and drive onto the Port Aransas ferry to cross the narrow channel to Mustang Island. Salty air invades the senses, and sunrays glint on the shifting waters where dolphins play. As you disembark into the heart of this historic fishing town, brown pelicans skim the water for dinner or perch on weathered piers. Fishing boats rock gently in the harbor, rigged for their work in nearby bays or the open ocean.

The Port Aransas Festival Season

May 10, 2018 | By

Port Aransas likes a party, and residents won’t let the effects of Harvey interfere with that tradition. April brought the annual SandFest, one of the nation’s largest native-sand sculpture competition, and before that, February’s Whooping Crane Festival drew birding enthusiasts from around the world.

Crafting for Recovery at Farley Boat Works

May 10, 2018 | By

Hurricane Harvey’s Category 4 winds, along with a 6-foot storm surge, met their match in the backyard of Farley Boat Works. While countless boats across the island were strewn far from their moorings by the hurricane or sunk in waterways, a 60-foot schooner named Lydia Ann moved less than a foot in its construction cradle, its hull, deck and “doghouse” cabin largely intact.

Tacos and Happiness at La Playa Mexican Grille

May 10, 2018 | By

La Playa’s roof collapsed during Harvey and had to be removed. “Our restaurant was like a convertible,” recalls Villasana. Rain and wind pounded the interior, but the cinderblock walls held, as did the restaurant’s striking 4-by-6-foot painting of a man and woman by the late local artist Tiddle Caylor.

Senior Editor Lori Moffatt Shares Her Favorite Places in Texas After 27 Years at Texas Highways

April 24, 2018 | By

This issue marks the 44th anniversary of the travel magazine of Texas. It’s also the last issue for Senior Editor Lori Moffatt, who is retiring after an esteemed 27 years with the publication. As a staff, we’re going to miss her irreplaceable knowledge of Texas’ history and culture, insightful edits and sharp eye for details, but even more so the passion and vitality she’s brought to these pages and the office over the years. Before her departure, I asked her to share some of her insights with the readers she’s served so well for more than 300 issues. 

18 Places to Go in Texas in 2018

December 28, 2017 | By Clayton Maxwell

From El Paso to Galveston, uncover our top 18 travel must-dos for 2018.

Sentinels of the Sea

January 12, 2017 | By Laurence Parent and Patricia Parent

The first lighthouses came to Texas shores in 1852, built to guide ships past sandbars and shoals at river mouths and through tricky passes between barrier islands.

Shore Things

May 11, 2016 | By Helen Anders

Texans storm the beaches for a wealth of reasons. So, when we envision the perfect beach hotel, each of us conjures a different image.

Day With the Dolphins

May 11, 2016 | By Melissa Gaskill

A sleek, gray bottlenose dolphin briefly breaks the surface of the water in a smooth, rolling motion.

Bent on Boats

May 28, 2015 | By Sallie Lewis

Inside a historic boat barn in Port Aransas, a small group gathered around a newly built wooden skiff to sign their names on the underside of the boat’s last unfastened floorboard.

Scenic Route: Port Aransas Marina

May 27, 2015 | By

The Port Aransas Marina—off Texas 361 by the ferry landing—offers a striking view of vessels docked at the Dennis Dryer Municipal Harbor.

Hello Beach!

May 13, 2015 | By Robb Walsh

After years of visiting Texas beaches whenever I could, this spring I made the leap and moved my family to Galveston.

Reflections on Glass

May 13, 2015 | By Celestina Blok

On my last day of a weeklong stay in Port Aransas, I set off to find a souvenir to remind me of the island until my next visit.

A Texas Bucket List

April 12, 2015 | By Michelle Burgess

In a few weeks, I’ll become a first-time grandmother when my daughter gives birth to a son, who will go by the name of Bowen.

Dog Days of Summer

May 21, 2014 | By Celestina Blok

I’m at the “coolest honky tonk on the Texas Riviera,” so claims the large, plywood sign outside.

5 Must-Try Restaurants in Port A

May 16, 2014 | By Celestina Blok

My annual summer vacations to Port Aransas consist of two things: beach-bumming and restaurant-hopping, and I’m not sure which I look forward to more.

Texas Top 40 No. 24, Port Aransas

March 4, 2014 | By

We used to call Port Aransas a sleepy fishing village.

Caching in

December 15, 2013 | By Andrea Abel

If my husband, John, buys a gadget, he’s going to use it. Trust me. All the more if the gadget has to do with the outdoors.

Texas Top 40 Travel Destinations

December 3, 2013 | By


Last fall, we asked Texas Highways readers to share their favorite places in the state for our Texas Top-40 Travel Destinations.

The June 2024 cover of Texas Highways: Treasures from the Coast

Get the Magazine

Save up to 62% off the cover price


Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Sign up for magazine extras, upcoming events, Mercantile specials, subscription offers, and more.