The small Mexican town of Boquillas was for many years a mining town, until that ended in 1919. Fortunately for Boquillas it lies directly across the Rio Grande from Big Bend National Park.
This worked great for years, with tourists crossing the border to go up into town for lunch, then returning to the park. All that ended with 9-11, and the border closings.
For more than 10 years the small town dwindled down to almost nothing, until finally the US Government built a remote immigration center and the flow started again.
The border crossing is only open on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, but our good luck had us there on a Sunday so we headed across the river in a rowboat.
The ‘Park and Ride’ lot on the Mexican side was where we picked up our ‘ride’ into town – a burro.
The townsfolk have this worked out – the family own some burros, and they walk along with you as you ride up the 1/2 mile hill into town, where they take you to their family owned restaurant. (there are two restaurants in town).
The food and cold beer were excellent.
After lunch they showed us around town, stopping off at his wife’s souvenir stand where we picked up something.
Their little town is resourceful. With a church and a school, they have everything they need to survive 160 miles from the nearest town in Mexico.
They do make trips across to the Rio Grande Village in the park to pick up needed supplies.
We continued our tour around town. While there are a few abandoned buildings, most are in use.
We stopped at the Park and Ride lot in town for our trip back down the hill.
A quick ride across the Rio Grande, followed by a brief visit to US immigration and we were on our way – full from lunch and with great memories of a cool little Mexican town.