Brownsville, McAllen and Harlingen, the Valley’s three largest cities, are tied together by US Highway 83 and its parallel railroad system, along which most Valley towns sprang up around the turn of the century.
Brownsville is the home of the Gladys Porter Zoo and the Valley Wing of the Commemorative Air Force, Brownsville is the site of the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College. Its growing industrial area and seaport bring ships from all parts of the world to the tip of Texas.
McAllen, the Valley’s largest city, is a mecca for winter visitors and has the distinction of being “the Square Dance Capital of the World.” In addition to its preeminence as a major port of entry with Mexico, a vital retail and wholesale center and a major healthcare center in South Texas, McAllen also boasts an excellent arts and sciences museum and a full calendar of cultural events.
Harlingen is home to the Marine Military Academy which boasts the original Iwo Jima Memorial from which the Arlington, VA, statue was cast. Harlingen’s revitalized historical area, the Jackson Street District, features architecture from the 1920s-50s. The palm-lined business district features quaint restored storefronts, old-fashioned street lamps and sidewalk benches and masses of colorful flowers. Stores sell antiques, apparel, collectibles, crafts, country treasures, flowers, furniture, jewelry and works of art.
Other MUST SEE Valley Towns Los Fresnos Port Isabel South Padre Island - Across the Laguna Madre San Benito - Between Brownsville and Harlingen Rio Hondo - Northeast of Harlingen Raymondville, Willacy County seat Port Mansfield - Angler paradise due east of Raymondville Pharr, Between McAllen and Harlingen San Juan, home to the Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan Del Valle National Shrine Alamo - Adjacent to Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge on US 281. Donna, Texas Weslaco - Focal point for Valley nature tourism. Mercedes, Famous nine-day Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show held every March. Edinburg - North of McAllen home of the University of Texas-Pan American, the Museum of South Texas History and the Edinburg Roadrunners of the Texas Louisiana Professional Baseball League. Hidalgo - Home of the Dodge Arena, the Killer Bees Ice Hockey Team, and the El Dorado Arena Football Team. Mission - West of McAllen, home of the Ruby Red Grapefruit. Granjeno and Penita- To the west of Mission La Joya Sullivan City Rio Grande City, the Starr County Fort Ringgold Roma
The Valley, rich in opportunities reminds you to leave no stone unturned when planing your vacation.