Down in the valley you’ll find a birder’s paradise. About 360 species of birds have been reported at Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, along with butterflies, javelinas, bobcats and more!
Things to Do
Nature is the main attraction here.
Look for birds and other wildlife, get some exercise, and see the Rio Grande Valley in its near natural state. Stop by our Exhibit Hall to enjoy the bilingual (English/Spanish) exhibits.
To protect the natural environment, we do not allow cars in the park. Leave your car at headquarters and explore on foot, bike or take a tram tour.
Look for birds
The park’s woodlands and brushlands provide habitat for a wide variety of birds (and other wildlife). Look for them along our trails or at our viewing stations, water features and the two-story, wheelchair-accessible Hawk Observation Tower.
About 360 bird species have been recorded in the park. These include subtropical species common in eastern Mexico, such as the Plain Chachalaca, Great Kiskadee and Altamira Oriole. The park is also a stopover for migratory birds, including Swainson’s and Broad-winged hawks.
Thousands of hawks stream overhead in spring and fall as they migrate. You’ll want to migrate to the Hawk Observation Tower for the best view – of the raptors, the tree canopy and Mexico.
Bring your binoculars or rent a pair from the park store. You’ll need them to fully appreciate the wildlife you’ll see here.
Download our Bird Checklist | PDF.
The park is part of the World Birding Center.
Hike, bike and tram
Explore 7 miles of trail, including 3.5 miles of park road, on bike or foot. The 1.8-mile Rio Grande Trail is wheelchair-accessible. Bikes aren’t allowed on this trail.
Bring your own bike or rent one from the park store (adult bikes are $5 per day).
The park also offers Tram Tours.
Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park
2800 S. Bentsen Palm Drive (FM 2062)
Mission, TX 78572
Make reservations online
Reserve by phone: (512) 389-8900
- Adult: $5
- Group (10+ people): $3
- Child 12 Years and Under : Free
7 a.m. – 10 p.m.
To guarantee entrance, reserve passes online, or by calling the customer service center, before you visit.
Busy Season: September through April.