My beautiful wife and I took a day trip from SPI to the Boca Chica beach area. One can see it from the south end of SPI, but the only access is through Brownsville, Tx., about 40 miles one way. Well worth the drive. I strongly suggest visiting during the week or just after the holidays when the kids are back in school. You will have the beach to yourself. The day we visited was the day after Labor Day. We saw the beach patrol a few minutes after we arrived, but it was the last person we saw until we left the beach and drove back up the highway to the border patrol checkpoint on Boca Choca Highway, an hour or so later. The trash barrels on the beach were overflowing from the weekend, but the beach itself was very clean. We will be back next trip.