I’m almost afraid to spill the secret, to release my new-found knowledge to the world.

Texas beaches are deserted on the weekdays in September. There, I said it, now you know.

We pulled the trailer south from North Texas and settled down in the beautiful Gulf Waters RV park. With our slide-out rooms only feet from the boardwalk, we slipped off our shoes and scurried to the soft sand beach. We spent a glorious week in Port A in late September and the closest people on the beach were half a mile away from our spot.

Schooling in the mornings left the entire afternoon and evening of each day to learn from the world around us by:

  • building sand castles (engineering, architecture, tides and erosion)
  • digging up Coquina Clams to watch them burrow under the sand again (biology)
  • spotting and identifying migratory birds passing through Texas on their way south for the winter (biology)
  • flying kites (physical science)
  • grilling locally-caught fish/shellfish for dinner (ecology, math and lifeskills)
  • and last but not least, watching the sun set the sky on fire as it set (astronomy)

Port Aransas offers many free educational opportunities as well as family fun. The UT Marine Science Institute houses a small museum where you can spend thirty minutes to an hour learning about the local ocean and wetland habitats. Youngest Son loved watching the sea horses maneuver in a tank while the other two boys enjoyed comparing the sizes of the whale bones on display.

The Port Aransas Museum offers a view local history as well as visiting displays, while the Leonabelle Birding Center is a great place to view many of the migrating birds and their website offers a checklist for visitors. Or you can grab a copy of a field guide for North American birds from the library and hit the beach like we did.

American Oyster Catcher

 You can also take the free ferry to the mainland and drive to nearby Rockport, which houses the Texas Maritime Museum and The Rockport Aquarium.

Forty-five minutes the other direction will take you to Corpus Christi, home to the USS Lexington, The Texas State Aquarium, The Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History, and dozens of other wonderful adventures.

USS Lexington from a previous trip to Port A.

With so much to offer and so few people to fight for beach space, Port Aransas in the fall is a gift to homeschool families.