The Del Rio area has been a haven for humanity in the arid shrubland of southwest Texas since prehistoric times. Spanish settlements in Ciudad Acuña—across the Rio Grande in Mexico—led to Spanish farming north of the river along San Felipe Creek. The same resource drew Anglo land developers, who dammed the creek in 1869 and built a network of irrigation canals that still operate today. Goat and sheep ranching also flourished in the region, boosted by the arrival of the Southern Pacific Railroad in the 1880s. Today, Del Rio is home to Laughlin Air Force Base; Val Verde Winery, the oldest operational winery in Texas; the beloved Julio’s Tortilla Chips; and Amistad Reservoir, a recreational paradise. With the railroad dividing the city, visitors will find more commercial developments in the north, while the southern part of town harbors historic attractions, like South Main Street, which is being revitalized with new shops.