Waking up slow to the rising sun. Drinking a cup of coffee on your porch or in the recreation hall with friends. Swimming in the resort pool or a morning of fishing. An afternoon of bike riding or trail hiking to spot rare bird species. Playing a game of bocce ball or pickleball. Enjoying a show or dancing the night away with your friends. This isn’t just vacation. This is a lifestyle for many “Winter Texans” who head to South Texas from all over Canada and the U.S. to spend the winter months. South Texas is also known as the “Rio Grande Valley”. South Texas is an increasingly popular destination and is known for its weather, food & culture, citrus orchards, world class birding, top notch hospitals, and friendly people. South Texas is not only beautiful but it is a lively and affordable place to spend one’s golden years. South Texas has been consistently rated as one of the least expensive places to live in the U.S.
Down here, the folks that come to live in South Texas are called, Winter Texans, which is not to be confused with the Snowbirds of Florida, Arizona, and Southern California. Many of them come down for the warm climate because the warmth eases joint pain, there’s no snow to shovel, and the outdoor activities are abound. There are many things to do and reasons to stay in South Texas to escape the cold. Many Winter Texans, approx 10,000, choose to stay at a Encore Resort. There are ten age-qualified Encore RV Resorts to choose from in South Texas. All are gated communities and most offer amenities and activities like pools & spas, fitness centers, shuffleboard, pickle ball courts, woodworking clubs, and much more.
Winter Texans are also trailblazers who love living their life on the road with the freedom to go anywhere and see anything whenever they want behind the wheels of their RVs! After retiring early, Kathy and her husband, who have been coming to an Encore Resort in South Texas since 2003, bought a new rig and headed out to see the country. Kathy and her husband found that having the freedom to go wherever you wanted was the best way to spend their winters. “The lifestyle of an RVer, you just cannot imagine the freedom that you experience to see things that are out there that other people don’t see when you stay in a hotel,” she says.
South Texas has lots of tourism to offer. A favorite among residents and visitors is South Padre Island which has popular landmarks and destinations like the Port Isabel lighthouse and the Sea Turtle Rescue center. The Sea Turtle Rescue is a non profit organization whose mission is to “rescue, rehabilitate, and release injured sea turtles, educate the public, and assist with conservation efforts for all marine turtle species.” It is a great place to bring the grandkids who will surely love the live interaction with sea turtles. Be sure to check seaturtleinc.org for more information on hatchlings, releases, and onsite activities. Other landmarks in South Texas include the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, and the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park.
Named one of the Top 10 sport fishing destinations in 2014 by Sport Fishing Magazine, Port Mansfield is a popular place for fishermen to visit. Whether you head out on your own fishing boat or embark on a chartered fishing trip, fishing in the Gulf of Mexico is a treat for fishermen where there are multiple large fish species waiting to be caught! Nearby at Port Isabel, there are hundreds of activities for visitors, but fishing is also a popular one. Port Isabel is home to Pirate’s Landing the longest fishing pier in Texas. Pirate’s Landing extends out into the Queen Isabella Causeway that leads to South Padre Island and fishing poles and tackle are always available to rent here.
South Texas is a popular and world renowned location for birders. The region has more than 500 species of birds & butterflies and is also home to the World Birding Center, which has 9 locations in South Texas, with each location offering unique birding trails and excursions throughout the area.
It is also the site of the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival which draws world class birders for speaking engagements, field trips, and special events every year. The 23rd Annual Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival will take place on November 2, 2016 and will feature speaking engagements by world class wildlife photographers and prominent birders, plus field trips to places like South Padre Island and the Upper Rio Grande. Visit rgbvf.org for more information about field trips and tickets.
Winnipeggers – ready to join the ranks of the Winter Texans? Trek south to this laid back area with a low cost of living and big city amenities. Take advantage of some of our new customer specials offered by Encore. Rates are $1,433 for a 3 month stay on a standard RV site at Sunshine RV and $1,338 for a 3 month stay on a standard RV site at Paradise Park. Valid until April 30, 2017. No RV, no problem, Park Model rentals are also available! Visit RVontheGO.com or RVSouthTexas.com to find out more information or call (877) 957-2778.