Just north of the Mexican border, this thriving city has adopted many colors, sounds and tastes of its southern neighbor, while maintaining plenty of Texan charm.
Known to locals as the “city of palms,” the southern plains city of McAllen is nestled between the Rio Grande River and the Mexican border. McAllen’s population may say only 130,000 on paper, but this figure swells during the day as workers from the surrounding towns converge on the city.
Likewise, in the evening and on weekends, McAllen becomes the unofficial playground for the 1.3 million residents of the Rio Grande Valley. That’s how energetic the city is; it pulls visitors in from all around for its charming nightlife, a lively medley of cuisines, fascinating local attractions and superb shopping.
Join the throngs of visitors who cross the border from Mexico each day in order to shop at some of Texas’ most popular malls. Spend the day searching for bargains at La Plaza Mall, Palms Crossing and the North 10th Street shopping district.
A large Hispanic community has provided McAllen with a tantalizing array of eating options. Stop at a roadside restaurant for quick and easy Tex-Mex, such as a burrito filled with fresh chili. Take a table outside a downtown restaurant to enjoy mouth-watering fresh dishes made of local ingredients.
See McAllen’s cultural side in action as you visit the Creative Incubator, a progressive institution that curates a program of exhibitions, workshops and activities. Stop at the McAllen Convention Center to listen to the Valley Symphony Orchestra playing as part of their regular concert series.
Venture outside the city and you’ll be met with wild birds, dramatic landscape and the gushing Rio Grande River. Follow some of the many hiking and cycling trails to help you navigate your way through the wilderness.
An international airport serves McAllen, as do frequent interstate trains and buses. Once you’re in town, enjoy the convenience of the frequent buses that run between all the major attractions in the city.