Nuevo Laredo is a border town that lies on the banks of the Rio Grande, across from the U.S. city of Laredo.
Nuevo Laredo is the largest inland port in Mexico, just as its counterpart across the border is the busiest inland port (bridge crossing) in the United States.
Nuevo Laredo is connected to U.S. city of Laredo by 3 international bridges and a rail bridge.
Geography, Environment & Climate
Nuevo Laredo is a city located in the municipality of Nuevo Laredo in the mexican state of Tamaulipas.
The municipality has an area of around 1332 km² (515 sq mi).
Both the city and the municipality rank as the third largest in the state.
The 2010 census population of Nuevo Laredo was more than 370,000.
Nuevo Laredo is also part of the Laredo-Nuevo Laredo Metropolitan Area with a total population of more than 635,000.
Rio Grande is the only source that supplies its citizens with water.
El Coyote Creek supplies Nuevo Laredo’s only natural lake El Laguito (“The Small Lake”).
The area consists of a few hills and flat land covered with grass, oak, and mesquite.
Nuevo Laredo features a semi-arid climate. Nuevo Laredo’s weather is influenced by its proximity to the Chihuahuan Desert to the west, by the Sierra Madre Oriental mountains to the south and west, and by the Gulf of Mexico to the east.
Much of the moisture from the Pacific is blocked by the Sierra Madre Oriental. Therefore, most of the moisture derives from the Gulf of Mexico.
Its geographic location causes Nuevo Laredo’s weather to range from long periods of heat to sudden violent storms in a short period of time.
Nuevo Laredo is cold for Tamaulipas standards during winter, the average daytime highs are around 19° C (66° F) and overnight lows around 6° C (43° F).
Nuevo Laredo experiences an average high temperature of about 37° C (99° F), and an average low of about 24° C (75° F) during summer.
Rain season is from Abril to October.
There are usually 35-40 rainy days per year in Nuevo Laredo.
Origin of the Name & Heraldry
Nuevo Laredo was part of the territory of the original settlement of Laredo (now in Texas). The settlement was founded in 1755 by Don Tomás Sánchez and was named Villa de San Agustin de Laredo after Laredo in Spain and in honor of Saint Augustine of Hippo.
The origin of name of the original spanish town of Laredo is unclear.
Some scholars say the name stems from Glaretum which means “sandy, rocky place”.
Others state Laredo stems from a Basque word meaning “beautiful pastures”.
Laredo might also stem from the Latin Larida which means gull.
Nuevo Laredo (“New Laredo”) was founded in 1848, by Laredo families who wished to remain Mexican and moved to the Mexican side of the Rio Grande.
Nicknames of Nuevo Laredo: Chuparrosa (“Hummingbird”) and Puerta a México (“Door to Mexico”)
Motto: Siempre con la Patria (“Always with the Motherland”)
History & Timeline
The colonial settlement of Villa de San Agustin de Laredo was founded in 1755 by Don Tomás Sánchez while the area was part of the Nuevo Santander region in the Spanish colony of New Spain.
The settlement’s territory was granted to José de Escandón by the King of Spain, and the settlement’s territory and population remained unified for ninety years, until the war of 1846-48, the Mexican–American War.
In 1846 during the Mexican–American War, the town was occupied. After the war, the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo ceded the land to the United States. A referendum was taken in the town, which voted to petition the American military government in charge of the area to return the town to Mexico. When this petition was rejected, most of the population, who were Tejano and had been in the area for generations, moved across the river into Mexican territory, where they founded Nuevo Laredo.
Nuevo Laredo was founded on May 15, 1848, by seventeen Laredo families who wished to remain Mexican and moved to the Mexican side of the Rio Grande.
They identified with Mexico, its history, and its cultural customs, and decided to keep their Mexican citizenship. The founders of Nuevo Laredo even took with them the bones of their ancestors so they would continue to rest in Mexican ground.
Tourist Attractions & Sightseeing
As an indication of its economic importance, one of Mexico’s banderas monumentales is located in the city. These flags have been established in state capitals and cities of significance.
Opened in 2004, the cultural center has a main theater, experimental theater, natural history museum, Reyes Meza museum, gourmet restaurant, cafeteria, temporary exhibition area, library, book shop, media library, and Uxmal walk where there are pre-Columbian works of art with colossal sculptures of gods and idols of the Mesoamerican cultures.
Market Maclovio Herrera
It is located in the historic city center, here you can find many kinds of mexican crafts from all the country, e.g. costumes, jewelry, traditional mexican candies and piñatas.
There are three bridges in the Nuevo Laredo area:
- International Bridge #1, the oldest bridge
- International Bridge #2, also known as Juarez-Lincoln (no pedestrians)
- International Bridge #3, also known as the Free Trade (“Libre Comercio Bridge”), inaugurated in 1999 (cargo only)
Also the Colombia-Solidarity Bridge, located about 32 km (20 miles) NW of the city in Colombia, Nuevo León. There are no urban areas on either side of this bridge.
Cultural Centers, Museums & Theaters
The Centro Cultural (“Cultural Center”), is Nuevo Laredo’s main theater with a sitting capacity of 1200 guests. The theater has presented high level shows high level, plays, concerts and dance recitals. The theater has a museum, library, and a cafeteria.
The Teatro de la Ciudad (“City Theater”) is a theater which presents plays, dance recitals, concerts and musical shows and special events.
The Casa de Cultura (“House of Culture”) houses music, painting, dance and literature workshops and also presents major artistic and cultural events such as art exhibitions, concerts, film samples, dance recitals and plays, among others.
Natural history museum was opened in 2007, in its permanent museum exposes human skeletons, dinosaur bones and fossils in general that allows to make a chronological history travel of the region, fauna, flora and geography, from the jurassic to our era.
Jose Reyes Meza Museum was opened in June 2008 It has the name of a remarkable painter, designer and muralist from Tamaulipas, the museum exposes various plastic works.
Word Station Gabriel García Márquez. Dedicated to the writer Gabriel García Márquez, Nobel laureate in literature, this cultural space opened in September 2008 and has an auditorium, exhibition gallery, library, reading rooms, children’s room, literary coffee and a book shop.
Old Customs Building was restored and adapted to serve as a cultural space, with the concert hall “Sergio Pena”, the great forum and an exhibitions gallery.
Longoria bank museum was built in 1929 by Don Octavio Longoria, currently its lobby is used to exhibit plastic arts and photography.
Historical Archive lies the documentary and graphic memory of the city, also has temporary exhibitions, consultation area, audiovisual area and the site museum which displays railroad artifacts, photographs and documents of time alluding to the history of the Railroad in Nuevo Laredo.
IMSS theater presents plays, musicals, movies and other events.
Adolfo Lopez Mateos city theater.
Polyforum Dr. Rodolfo Torre Cantu. Place to hold events and mass entertainment, was opened on September 4, 2013. It has the capacity to hold over 5000 people and parking for over 1000 vehicles. The project is still under construction and includes a civic center, stage performances, cultural walk, aquarium, soccer fields and basketball courts and more.
The city has some malls like Paseo Reforma, it was opened in May 2008, this mall has many commercial establishment, like Wal-Mart Super Center, The Home Depot, and Cinépolis.
Other shopping centers are, Plaza Real, Plaza 2 Laredos, Plaza commercial La fe.
Sports city (“Ciudad deportiva”) has a baseball stadium, the multidisciplinary gymnasium of basketball, tennis courts, squash courts and soccer court.
There is a fairly large array of night-time entertainment venues.
Most establishments (clubs, bars, and restaurants) are located in the historical district. Other restaurants (including chains such as Carl’s Jr., Burger King, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and McDonald’s) are located along Avenida Vicente Guerrero and Avenida Reforma.
Nuevo Laredo has a red light district called Boy’s Town, (or “La Zona”).
Parks, Zoos & Recreation
- Recreational park El Laguito.
- Narciso Mendoza park has the Fidel Cuellar library, a walking trail around the park (circuit almost 800 m), a FutRap court and a playground.
- Viveros Park is a 0.50 km2 (124 acre) forest park that overlooks the Rio Grande on the eastern side of Nuevo Laredo. The park features playgrounds, a driver education park, Camécuaro pool, green areas, picnic areas with barbecue pitsthe, regional zoo, an aquarium, and jurassic park.
- Regional Zoo has a wide range of animal species from different ecosystems and from the region, it is located next to the Ecological Park “Viveros” and receives hundreds of visitors daily.
How to get there & Transportation
Cross from Laredo, U.S. to Nuevo Laredo
There are 3 bridge crossings, but 1 of them is commercial only (24 hours opened).
Both regular traffic city crossings are difficult for RV’s and large vehicles. So if you have a large vehicle or are intimidated by traffic and little parking, the Colombia crossing about 32 km (20 miles) to the North is for you.
City of Laredo International Bridge System Toll Rates:
Non-Commercial: $1.75 per axle
- Pedestrians & Bike – $1.00
- Moto: $3.50
- Private vehicles (2 axle): $3.50 per vehicle
- Private vehicles (3 axle): $5.25 per vehicle
- Private vehicles (4 axle): $7.00 per vehicle
Commercial: $4.75 per axle
- Bus (2 axle): $9.50 per vehicle
- Bus (3 axle): $14.25 per vehicle
- Track (2 axle): $9.50 per vehicle
- Track (3 axle): $14.25 per vehicle
- Track (4 axle): $19.00 per vehicle
- Track (5 axle): $23.75 per vehicle
From Monterrey: $11-$26 (3:00 hours)
From Reynosa: $19-$65 (3:20/4:20 hours)
Nuevo Laredo is served by the Quetzalcóatl International Airport with daily flights to Mexico City.
The neighboring Laredo International Airport in Laredo in Texas has daily flights to Houston and to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and Tri-weekly flights to Las Vegas, Nevada and bi-weekly seasonal (May–August) flights to Orlando, Florida.
Tourist Assistance + Emergency Numbers
You can dial 078 from any phone, where you can find free information about tourist attractions, airports, travel agencies, car rental companies, embassies and consulates, fairs and exhibitions, hotels, hospitals, financial services, migratory and other issues.
Or dial the toll-free (in Mexico) number 01-800-006-8839.
You can also request information to the email firstname.lastname@example.org
MORE EMERGENCY NUMBERS:
General Information: 040 (not free)
National Emergency Service: 911
Radio Patrols: 066
Police (Emergency): 060
Civil Protection: +52(55)5683-2222
Anonymous Complaint: 089
Setravi (Transport Mobility): +52(55)5209-9913
Road Emergency: 074
Cruz Roja: 065 o +52(55)5557-5757
Firefighters: 068 o +52(55)5768-3700