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San Antonio is a beautiful city on the South Texas Plains. There's a lot to do in this city: fine art museums, historical missions and plenty of amusement parks in addition to great dining and drinking. The culture and people are vibrant and interesting. Overall, San Antonio feels like a small town; however, with a population well over one million the city is the second largest in the state.
San Antonio is considered to be the cradle of Texan liberty. Its most well-known landmark is the Alamo, the site of the famous battle where Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie were killed.
No other city in Texas reflects the state's Mexican heritage better than San Antonio. Hispanics make up a considerable fraction of the population and it shows in most places. The Hispanic atmosphere of San Antonio makes it a truly unique US city. This becomes most evident during Fiesta week, a yearly celebration where thousands of San Antonians enjoy parades, food and drink in the charming downtown streets of the city.
The Tejano capital of the world, San Antonio, with a population of around 1.9 million, still enjoys a small-town feel. Its people are friendly, open and bicultural, and the concentration of population around its center makes it easy to get just about anywhere within a 20 minute drive.
San Antonio International Airport (SAT) May be reached in about 1 hour 15 minutes from Dallas/Fort Worth or less than 1 hour from Houston. Other destinations are available; check with individual airlines.
Amtrak, SAS, 350 Hoefgen St
Most visitors to San Antonio arrive by either I-35, I-10, or US 281. I-10 comes from El Paso to the west and Houston to the east. I-35 comes from Austin to the north and Laredo to the south. US 281 connects with Brownsville to the south and Blanco and Johnson City to the north. I-37 completed some years ago shortens the drive to Corpus Christi on the Gulf of Mexico.
Greyhound, 500 N St Marys St, Downtown.
San Antonio is in the middle of Texas. Therefore, it is not accesible by boat. Although there are many tubing opportunities around San Antonio, thanks to the huge abundance of rivers in the area.
The River Walk, in downtown San Antonio, does offer a River Taxi that shuttles people to hotels, restaurants and shops along its banks.
Map of Downtown San Antonio
San Antonio's bus system is known as the VIA Metropolitan Transit. It also runs the downtown streetcar service (actually a bus) for a small fare. Bus fares range from about $0.80 to $1.60 depending on the service. Discount fares are available to children between the ages of 5 and 11, senior citizens 62 and older, Medicare recipients, persons with disabilities and students. A reduced fee ID is required for reduced fares and can be acquired from VIA Information Centers (students may get the necessary forms from their campus administration). Bus schedules and route information can be found at VIA's website or by calling the VIA information line 210-362-2020 or for the hearing impaired at 210-362-2019.
You can reserve a cab and get taxi fare information from Yellow Cab online at or by phone at 210-222-2222
The Alamo. Considered to be hallowed ground and the Shrine of Texas Liberty, the Alamo is a former mission which was also the site of the Battle of the Alamo. Admission is free, although donations are appreciated. Revenues from an adjacent gift shop fund the historic preservation efforts.
Aztec on the River. The Aztec On The River is touted as the Riverwalk’s newest, most exciting attraction. This historic 1926 movie palace has been meticulously restored, complete with a Mighty Wurlitzer theatre organ. Open daily - call for show times. Group, senior and military discounts available. On the RiverWalk at the corner of E. Commerce and N. St. Mary’s Streets.
Casa Navarro State Historical Park. Homesite of Jose Antonio Navarro, a 19th-century Texas legislator under Mexico, the Republic of Texas and the U.S. The park is the site of Navarro’s furnished house, first residence, and store.
King William Historic Area. A 25-block area near downtown on the south bank of the San Antonio River. In the late 1800s the King William District was the most elegant residential area in the city. Prominent German merchants originally settled the area. It was zoned as the state's first historic district, and has once again become a fashionable neighborhood.
Market Square - El Mercado. Visitors can browse through the 32 shops at "El Mercado," and 80 specialty shops in Farmers' Market Plaza. Market Square is also the scene of many Hispanic festivals where food and beverage booths spring up alongside the Guadalajara lamps and the strains of mariachi music blend with the excitement of Mexican dances. Free admission.
River Walk. The River Walk area of San Antonio is an excellent place to explore by day and party by night. The River Walk has guided barge tours by Rio San Antonio Cruises departing regularly. Numerous restaurants line the river on both sides. At one end of the riverwalk is the Rivercenter Mall, which houses, amoung other things, an IMAX.
San Antonio Missions National Park. Four Spanish frontier missions, part of a colonization system that stretched across the Spanish southwest in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, are preserved here. They include missions San Jose, San Juan, Espada, and Concepcion. The national park, containing many cultural sites along with some natural areas, was established in 1978 and covers about 819 acres.
San Antonio Visitor Information Center, 317 Alamo Plaza, 800-447-3372 . For visitors coming to San Antonio, a good starting place to see is the downtown Visitor Information Center and Official City Store located right across the street from Alamo. It is a wealth of information about San Antonio. Representatives there can assist you in getting a map of the city, help you get around, or anything else you may need in San Antonio.
San Antonio Zoological Gardens and Aquarium