McAllen City Guide

Welcome to McAllen, Texas! Located in the Rio Grande Valley near the U.S.-Mexico border, McAllen is a thriving city with a rich history, vibrant culture, and beautiful natural surroundings. Here’s a quick guide to help you explore the best that McAllen has to offer.

  1. Attractions:
    • International Museum of Art & Science (IMAS): A museum showcasing a variety of art, science, and cultural exhibits, as well as interactive displays and educational programs.
    • Quinta Mazatlan: A historic Spanish Revival-style mansion and nature preserve, offering birdwatching, walking trails, and educational programs.
    • McAllen Heritage Center: A local history museum featuring exhibits, photographs, and artifacts that showcase the history of McAllen and the surrounding region.
  2. Food and Dining:
    • Palenque Grill: A popular local restaurant offering delicious Mexican cuisine, including grilled meats, seafood, and traditional dishes.
    • SALT – New American Table: A farm-to-table restaurant featuring a menu of creative and locally sourced dishes, as well as an extensive wine list.
    • Mama Mia Pizzeria: A family-owned pizzeria serving up tasty pizzas, calzones, and other Italian favorites.
  3. Nightlife:
    • 17th Street Entertainment District: A lively area with various bars, nightclubs, and restaurants, offering live music, DJs, and dancing.
    • Bourbon St. Grill: A New Orleans-themed bar and grill featuring live music, a wide selection of beers and cocktails, and Cajun-inspired pub fare.
    • Thirsty Monkey: A popular bar offering a laid-back atmosphere, a variety of beers and cocktails, and live music.
  4. Outdoor Activities:
    • McAllen Nature Center: A beautiful 33-acre park with walking trails, birdwatching opportunities, and educational programs about the local flora and fauna.
    • Fireman’s Park: A large community park offering sports fields, picnic areas, a lake for fishing, and paddleboat rentals.
    • Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park: A 760-acre state park known for birdwatching, featuring observation decks, walking trails, and a butterfly garden.
  5. Shopping and Markets:
    • La Plaza Mall: A large shopping center featuring popular retail stores, department stores, dining options, and a movie theater.
    • Palms Crossing: An open-air shopping center with a variety of retail stores, restaurants, and entertainment venues.
    • McAllen Farmers Market: A weekly outdoor market held on Saturdays, offering fresh produce, artisan goods, and local food vendors.
  6. Events and Festivals:
    • McAllen Holiday Parade (December): A festive holiday event featuring illuminated floats, marching bands, and appearances by celebrities and local personalities.
    • Viva McAllen Streets (February): A community event promoting health and wellness, featuring a variety of fitness activities, live music, and food vendors.
    • PalmFest International Folklife Celebration (October): A cultural festival held at the McAllen Convention Center, showcasing the diverse heritage of the region through live performances, art displays, and food.

Be sure to check local event calendars for additional activities and festivals during your visit. Enjoy your stay in the vibrant and welcoming city of McAllen!