San Antonio is a bustling Texas metropolis that embraces its more than 300 years of history, diverse heritage, and gorgeous natural beauty. Explore Spanish missions built in the early 18th century, cruise the famous San Antonio River Walk, cheer on one of the best basketball teams in the world, and more. These are just a few of the many experiences you can have when you visit San Antonio. In fact, there’s so much to do in the Alamo City that it may be a challenge to figure out what to do first. Don’t worry, partner. Check out our list of some of the top things to do in San Antonio to get your next adventure in this historic city started.
Of course, a cruise isn’t the only thing to do on the River Walk. Although the section that winds its way through downtown San Antonio is perhaps its most famous, there’s much more to it than you’d think. In fact, the San Antonio River Walk runs 15 continuous miles from the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park through downtown to Brackenridge Park. Not only that, but there are several kayak and canoe access points on the section south of downtown, providing yet another way to travel to many of the most interesting places in the Alamo City. For a full idea of what San Antonio River Walk has to offer, check out this trail map.
Today, the Alamo stands right in the heart of downtown San Antonio. Step inside its walls and you’ll see numerous exhibits that recount the history of the battle, the revolution in Texas, and the Alamo’s original layout when it was a mission. The grounds include the historic church and living quarters, as well as a garden area and a gift shop.
The Alamo is a true Texas historic landmark and one of the essential things to do in San Antonio.
The outer walls and foundations of some of the original structures still stand at each of the missions, all of which are accompanied with displays that provide a glimpse of what it was like to live in each place. A few other structures remain as well, such as the 270-year-old aqueduct at Mission Espada and the historic grist mill at Mission San Jose.
Access to the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park is free. To get from one mission to another, you can either drive on the well-marked streets or hike or bike on the Missions Hiking Trail. If you do go on foot, you should know that the missions are a few miles from each other, so bring some water and be ready for a workout. While you’re touring the area, don’t be surprised if you hear the sounds of mass. That’s because, despite being nearly 300 years old, each chapel is an active Catholic parish. History lives in San Antonio, and nowhere is that more tangible than at San Antonio’s missions.
Take a photo with Batman and then go on a 4D Gotham City adventure on Batman: The Ride, the world’s first roller coaster with magnetic coaster technology. This ride is just one of more than a dozen thrill rides at Six Flags. If you want something a little mellower, head to one of the park’s family rides. There’s even a set of rides for young kids, as well as a water park that’s open during the summer.
SeaWorld San Antonio - the Alamo City’s other amusement park - consists of aquatic-themed rides, exhibits, and performances with orcas, dolphins, and sea lions. Roller coasters such as The Great White and Steel Eel offer plenty of heart-stopping thrills out of the water, but those wanting to go for a splash will want to check out Rio Loco or Journey to Atlantis. Educational shows and demonstrations offer plenty of amusement for kids and adults, while the exhibits provide visitors the chance to get up close and personal with the animals. If, after all of this, you just have to make like a dolphin and jump in the water, you’re in luck. Find your way to Aquatica, SeaWorld’s waterpark that features a 400,000-gallon wave pool, a whole set of rides, and a number swimming areas for those who just want to relax.
If you’re looking for high-flying fun or to make a summer-time splash, you can't miss this essential thing to do in San Antonio.
The Spurs’ star-studded team, including Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Kawhi Leonard, plays its games at the state-of-the-art AT&T Center in San Antonio’s east side. Regular season games start in late October and end in mid-April, so if you’re in San Antonio during this time you must head to a Spurs game.
Images courtesy of Visit San Antonio.
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