'Winter Texans' in Tamaulipas this week. 'Winter Texans' in Tamaulipas this week.

‘Winter Texans’ go home after safe trip

Tamaulipas working to encourage US, Canadian visitors to come back

For the first time in eight years a tour group made up of around 80 “Winter Texans” has visited the northern border state of Tamaulipas.


And by all accounts they had a very good — and safe — time.

For many of the tourists — United States and Canadian citizens who spend the cold winter months in the south of Texas — the highlight of the trip was attending the colorful and lively Playa Miramar carnival.

“My stay in Tamaulipas has been very nice. We visited the carnival, we saw a show, it was fabulous. We’ve had positive experiences [and] met a lot of people . . . everyone is very friendly” said Hugh Bachs of Napanee, Ontario.

Another Canadian visitor gave a similarly glowing report.

“We’ve been treated very well by everyone here and we’ve had tremendous fun. My favorite moment of the trip so far was the carnival. We enjoyed it for hours. Without a doubt, I would recommend visiting Tamaulipas to my friends,” said Robert Mason of Thunder Bay, Ontario.

The “Winter Texans” also visited the city of Tampico where they enjoyed a tour of the historic center. The cathedral, the city’s main squares and the old maritime Customs House were all highlights.


Months prior to their arrival, officials from the Tamaulipas Secretariat of Tourism visited the Rio Grande Valley in Texas to hold meetings with tour operators with the aim of reactivating tourism from the neighboring state.

Last month, officials from the Ciudad Madero municipal government also went to Texas to promote the Playa Miramar carnival.

State authorities including Governor Francisco García Cabeza de Vaca and the state’s public security and tourism secretariats have worked to ensure that tourists can visit the state’s attractions safely, in response to the violence has plagued Tamaulipas in recent years.

At an event to welcome the tourists, the tourism secretary said that the government would continue working to attract more visitors to Tamaulipas.

“. . . this kind of tourism has a significant economic impact . . . we hope that this trend continues . . .” María Isabel Gómez Castro said.

Travel by “Winter Texans” to Tamaulipas has been severely affected by insecurity during the last eight years.

Source: Milenio (sp), MVS Noticias (sp)

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  • WestCoastHwy

    Getting on board the the criminal gangs and paying mordidas is the first part. I would believe that it only take that black sheep criminal gang to spoil the barrel of apples; the wanna be gang!

  • cooncats

    A few staged “safe trips” is not what it will take to get the thousands of winter Texans to start visiting and spending money in the border towns. Reynosa used to be a great place to visit, shop and eat. The gangsters have made the place unsafe and most of the businesses that used to thrive off the tourist trade are gone. This is true of almost every town along the U.S./Mexican border.

    Basically, the Mexican border states are in the hands of the criminals and that hasn’t changed. Ironically the “wall” could help this situation by limiting their movement and reach along the border. You can’t blame America, confronted with a failed state along the Rio Grande, wanting to block the place off. If Mexico really got serious about security on their side of that border, and gave up this idea they are entitled to enter the U.S. illegally, there would be no need for a wall.

    Before the criminals took over along the border it was open, safe and a great place to visit. “Back to the Future” is the solution to this problem, not a few PR stunts like this.

    • Dave Warren

      Oh Heavens …what if America stopped buying drugs? What would be the effect of that???? Unfortunately the politicians don’t want to get drugs off the street ? Drugs and crime are a demand side problem. If the US would fix it’s own broken system perhaps them Mexico could deal with its problems. I’m not aware of any manufacturers of guns in Mexico? All the guns and violence are exported to Mexico. I’m not aware they are shooting high school students in Mexico….that seems to be a wholly American problem.

      • Güerito

        No need to speculate. As the US moves toward legalization, violence increases in Mexico.

        These guys need to find another job, and it most often involves local drug sales in Mexico or violence against Mexicans.

        The worst thing for Mexico, at least in the short term, would be if the US stopped buying drugs from Mexico.

        • Dave Warren

          Kidnapping ,gasoline theft and petty crime will never replace the money generated by drugs. No money to pay politicians or police. The framework would break down in my opinion.

          • Güerito

            You’re right that kidnapping, gasoline theft and petty crime will never replace the money generated by drugs.

            That’s why they’ve also moved into retail drug sales, extortion, illegal logging, human trafficking, train robbery, truck freight theft, etc. These crimes are on the rise in Mexico.

            “Correa-Cabrera looks at organized crime from an economic perspective and argues that the term “drug cartel” is outmoded: The Zetas and groups like them have morphed into transnational corporations with interests in everything from coal mining and the extraction of oil and gas to cornering the market on avocados.

            Groups like the Zetas are not even drug cartels anymore in the traditional sense. They are more like a transnational company with many branches, including the politicians, the migrant smugglers, the sicarios [hitmen] and the money launderers.

            Q: So at the heart of your book is the idea that the drug war isn’t really about drugs, it’s about controlling territory and resources?

            A: Correct. I started mapping the different conflicts in Tamaulipas. And when I looked at the GIS maps, it showed me a different kind of pattern than I expected — an expansion into places that weren’t really necessary for drug trafficking but where there were natural resources. I also found conflicts in other regions of Mexico, where there is coal, copper, water and gold.”


          • Dave Warren

            Yes I have read quite a bit of what you are saying. I have always wondered about all the scrap steel lying around here because in Canada it was bought up a great prices years ago. Then I read about Gangs in Michocan stealing scrap and shipping it off. We get 300$ for a scrap car like a Tsuru. I hate to read that things are hopeless. I realize that politicians and police are in on the kidnappings etc. My wife is Mexicana and she has grown children and it seems so hopeless. Yet there are tremendous resources here. A great talented educated work force. So many with good education yet no opportunity to use it. I know many young men here that have just given up. They don’t want to work because there is no dignity. It is hopeless.I am a bit of a revolutionary and in my country we had a youth uprising that changed the world. But here people are afraid to march. Afraid to speak up ….because the power with crush them…the population is traumatized. The thing is that you must be willing to die for a cause. But no one will do it …it is obvious how it ends. 30 people here in Nayarit buried in the sugar cane. Even if you change the countries structure through peaceful protest there is nothing to ensure that it won’t fall back into corruption. Yet this country is a paradise and really so rich . It can provide for all the people.

    • Hear, hear!