Palacios is a city in Matagorda County, Texas, United States. The population was 5,153 at the 2000 census.
|Nickname(s): City by the Sea|
Location of Palacios, Texas
|Coordinates: 28°42′33″N 96°13′3″W|
Palacios is located on the Gulf Coast at (28.709153, -96.217588), about halfway between Houston and Corpus Christi. It is connected to both cities by State Highway 35.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.3 square miles (14 km2), of which, 5.0 square miles (13 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it (4.36%) is covered by water. It is located on the shores of Tres Palacios Bay, an arm of Matagorda Bay.
The Palacios area is known among birders for its wide diversity of bird life. Since 1997, as part of the 15-mile-diameter Matagorda County-Mad Island Marsh count circle of the National Audubon SocietyChristmas Bird Count, it has consistently reported more bird species than anywhere else in the United States. On December 19, 2005, a record 250 species were observed.
Home to about 400 vessels, Palacios is the third-largest shrimping port on the Texas Gulf Coast, and has proclaimed itself to be the "Shrimp Capital of Texas". The most common industries are educational services, agriculture/fishing, and construction. The area has also long been a major center for energy production, and the county is positioning itself as an "energy cluster" for both conventional and alternative "green" power generation, with over $3 billion in new construction undergoing permitting as of 2011. The local tourism industry is based on fishing, boating, birding and eco-tourism opportunities.