The Skinners live close to the US border and like to escape to the warmth six months of the year. When a friend of theirs told them he had a park model for sale in South Texas, they flew down to see it. “We spent a week at Fun-N-Sun and talked to the people there,” said Carol Skinner. “We looked at some other parks and decided Fun-N-Sun was the kind of place we’d like to live.”
In the southeast tip of Texas there lies a land overlooked by the snow king. It’s a land that offers Winter Texans a pleasant winter with a myriad of activities and one that attracts ardent bird watchers from across the continent.
Harlingen, Texas and the surrounding area have all the necessary attributes to attract those looking for a great place to retire and who want an enjoyable location for the long winters. The city is built in the middle of prime agricultural land that provides fresh vegetables year round and is surrounded by several natural parks where hikers and birders alike can enjoy the outdoors. The sub-tropical climate is perfect. A multitude of RV parks are now established in the area, including four Encore Resort Parks: Sunshine RV Resort, Paradise Park RV Resort, Tropic Winds, and Lakewood RV Resort.
When the northern winds are hurling snowdrifts across the roads, it’s nice to be soaking in an outdoor spa at one of the south’s most luxurious RV resorts, Victoria Palms.
The Rio Grande Valley in South Texas has long been known for its moderate winter temperatures, abundant palms, and warm gulf breezes. The developers of the Victoria Palms RV Resort took advantage of these natural advantages and built one of South Texas’ premier RV resorts in Donna, TX.
Back in the early 2000s, Elizabeth Funke and her husband decided they’d like to try something a little different when it came to a winter getaway.
“We tried a few places and one day we drove through a park in Mercedes, TX.” said Elizabeth. “We were driving slowly around and people waved to us. We stopped to get a brochure and the people that had waved to us came up to us before we could even get in the building. They were welcoming us to park and wanted to know when we planned on coming to stay.”
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.
For the past ten years, my husband Jack and I have been wintering in the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) of south Texas. We are called “Winter Texans” as opposed to the “Snowbirds” in Florida & Arizona.
As new retirees, we first visited many southern states, wandering the roads with our motor home, from Florida to California. When we found Texas, it immediately felt like home. We are now two of the thousands of retired Canadians who make the trip to the RGV each winter – some RV parks / Mobile home resorts here are 60 or more percent Canadian residents.