A Warm Winter Getaway: Day 3 & 4 Culinary Edition

Last Updated on February 8, 2023 by Left Lane

View of the Gulf of Mexico looking over the hotel pool from the balcony of our Junior King Suite, Oceanview at the Hilton Garden Inn Beachfront in South Padre Island Texas
Our first view of the Beach from the balcony of our room in the Daylight

After arriving to our room at the Hilton Garden Inn South Padre Island late into the night of our first stay. We weren’t granted a full view of the beautiful oceanfront until after sunrise. Being the Coffee drinker that I am, the day doesn’t officially start until after Coffee.

First thing on the day’s agenda was to find Coffee & breakfast. After using Yelp to scour food reviews, & restaurants that were currently open the day after Christmas. We decided upon a local restaurant called The Grapevine Cafe & Coffeehouse.

Woman with hair in bun, enjoying breakfast on the balcony with a water view over the pool, and Gulf of Mexico. With food from the Grapevine. Shrimp Omelet with Hash browns, Banana Bread French Toast, and Fruit Bowl
Enjoying breakfast from the Grapevine. Shrimp Omelet with Hash browns (left) Banana Bread French Toast & Fruit Bowl (right)


After breakfast from the Grapevine, which was absolutely delicious. We decided it was time to head to the beach to check out the shores of South Padre Island.

Woman posing on the boardwalk pier under Palm tree canopy at the Hilton Garden Inn Beachfront in South Padre Island Texas.
The walk to the beach through the Hilton Garden Boardwalk was scenic.

After arriving on the shores finally, we were greeted by some of the local beach sand castle artwork. On the island there’s a game for tourists, & locals to play. In which you can find the sand art designed at different locations around the island.

A long Sand Castle on the beach in South Padre Island Texas, with each of the castles 7 towers progressively getting taller from left to right.
One of the Sand Castles from the game on South Padre Island.

We enjoyed walking the beach, & watching the local seabirds wait patiently to steal the fish from the fishermen as they reeled in their catches, it was quite entertaining. Although the fishermen weren’t finding it as funny as everyone else on the beach :-).

Interracial Couple barefoot on the beach, with Blue Skies, and the Gulf Of Mexico in the background.
Barefoot in the sand! Warm Vibes

With miles of shoreline to walk, & restaurants scattered all along the coast. It’s easy to just enjoy your time on the shores & find a place to relax wherever your leisurely stroll may take you.

Video of the South Padre Beachfront

As we continued our exploration of the coastline, we came across a garden where the palms looked slightly different then the others. After a close investigation, it turned out we had located a Banana tree garden on South Padre Island.

A banana tree growing in South Padre Island Texas
A Banana Tree of South Padre Island


After spending the day exploring the island from the shoreline. We were ready to figure out what we were going to do for dinner for the evening. After looking through all the local restaurants on the map, we decided on a place called The Lookout Bar & Refuge.

Avocado Club Sandwiches, and Fries from the Lookout Restaurant in South Padre Island Texas sitting on the hotel bed at the Hilton.
Avocado Club Sandwiches & Fries from the Lookout.

After eating so much food in one day. We decided to end the day with a sunset walk on the beach. We had to go home soon, before we had to be rolled home. Because South Padre Island has feed us well.

Actual photo of us calling for help to make it home after dinner 🤣

The sunset walk along the beach was peaceful, with tiny little crabs scurrying along the beach. Their little legs carrying them along in a blur of movement.

Every once in awhile there was the occasional mystery crunch underfoot, & you just had to be optimistic & hope it was one of the many seashells scattered along the shore. This was an ideal day of relaxation.

Sunset on the beach in South Padre Island Texas over the Gulf of Mexico.
Sunset on South Padre Island


After discovering The Grapevine Restaurant. We decided it was the best place to get breakfast & Coffee again on day 4. Because just in case I haven’t mentioned it, the day doesn’t start before Coffee 🤣.

Woman with hair in bun enjoying breakfast on the balcony at the Hilton Garden Inn with Jalapeño Western Omelet, with Hash browns, and Original French Toast, with Bacon. With Palm Trees, the hotel pool, and the Gulf of Mexico in the background.
Jalapeño Western Omelet with Hash browns (left) & Original French Toast with Bacon (right)


There was a local gift store on the island called Turtle Island Beachwear. It’s a really new business, only being open for three months currently. My partner, with Turtles being her favorite animal. Just had to stop by this store, due to the 33 foot tall, & 20 foot wide Turtle named Tank on the front of the store.

Woman posing on the stairs of Turtle Island Beachwear with the 33 foot tall sea turtle known as Tank.
My partner posing with Tank The Turtle. One of the Turtles from the Art Trail.

Tank had a information plaque mounted on the wall beside him with a QR Code on the plaque.

Information Plate telling about Tank the Sea Turtle at Turtle Island Beachwear.
Tank’s information plate

After scanning the QR code it took you to a website which gave you more information about Tank, & led to the discovery of the Sea Turtle Art Trail. Once my partner found out there was an entire trail of Sea Turtle art. There was no stopping her from seeing them all. To see photos her visiting every Sea Turtle on the Island Click Here


I had noticed that South Padre Island had a bicycle rental store, or two. They also had bicycle lanes on both sides of the road. Making it convenient to get around the island by bicycle. I personally wanted to bike the Island of South Padre to explore the local businesses.

Video from our South Padre Bicycle Trip

With my partner wanting to explore the Sea Turtle Art Trail. We decided that the best way to do so, would be to rent bicycles & hit the Turtle Art Trail. We called multiple stores to ask about renting a bicycle, being told they were sold out by each store. We then decided to hit the streets & drive store to store until we found a bike, 5 bicycle stores later. We had bicycles, & were ready to hit the Turtle Trail.

Map of the South Padre Island Art Trail in Texas.
Map of the South Padre Island Sand Castle, & Sea Turtle Art Trails

Neither one of us had looked at a map of how far apart all of the Turtle Art Sculptures were. We didn’t know how long this bike ride was going to be. In my mind we were going to ride 5 maybe 6 miles on the bicycles. Being as they strategically placed the Turtles at locations stretching from one city limit, to the other city limit. Boy was I wrong, we were in for a ride!

Interracial Couple on Bicycles on cobblestone path during beach vacation in South Padre Island Texas.
Getting ready to start our Turtle Trail bike Tour

The city limit of South Padre Island is just about 6 miles long, & less then a 1/2 mile wide. Which ended up taking us on an 11 plus mile bicycle ride across the island.

Woman riding bicycle down cobblestone path, through the palm trees in South Padre Island Texas.
The Adventure has begun!

Not even a few blocks into our journey, I noticed my partner was struggling more with her bicycle then I was. I asked her did she want to swap bikes & she said yes. She had picked the green bike because it was her favorite color.

After swapping bikes, it turns out the green bike had been left out in one to many rainstorms, or taken on one to many dips into the saltwater. It’s pedal & chain drive system were extremely rusted, & made pedaling a laborious task. The fact that the back wheel was slightly warped, didn’t help much either. The bike was so bad, it required standing up to pedal on flat ground as if you were continuously climbing a hill.

After toughing it out until we made it back to the bike rental shop. The shop was an entire 3 miles away, which this rusty warped bicycle transformed from a leisurely ride, into an uphill climb the whole way. I quickly exchanged her rusty bike for a better bike & we were back out on the Turtle Trail.

Woman in mask, with hair in bun posing with Indigo the Sea Turtle on the Sea Turtle Art Trail in South Padre Island Texas.
Getting a map & a picture with the next Turtle named “Indigo” on the Turtle Trail Art Tour.


After pedaling to the other side of the Island on our turtle hunt. We we were ready for a break & some lunch. Looking at the local businesses as we passed I noticed a Mexican Restaurant that caught my eye. It was called El Chilango Taqueria.

Woman enjoying lunch at the colorful Mexican Restaurant El Chilango Taqueria, with sombreros hanging on the wall in the background. Having Chicken Burrito, and Spicy Shrimp Tostadas in South Padre Island Texas.
Lunch at El Chilango Taqueria. Chicken Burrito (Top) & Spicy Shrimp Tostadas (bottom)

Don’t know if we were just extra hungry due to the bicycle ride or what, but this was some really good food. After lunch we got back on our bicycles, & were back on the Turtle Trail.

Woman posing with Miracle the Sea Turtle on the Art Trail in South Padre Island Texas.
Meet “Miracle” the Turtle. One of the Art Trail Turtles.

Riding completely across the city of South Padre Island, brought us to the South Padre Island Convention Center for the last Turtle of the trail for us.

Woman sitting in Big, Oversized beach chairs in South Padre Island Texas with bicycles, and palm trees in the photo.
My partner taking a break in the Big Chairs at the South Padre Island Convention Center
Woman posing with Luna the Sea Turtle, on the art trail in South Padre Island Texas, with bicycles in the background.
Meet Luna the Turtle. The last of the turtles on our ride for the day.

We toured the island, ate good, exercised, & created an adventure out of every memory along the way. After an 11 mile bicycle trip we were more then ready to kick back & relax the rest of the night away.

The Roving Gypsy®

Thanks for reading. If you want to hear more about our Holiday Road trip, & see where we end up. Like, share, comment & let me know… To Be Continued…