Located in the Rio Grande Valley along the border of Texas and Mexico, McAllen, Texas is one of the country's fastest growing cities. With its hot climate and large retail districts, McAllen's early settlers enjoyed a rich rural agricultural and ranching economy. Development of irrigation systems and the addition of railway transport in the early 19th century served as a catalyst for McAllen's booming economy, and as a current popular shopping destination for neighboring Mexican citizens, its no wonder McAllen is experiencing such rapid growth. McAllen is also located along a major migratory path for a number of species of birds, and the city has some of the nation's best bird watching. The city is also just a short drive from the coast of the Gulf of Mexico as well as the popular city of Monterrey in Nueva Leon, Mexico. Rich in culture and natural beauty, McAllen, Texas is not to be missed.