Attractions

Mexico Border

Just across the Rio Grande from Brownsville is a beautiful glimpse into Matamoros, Mexico. Our friendly neighbor invites visitors to add an international flavor to their visit and enjoy all Mexico has to offer.

Art and handcrafts from all parts of Mexico can be found in the shops and markets of Matamoros. The goods include the leather, silver and gold jewelry, talavera pottery, Zarapes, boots, and art. Many shops are just across the Gateway International Bridge. However, more shops are just a short taxi or tourbus ride away at the Juarez Market. Some of the shuttles have pick-up points near the Gateway International Bridge.

Matamoros offers many restaurants to suit many tastes. From traditional Mexican fare to regional seafood dishes and even great steaks, visitors are sure to be satisfied. The dining experience often takes on added dimensions with costumed servers and mariachi music.

Many sites in Matamoros take you back into a colorful past. The Casa Mata Museum is a rich, historical reminder of numerous military actions that have resulted in the abbreviation "H." to precede Matamoros, which conveys the meaning "heroic." At Plaza Hildago, visitors can discover a marvelous cathedral built in 1825 and renovated historic buildings such as the city hall and the Matamoros Casino. The "Museo del Agrarismo Mexicano" depicts the agricultural heritage of the State of Tamaulipas and Mexico with numerous exhibits and authentic artifacts from the Mexican Revolution of 1910.

Matamoros has a beach on the Gulf of Mexico known as Playa Bagdad. Thatched palapas dot the beach. Regional fishing tournaments are held year-round and camping on the sand is a tradition among the locals. The many celebrations include the Expo Fiesta in June and July, Mexican Independence in September, the Festival Internacional de OtoƱo in October with acts from around the globe, the Day of the Dead in November, a vast display of Christmas lights across the city, and Semana Santa at Easter. Plan a trip around one of these events and it will be a pleasant experience.

 

Current Requirements to Enter the United States From Within the Western Hemisphere by Land or Sea

U.S. Citizens
A verbal declaration and the ability to prove to a CBP officer, if requested, that your claim to U.S. citizenship is valid. Because it is difficult to prove your identity and citizenship without documents, presenting a driver's license and either a birth certificate or naturalization certificate, or a passport, is highly recommended.

Lawful Permanent Residents
Alien Registration Card (Form I-551) or other valid evidence of lawful permanent residence status is required.

Canadian Citizens and Citizens of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda
A verbal declaration and the ability to prove to a CBP officer, if requested, that your claim to Canadian/Bermudian citizenship is valid. Because it is difficult to prove your identity and citizenship without documents, presenting a driver's license and either a birth certificate or naturalization certificate, or a passport, is highly recommended.

Mexican Citizens and Nationals
All Mexican citizens, including children, are currently required to present a border crossing card or passport with visa.

Land Sea Document Requirements
Beginning January 31, 2008, U.S. and Canadian citizens 19 years and older who enter the U.S. at land and sea ports of entry from within the Western Hemisphere will need to present government issued photo ID, such as a driver's license as proof of identity, along with proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or naturalization certificate, or a passport. Children age 18 and under will be able to enter with proof of citizenship. Verbal claims of citizenship and identity alone will not be sufficient to establish identity and citizenship for entry into the United States. Please be sure to visit CBP.gov for updates on travel documents and details as to when new requirements will go into effect.

Know Your Destination Country Documentary Requirements
It is strongly recommended that all travelers leaving the U.S. verify the specific documentary requirements for their destination country. This information is available through travel.state.gov, or by consulting with the Embassy of the country you are visiting to determine what documents are needed to meet the entry requirements of that country. These requirements could include a birth certificate, passport, or passport and visa for entry into that country.

For Customs related questions please contact:

U.S. CUSTOMS & BORDER PROTECTION
1300 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Rm. 5.4D
Washington, DC 20229

Or check the Web site:
www.cbp.gov
for Import & Export and Travel Information

U.S. Customs & Border Protection in Brownsville:
(956) 983-5800

Mexican Immigration Office:
011-52-868-812-0251 in Matamoros.

Mexico is just a two-step across the Rio Grande from downtown Brownsville, easily making your trip an international one. The friendly neighbors of Matamoros welcome visitors to join their cultural events, to shop for bargains at old world style markets, and to enjoy the cuisine of a variety of restaurants.

Mexicans love a fiesta. This means that many holidays become a festival. Some examples include Dies y seis de Septiembre (Independence Day), Day of the Dead, Battle of Puebla, Holy Week, and the Christmas holidays.

The shops and markets of Matamoros offer many art, handcraft, and souvenir options. Good values are available on items ranging from leather goods, silver and gold jewelry, colorfully woven fabrics, pottery, and even prescription drugs. The museums trace the unique history and include new exhibits, one recounting the travels of Pancho Villa.

Matamoros has an ever-expanding collection of restaurants. Along with authentic Mexican, regional seafood, casual French, Asian, and continental fare is served, often accompanied by native music, performed at your table.

Be sure to include Matamoros as part of your trip to the Rio Grande Valley!

For more information and current events in Matamoros, Mexico visit: www.matamoros.com And read Visiting Mexico Requirements

Travel by Land - If a U.S. citizen does not have a passport or a certified copy of a birth certificate, the following may be accepted as proof of citizenship: - A U.S. state or federal government-issued birth record (note: hospital-issued birth certificates are not acceptable) or baptismal record. If a U.S. citizen child was recently born, and no copy of the birth certificate is available, bring whatever paperwork the hospital has given you as a record of the birth. If you do not have a certified copy of your birth certificate, one can be requested from the Vital Records office in the State where you were born.

If you are traveling in the Western Hemisphere, (Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Central and South America):

ALL persons*, including U.S. citizens, traveling by air between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and Bermudaare required to present a valid passport, Air NEXUS card, or U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Document.

Beginning January 31, 2008, U.S. and Canadian citizens 19 years and older who enter the U.S. at land and sea ports of entry from within the Western Hemisphere will need to present government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license as proof of identity, along with proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or naturalization certificate, or a passport. Children age 18 and under will be able to enter with proof of citizenship. Verbal claims of citizenship and identity alone will not be sufficient to establish identity and citizenship for entry into the United States. Note: Children age 18 and under will need to present a birth certificate, naturalization certificate or a passport to enter the U.S.

For more information on crossing on the border visit U.S Customs & Border Protection website


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