Friday, December 30, 2016

South Padre Island

December 26-28

We had a very nice time while we were at South Padre Island. On Monday we headed to the island & on the way
we stopped in Port Isabel & had lunch at Pirates Landing. It's been 14 years since we've been to SPI & to Pirates Landing & we were not disappointed. Our lunch was very good.

Once we got to SPI we decided try restaurants that we have never been to rather than going to our old favorites. Since we had a BIG lunch we passed on dinner Monday. Tuesday morning we had the free breakfast buffet at the hotel which was mediocre at best. All the "bread" items were "white flour".

White bread & plain bagels. The muffins were miniature & intended to appeal to kids. Nothing healthy except an omelet at this buffet. The waffle was mediocre so I just ate a few bites. The egg dishes did not look very appealing so I passed. The omelet was made to order & they had a nice selection of veggies I could choose from.

On Tuesday afternoon we went out exploring to see all the changes that have happened since we left Texas back in 2003. We stopped at Rene's (Owned by Rene's in Mission). I was disappointed that it was just a gift shop & no restaurant but while there we checked out two places along the same strip shopping center & we came across Yummies Bistro (it was closed) & Gabriella's Italian Restaurant which was getting ready to open. They gave us menu's to look at & we decided to stick around & have an early dinner.

The food & service was fantastic & of course we both over indulged but walked it off on the beach. Everything is made from scratch
(no Sysco here), including the decadent desserts & each is made with their special "twist" to it. My favorite Italian meal is linguini with white clam sauce which is hard to find & they used fresh clams (still in the shell). I was in heaven. Al had his usual lasagna but he said it was the best he ever had. Not bad for a guy who doesn't get easily excited.

Based on reviews I read I decided to try Yummies Bistro for breakfast on Wednesday instead of the free, but not so good breakfast buffet. It was the best decision! I had a multi-grain waffle with pecans. It really was fantastic....even better than Cracker Barrel's pecan pancakes. Al had the Tex-Mex scramble that he said was very good.

Our itinerary:
Monday after we settled into our room we stopped over at the Birding & Nature Center which was cross the street from the hotel....very convenient & what a great place.

We did a dolphin tour on Tuesday with South Padre Island Dolphin Research & Sea Life Nature Center. This is a small tour that only seats 6 per pontoon. It really was so much nicer than going on the big boatswith a bunch of people & not getting that personal touch. Scarlet & her husband George do an outstanding job. George was out Captain along with his dolphin spotter, Gorgi (one of their dogs). She was a
hoot! Every time she heard their "sonar"under water she would bark & point to where they were & she was right on every time. George & Scarlet communicate with each other when dolphin are spotted & we sure did see a lot of them. It was very hard to capture photos because they are gone by the time you hit the button but I did get a couple of decent ones. We had lots of sightings thanks to Gorgi.

The photos are posted in the order taken each day
The parrot is one of several birds in an aviary in the same area as the Pirates Landing & the Dolphin tour. The aviary is maintained by Davy Jones Locker. After we checked in at the hotel on
Monday we went to the Birding & Nature Center was our second stop which was across the street from our hotel. The turtle's were in the front of the building & the heron was wandering around in the bay side.
Tuesday afternoon was the highlight of our stay, the Dolphin Tour
Wedding Cake

The foodie photos were taken at Gabriella's

Linguini with Clams


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