Here’s when you should visit San Antonio, Texas

Feb 8, 2023 • 4 min read

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Major annual events – such as the rodeo each February – mean scores of citywide parties throughout the year in San Antonio © Cavan-Images / Shutterstock

San Antonio – variously known as “Alamo City,” the “River City” and “Military City” – is home to some truly iconic destinations and a few hidden gems.

A few common attractions are sure to show up on any to-do list: the  Alamo , the River Walk  and perhaps a trip to the blossoming Pearl District.

But once those boxes have been checked, what’s next? And when is the best time to see this city of many names at its best? Here’s when to go to San Antonio for festivals, food, the outdoors and more.

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Visit in May to August to get outdoors in San Antonio

If you associate heat with San Antonio, you are not alone. By the time May rolls around, daily highs typically average between 85-95°F, with humidity above 60%. Despite this extreme heat, many locals invite friends and family to visit each summer. Because that is when San Antonio’s true colors can be seen.

And the best way to see those colors firsthand? Fireworks displays. Which happen all summer long.

Come Memorial Day, San Antonians celebrate that one out of every eight San Antonio residents is directly connected to the military in some way. This can be seen – and heard – in the sky throughout the summer.

People here truly love their fireworks. On July 4, the most extravagant (legal) displays can be found at Woodlawn Lake – but rest assured (local laws notwithstanding) that explosions can be seen and heard from almost any location come sundown.

By day, you can escape the heat with a long river float on the Comal River in nearby New Braunfels, take a dip on the beaches of Medina Lake or bring the whole family to San Pedro Springs.

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January to April is party season, with the rodeo, Fiesta and more

Locals are partial to springtime in San Antonio: temperatures are at their most tolerable, and the city awakens as each flower blooms. The kickoff to the season is the  San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo  each February. Bring the kids to enjoy carnival rides and an opportunity to pet livestock – then come back later with friends for one of the many concerts that take place each night.

Visitors who can’t make it in time for the rodeo can still take advantage of the lower seasonal hotel rates to check out the Alamo on the anniversary of its battle (February 23), or set up a personal photo shoot in a field of bluebonnets (watch out for those rattlesnakes). You can even try and spot PGA legends at the Valero Texas Open .

But the real gem of the season is  Fiesta .

This annual multi-week celebration is one of San Antonio’s biggest draws. As April rolls around, Mission City plays host to countless parades, festivals and parties, kicking off with an Oyster Bake that draws 60,000–70,000 guests annually. Many parades occur throughout the celebration, most notably the Battle of Flowers Parade , the original official Fiesta event. Led by a passionate group of local women since 1891, this parade commemorates fallen heroes of the Alamo and San Jacinto Battles and is a local favorite (many in the area even get the day off work to celebrate).

Another key parade winds its way through San Antonio’s King William District toward the end of Fiesta, showcasing a collection of historic houses built by German settlers after the Civil War. The King William Parade and King William Fair  celebrate the neighborhood’s rich history and support the community each year. 

NIOSA (Night in Old San Antonio), is the most exciting of all Fiesta's events. This four-night festival takes place in the heart of downtown and features food booths, dancing, original local artwork, lots of drinks and more bright colors than one can imagine.

This is the real San Antonio. According to the festival organizers, locals consume “17,000 lbs of beef; 11,000 lbs of chicken; 5000lbs of sausage; 3000 turkey legs; 25,000 buns; 30,000 tortillas; 2000lbs of masa; 6000 tamales; 15,000lbs of fruits and vegetables; and 1000lbs of guacamole.” How could anyone resist such Texas-sized excess?

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Watch the city twinkle for the holidays from September to December

Once summer has come and gone, the tourist season also begins to wane – which means great deals on lodging. Still, there is plenty to see throughout the fall without worrying about the imposing summer sun. 

Fright fans can head to the area amusement parks for seasonal spookiness and the  13th Floor Haunted House  on Commerce St is a long-standing Halloween tradition. 

Perhaps the prettiest way to see local icons the Alamo and River Walk is when they’re twinkling with holiday lights. In December, layer-wearing visitors take rides on riverboats beneath the cascading colored lights hanging from the bald cypress trees overhead. While the city no longer decorates a tree in  Alamo Plaza , there is no shortage of holiday spirit to be found there, with carolers and Santas spotted daily. 

In true San Antonio tradition, the city wouldn’t be able to ring in the new year without another incredible light show. Visitors looking to celebrate New Year’s Eve should head down to Hemisfair Plaza to watch the official fireworks display illuminate the downtown skyline. 

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This article was first published April 2021 and updated February 2023

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Weather & Climate

Public Transportation

Airport Guide

Neighborhoods to Check Out

Top Things to Do

Things to Do with Kids

Shopping in San Antonio

Best Museums

Outdoor Activities

Missions in San Antonio

San Antonio River Walk

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Best Time to Visit

The Best Time to Visit San Antonio

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

ShutterRunner.com (Matty Wolin) / Getty Images

San Antonio oozes a distinctive, Mexican-influenced charm and authentic flavor that sets it apart from other Texan cities. And, while most visitors have heard of the River Walk and the Alamo, this fast-growing city has many different cultural attractions to explore; not to mention, the food, art, and shopping scene here is outstanding. 

Depending on what you want to do, it can help to get some background on San Antonio’s weather, so you know what to expect and what to pack. In general, November through April tends to be the best time to visit San Antonio, thanks to the dependably mild, pleasant temperatures and lack of severe heat or cold.  

The Weather in San Antonio

San Antonio has a humid subtropical type of climate, which means that summers are long and humid, while winters are relatively short and mild. January is the coldest month of the year, with high temperatures averaging 62 degrees F, while July and August are the hottest months, with average temperatures of a scorching 95 degrees F.   Humidity averages about 80 percent in the early morning during most of the year, but drops to about 50 percent by late afternoon; rainfall is evenly dispersed throughout the year. Because San Antonio is located only 140 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, the area is affected by tropical storms and occasional heavy rainfall.  

Breezy, sunny springtime is the ideal time to visit San Antonio. Combine your trip with a detour into the nearby Texas Hill Country, where vibrant swaths of wildflowers turn the landscape into a rainbow-hued wonder. Apart from the legendary bluebonnet (which typically peak in April), look for delicate pink evening primrose, purple winecup, and Indian paintbrush.

Events to check out:

  • Pack a picnic and take advantage of spring’s pleasantly warm temperatures by biking or walking along the Missions Trail , which connects the city’s five UNESCO-status Spanish colonial missions (including the Alamo); or, walk around the revitalized Pearl District.
  • The San Antonio area enjoys plentiful spring blooms, so be sure to get out into the Hill Country during your visit. Nearby Blanco State Park, Goliad State Park, and Historic Site, and Guadalupe River State Park are all great places for wildflower-viewing. Serious flora lovers should check out the 132-mile loop formed by U.S. Highway 181 from San Antonio to Kenedy; you’ll be in DeWitt County, otherwise known as the Wildflower Capital of Texas. (And whatever you do, don’t pick the blooms! It’s not illegal, but you’ll get lots of bad looks from Texans if you’re out there plucking bluebonnets; leave them for others to enjoy.)

There’s no way around it; summers are incredibly hot and humid in San Antonio. Generally, from around late May to early September, temperatures consistently hover over 90 degrees F (and in the dead of summer, it’s more like 100 degrees). The area is also prone to torrential rains and flash floods during the summer, especially in May and June. Despite the oppressive heat and strong chance of storms, summertime is a popular time for families to visit since kids are out of school. Expect attractions to be busy and hotel prices to be higher than they usually are, so be sure to book accommodations and activities in advance. Oh, and pack your sunglasses, a sun hat, the strongest sunblock imaginable, and a reusable water bottle—staying hydrated is critical, particularly if you’re not used to the heat.

  • During midday, you’ll probably want to duck indoors to escape the sun. This is a great time to visit one of San Antonio’s remarkable museums, like the San Antonio Museum of Art, The Witte Museum, The McNay Art Museum, or The Briscoe Western Art Museum.
  • Brave enough to face the sunny temps? Take part in Fiesta Noche del Río, an outdoor performance on the River Walk that features music and dance from several Latin American countries.
  • Head to Six Flags for the park’s annual Celebrate! Summer Night Spectacular, or check out the city’s Juneteenth celebration.

Fall is a lovely time to visit San Antonio—the stifling temperatures of summer are gone (sort of—San Antonio is always on the warm side), and storms are less likely than in summer and spring. Between late September and early December, expect temperatures in the 70s and 80s. Another great reason to visit during the fall? Post-summer tourist activity has usually died down by now, and hotel prices tend to be a bit cheaper.

Events to check out: 

  • Culture vultures, take note: There are several arts and culture festivals that happen in San Antonio in the fall, like Dia de Los Muertos San Antonio, the World Heritage Festival, and Luminaria’s Contemporary Arts Festival.
  • Halloween enthusiasts can enjoy a ghoulishly good time at Ripley’s Haunted Adventure, Fright Fest at Six Flags, or the Haunted River, a full-day festival of costume contests, a parade on the River Walk, and more.   

Winters are mild in San Antonio. Even in the coldest months (December through February), daily highs are in the mid-to-low 60s F. Average lows can sink to 40 degrees F, though, so pack layers and prepare to bundle up.

  • Festive events abound throughout the city during the holiday season, so be sure to check out the Ford Holiday River Parade, Holiday in the Park at Six Flags, and the Old West Christmas Ranch.
  • Be sure to celebrate San Antonio’s favorite holiday food (tamales, of course!) by going to the annual La Gran Tamalada, a community workshop that honors the treasured tradition of making tamales. 

Winter and spring are the best times to visit San Antonio for comfortable weather and mild temperatures, specifically from November to April. Even in the coldest months of December and January, the average daytime temperatures are above 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

Rain is pretty evenly dispersed throughout the year, although May and June bring about frequent downpours and even occasional flooding.

If you don't enjoy heat, avoid visiting San Antonio in the summer months when temperatures are high and it's extremely muggy. Since school is out, it's also one of the busiest times in the city and prices for hotels and flights are at their highest.

Weather Spark. "Average Weather in San Antonio, Texas, US, Year Round." Retrieved February 19, 2021.

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San Antonio River Walk

San Antonio River Walk: A Complete Visitors Guide

Last updated: April 7, 2024 . Written by Laurence Norah - 29 Comments

If you’re visiting San Antonio, you have to take some time to explore the San Antonio River Walk, also known as the Paseo del Río. This is a 15-mile-long series of walkways that run along the San Antonio River, with shopping, dining and other attractions along the route.

The River Walk is definitely one of the highlights of the city, and we loved exploring it. In this post, we’re going to share everything you need to know to visit the San Antonio riverwalk.

We’ll go through the highlights, explain what the river walk is and how to find it, as well as anything else you might need to know about visiting the San Antonio riverwalk. Let’s get started!

What is the San Antonio River Walk?

The San Antonio River Walk (also referred to as the riverwalk or Paseo del Río in Spanish) is a 15 mile long network of walkways which run alongside the banks of the San Antonio River. Five miles of the River Walk runs through downtown San Antonio.

The River Walk is home to attractions, shops, art, and restaurants, and is today a major San Antonio attraction in its own right.

The history of the riverwalk is fairly long, but its beginning can be traced back to a tragic flood on the San Antonio River in 1921, which killed 50 people.

Following this disaster, a means for controlling the river levels was discussed, with the end result being the San Antonio River Walk. Set one level below the main city level, the initial River Walk had around three miles of walkways and twenty bridges.

Construction of the riverwalk started in 1939. Most of the initial funding needed for the project came from the Works Progress Administration in 1939.  The first restaurant, Casa Rio, opened on the River Walk in 1946. Casa Rio is still in operation today, along with many others.

Over time, the River Walk has expanded, and today there are over fifteen miles of walkways, as well as countless attractions and sights to be seen.

The River Walk now stretches from the San Antonio mission area, through downtown, and up to the major museums in the city. It’s a must-see for visitors to the city, and we’re going to share some of our favourite things to do along the San Antonio River Walk.

San Antonio barge

Useful San Antonio River Walk Information

Here are some useful facts about the River Walk that might help you plan your trip.

How Long is the San Antonio River Walk?

The San Antonio River Walk is 15 miles long, with five miles of that flowing through downtown San Antonio.

Is the San Antonio River Walk Accessible?

Yes, the river walk is accessible. There are ramps and elevator access points from street level down to the river walk level. Some of the crossing points are not wheelchair accessible however.

This website has maps that shows the ramps and elevators that provide accessible entry to the San Antonio River Walk.

Are there restrooms on the River Walk?

There are public restrooms at some locations along the river walk, such as in the Rivercenter Mall. There are also restrooms at the various bars and hotels along the River Walk.

Outside of the downtown area, there are also restrooms in some of the parks and missions in the Mission Reach area. There are also some facilities in the Museum Reach area.

Are there water fountains on the River Walk?

The Mission Reach stretch of the River Walk has a number of water fountains, which is important as this is the longest stretch and if you are cycling or walking here it can be very hot, especially in the summer months.

In the downtown area, you will need to visit the shops or malls, or pop into a restaurant or cafe for water.

Where does the San Antonio Riverwalk Start and End?

The River Walk starts around 4 miles north of the city center, where E. Hildbrand Ave crosses the River. It finishes to the south of the city, near Mission Espada.

How Long Would it Take to Walk the Whole River Walk?

To walk the entire River Walk from one end to the other including the downtown area would likely take five to six hours.

When is the San Antonio River Walk open?

The River walk is open year round, 365 days a year. The majority of the River Walk, from Mulberry to Eagleland Plaza, is open 24 hours a day.

However, the River Walk that passes through Brackenridge Park in the north of the city is only open from 5am to 11pm. The Mission Reach stretch of the River Walk south of Eagleland Plaza is only open from dawn to dusk due to it being a natural area which is home to wildlife.

Is the Water in the River Walk Ever Drained?

Yes. The water in the river is normally drained for essential maintenance every two years. This generally happens at the end of January and lasts for around 10 days. At this time there is no water in much of the river loop, and the river cruises will not be running.

The next scheduled emptying and maintenance is January 2026.

You can see the dates for future maintenance on the river maintenance page of the San Antonio city here .

Are Dogs Allowed on the River Walk?

Dogs are permitted on the River Walk but they must be on a leash. Many of the restaurants on the River Walk allow dogs on their patios, but do always check to be sure.

Pearl Brewery San Antonio

What to Do on the San Antonio River Walk

There’s a lot to do on the San Antonio River Walk. From shopping to entertainment to museums—to just taking a leisurely stroll or boat ride—the River Walk has something for everyone.

Here are some of our favourite things to do on the River Walk to give you some inspiration for your visit.

Take a boat ride

One of the most popular ways to experience the River Walk is to take a ride on one of the various River Walk barges.

There are a number of different options for these, ranging from the River Boat taxi services, which will take you from one part of the River Walk to another, through to narrated tours, private boat tours and even boats that offer a full meal as you float along!

Taking a cruise on the San Antonio River Walk is a wonderful way to experience it, and costs are not too high, with narrated tours available from around $12, and an all-day taxi pass for the downtown River Walk area also $12.

You can get tickets for the river shuttle and cruises in person at various points along the River Walk, or you can buy them online in advance here .

Both the GoCity San Antonio Explorer Pass and the San Antonio CityPASS include a Go Rio San Antonio river cruise along with many other attractions. Both can be a great way to save money in the city.

Eat at the restaurants

One of the highlights along the downtown river walk area are all the places to sit, eat, or drink, and watch the world go by.

The restaurants are adorned with wonderfully colourful umbrellas, and there’s a wide range of dining options. This can make picking a spot challenging, so take a look at our section on restaurants along the River Walk further on in the post to help you decide where to eat.

Some quick tips though would include Casa Rio, which is the oldest restaurant on the River Walk, as well as Justin’s ice cream, for excellent ice cream!

Riverwalk restaurants San Antonio

Go Shopping

If you love shopping, the San Antonio River Walk has you covered. There are a number of shopping locations along the riverwalk, but perhaps the most well-known and largest is the Shops at Rivercentre (formerly known as the Rivercenter Mall).

The Shops at Rivercentre is built around an extension of the River Walk, which is known as the Rivercentre lagoon. Around this lagoon, the Shops at Rivercentre provides shopping and dining experiences across four floors, with over 100 retailers operating here, including theatres, restaurants, a Macy’s, Starbucks, and more.

There’s also outdoor seating around the lagoon area and even hotels available – see our guide to where to stay on the River Walk below for more information on these.

Another popular shopping destination on the River Walk is the La Villita Historic Arts Village. This art community is home to several art galleries, as well as stores selling a variety of items, including souvenirs, customised jewelry, pottery and regional folk art.

We’re sure you’ll find something to love here!

Rivercenter San Antonio River walk

Visit the Museum Reach section of the River Walk

The San Antonio River Walk was extended in 2009 to include an area north of the city which is home to a number of museums and other attractions, including the Pearl Brewery. This section of the riverwalk is known as the Museum Reach.

Attractions in the area include the Witte Museum, the San Antonio Zoo, the DOSeum, San Antonio Museum of Art and Pearl Brewery. This river walk runs through Brackenridge Park, which is also home to a Golf Course and Japanese Tea Garden.

If you are interested in visiting these museums and attractions, then the Museum Reach section of the River Walk is a great way to get here and get around. You can either walk, or take a river taxi to get here and around.

Note that most museums have an admission fee. If you plan on seeing a number of paid attractions in the city, then we suggest checking out either the GoCity San Antonio Explorer Pass or the San Antonio CityPASS to see if they can save you some money.

San Antonio Museum of Art

Take in a Show

If you’d like to take in a show or performance whilst you’re on the San Antonio River Walk, you might want to head to the Arneson River Theater.

Designed as part of the original riverwalk by architect Robert Hugman, the theater is split across the river, with the stage on the north side and the 800 person seating area on the south side.

The outdoor theater hosts a variety of performances, from music to plays, dance recitals and opera. You can see some of the events on the official riverwalk events page here .

If you are looking for a more traditionally designed theater, then you might want to visit the Aztec Theater . Built in 1926, this actually predates the riverwalk, however it is located right next to it.

When it was built, the Aztec theater was designed to be highly decorated and opulent. As the name suggests, the style focuses on Aztec design, with columns, artwork, murals and sculpture working together to give a feel for ancient Mexican temples.

In terms of shows, the Aztec primarily hosts musical performances, however there are also other shows available. You can see the full listings here .

Aztec Theater San Antonio

Visit the Missions

In 2011, the San Antonio River Walk was extended again, this time to the south of the city where you will find the San Antonio’s Missions National Historical Park.

This park consists of four Mission buildings, which along with the more famous Alamo Mission in downtown San Antonio , form a UNESCO world heritage site.

Whilst many visitors take the time to visit the Alamo, which is just a couple of minutes walk from the downtown section of the River Walk, far fewer head south to the Mission reach stretch of the River Walk.

This is a shame, as this stretch has a much more relaxed vibe, with a more natural feel and the option for cycling and kayaking.

The four missions are also well worth visiting. All four are free to visit, and by doing so you will get a fuller picture of early life in this part of the world. You can see our full guide to visiting the Alamo and San Antonio missions for more information and to help plan your visit.

Just be aware that it is quite a long walk from the downtown section of the River Walk. Instead, we would suggest either cycling, taking the bus, or doing a guided tour with transport like this .

Mission Concepción San Antonio

Whilst the river taxi and river barges are a popular way to get around the downtown and Museum section of the riverwalk, they don’t go everywhere.

Another great option for getting around the River Walk, particularly for those of you who want to head down to the Mission Reach section, is to cycle the River Walk.

The cycle trails along the river, which are shared with pedestrians, are level and well maintained, and there’s a network of cycle hire points around the city and at various points along the river walk trail, so you don’t even need to bring your own bike. Bike hire is affordable, and this is a great way to get around.

One thing to be aware of is that in summer San Antonio gets very hot, and there is limited shade along the southern parts of the River Walk. So if you do decide to hire a bike, make sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen.

Follow the River Walk Plaques

The San Antonio River Walk was largely the result of the vision Robert H. H. Hugman , a San Antonio architect, who came up with the idea to create the downtown waterway surrounded by commercial development.

His plans were finally approved, and Hugman was the main project architect for the Riverwalk.

Today, you can take a self-guided walking tour of the River Walk—the Historic Hugman Tour. This historical trail includes more than 50 plaques which tell the story of the area with photos and information.

The tour is also available on smartphones—QR codes are available at each stop which you can scan for information on what you are seeing.

You can find out more about the tour and Hugman at the official Hugman Tour website .

San Antonio River Walk walking trail

Go Kayaking

The Mission reach section of the riverwalk, at the south of the city, is great for kayaking, and this makes for a unique way to see the river at a leisure pace. It also allows you to get close to some of the wildlife that lives in and along the river.

You can rent kayaks for unguided or guided tours . The river is calm and easy to paddle, so even beginners shouldn’t have much trouble!

Enjoy the Art

San Antonio has a lot of public art, and there are many pieces on display all along the River Walk.

There’s a great website here which lists the public art in San Antonio, with a map you can use to locate pieces and their artists.

Visit the King William District

Just a 20 – 30 minute walk south from the downtown loop of the River Walk is the King William Historic district.

This area of San Antonio is home to a number of beautiful 19th century homes, which are constructed in a variety of styles, including Greek Revival, Victorian and Italianate.

Some of the properties are open for viewing, so you can visit inside them, or you can just enjoy a wander around. We can also recommend visiting the Guenther House , which is both a historic home you can tour, and a cafe/restaurant.

King William historic district home San Antonio Texas

Tours including the San Antonio River Walk

If you’re interested in taking a tour of the San Antonio River Walk, there are a number of options. Many of these tours also include other sights in San Antonio beyond the river walk.

  • A San Antonio Ghost tour . San Antonio has it’s fair share of paranormal goings on, and a good way to learn about these is with a ghost tour of the city. There’s also a Segway ghost tour .
  • A full day tour of the whole city , which includes the majority of the highlights of the city. Also available as a half day tour.
  • A combination river cruise and Hop on Hop off bus ticket for the city . This two in one ticket will let you experience a lovely river cruise, plus get around the city in an open top bus. You can also purchase a ticket for the Hop on Hop off bus by itself of course, and use it to get to different parts of the river walk.

As you can see, there are a number of tour options which include the San Antonio River Walk!

San Antonio dining barge

San Antonio River Walk Map

Here is a Google Map which shows the general route of the San Antonio riverwalk, which you can also see on Google Maps here .

San Antonio River Walk map

We can also recommend looking at the official San Antonio river walk map, which you can see here .

San Antonio River Walk Hotels

There are a lot of places to stay in San Antonio. For our guide to the riverwalk, we wanted to share some good options that are either on, or very close to, the San Antonio River Walk.

  • Marriott Rivercenter – Connected to the Rivercentre mall and on the Riverwalk, this well-rated 4* property has an indoor and outdoor pool, fitness centre, variety of dining options, and all rooms are en-suite.
  • Hotel Gibbs Downtown Riverwalk – This hotel is just across the street from the Alamo and a minute or so from the River Walk. It’s a mid-range hotel, and was where we stayed in San Antonio. We loved the great breakfast, friendly staff, well-sized rooms, and fantastic location
  • Best Western Premier Historic Travelers Hotel – just 100 yards from the River Walk, this is one of the better value mid-range hotels in downtown San Antonio,
  • The  St. Anthony – a luxury pick in the historic property, the St Anthony features a heated pool with bar, 42″ TV’s in every room, and a location just 200 yards from the River Walk.
  • The Westin Riverwalk San Antonio – a highly rated 4* hotel on the Riverwalk, with an on-site restaurants, 42″ TVs in ever room, coffee making facilities and on-site spa
  • Drury Plaza Hotel San Antonio Riverwalk – a 3* property with direct access to the Riverwalk, with a rooftop swimming pool as well as an indoor pool. Breakfast is available, and rooms come with coffee machines, microwaves and refrigerators
  • Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk – found on the Riverwalk and just 100 yards from the Alamo, this 4* hotel gets excellent reviews. Rooms have coffee makers and fridges, work areas, and there’s a pool.
  • Holiday Inn San Antonio Riverwalk – a good value 3* hotel on the Riverwalk, the Holiday Inn has on-site dining, a cafe and gym. Rooms have work desks, coffee makers and refrigerators.

It’s worth being aware that this part of San Antonio is a more premium part of the city, being in the heart of downtown, so prices can be a little higher on average than other parts of the city. You can see more listings for San Antonio, which includes hotels, apartments and hostels, on booking.com here .

There aren’t many well rated properties in the budget category in the downtown area. We’d advise checking out the  Days Inn by Wyndham  and  Motel 6 San Antonio Downtown , although do read the recent reviews before booking.

Vacation rentals are of course another option. You can see the listings for San Antonio on Vrbo here .

Hotel Gibbs San Antonio

San Antonio River Walk Restaurants

There are a huge number of restaurants on the San Antonio riverwalk, which can make picking one a challenge. To help you out, we’ve put together this short list of options to help you decide.

Casa Rio is the oldest restaurant on the riverwalk, making it a bit of an institution. The building is an old Spanish hacienda, and there’s indoor and outdoor seating. They serve up Tex-Mex fare, and this is an excellent place to sip a margarita whilst watching the river boats and world go by.

Iron Cactus

If you love tequila, you’ll want to head to Iron Cactus . This popular Mexican restaurant has over 100 to choose from, including a range of tequila flights if you want to try some different options.

They also do a line of tequila infused dishes if you’re feeling adventurous, as well as a range of cocktails. The food here is award winning with a wide range of Mexican dishes to choose from.

The Esquire Tavern

The Esquire Tavern is the oldest Riverwalk bar, and also has the distinction of being the home of the longest wooden bar top in Texas. It’s not just drinking though, as this Riverwalk location also has a good choice of bar-style meals.

Biga on the Banks

If you’re looking for a fine dining experience on the Riverwalk, you’ll want to make a beeline for Biga on the Banks . With a focus on classic American dining overlooking the Riverwalk, we’re sure you’ll have a lovely meal here.

Justin’s Ice Cream

If you just want to enjoy a delicious home made ice cream, then we would highly recommend a visit to Justin’s Ice Cream . These guys started serving ice cream on the River Walk in 1981, and we very much enjoyed the ice cream we had here.

Casa Rio San Antonio River Walk

Other Things to Do in San Antonio

San Antonio has a great many attractions, from the famous Alamo to the Six Flags theme park just outside the city.

As well as the River Walk, some of our other favourite attractions include the Buckhorn Saloon, San Fernando Cathedral, and the Historic Market Square.

We’ve put together a detailed guide to visiting the Alamo , as well as all our favourite things to do in San Antonio , which should help you plan a trip to this lovely city.

San Fernando Cathedral Light Show San Antonio

Further Reading

Hopefully this guide to visiting the San Antonio River Walk has helped you prepare for your visit to one of the top attractions in Texas.

We’ve put together some other content on San Antonio to help plan your trip, and we also have a lot of other posts about the USA. We’ll also be be writing more about Texas, including our visits to Austin, Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth and Big Bend National Park, so do sign up to keep up to date  with our latest posts.

In the meantime, here are some other posts we think you might find useful to help you plan trips within the USA.

  • Our detailed guide to things to do in San Antonio
  • Our guide to visiting the Alamo , to help you plan your visit to this popular attraction as well as the other San Antonio Missions
  • We have a detailed guide to things to do in Austin , which is just an hours drive away, plus a guide to things to do in Houston and things to do in Dallas if you are doing a trip through Texas.
  • If you do visit Houston, check out our guide to visiting Space Center Houston , to help you plan your visit to this awesome attraction
  • We visited San Antonio on a road trip, which is our favourite way to travel in the USA. If you want to do something similar, we have a guide to  how much it costs to travel in the USA , as well as  tips for driving in the USA
  • If you want some road trip inspiration, see our itineraries for a  USA Deep South road trip ,  California Road Trip ,  Route 66 Road Trip  and  Pacific Coast Highway Road Trip
  • We’ve visited a lot of other cities in the USA! See our guides to  Things to do in Savannah ,  Things to do in Charleston ,  Things to do in Albuquerque ,  Visiting New Orleans During Mardi Gras ,  Things to do in Cambria  and  Things to do in Santa Fe  to get started!

And that’s it! As always, we’re happy to hear your questions, feedback and suggestions about this post. Just use the comments section below, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

A detailed guide to visiting the San Antonio River Walk, Texas. Includes what to see and do on the river walk, where to stay and where to eat! #texas #travel

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30th December 2023 at 11:57 pm

Hi. Can you tell me the least busy month to visit the River Walk?

Laurence Norah says

31st December 2023 at 10:24 pm

So I’d say normally any time from November through April will be quieter. There are definitely more visitors over the summer months. Normally I’d say January would probably be the quietest month, but just note that this is also when the river is drained for maintenance. This happens every second year, normally for around 10 days, and is next scheduled from the 16th January 2024.

Enjoy your visit!

Jodi L Rexroat says

11th December 2023 at 8:28 pm

My family and I would like to visit over Christmas/New Years. How long are the Christmas lights up for? Thanks Jodi

12th December 2023 at 6:28 pm

The San Antonio riverwalk lights turned on this year on November 24, 2023, and will remain on from dusk to dawn nightly through January 7, 2024 (at dawn).

Enjoy your time in San Antonio!

Paula D'Aiuto says

13th February 2023 at 6:50 pm

Hi, We will be coming to Austin in early March and wanted to take a side trip to San Antonio. Would you happen to know approx how long of a drive is it from the Fairmont in Austin (between the Capitol and UT)? And where is a good place to park that is convenient to the River Walk?

Thank so much, great and informative page! Paula

15th February 2023 at 9:32 am

So it’s about a 75 minute drive down the I-35 if the traffic is clear. For parking there are quite a few options in the downtown near the river walk including various parking structures. You can see a good list here across various prices.

Have a great time in Austin and San Antonio! Let me know if you have any more questions 🙂

3rd January 2023 at 2:53 am

What is the situation with parking near the Riverwalk area for those who would be using a suburban hotel?

3rd January 2023 at 4:41 pm

So there are a number of parking structures in the vicinity of the river walk. Obviously these are paid locations, but it is possible. However, you would want to check the price, as depending on the location of your chosen hotel it might be more cost effective to take either public transport (if available) or use an app like Lyft / Uber to get around.

Have a great time in San Antonio!

12th December 2022 at 11:19 am

While this guide is good it does not discuss the many mosaic and other/sculpture art pieces along the walk. I am trying to identify the pictures I took of many but there seems to be little information available other than 1 artist has 11 between 2 bridge no titles to the pieces or actual locations.

13th December 2022 at 8:19 am

Thanks for your feedback! There’s some good information here on the art around San Antonio and along the river walk: https://events.getcreativesanantonio.com/public-art/river-walk-mosaic-murals/

Safe travels!

Yvonne Brockmeyer says

12th October 2022 at 11:28 am

Are there places to sit and rest along the river walk? My husband can’t walk for long periods of time.

12th October 2022 at 12:43 pm

Yes, there are a number of areas you can stop and sit along the river walk, so you should be fine 🙂

Bob Holsclaw says

4th August 2022 at 2:40 am

good article…planning a trip in the fall….thanks for the info!

4th August 2022 at 6:04 pm

My pleasure Bob, have a great trip!

22nd July 2022 at 1:30 pm

We are coming August 7th. Any suggestions?

22nd July 2022 at 7:33 pm

Sure – I’d recommend reading our guide to things to do in San Antonio here:

https://www.findingtheuniverse.com/things-to-do-san-antonio-texas/

Most visitors have a trip to the Alamo as a key highlight, and we also have a guide to doing that as well:

https://independenttravelcats.com/guide-to-visiting-the-alamo-in-san-antonio-texas/

Have a great time in San Antonio and let me know if you have any specific questions about your trip!

23rd February 2022 at 10:53 pm

My first time to San Antonio coming up March 3rd and I am a guy that sits outside and have some drinks. My question is are there some little places that provides beer and some seating next to the river?

24th February 2022 at 11:15 am

Hey Larry – there sure are. There are lots of restaurants all along the river walk with seating right by the river. There’s the Esquire Tavern, Mad Dogs British pub, Naked Iguana… the list goes on 🙂 I don’t think you’ll have a shortage of choice! Have a great time in San Antonio – let me know if you find a favourite spot 🙂

marcia says

3rd January 2022 at 9:50 pm

this was very helpful. we are planning trip in February 2022. will the river have water in it?

4th January 2022 at 12:28 pm

Thanks Marcia! Currently the downtown area of the San Antonio River is scheduled to be drained from the 23rd January 2022 until 30th January 2022 for maintenance. This happens most years. However, barring any unforeseen circumstances, it should be back to normal by February for your trip. Have a great time!

3rd April 2020 at 7:25 pm

I live in San Antonio, and must say this is a great guide. You captured many great aspects of the riverwalk, including the light display at Fernando Cathedral. We have yet to witness that without it being cancelled. Anyway, I hiked the entire riverwalk with my dog recently and can confirm that it DOES take 5 – 6 hours. It’s 15 miles to The Pearl. If you happen to do many of the Mission Trails and hike through Brackenridge toward the headwaters it’s probably 20 miles or so.

The question popped up in the search engine and I wanted to see your response to it. I shared our adventure on our website Places for Pups, and uploaded my own video to youtube. It’s a pretty unique and amazing experience. Do you happen to have any posts sharing your lifestyle specifically, as in the planning and preparations which go into the travels, as well as how it works?

3rd April 2020 at 7:40 pm

First thanks very much for your positive feedback. To have a local give us their compliments is always the best praise! It also sounds like you had quite the walk – thanks for letting us know how long it took.

So your question seems multi faceted. Are you asking about how we plan our travels in general, or how we run a travel blog? I’ll answer both, but happy to answer follow up questions as well 🙂

In terms of the planning, we tend to primarily do independent travel. That means we plan the route, book the hotel (and hire car if necessary), and try to come up with a day to day itinerary as well of the things we want to see. Because our goal is to create content from our trips, we are probably a little bit more detailed than most people might need to be, and we also tend to see a lot of sights per day so we have a good idea of what we are talking about. We then try to share our experiences to help other do something similar. A good example of this might be some of our Route 66 content, such as our our 2 week Route 66 itinerary , and our guide to planning a Route 66 trip .

In terms of the blog, I would say that we have been doing this since 2010, and over time our model has certainly evolved. I did write a guide to starting a travel blog , which goes over many of the ways we make a living doing what we do, but the main points of income for us include advertising, sales of products we recommend, and my online photography course . I would say it is certainly possible to make a living as a travel blogger, as we do, but it definitely has to be something you love doing first and foremost because it can take a long time to make a success at it, and it can certainly be discouraging at times!

Let me know if you have any more questions and I’m happy to try to help. We also have a facebook group you’re welcome to join, which you can see here .

4th April 2020 at 3:55 am

In response to the praise, you definitely deserve it because I expected your guide to be short and lacking in details like many websites. You shared a lot of photos and details, you went inside/outside, answered several questions, shared maps and other resources – great stuff! I can tell you take pride in the details and I am the same way.

I started blogging again about my hikes with my dog because I find so much lackluster information online. I figured I would just provide better information AND it would be dog friendly. We’ve got several articles on pages 1-5 for their topics. Sadly, the Ultimate Guide I created last year refuses to rank. I’ve been trying to update it all week, but can’t figure out for-the-life-of-me why it’s not showing up for its topic. It’s really bizarre.

Anyway, I’ll check out the facebook group. Do you use professional cameras, or cell phone cameras? I use my iPhone which seems to do much of what I need right now, but I’m sure there are better alternatives. I’ll check out your guide as well because my wife and I would definitely be interested in visiting new places. I would have to do all of the writing though lol, but that’s cool. I set up our site so that I could eventually include places out of town. Thanks for the quick response.

4th April 2020 at 12:03 pm

Hi David – thanks! So there are so many ranking factors and sometimes it’s just very hard to know. I’d suggest using the Google Search Console tool to see what search terms people are using to find your site, and then trying to optimize around those. It is a long game, and if its a competitive search term, it can take a while to rank. And sometimes it just doesn’t happen. It’s frustrating! The best option is really just to create lots of great content and over time it will all start to rise 🙂

We do travel with professional cameras, lots of them in fact. We have a complete guide to our photography gear here . However, smartphones have come on in leaps and bounds over the years, and you definitely don’t need high end equipment to get great photos 🙂

Jan Leach says

7th September 2019 at 1:37 pm

Can we get a hard copy of this guid?

7th September 2019 at 1:38 pm

We don’t have the functionality to do hard copies as yet, it’s something we’re trying to figure out how to provide. However, most web browsers will let you save a webpage, or print it to PDF, which would be your best option in the meantime,

17th October 2019 at 6:41 pm

Just as an update for you, I’m pleased to say that we have now added a print button to our site which will let you get a copy of the guide in a print friendly format!

Tanya Reed says

15th August 2019 at 2:37 pm

Hi Lawrence – This guide is very helpful and we look forward to visiting San Antonio. We definitely want to do a boat ride. Do you know if there are any way to do a private boat ride (with a driver/captain) along the River Walk here with just my family (there are 7 of us)? THanks!

15th August 2019 at 2:57 pm

Thanks very much 🙂 You absolutely can do a private river cruise, for example, Go Rio cruises who do the shuttle and narrated cruises offer a private cruise option, you can see more about that on their website here: https://www.goriocruises.com/Cruises/go-rio-charter-cruise/

Obviously this will work out more expensive than a general cruise, but it is certainly doable and not too expensive 🙂

Have a great time!

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The San Antonio Things

27 Things To Do On The Riverwalk (The Venice of Texas)

Sure, the Riverwalk is 100% a tourist destination in San Antonio. You could easily say it’s THE tourist destination. Afterall, the Riverwalk is where you’ll find the Alamo, historic Tex Mex restaurants, world-class museums, the San Fernando Cathedral, outdoor art, and miles and miles of biking and hiking trails. But despite the many (M-A-N-Y) tourist traps, there are some legitimately fun things to do on the Riverwalk. 

Things To Do On The Riverwalk 1

Top 3 Things To Do On The Riverwalk

Read on to see a longer list of all 27 amazing things you can do on and around the riverwalk. But if you're in a hurry, here are the 3 top things to do on the Riverwalk:

1. Take a GoRIO River Cruise.  These are those river barges you see floating around the river. They typically involve a knowledgable tour guide who will fill your head with facts about the Alamo city.

2. Eat at a riverwalk  restaurant.  Beware! There are lots of bad restaurants on the riverwalk . To keep from getting caught in a tourist trap, here are the very best restaurants on the riverwalk , as well as the best options for Tex Mex on the riverwalk .

3. Wander, shop, take it all in. You don't need to spend a lot of money to enjoy the ambiance! However, if you want to experience more of the delights on this beautiful part of San Antonio, read on.

things to do on the riverwalk 2

Sections Of The San Antonio Riverwalk

Folks love the Riverwalk because it feels a bit like the Venice canals…just a bit more Texas-y. Actually, the first parade on the Riverwalk in 1936 was called “A Venetian Night.” Really!

There are three main sections of the Riverwalk: the Downtown Reach, Museum Reach, and Mission Reach. 

Things to do on the Riverwalk 3

1. Downtown Reach: this is the downtown loop, and it’s what most people think of when they mention the San Antonio Riverwalk.

This is where you’ll find the GoRio boat cruises, all the famous historic Tex Mex spots, the famous “Selena bridge,” and live mariachi bands. There’s a lot to do in the Downtown Reach!

Keep in mind that this is definitely the most touristy section , so it’s typically pretty crowded and expensive. If you’ve only ever visited Downtown Reach and never explored the other portions of the Riverwalk, you’ve gotta check them out. There’s so much more to the Riverwalk than just this downtown loop. 

things to do on the riverwalk 4

2. Museum Reach: a must-visit if you’re planning to see the San Antonio Riverwalk!

Museum Reach is my personal favorite part of the Riverwalk. Built in 2009, Museum Reach is 1.3 miles long. It stretches from Lexington Ave all the way up to the Pearl Brewery district.

And no, you don’t have to actually go inside any museums to enjoy it (although you could!). Museum Reach includes outdoor art like Carlos Cortés’s “The Grotto” and Donald Lipski’s “F.I.S.H.”

Mission Reach riverwalk

3. Mission Reach: a great option if you want to kayak in or bike along the San Antonio River.

Mission Reach is an 8 mile length of the river that starts downtown and extends south. Since this is such a large, spacious section, it’s typically the quietest way to enjoy the Riverwalk.

The hiking trail allows you to see 4 of the 5 missions (the 5th mission being The Alamo) along the Riverwalk.

For starters, here are a few insider tips for visiting the Riverwalk.

1. Choose the correct time to visit . I’ve had many friends tell me that they were severely underwhelmed by the Riverwalk. “It’s too crowded!” they’ll say. And when I ask when they stopped by, they’ll say on a Saturday night. Uh, yeah…that’s why it was crowded! 

things to do on the riverwalk 5

Unless you want shoulder-to-shoulder packed crowds, try to avoid the weekends. My favorite times to visit the Riverwalk are weekday mornings (it's so pretty in the cool spring months!) and, of course, weeknights during the month of December when the Riverwalk is all decked out for the holidays. 

things to do on the riverwalk 6

2. Know where to find the best restaurants on the Riverwalk . If you wait until you get there and just walk up to any random restaurant, you’ll most likely get overpriced “bleh” food.

Look through this map of the best local restaurants on the Riverwalk or this lovely guide to the best Tex Mex on the Riverwalk to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck! 

things to do on the riverwalk 8

3. Embrace the tourism aspect of the Riverwalk. I mean, it is what it is. The Riverwalk is kind of loud, a bit obnoxious, and definitely a tad crowded. But it’s actually very beautiful!

It’s loaded with history and culture, and there’s a reason why millions of people visit it every year. Just accept that it’s going to feel a bit touristy, and everything will go smoother. Mmmk?

A Quick (Fun!) History Lesson Of The Riverwalk

This will be brief! But it’s fun to know a bit about how the Riverwalk even got here! 

Let’s go waaayyy way back at the beginning of time…. Ok, not really. Just back to the 1500s. 

things to do on the riverwalk 7

San Antonio River was first mentioned in the 1500s by a Spanish explorer. SO COOL! For hundreds and hundreds of years, people have recognized the beauty and power in this river.

things to do on the riverwalk 9

For the next few centuries the San Antonio River was utilized as a water source for the various Missions in San Antonio. It’s no coincidence that you can now bike along the river trail and see all 5 missions near the water! 

In more modern days, the Riverwalk was actually created as a flood management system in San Antonio in the 1900s. Yup! It’s here to save lives. Without it, downtown San Antonio would constantly be flooding. 

things to do on the riverwalk 10

In fact, in 1921 there was a tragic flood in San Antonio that killed about 50 people . In the late 1920s a guy named Robert H. H. Hugman had the idea for shops on the river, and the city liked the idea. Insert a few flood gates, dams, and decades of construction….and you get the Riverwalk you see today. 

(This is obviously an oversimplified version of the Riverwalk’s rich history. It’s definitely worth digging into if you enjoy history, culture, engineering, and city planning!) 

27 Things To Do On The Riverwalk

1. gorio boat cruises.

GoRio Boat Cruises

Are GoRioBoat Cruises actually fun? I vote YES! I think these are the types of things you’ll want to do one time (probably not over and over again), but if you’re new to San Antonio or you’re visiting with a small group of friends or a family, it’s a fun way to learn basic facts about the city and get to see the entire Riverwalk region without having to squeeze through crowds. 

The guides are trained in all the San Antonio knowledge you might want to know, so you’ll have a bunch of SA trivia in your head by the end of the trip. 

The narrated cruises on quiet electric boats are just 35 minutes. You won’t get bored because they’re short and to the point!

And then there are the river barges that simply act as transportation. You can get a 1-day or a 3-day pass that allows you to quickly move around the Riverwalk in a comfortable boat. I think this is worthwhile if you’re planning to stay in a hotel on the Riverwalk and you want to be able to access lots of different points quickly. 

2. Eat Tex Mex on the Riverwalk

Eat Tex Mex on the Riverwalk

San Antonio culture literally IS Tex Mex, so you’ve gotta eat some amazing Tex Mex while you’re visiting the Riverwalk!

Full disclosure: most of the Tex Mex on the Riverwalk is absolute crap. I mean, I hate to say that, because there are some darling, historic restaurants that look like so much fun. But I’ve tried a bunch of them and been sorely underwhelmed with watery salsa, overcooked steak, and grocery store tortillas. 

Eat Tex Mex on the Riverwalk

However, there are a few REALLY good Tex-Mex spots on the Riverwalk if you know where to look! I’ve written this guide + map to show you what I think are the best options. 

Cheers to excellent top-shelf margaritas, tableside guacamole, and fantastic fajitas with a view of the water. Eating (good) Tex-Mex is one of the best things to do on the Riverwalk. 

3. Take A Picture At The “Selena Bridge”

Take a picture at the "Selena Bridge"

If you’re visiting the Riverwalk in San Antonio, you’ve got to stop by the famous Selena Bridge. Fans of Selena Quintanilla know all about this bridge! It’s the famous bridge where the romantic scene in the “Selena” movie (starring J. Lo) was filmed. 

It will probably be obvious when you find this bridge because it will be swarming with people taking photos and selfies, but in case you want an address, it’s located between N St Mary’s Street and Navarro St. 

You can also just search for the “Iron Cactus” restaurant on the Riverwalk. The bridge is right by that restaurant. 

Or, you can just dine at Iron Cactus and see the Selena Bridge while you enjoy your food! Iron Cactus is one of the best options for Tex Mex on the Riverwalk and the front patio offers a perfect view of the Selena Bridge. 

WEBSITE | 1040 - 1098] River Walk St, San Antonio

4. Visit The Alamo

Visit The Alamo

The historic Alamo mission is located just off the Riverwalk. You can easily squeeze in a visit at The Alamo during your time at the Riverwalk. 

The Alamo was built by Roman Catholic missionaries in the 18th century, but it’s mostly remembered for the famous Battle at the Alamo when general Santa Anna’s army killed nearly all the occupants and reclaimed the Alamo. It’s quite the story, and a visit to the Alamo is a must for any San Antonio visitor. ( However, there are 4 other missions in San Antonio that are worth visiting, too! ) 

Keep in mind that if you want to tour the Alamo, it’s completely free BUT you’ll need to make a reservation for a timed entry. 

WEBSITE | 300 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205

5. Go Shopping At The Shops At Rivercenter

Go Shopping At The Shops At Rivercenter

If you’re visiting the Riverwalk on a hot, steamy August day and you need to escape the heat, duck inside Rivercenter Mall. It’s a nice place for air conditioning and retail therapy! 

The Shops at Rivercenter include 100 retail stores, 14 restaurants, an IMAX theater, LegoLand Discovery Center , SeaLife, and (did we mention this yet?) AIR CONDITIONING! Yes. Yes yes yes. When you’re dripping sweat on a 106-degree day, that AC at the mall feels amazing. 

WEBSITE | 849 E Commerce St, San Antonio, TX 78205

6. Visit the Briscoe Western Art Museum

The Briscoe Western Art Museum

The Briscoe is located just one street away from the Riverwalk, and it’s a beautiful museum in San Antonio! The Briscoe explores the art and artifacts that helped shape the West into what it is today. 

General Admission is pretty reasonably priced, but locals can take advantage of FREE days on certain times of the month. Check out their website for more information. 

WEBSITE | 210 W Market St, San Antonio, TX 78205

7. Get A Scoop at Mr. Ice Cream

Get A Scoop at Mr. Ice Cream

This retro ice cream parlor is the perfect place to enjoy a break from the crowds and get a sweet treat! They have dozens of flavors of Bluebell Ice Cream (a favorite brand here in Texas) waffle cones, sundaes, and shakes. 

WEBSITE | 423 E Commerce St, San Antonio, TX 78205

6. Grab Drinks at Esquire, The Oldest Bar On The Riverwalk

Esquire Tavern on the Riverwalk

Not only is Esquire home to the longest wooden bar top in the state of Texas (it literally goes the entire length of the long, skinny bar!), but it’s also the oldest bar on the Riverwalk. It opened in 1933 to celebrate the end of prohibition. 

Esquire is dark, sultry, and moody. It’s a great spot to drop in during the evening hours, but I also find it kind of fun during the middle of the day because it’s so dark and cool in there. 

They have a nice list of classic cocktails like a Moscow Mule, Old Fashioned, and a classic Pimm’s Cup. But their happy hour is where it’s at! From 2-5 pm on Mon-Fri you can enjoy $5 beers, $8 happy hour cocktails, and $9 glasses of wine. 

WEBSITE | 155 E Commerce St, San Antonio, TX 78205

9. Head North To The Pearl District

Head North To The Pearl District

Did you know that the Pearl District is located on the Riverwalk? It’s at the north of Museum Reach (away from the main portion that most people think of when they’re talking about the Riverwalk) so it’s away from the Riverwalk crowds. 

The Pearl is honestly a full experience all on its own. But if you want to dine near the Riverwalk but AWAY from the tourists, be sure to snag a reservation at Supper. And if you want to look at some of the best restaurants at The Pearl, here’s a guide!   

Head North To The Pearl District

10. Amerson River Theatre

Arneson River Theater

This historic theatre located at the La Villita Arts Village is a sweet spot to stop by and watch a live performance on the Riverwalk.

Every weekend, the Fiesta Noche del Rio performs an iconic cultural performance at the Amerson that’s not to be missed! 

WEBSITE | 418 Villita St, San Antonio, TX 78205

11. La Villita Historic Village

La Villita San Antonio

Listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, La Villita is an artisan village that originally served as San Antonio’s first neighborhood! Yup, these little stone houses were where European immigrants from Germany and France lived, and it’s now a charming art village near the Riverwalk. 

You can stop by to stroll through the plaza and courtyards, shop for artisan goods, and dine at Little Rhein Prost Haus, a nod to the German settlers from back in the day, or Guadalajara Grill. 

La Villita is just a short walk from the water, and it’s definitely worth the visit! This is one of my top picks for things to do on the Riverwalk in San Antonio. 

12. Get Photos Of The Famous Casa Rio Umbrellas

Casa Rio Umbrellas

Most online guides to the best things to do on the Riverwalk will tell you to eat at Casa Rio…but I love and respect you and I don’t want you to waste your money. Full disclosure: the food at Casa Rio is VERY lackluster. 

However, the umbrellas outside Casa Rio are pretty iconic. You’ve probably already seen photos of them without knowing it! Pretty much every pamphlet or advertisement for San Antonio has a photo of them.

It’s fun to stop by and take a photo of these umbrellas! I don’t recommend the food at Casa Rio, though. If you want to find the best options for Tex Mex food on the Riverwalk, go to one of these spots.  

WEBSITE | 430 E Commerce St, San Antonio, TX 78205

13. Visit The Riverwalk During The Holidays!

Visit The Riverwalk During The Holidays!

This is TRULY the most magical time of the year at the Riverwalk! It’s all lit up and sparkly, holiday music is playing over the water, and the river barges are twinkling with lights.

Visit The Riverwalk During The Holidays!

Keep an eye out for special holiday events, parades, and performances. 

Honestly, this is the one time of the year when I don’t mind the crowds on the Riverwalk because everyone is so holly-jolly and having a grand time. 

Visit The Riverwalk During The Holidays!

If you want to get in the holiday spirit, stop by the Riverwalk during the month of December, enjoy a special holiday cocktail, and soak up the holiday vibes. 

14. Check Out The Historic Aztec Theatre

Aztec Theatre in San Antonio

Built in 1926, Aztec Theatre was originally THE movie theater destination in San Antonio. It’s now used for all sorts of concerts, shows, and entertainment, and it’s located right across the street from the Riverwalk. 

104 N St Mary's St, San Antonio, TX 78205

15. See The Grotto

See The Grotto

The Grotto, an art installation and artificial cave by Carlos Cortés, is a really cool thing to see on the Riverwalk. It’s part of the Museum Reach, the 1.3-mile portion of the Riverwalk that extends north of downtown.  

The Grotto is this really cool 3-story sculpture that will instantly draw you in. You can walk through the middle of it and experience the waterfall from the inside. There are even sculpted stalactites and stalagmites in there!

While you probably won’t spend more than about 10 minutes looking at it, The Grotto is a must-see on the San Antonio Riverwalk and a fun destination if you’re going on a walk at the water’s edge. 

WEBSITE | N River Walk, San Antonio, TX 78215

16. Bike The Mission Trail

Bike The Mission Trail

If you’re looking for active things to do on the Riverwalk and you’re up for a bit of a challenge, biking the Mission Trail is a fun bucket list item in San Antonio.

The Mission Reach of the trail extends about 8 miles south, and there are hiking and biking trails along the water. 

You can see 4 of the 5 San Antonio Missions along this trail (the 5th mission is the Alamo, which is located at the Downtown Reach of the Riverwalk.) The missions aren’t all exactly ON the water, but they’re all within a very short walk from the water’s edge. After all, this river is what sustained these missions back in the day! 

17. Enjoy Cocktails at Ácenar

Enjoy Cocktails at Acenar

Looking for the best cocktails on the Riverwalk? My personal favorite place to get an excellent margarita is at Ácenar. It’s an excellent Mexican restaurant that has patio dining and river views, and it’s elevated slightly above the pedestrian walkway so you don’t have to worry about people walking inches away from you. 

Ácenar also has happy hour specials from 2-5 pm Sunday - Thursday! 

WEBSITE | 146 E Houston St, San Antonio, TX 78205

18. Visit Museum Reach On The Riverwalk

Visit Museum Reach On The Riverwalk

Don’t get stuck at the downtown portion of the Riverwalk. Be sure to check out Museum Reach! 

It took me way too long to get to this part of the Riverwalk because I assumed it was just the part you visit if you plan to go inside the museums. 

Visit Museum Reach On The Riverwalk

But you don’t need to actually go inside any of the museums to enjoy Museum Reach! (For the record, there are some excellent museums in San Antonio along Museum Reach that you should totally visit.)

Visit Museum Reach On The Riverwalk

Museum Reach is home to more than 70,000 native plants. Just walking these trails and enjoying the public park is worthwhile. 

But there are also numerous outdoor art installations. No need to research ahead of time or go searching for them…just wander the Riverwalk and you’ll see them in plain sight! 

WEBSITE | Unnamed Road, San Antonio, TX 78215

19. Watch the Texas Cavaliers River Parade In April During Fiesta!

Planning to be in San Antonio during Fiesta? You have to make it to the Riverwalk for the Texas Cavaliers River Parade! It happens every year in the third week of April. 

A typical parade goes down a street, but a river parade passes through (you guessed it!) the San Antonio River! Folks line the edges of the Riverwalk and the bridges above and cheer and clap for the bright, vibrant colors, river barges, and exciting music that occurs during the 2-hour extravaganza. 

20. Love Lock Bridge

Love Lock Bridge in San Antonio

Most cities have their own version of a lock bridge, and San Antonio is no exception. For those looking for memorable things to do on the Riverwalk, visit the Love Lock Bridge. 

The bridge is located near the Bexar County Marriage Liscense Office, so couples will often go to the bridge right after getting officially married and “lock in their love” with a lock on the bridge. 

It’s a beautiful place to visit! 

126 Main Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205

21. Visit A Spa On The Riverwalk

Visit A Spa On The Riverwalk

There are a few good spas located on the San Antonio Riverwalk. If you’ve been feeling some tension and need a massage, or you just want to treat yourself to a facial or a deluxe manicure, book an appointment at Mokara Spa at the Omni, or the Spa at Hotel Contessa. 

Or if you want a few other ideas of excellent spas in San Antonio , visit one of these spas .

22. Stay In A Beautiful Hotel

Stay In A Beautiful Hotel

There are some incredible boutique hotels in San Antonio (we have a really good guide to them here !) but if you want to stay directly on the Riverwalk, you have a few good options, too. 

The Thompson Hotel is a luxury boutique hotel that’s new in San Antonio. It has some excellent restaurants, including a rooftop lounge, a poolside restaurant, and a meat-forward restaurant from James Beard Award finalist San Antonio Chef Steve McHugh.  

WEBSITE | 115 Lexington Ave, San Antonio, TX 78205

Hotel Havana is a Cuban-inspired hotel that was originally opened in 1914 to evoke a tropical Mediterranean feel in the heart of the city. It was reopened in 2010 by the Bunkhouse Group and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

WEBSITE | 1015 Navarro St, San Antonio, TX 78205

And, of course, if you want to stay in the heart of the Downtown Reach portion of the Riverwalk, the Omni La Mansion Del Rio is pretty much impossible to beat. Built in 1852, this luxurious hotel features an open-air Spanish courtyard, exposed beams, and some of the best river views you’ll find from any hotel.   

WEBSITE | 112 College St, San Antonio, TX 78205

23. Admire The Natural Beauty

Admire The Natural Beauty

It’s no wonder why the Riverwalk has been called “The Venice of Texas.” With exquisite arched bridges, flowing water, historic stonework, and native plants, this San Antonio gem truly is a natural beauty. 

You could easily fill a couple hours of time by simply wandering around the Riverwalk and soaking in the sights. 

24. Blue Star Arts Complex

Blue Star Arts Complex

This is San Antonio’s longest-running art space, complete with restaurants, shops, and galleries…and it’s located on the Riverwalk! You’ll have to walk about 25 minutes south of the Downtown Reach, but you can walk directly along the water all the way to Blue Star. 

Once you’re there, be sure to grab a flight of beer at Blue Star Brewing Co., one of the best craft breweries in San Antonio , or enjoy some pizza at Stella Public House, an essential San Antonio pizza restaurant . 

WEBSITE | 1414 S Alamo St, San Antonio, TX 78210

25. Espada Aqueduct

Espada Aqueduct

When was the last time you went to see an ancient irrigation system?! This one was built in 1731 by the Spaniards who inhabited Mission Espada. It’s quite a feat of engineering! They successfully maneuvered the water to be used for crops in the farmland. 

The coolest thing about this aqueduct? You can still see it today, 300 years later! 

The Spanish settlers quickly figured out that rainfall in (what is now) south Texas is inconsistent and water flow needs to be managed. This is how they did it.

WEBSITE | 9045 Espada Rd, San Antonio, TX 78214

26. Kayak In The River

Kayak In The River

It is SO MUCH FUN to take a kayak out on the water on a beautiful Texas day, which is why kayaking is one of the best things to do at the San Antonio Riverwalk! 

There are designated areas where you can bring your non-motorized boats in the water. (Note: you can’t kayak in the downtown Reach…that’s where the GoRio Cruises belong!)

There are miles and miles of long stretches of the Riverwalk that are open to kayakers. Whether you want a long, strenuous workout, or you just want to enjoy a few leisurely minutes on the water, kayaking in the river is one of the most unique and memorable things to do on the Riverwalk. 

27. People Watch And Enjoy The Energy!

People Watch and Enjoy The Energy!

Love it or hate it, there’s no denying that the Riverwalk is swarming with people and energy. Whenever you find a crowd of people, there’s sure to be a few characters around. 😉 

Whether you want to find a free spot to sit for a while (there are plenty of benches lining the Riverwalk) or you want to spend some money and enjoy a margarita and some chips & queso at a Tex-Mex restaurant on the Riverwalk , finding a place to sit and “people watch” for a few minutes is a surprisingly fun thing to do on the Riverwalk.  

things to do on the riverwalk 12

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best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Best Times To Visit San Antonio

The best time to visit San Antonio is from November to April, when the weather is comfortable and the hotel rates are lower. Summer sees the largest influx of tourists from in- and out-of-state. Because of its historical significance to the state and its family-friendly theme parks, San Antonio attracts hordes of Texas families when the kids are on summer break. But the long Texan summer is close to unbearable (for most people) with humidity and temperatures exceeding 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The masses also make for more crowded attractions and higher prices at hotels . You'll enjoy the city a lot more when you are less damp, saving cash and enjoying the festivals of the winter and spring.

Weather in San Antonio

Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center

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Tourism volume is estimated based on in-market destination search query interest from Google and on travel.usnews.com in 2015-2016. Hotel prices are sourced from a sample of U.S. News Best Hotels rates through 2015-2016.

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TravelAwaits

Our mission is to serve the 50+ traveler who's ready to cross a few items off their bucket list.

19 Fantastic Experiences On San Antonio’s River Walk

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

  • Activities and Interests
  • Destinations
  • History and Culture
  • San Antonio
  • United States

The San Antonio River Walk, one of the most romantic adventures in the country, is the most popular attraction in San Antonio, Texas, and maybe the whole state. Also known as Paseo del Rio, it is 15.2 miles in length and broken into three sections.

In addition to the downtown River Walk, the Museum Reach extends approximately 4 miles north, populated with condominiums, apartments, hotels, and several museums.

The Mission Reach extends south, transforming an 8-mile area of the river into a wetland woodland ecosystem. The Mission Reach connects four of the five UNESCO missions. The Alamo is the fifth mission located in the downtown area.

The River Walk has so much more to offer than boat tours — although those are fun, too! First, let’s explore the Museum Reach section of the River Walk and then make our way to Mission Reach.

Tobin Center For The Performing Arts in San Antonio, Texas.

1. Tobin Center For The Performing Arts

Tobin Center is a local non-profit world-class performing arts facility on the east bank of the River Walk. The center features a performance hall with balcony boxes, a studio theater, an outdoor performance plaza with a 32-foot video wall, and a water taxi portal. Some up-and-coming presentations are HeartByrne Plays Talking Heads and The Music Of Queen .

2. San Antonio Museum Of Art

The San Antonio Museum of Art (SAMA) provides almost 50 public programs yearly including special exhibitions, lectures, concerts, films, and family and children’s workshops. The Gloria Galt River Landing, shaded pavilion, terrace, and esplanade along the museum’s north side welcomes visitors to the Asian Art Wing, Latin American Art display, the Luby Courtyard, and the Cowden Gallery.

The Grotto along the San Antonio River Walk in Texas.

3. The Grotto

Carlos Cortes created a concrete grotto with cave-like walls with craggy faces, splashing waterfalls, and winding passageways with stalagmites and stalactites. A street-level stairway leads into the jaws of a giant jaguar head, with steps leading down to a picnic area, thatched-roof palapa, benches, and recessed lighting.

4. The Pearl

The 22-acre Pearl Brewery site on the east bank is the headquarters for Hotel Emma, with its restaurant, Supper, the year-round Pearl Farmers Market, and The San Antonio Culinary Institute of America. You’ll also find fantastic eateries such as Johnny Hernandez La Gloria Restaurant, the Culinary Institute’s Savor Restaurant, and The Boiler House Texas Grill and Wine Garden. Plus, eat at The Bottling Department, San Antonio’s first food hall. Find great shopping at The Sporting District, Bike World, and The Twig Book Shop.

Pro Tip: From the downtown River Walk , you can walk approximately 2 miles to The Pearl. There are also bike-share stations located all along the route, or you can get a river taxi ticket for the day. If you opt for the river taxi, you’ll be dropped off along the river and will get to ride through the lock system.

5. Brackenridge Park

It’s best to drive to Brackenridge Park , where you can spend the day with the trails, sports, picnic areas, and train rides. You’ll also find an 18-hole golf course; the San Antonio Zoo and Education Center; the Japanese Tea Garden with its waterfall, pagoda, and cafe; and the Witt Museum.

The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas.

6. The Alamo

Visit the hallowed grounds of The Alamo . Almost 200 Texans, led by James Bowie, Davy Crockett, and William B. Travis, battled Santa Anna for 13 days before the Alamo fell on March 6, 1836.

7. San Fernando De Bexar Cathedral

As you walk to El Mercado, stop off at the San Fernando De Bexar Cathedral, the mother church of the Archdiocese of San Antonio, facing the city’s Main Plaza. San Fernando, founded on March 9, 1731, by a group of 15 Canary Island families at the invitation of King Philip V of Spain, is the oldest continuously functioning religious community in Texas. You can light a candle here.

The Spanish Governor’s Palace in San Antonio, Texas.

8. Spanish Governor’s Palace

The Spanish Governor’s Palace represents the last residence and working office for the military garrison captains from 1722 to the early 1800s. Tour the beautifully landscaped courtyard and the rooms furnished with Spanish Colonial furniture.

9. Casa Navarro State Historic Site

The adobe and limestone National Historic Landmark is the home of Tejano patriot Jose Antonio Navarro (1795-1871), a rancher, businessman, and one of only two native-born Texans to sign the Texas Declaration of Independence.

El Mercado in San Antonio, Texas.

10. El Mercado

El Mercado , the largest Mexican market in the United States, is several blocks west of the Downtown River Walk at 514 W Commerce Street. This historic market square is made up of a three-block outdoor plaza lined with dozens of specialty shops and restaurants. Be sure to stop in at Mi Tierra Cafe and Bakery , with its ample selection of classic Tex-Mex dishes, baked goods, strolling Mariachi musicians, and Christmas lights year-round.

11. La Villita Historic Arts Village

I always find something unique at La Villita , an artists’ and business district housing over 25 shops and galleries showcasing local handmade gifts, custom jewelry, pottery, and imported Mexican folk art. You’ll find four excellent restaurants here: Fig Tree Restaurant , Guadalajara Grill (ask for the chef’s specials, and Willy’s Sexy Coffee flamed tableside), and La Villita Cafe .

12. Hemisfair

The original location of the 1968 World’s Fair is now a vibrant parks district with three public parks, the convention center, local businesses, and residences. Hemisfair’s crown jewel is the Tower of the Americas , a 750-foot-tall observation tower and restaurant that provides spectacular views of the Alamo City.

A historic mansion in the King William Historic District.

13. The King William Historic District

The King William Historic District south of downtown San Antonio was settled by Germans, who came to Texas in the 1840s and congregated in an area that came to be known as Sauerkraut Bend. The area came to be known for its large, impressive Italianate, Greek Revival, and Victorian-style mansions. King William, the main street, was named after King Wilhelm I, King of Prussia, in the 1870s.

Pro Tip : Rent one of the bicycles and explore these magnificent historic homes.

14. The Guenther House

In 1859, The Guenther House was built next door to Carl Guenther’s mill, which is still functional today as the Pioneer Flour Mill. The house is best known for its Art Nouveau style, unique interior, and three-story addition. Today, the Guenther House is a milling history museum and a restaurant.

Mission Concepcion in San Antonio, Texas.

15. Mission Concepción

Drive along South St. Mary’s Street to Mission Road to get to the first of four San Antonio Missions south of the city. Dedicated in 1755, Mission Concepción , about three miles south of the Alamo, stands stately as the oldest unrestored stone church in America. The colorful geometric designs that covered its exterior have long since faded, but original frescos in several rooms are still visible.

Pro Tip: Follow along with the cell phone audio tour .

16. Mission San Jose Y San Miguel De Aguayo

The Mission San Jose is 2.5 miles south of Mission Concepción. Mission San Jose is the “Queen of the Missions,” the largest of the missions after being restored to its original design in the 1930s by the Works Project Administration (WPA). In 2020, it celebrated its 300-year anniversary.

17. Mission San Juan Capistrano

Mission San Juan was transferred to its present location in 1731 from its original east Texas location. In 1756, the stone church, a friary, and a granary were completed.

These missions were both churches and communities. San Juan was a village with orchards and gardens where melons, pumpkins, grapes, and peppers were grown. Beyond, farm and pastureland cultivated corn, beans, sweet potatoes, squash, and sugar cane, plus sheep and cattle. The San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, in partnership with the San Antonio Food Bank, has planted a living demonstration farm on the Mission grounds that’s fed by a historic aqueduct, providing irrigation.

Mission San Francisco De La Espada in San Antonio, Texas.

18. Mission San Francisco De La Espada

Eight and a half miles south of the Alamo, Mission Espada was the first Texas mission, founded in 1690 as San Francisco de Los Tejas near present-day Weches, Texas, northeast of Crockett. In 1731, the mission moved to the San Antonio River with a new name, San Francisco de la Espada. Members completed the church in 1756.

19. Espada Aqueduct And Acequia System

Constructed in 1745, the Espada Aqueduct is located just north of Mission Espada. The aqueduct brought water from the San Antonio River over a low-elevation creek to the mission farmlands.

Splurge to reserve a hotel room with a River Walk view at the Omni La Mansión del Rio Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk . Occasionally hotels offer “unpublished” rates when you call directly. In winter, the weather is cool and there are fewer crowds, making it the time to go. Around the holidays, you can catch the Holiday Lights on the River Walk , Ford Fiesta de las Luminarias , and the Ford Holiday River Parade and River Lighting Ceremony .

Whenever you decide to visit, consider my picks for the best restaurants and hotels on the River Walk . With colorful umbrellas lined up along the river, you can’t miss Casa Rio, which was the first restaurant on the River Walk. For fine dining, head to Boudro’s or Biga . There is also a Morton’s Steakhouse within walking distance of the River Walk. Head to the oldest running saloon in Texas — The Buckhorn Saloon & Museum — to see the exotic animal collection, The Texas Ranger Museum, the cafe, and the gift shop. Speaking of shopping, The Shops at Rivercenter offers retail therapy along the River Walk.

Several guided tours are available. See the sights by river boat on a GO RIO San Antonio River Cruise , take a Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus tour (your choice of 24-hours plus second day free, or a 72-hour bus tour), and Tower of the Americas tour by City Sightseeing San Antonio from under $60 per person. What a great way to get the overall view of San Antonio!

For More Fun In The San Antonio Area, Check Out These Articles:

  • 7 Unique And Incredible Experiences In San Antonio
  • 10 Fantastic Outdoor Activities In San Antonio
  • 4 Beautiful San Antonio Missions To See After You’ve Visited The Alamo

Image of Janie H. Pace

Janie H. Pace is a travel writer and photographer based in Fort Worth, Texas. Her culinary, wine, and travel photography adventures have led her across Peru from Cusco through the Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu; up the Canadian Icefields Parkway from Lake Louise to Banff and Jasper, indulging in Fairmont luxury hotels; and to the four largest islands of Hawaii. Her latest adventure was a Viking Cruise to the Norwegian Homelands. After a career in advertising and sales, Janie knows what makes compelling, substantial content. Whether she's participating in a wine tasting, restaurant review, or local craft beer or distillery tour, Janie posts her adventures at Journey Mapped .

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Best Time To Visit San Antonio Riverwalk: A Comprehensive Guide

San Antonio Riverwalk is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Texas. The Riverwalk is a network of walkways along the San Antonio River that is lined with shops, bars, and restaurants. It is a great place to take a stroll, enjoy the scenery, and experience the local culture. Visitors can also take a boat ride along the river and learn about the history of the area.

The sun sets over the San Antonio Riverwalk, casting a warm glow on the winding waterway and bustling restaurants

When planning a trip to San Antonio Riverwalk, visitors may wonder what is the best time to visit. The answer to this question depends on personal preferences and what you want to experience. However, generally speaking, the best time to visit San Antonio Riverwalk is between September and April. During this time, the weather is comfortable, and the hotel rates are lower.

It is important to note that the Riverwalk can get crowded during the peak tourist season, which is from May to August. The weather can also be hot and humid during this time, which may not be ideal for some visitors. Visitors who want to avoid the crowds and enjoy a more relaxed atmosphere should consider visiting San Antonio Riverwalk during the off-season.

Optimal Seasons for Visiting

The San Antonio Riverwalk bustles with activity in the spring and fall, as vibrant foliage lines the waterway. The warm, sunny days provide the perfect backdrop for leisurely strolls and outdoor dining

San Antonio Riverwalk is a popular destination that attracts visitors throughout the year. However, some seasons are better than others depending on what you’re looking for. Here are the optimal seasons for visiting the San Antonio Riverwalk.

Spring: Festivals and Mild Weather

Spring is one of the best times to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk. March, April, and May offer comfortable temperatures, low humidity, and plenty of festivals. The city awakens as each flower blooms, and visitors can enjoy events like Fiesta, which is held in late April and early May. Fiesta is a 10-day celebration that features parades, music, food, and other cultural events. The mild weather during spring makes it an ideal time to explore the 15-mile-long series of walkways that run along the San Antonio River.

Fall: Pleasant Temperatures and Events

Fall is another great time to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk. September through November offers pleasant temperatures, low humidity, and plenty of events. Halloween is a big deal in San Antonio, and visitors can enjoy spooky events like the Haunted River. The city also hosts the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) festival in November, which celebrates the lives of loved ones who have passed away. The fall season is perfect for those who want to avoid the crowds and enjoy the pleasant weather.

Winter: Holiday Charm and Lower Crowds

Winter is a great time to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk if you want to experience holiday charm and lower crowds. December is the busiest month, but the crowds are still lower than during the summer. The Riverwalk is decorated with twinkling lights, and visitors can enjoy events like the Ford Holiday River Parade and Lighting Ceremony, which takes place in late November. The temperatures during winter are mild, making it a great time to explore the city without feeling too crowded.

In conclusion, the best time to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk depends on what you’re looking for. Spring offers festivals and mild weather, fall offers pleasant temperatures and events, and winter offers holiday charm and lower crowds. Visitors can enjoy the Riverwalk and the city’s many attractions throughout the year, but these seasons offer the optimal experience.

Attractions and Activities

The San Antonio Riverwalk bustles with visitors enjoying boat rides, dining, and live music. The best time to visit is during the evening when the lights illuminate the walkways and bridges

San Antonio Riverwalk is an iconic destination that offers a wide range of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. From cultural and historical exploration to dining and nightlife, shopping and entertainment to recreation and family activities, the Riverwalk has something for everyone.

Cultural and Historical Exploration

The Riverwalk is home to several cultural and historical landmarks that are worth exploring. Visitors can take a tour of the Alamo, the site of the famous battle that played a crucial role in Texas’ fight for independence. They can also visit the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that includes four Spanish colonial missions.

Dining and Nightlife

The Riverwalk is a foodie’s paradise, with a wide range of restaurants, bars, and eateries to choose from. Visitors can enjoy authentic Mexican cuisine at Boudro’s, or head to the Esquire Tavern for craft cocktails and live music. There are also plenty of options for nightlife, with bars and clubs that cater to a variety of tastes.

Shopping and Entertainment

For those who love to shop, the Riverwalk has plenty of options. The Pearl District is a popular destination for shopping, with a variety of boutiques, shops, and restaurants. La Villita Historic Arts Village is another great option, with shops that sell everything from handmade pottery to fine art. The Shops at Rivercenter is a large shopping mall that offers a variety of stores and entertainment options.

Recreation and Family Activities

The Riverwalk is a great place to take a leisurely stroll or bike ride, and there are also plenty of options for families. Visitors can take a boat tour of the river, or enjoy a picnic in one of the many parks along the way. The King William District is a great place to explore, with beautiful historic homes and tree-lined streets.

Overall, the San Antonio Riverwalk is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for a unique and memorable experience. With its rich history, vibrant culture, and diverse range of attractions and activities, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Tourists strolling along the San Antonio Riverwalk, admiring the colorful buildings and lush greenery, while boats glide peacefully along the waterway

What months offer the most pleasant weather for walking along the Riverwalk?

San Antonio’s Riverwalk is open year-round, but the most pleasant weather for walking along the Riverwalk is between September and April. During these months, temperatures are mild and comfortable, making it the perfect time to explore the city’s attractions.

During which season can visitors find the best hotel deals near the Riverwalk?

Visitors can find the best hotel deals near the Riverwalk during the summer months. However, it is important to note that San Antonio is a popular tourist destination, so it is best to book in advance to secure the best deals.

How many days are recommended to fully experience the Riverwalk and its attractions?

To fully experience the Riverwalk and its attractions, it is recommended to spend at least two to three days in San Antonio. This will allow visitors to explore the city’s many museums, parks, and historical sites, as well as enjoy the Riverwalk’s many restaurants and shops.

What are the peak tourist seasons to avoid for those seeking a less crowded visit to the Riverwalk?

The peak tourist seasons in San Antonio are during the summer months, from June to August, and during the holiday season, from mid-December to early January. Visitors seeking a less crowded visit to the Riverwalk should plan their trip during the off-season, between September and April.

Are the holiday celebrations in December a good time to experience the Riverwalk?

Yes, the holiday celebrations in December are a great time to experience the Riverwalk. During this time, the Riverwalk is decorated with festive lights and visitors can enjoy holiday-themed events and activities.

What unique events or festivals should travelers consider when planning a visit to the Riverwalk?

Travelers planning a visit to the Riverwalk should consider attending the Fiesta San Antonio, a 10-day festival featuring parades, food, music, and other cultural events. Another popular event is the Dia de los Muertos celebration, which takes place in early November and features traditional Mexican food, music, and art.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Hey there, I'm Robyn and I'm a travel enthusiast and the writer behind this website. With a passion for adventure, I've been traveling and sharing my experiences for as long as I can remember.

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3-Day Guide To The San Antonio River Walk That Will Make You Want To Extend Your Trip (+Map)

There is a chance that this post contains affiliate links. If you click one of them, we may receive a small commission (for which we use to keep this blog running) at no extra cost to  you.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

The San Antonio River Walk is a world-famous urban waterway in the heart of San Antonio, Texas. The River Walk is a network of beautiful walkways running alongside the San Antonio River that’s actually a story beneath the main city streets! It’s a special oasis in the heart of this city giving locals and tourists alike a unique San Antonio experience!

After a quick google search, you’ll find that the River Walk is 15 miles long . You may wonder where to even start when planning out your trip. I’m here to save you some stress and time with this complete 3 Day Guide To The San Antonio River Walk where you’ll learn-

Where To Stay

Where to eat.

  • Things To See
  • Tours Worth Taking
  • & How To Get Around The River Walk!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Table of Contents

There are plenty of hotels right along the River Walk that are totally worthy of a stay! However, I am so glad that I got to experience the Hotel Valenica during my trip. This luxurious San Antonio hotel was conveniently located right on the river walk and offers upscale rooms and suites to visitors.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Pros of staying at the Hotel Valenica-

  • Option of guest rooms or suites
  • Delicious Argentinian restaurant on-site called Dorrego’s Restaurant & Naranja Bar that serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert
  • In-Room dining available 24 hours a day (perfect for when that midnight craving hits)
  • Flamenco Guitarist plays live music in the lobby living room throughout the week
  • Beautiful courtyard that I loved taking an afternoon break in

Pro-tip- All the rooms are beautiful! But if you can, try to book a room on the 4th & 5th floor because it has a balcony that looks out to the courtyard.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Looking for a COMPLETE hotel guide? You’ve got to check out this website that provides a full list of historic, pet-friendly, River Walk based, etc hotels.

I like to tease people that I left San Antonio with a full heart…and even fuller stomach! When I tell you the food is great, I really mean that it is freakin-fantastic-lick-your-plate-clean type of great! Here are some of my top recommendations of where to eat while exploring the San Antonio River Walk.

Boudro’s

Boudro’s is a Texas bistro that will have you coming back time and time again. In fact, most first-time guests find themselves doing just that.

What I really appreciated about this extraordinary restaurant was that the head chef keeps the traditions of South Texas while elevating that history to new heights with his unique dishes.

A few fan favorites include the prickly pear margaritas, the table side guacamole, and their delicious duck & quail dishes . Speaking of the guacamole, you’ll definitely want to experience this table side presentation where they demonstrate how they create their signature flavor and then let you eat it afterwards! If you’re anything like me, you’ll download the free recipe from their website right after your first bite.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Iron Cactus

Iron Cactus was the last place that I was able to eat at before having to catch my flight and boy was I glad that I did! This restaurant serves contemporary Mexican food at a great price, making it easy on your wallet to come back for additional meals.

What they pride themselves on is making most of their food from scratch, including their delicious handmade tortillas! The atmosphere is inviting and provides a place for friends and families to get together and experience a wonderful meal together.

My problem with restaurants is that I usually get full before dessert roles around and I end up missing out. Don’t do that here! There are endless options that it would be a shame to pass up this delicious experience.

Pro-tip- Get the freshly made Mexican donuts with the chocolate sauce…you can thank me later!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Bier Garten

I really appreciated that although you could get the famed Tex-Mex and Mexican Cuisine, the River Walk had a wide variety of different options! The Bier Garten is one of those alternative choices.

The Bier Garten is located in a secluded portion of the River Walk surrounded with greenery and waterfalls creating the perfect ambience for visitors to come and stay awhile . Guests experience rich German culture and hospitality while sharing authentic Bavarian fare.

Some fan favorites include sausages, pretzels, kraut, and a wide variety of beers and wine. They also make a mean chicken sandwich and apple streusel cheesecake that I 100% recommend!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

One of the joys of dining alongside the riverwalk is that you typically have the option of dining al fresco along the river or inside (it’s a nice option to have depending on the weather).

Zocca , like most restaurants, also offers these two dining options. I enjoyed their breakfast and opted for a texas-size belgium waffle and it did not disappoint!

However, if you’re not available to dine with them for breakfast, join them for lunch or dinner. Why? They are consistently ranked as one of the best Italian restaurants in San Antonio making it a great stop if you need a break from the famous Mexican and Tex-Mex food.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Original Mexican Restaurant

Craving some of the best Mexican food that the River Walk has to offer? Then head over to the Original Mexican Restaurant! They serve up amazing tacos, fajitas, and margaritas daily.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to visit for dinner, but I did swing by for a slice of their famous cheesecake. You think I’m joking about it being famous? Well let’s just say that it’s been a visitor favorite since 1968! And with a creation date that old, you know there must be a good reason why it’s still around.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Justin’s Ice Cream

After an especially warm day along the River Walk, I did a double take passing by Justin’s Ice Cream and knew that I needed to get a cone. They offer a variety of fresh, handmade desserts. I especially loved their gelato flavors, but you’ll also find ice cream along with sorbet flavors.

Looking for additional sweet treats along the River Walk? Then this Dessert Guide is for you!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Things To Do/ Sites To See-

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

San Fernando Cathedral

A short walk from the banks of the River Walk, you’ll find the majestic San Fernando Cathedral. This Roman Catholic Church is right in the Main Plaza and is definitely a site that you don’t want to miss!

Make sure to come back at night to this iconic spot. Why? You’ll get to see a beautiful light show that is projected onto the face of this historic building. The show takes you through the history of San Antonio, all the way from when it was first discovered up to current times. You can learn more about The Sage here .

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Spanish Governor’s Palace

Next up on the list of historical places that you need to visit is the Spanish Governor’s Palace. You’ll get to see the only “remaining example in Texas of an aristocratic 18th-century Spanish Colonial in−town residence.” You can learn more about this site here.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Here is a Complete List of Historic Sites near the River Walk

Historic Market Square

Historic Market Square is not to be missed during your trip! Here you’ll find over 100 locally owned businesses ranging from shops to bakeries and restaurants. This is also the place to visit if you’re searching for authentic Mexican cuisine.

I visited during the week but business owners told me that I should come back during the weekends because the whole square is filled with live entertainment and dancing!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

San Antonio Museum of Art

No matter what type of art collections you’re into, there’s a good chance you’ll find it at the San Antonio Museum of Art (nicknamed SAMA). This art museum is known for the most comprehensive ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian art collection in the southern United States!

With five stories in just one wing, you’ll spend hours here going through their large art collection! Do note that they are closed on Mondays but are open Tuesday-Sunday with varying hours.

Here’s a full list of museums near the San Antonio River Walk

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Buckhorn Saloon

Just two blocks from the Alamo, you’ll find Buckhorn Saloon . Buckhorn Saloon includes a Cafe, Gift Shop, Shooting Gallery and of course, their two museums- The Buckhorn Museum and the Texas Ranger Museum. If you’re looking to escape the heat (or the rare cold), this place is worth stopping by!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Can you visit San Antonio and not stop at the Alamo? There is so much written about this historic place so I’ll keep this section short and sweet. There is no cost to enter but if you’re looking for a tour, you’ll have to pay.

I would recommend to take 20 minutes and head to the very back of the Alamo where they house the amphitheater. They have a short movie playing on loop that does a fantastic job of explaining the history and significance of this area.

Pro-tip- Go and watch the video before exploring because you’ll have a greater appreciation for the area after learning more about it.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

How To Get Around The River Walk

In my humble opinion, I would not rent a car if your plan is to visit and vacation along the San Antonio River Walk. Instead, I would purchase a 1-3 day hop-on hop-off City Sightseeing Pass!

This sightseeing bus stops at all the major stops along the riverwalk (like the historic Market Square, the Alamo, The Pearl, etc.) I loved riding with them because not only do they provide easy and convenient transportation, the buses are narrated too!

Some people will simply stay on the bus for the entire loop (about 1 hour) and enjoy getting a comprehensive overview of the city. Another strategy would be to choose the stops that are most appealing to you, and get off when you arrive. Then you can easily jump back on as the buses run in 30 minute intervals.

We’ve loved using hop-on hop-off buses and have done so when we traveled to Chicago , London , Rome, etc.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Go Rio Cruises Along The San Antonio River Walk-

Just like Venice , a ride (in Italy’s case, a gondola ride) along the San Antonio River Walk is a must! Go Rio has eco-friendly electric river boats that cruise the waterways providing tours for visitors.

These beautiful colored boats run throughout the day and have departure points all along the River Walk giving you plenty of convenient options. Most of the cruises are narrated and provide a peek into the history and current happenings of the River Walk.

You can learn more and book your cruise here.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Check out t his guide for a complete list of tours near the San Antonio River Walk!

Events Along The San Antonio River Walk

No matter what time of year you visit the San Antonio River Walk, you’re sure to find something happening! I got lucky and happened to be there during the Ford Parade of Lights that was absolutely magical. Some other notable events include Mardi Gras celebrations, Jazzfests, celebrations around every U.S. holiday, and more!

You can find the full list of events here.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

San Antonio River Walk Map

All of these locations that I have highlighted in the article are located on the Google Map for easy planning. Enjoy!

A big thank you to the San Antonio River Walk for hosting us and all the individual businesses that were involved. All opinions remain my own.

Pin for later!

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

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Texas Travel 365

colorful umbrellas over tables on one side of the river and a bridge and buildings on the other side san antonio riverwalk

15 Best Things To Do On The San Antonio Riverwalk

August 22, 2022 //  by  Texas Travel 365 //   Leave a Comment

Are you looking for fun things to do on San Antonio Riverwalk? If yes, then you have come to the right place. In this article, we will take you through some of the best places to visit on the San Antonio Riverwalk and how to make the most of your time here.

San Antonio Riverwalk is one of the most popular attractions in the world. The stunning architecture, historical attractions, romantic ambiance, and plethora of restaurants and shopping options make it a popular place to visit in San Antonio .

From fun river cruises to gorgeous bridges, to historic attractions, there is no shortage of San Antonio Riverwalk activities to indulge in when you are planning a trip to this Texas city.  

That’s not all, there are many biking, hiking, and walking trails to explore around this River Walk as well. So, whether you are traveling with friends, family, or your significant other, you can easily find fun things to do here to suit your mood.

If you are wondering about what to do on San Antonio Riverwalk, then check out our list of the 15 best things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk.

What is the San Antonio Riverwalk

The San Antonio Riverwalk is also known as Paseo del Rio and was built in 1929 to manage the flooding in the area.

The Riverwalk was also built to improve the views of the San Antonio River and the architecture was managed by Robert H. H. Hugman, who is also known as the ‘Father of the Riverwalk’.

In short, the San Antonio Riverwalk is a flood management project which includes dams, flood gates, and storm sewers to control the flood. However, at the same time, many commercial shops and restaurants were added around the river to make it more appealing for visitors.

How Long is the San Antonio Riverwalk?

This Texas River Walk in San Antonio is 15 miles long and extends along the banks of the

famous San Antonio River.

Out of this vast length, 5 miles is a part of downtown San Antonio and is home to several popular attractions in the city.

Areas Of The Riverwalk In San Antonio

The Riverwalk in San Antonio is divided mainly into three sections: the Mission Reach, the Downtown Reach, and the Museum Reach.

Each section offers some unique activities and attractions to visitors that make them a must-visit.

Museum Reach

Home to several luxury hotels, unique museums, and artworks, the Museum Reach is located to the north of Downtown Reach.

It is close to 3 miles long and features several amazing museums such as The DoSeum Museum, the San Antonio Museum of Art, the Witte Museum, The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, and so on.

Downtown Reach

Located south of the Museum Reach is the Downtown Reach, the most popular section of the San Antonio Riverwalk.

This section is around 2.5 miles long and is home to a large number of bars, malls, boutique stores, restaurants, and more. Since it is the commercial section of the Riverwalk, it attracts the most tourists every year.

Mission Reach

Last, but not least, we have the Mission Reach that extends to the south of the Downtown area.

This section is home to the frontier missions that form the UNESCO World Heritage Site of San Antonio Missions. Visitors can easily walk or bike to Mission Espada, Mission San Juan, Mission Concepcion, and Mission Jose.

Is the San Antonio Riverwalk free?

If you are looking for free things to do in San Antonio, then the Riverwalk is the perfect place to visit. It is a public city park and is always free for visitors and tourists to explore.

While walking, hiking, and biking on the Riverwalk are free, there are many attractions such as museums, restaurants, tours, etc. that will be chargeable.

Best San Antonio Riverwalk Attractions And Things To Do

Take a riverboat cruise on the san antonio river.

Of course, one of the top San Antonio Riverwalk activities to enjoy is a boat trip down the San Antonio River.

This is one of the best ways to enjoy Downtown San Antonio and you have lots of cruise options to choose from. You can go on a guided river cruise, a dining cruise, or simply take the river shuttles to travel from one destination to another on the river walk.

If you wish to learn about the Downtown and the Museum reaches, then the best option is to take the narrated river cruise. It is a 35-40 minute cruise where you learn the history of the Riverwalk along with San Antonio.

For those who wish to enjoy scenic views of the Riverwalk while experiencing a delicious meal, the dining river cruises are the best option. There are many riverwalk restaurants that offer dining cruises for their guests so, you have a lot of options to choose from.

Join a Ghost Tour

One of the best things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk for adults is to go on the entertaining and scary ghost tours on the riverwalk.

As the city’s history spans over 300 years with several gruesome events in the past years, it is no surprise that many people have reported paranormal activity in the area. There are many ghost tours that you can join that will take you to the most haunted places in San Antonio.

From The Menger to the Alamo, visit the most haunted spots in San Antonio and learn about the history and story of each place.

Have a Drink at the Oldest Bar

For those who love to party, one of the top things to do in San Antonio Riverwalk at night is visiting the oldest bar along the riverwalk, Esquire Tavern.

Opened in 1933, this bar with its vintage décor is one of the top San Antonio Riverwalk attractions to visit. It also happens to be the longest wooden bar in Texas with 100 ft in length and offers a stunning view of the San Antonio river from the balcony.

While their cocktail menu is good, their food menu is even more amazing with options such as collard greens, deviled eggs, bison burgers, and more. Trust me, a visit to Esquire Tavern is a must when you are exploring the riverwalk.

Enjoy Delicious Tex-Mex Food at the Restaurants and Cafes Here

If you are wondering about what to do on San Antonio Riverwalk, then one of the best ideas is to enjoy a delicious Tex-Mex meal here.

The Riverwalk is home to a wide range of restaurants and cafes that cater to all kinds of taste buds. There are many restaurants here that will satisfy your craving for Tex-Mex food while providing you with good ambiance and river views.

So, if you are a foodie, then one of the top things to do at the riverwalk is enjoying a delicious Tex-Mex meal at a riverwalk restaurant.

Go on a Pub Crawl

Are you looking for the best things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk for adults? If yes, then you should definitely go on a pub crawl on the riverwalk.

There are many bars and breweries on the San Antonio Riverwalk where you can try different drinks, have some fun, and make new friends on the way. You can choose to do an impromptu pub crawl or join an organized one and have some fun here.

Honestly, if you are looking for fun things to do in San Antonio Riverwalk at night, then you cannot go wrong with a pub crawl.

Explore the Bridges on the Riverwalk

The Downtown Reach section of the Riverwalk is home to many beautiful bridges that make it easy for visitors to cross the river and access different restaurants and shops.

Each of the bridges has stunning architecture and offers great views of the riverwalk, making it a perfect attraction here. A few bridges that you should check out on the riverwalk are Selena bridge, Rosita bridge, and so on.

If you are looking for free things to do on San Antonio Riverwalk, then exploring the Bridges of the Riverwalk is the best activity.

Visit the Alamo

One of the top attractions to visit in downtown San Antonio riverwalk is the Alamo.

This is an iconic landmark that was built by the Spanish as a church and is an important part of the history of Texas. This historic attraction is popular for its role in the 1863 battle that played an important part in Texan independence.

Visitors from all over the world come to this historic site to learn about the history of Texas. You can also take a walk in the Alamo Plaza and watch the activities happening around this touristic landmark. It is truly one of the best Spanish Missions in Texas to visit!

Watch a Show at the Arneson River Theater

For fun things to do on San Antonio Riverwalk, watching a cultural performance at the Arneson River Theater is a good option.

Located in the La Villita Historic Arts Village, the Arneson River Theater is an outdoor amphitheater with a capacity of 800 people. Here, you can catch different kinds of shows such as plays, music concerts, opera, and so on.

If you love watching plays, then you should definitely visit this beautiful amphitheater on the riverwalk.

Celebrate Christmas on San Antonio Riverwalk

One of the most amazing things to experience on the riverwalk is the Christmas festivities and decorations.

During the Christmas season, all the trees on the riverwalk are lit up with beautiful lights while the bridges are decorated with colorful wreaths. You will find the decorations here from the day after Thanksgiving Day until the first week of January.

Trust me, the entire riverwalk looks entirely magical at this time, making it one of the best places to enjoy Christmas in San Antonio .

Spend Time in the Pearl District

Named after the former Pearl Brewhouse, Pearl District is one of the top places to visit on the San Antonio Riverwalk.

Located close to the Downtown San Antonio, this vibrant neighborhood is a trendy part of the city where you will find several breweries, eateries, and Farmer Markets. This place is also popular for playing lawn games where bystanders can enjoy the game.

On the weekends, there is live music being played here to make this district fun and entertaining for the visitors. So, if you want to enjoy free things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk, then spend some time at the Pearl District.

Enjoy the Hiking and Biking Trails

One of the best activities on the San Antonio Riverwalk to enjoy the San Antonio river views is by exploring the hiking and biking trails alongside the river.

The trails are 30 miles long beginning at Brackenridge Park and ending at Mission Park. Visitors can explore the museums at one end of the trail and the missions at the other end of the trail.

Hiking can easily take you around 5-6 hours but the views will be so rewarding. If you want to experience some adventurous and free things to do in San Antonio Riverwalk with kids, then explore the hiking and biking trails here.

Visit the Amazing Museums

Another great thing to do here is visiting the fun and unique museums in the Museum section of the Riverwalk.

The San Antonio Museum of Modern Art is the perfect place to admire artwork from the Mediterranean, Asian, and Latin American regions.

For those who are traveling with kids, the DoSeum Museum is a great choice where you will find interactive exhibits on reading, art, and science. Kids can innovate or solve puzzles here, making it a great family-friendly destination.

There is no shortage of fun museums to explore on the riverwalk so, you should make the most of your time here and explore as many as you can.

San Antonio Zoo

San Antonio Zoo is one of the best San Antonio Riverwalk attractions for families and kids.

This city zoo is home to some of the most majestic animals in the world such as lions, elephants, tigers, orangutans, and so on. It is located in Brackenridge Park and features around 750 animal species including a few that are extinct or endangered in the wild.

There are over 10 exhibits that offer an immersive experience to visitors and will be loved by animal lovers of all ages. So, if you wish to see some unique animals, then do plan a visit to the San Antonio Zoo.

Learn the History of Texas at the Missions

One of the top places to visit on the San Antonio Riverwalk is the Missions National Historic Park which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

This popular attraction includes Mission Espada, Mission Concepcion, Mission San Juan, and Mission San Jose. Visitors can also walk to the Alamo from the Mission Reach and complete their Mission Trail.

At the Missions, you can marvel at the church and the ground and learn about its history and the gorgeous architecture of these structures.

Admire the Artwork on the Riverwalk

The Riverwalk is home to some amazing artworks, making it one of the top places to visit in San Antonio for art lovers.

From sculptures to murals, you will find all kinds of unique artworks in the Museum Reach of the riverwalk. One of the most famous artworks to admire here is the Grotto.

There are many other beautiful pieces to see here apart from the Grotto such as the Whispers sculpture, the Fish sculpture, steel plates under the McCullough Bridge and Brooklyn Bridge, and so on.

Visitors can enjoy a walking tour of the Riverwalk to explore these wonderful creations and marvel at them.

Best San Antonio Riverwalk Restaurants

One of the best things to do in San Antonio Riverwalk is to enjoy a delicious meal as you admire the San Antonio River views. You will find many amazing restaurants on the riverwalk that not only offer great views but amazing ambiance as well.

This is why I have picked out a couple of my favorite riverwalk restaurants that you must try in San Antonio.

One of the best restaurants on the San Antonio Riverwalk is Casa Rio which was opened in 1946. This restaurant is famous for its colorful umbrellas and has become a synonym for the best riverwalk restaurants in San Antonio . From playing a Mariachi band to entertain the guests to serving the best Tex-Mex food, this restaurant doesn’t disappoint you at all.

So, if you are looking for a place to eat some delicious Tex-Mex food such as burritos, tacos, etc. while enjoying the river views, then Casa Rio is the best choice.

Restaurant Gwendolyn

For those who are looking for a fine dining experience on the Riverwalk, Restaurant Gwendolyn is one of the best restaurants on the San Antonio Riverwalk.

The best thing about this restaurant is that they prepare dishes using 1850s or earlier recipes only. Moreover, they only use old-school methods to prepare the food and don’t make use of fryers, microwaves, etc.

A few dishes that you must try here are lamb tamales, watermelon gazpacho, and so on.  

Rio Rio Cantina

If you are looking for a good Mexican restaurant on the Riverwalk, then you should try Rio Rio Cantina.

This Mexican restaurant on the San Antonio Riverwalk offers the most delicious Tex-Mex food such as quesadillas, fajitas, street tacos, and so on. Enjoy your delicious meal and the scenic river views while the Mariachi band serenades you at this San Antonio restaurant .

Best San Antonio Riverwalk Hotels

If you wish to explore more of the attractions on the Riverwalk, then you should look for a hotel nearby. Thankfully, you will find good San Antonio riverwalk hotels in all price ranges.

Here are a few best hotels to consider when searching for reliable places to stay on San Antonio Riverwalk.

Omni La Mansion Del Rio

Omni La Mansion Del Rio is one of the best San Antonio Riverwalk hotels that is located just next to the river.

The 4-star hotel features river-facing rooms as well and the Spanish colonial-style building offers a romantic vibe to the customers. Plus, there are lots of fun activities nearby that will keep the guests occupied and happy during their stay here.

Check Prices on Booking.com

The Westin Riverwalk

Another great hotel option to consider on the Riverwalk is The Westin Riverwalk . This Starwood property offers a comfortable and high-end experience to the guests with rooms that are airy and modern. On top of that, you can choose a river-facing room as well. The best thing about this hotel is that the Alamo is only a 13-minute walk from here.

Wyndham Garden River Walk Museum Reach

With both the rooms and the rooftop pool offering views of the San Antonio River, Wyndham Garden River Walk Museum Reach is undoubtedly one of the top San Antonio Riverwalk hotels to stay at. This pet-friendly hotel is great for those who wish to explore the Riverwalk area while not compromising on their comfort during the trip.

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10 Best San Antonio River Walk Things to Do in 2024

The Best Things To Do in Riverwalk San Antonio Texas | Winetraveler.com

Editor’s Note: This brief guide to our favorite things to do on River Walk in San Antonio is part of our travel guide series. Find out about great activities, places to eat, drink and sleep without breaking the bank!

Top Things to Do on San Antonio’s River Walk 2024

San Antonio’s River Walk (also known as  Paseo del Río ) is full of food, drinks, shopping, history, beauty and romance. On one end of the spectrum, you have numerous bars, restaurants and hotels lining a river setting that makes you feel like you’re in Amsterdam (minus some of the “freedoms”).

Not far away from this lively and beautiful scene, you have what remains of the Alamo. The site of an epic siege and battle that raged in 1836 for over 13 days.

Drink at Esquire

The westin river walk.

It’s important to note that River Walk is a popular tourist destination in Texas. It can be somewhat crowded on the weekends, so it’s worth visiting River Walk with an idea of where you want to go beforehand. You should also expect to pay tourist prices at many bars and restaurants. However, if you pick the right establishments, you’ll get great service along with great food and drinks.

Best Things to do on River Walk in San Antonio, Texas | Winetraveler.com

Take a Riverboat Tour Cruise

Riverboat cruises and things to do in San Antonio

Take a 40-minute guided Riverboat cruise through most of River Walk with an award-winning tour company like City Sightseeing San Antonio . You can purchase a pass that includes both the Riverboat excursion, in addition to a 3-day hop-on-and-off bus pass to get out and explore more of the city. It’s one of the best deals you’ll come across for exploring San Antonio. 

Get a Beer, Wine or Margarita To Go at the Bier Garten

Things to do in River Walk San Antonio

Yes, you can walk around with alcohol on River Walk.

River Walk is the type of place you might want to grab a drink to go while you explore. After all… this is a wine blog. We’re enthusiasts of beverages that enhance an already sweet location. That being said, we highly suggest you visit the Bier Garten directly East of The Alamo. You can grab a drink here and trek around the River Walk.

Note that you can only carry drinks openly on the River Walk, not above on the street.

Visit the Alamo

Visiting the Alamo near River Walk San Antonio Texas

In the summer, (June, July & August), you can visit until 7pm. Note that you cannot take pictures inside any buildings on Alamo grounds.

Take a Half-Day City Tour

If you’re looking to get a taste of San Antonio, better understand its history while also stopping by most of the main attractions, this experience is for you. It’s fairly all-encompassing, and also stops at somewhat lesser-known locations like the Japanese Tea Garden and the Grotto. This is also a great tour option if you’d prefer to avoid extensive walking, which can be brutal during the hot months in San Antonio. You’ll have an airconditioned vehicle, professional guide and driver who will pick you up from your downtown hotel. The price is just $65 .

Eat and Drink at Iron Cactus

Best Bars in River Walk San Antonio

This place isn’t the cheapest spot to buy drinks if you’re comparing it to Austin, but they make some mean beverages and feature over 80 different kinds of tequila. It’s a great spot to indulge in both Mexican food and drinks.

Best Restaurants in San Antonio Texas River Walk

Many dishes are done tapas-style. Try the brisket quesadillas and or the crab fritter nachos. If you’re into margarita’s, don’t shy away from the Strawberry Cactus Margarita with Cactus Juice. The bartenders and servers at Iron Cactus are also incredibly knowledgeable about the drink menu, so don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Take a Ghost Tour and Pub Crawl

What better way to experience a ghost tour than with a little buzz? San Antonio’s history spans over 300 years, and if you’re a history buff yourself, you’d know that this city has seen its fair share of violence. Because of this, numerous reports of the paranormal have been documented over the years. There’s no shortage of ghost stories, and this is one of the most popular ways to experience them firsthand if you’re into this sort of thing. The guides on this tour dress up, and even carry lanterns while you walk the city to and from The Alamo and they tell their tales. Reserve a tour here with Ally .

Take a Drunk History Tour

With a drink in hand, get ready to explore San Antonio in our favorite way at Winetraveler: on a drunk history tour . From The Alamo to the spot where Teddy Roosevelt recruited his crew of Rough Riders, you’ll get a fair dose of history. But the guides who operate this experience keep it interesting. You’ll go on a bar crawl through the city’s most historic bars, too.

Warm welcomes, prompt service, heavy pours and exclusive access await you all while you learn history not found on any other tour in a truly unique personalized and boutique tour experience.

This is one of the most highly-rated experiences on our website at the moment and not to be missed on your next trip in San Antonio.

Cruise San Antonio on a Vespa and Side Car

No, you’re not in Europe. You’re in Texas. And yes, you can explore San Antonio in this mode of transportation and eat tacos . That’s exactly what we came to find when we booked a Vespa and Side Car with San Antonio SiDeCaRs. Kevin and Liz will even pick you up from your hotel on this private tour. You’ll get to see some of the most interesting attractions and then head to an authentic local taco establishment. How can you go wrong? 

See San Antonio by Segway

Have you ever been on a segway? We hadn’t either until stopping in San Antonio. This 2-hour experience  keeps you mobile while cruising through the majority of San Antonio’s attractions. It’s also guided, so you’ll get to understand the history of each landmark you stop at, which include HemisFair Park, Tower of the Americas, the Alamodome, Bexar County Courthouse, San Fernando Cathedral, El Mercado, and Arts Village La Villita. You’ll also have plenty of time to have fun riding your Segway and get great photo ops.

Best Bars and Restaurants in Riverwalk San Antonio Texas | Winetraveelr.com

A great spot to end the night. The Esquire Tavern is an amazing, dimly lit & rustic bar elevated above San Antonio’s River Walk. It was opened in 1933 in an effort to celebrate the END of prohibition. It’s also the oldest bar on River Walk. The ambiance is incredible and warming. From the thick wood flooring to the antique lanterns hand-picked by the bar owner at local San Antonio antique shops – there’s an authenticism here unlike most bars on the River Walk strip. You’ll also get true mixologists, as opposed to your typical bartender serving you sexy beverages. If you need a pick-me-up at the end of the night, try the French-pressed coffee with a shot of Bailey’s.

River Walk Facts:   The San Antonio River itself played host to a variety of cultures. These included early Native American tribes, Mexican migrants, as well as Spanish trekkers and settlers in the early 1700s. You’re walking on ground steeped in history!

Best San Antonio River Walk Hotels

There are dozens of hotels within the River Walk area that not only offer a convenient location, but also delightful river views, great food, comfortable rooms, and service. There are two hotels in particular that we recommend and have stayed at previously.

Omni Mansion del Rio

If you’d fancy the ability to step right out of the hotel and onto the river, the Omni La Mansion is a great choice. This 4-Star hotel offers balcony rooms facing the river and their staff are some of the friendliest we’ve come across. It’s a Spanish colonial-style building, and the atmosphere of the place offers a romantic experience and convenience for all of the nearby activities San Antonio has to offer.

Whenever traveling, the ability to rely on a hotel brand is very important to us. This Starwood property and 4-Star Westin Hotel offers a comfortable and upscale experience at a reasonable price. The rooms are modern, elegant refreshing and airy. If you upgrade your room, you can get a balcony overlooking the river. In addition, there’s a delicious Italian restaurant that overlooks the river, and if you get a decent table you’ll be able to enjoy the stunning sight. It also has free WiFi and is only a 13-minute walk to the Alamo. 

Map of River Walk San Antonio | Winetraveler.com

Travel Advice

  • Keep your eyes open as you walk the River Walk. There are numerous plaques throughout the area that will give you insight into River Walk’s history and progress.
  • Consider applying for a travel credit card that earns you a signup bonus and points on travel and dining for free flights to and hotel stays in San Antonio.
  • If you have a smartphone with scanning capabilities, keep an eye out for scannable “QR” barcodes throughout River Walk. When you scan one, you’ll get feedback and historical information related to that particular location.
  • There are numerous maps of River Walk throughout the area, making it fairly easy to navigate. The entire centre of River Walk is a horseshoe attached to a vertical line.
  • There are River Walk educators – paid by Centro San Antonio and called Ambassador Amigos – frequently present on The Walk. They wear bright yellow-orange shirts and provide information and advice to locals and tourists. Don’t be shy and ask your questions, they’re friendly and like what they do .

Frequently Asked Questions about San Antonio River Walk Things to Do

What are the must-see attractions at san antonio’s river walk.

Our readers often want to know the top attractions and must-visit spots on San Antonio’s River Walk. Some popular sites include the Alamo, La Villita Historic Arts Village, Briscoe Western Art Museum, and the Arneson River Theatre. Read our guide to see several more exciting options.

Are there guided tours available along San Antonio’s River Walk?

Yes, there are many guided tour options on River Walk and all around San Antonio. Some of these tours are short experiences along the river itself, others are more all-encompassing half or full-day tours. We recommend guided tours in San Antonio that are operated by locals, to better understand the history and culture of the area. Popular options include riverboat tours, bar & food crawls, walking tours, and even ghost tours. We include several specific tour options in this guide that allow you to schedule and purchase tickets ahead of time.

What are some good restaurants and bars on the River Walk?

San Antonio’s River Walk is famous for its variety of dining options. Winetravelers often ask for recommendations on the best spots to eat or grab a drink. Restaurants like Boudro’s, Iron Cactus, and Ostra are popular choices.

Can you drink alcohol publicly on the River Walk in San Antonio?

Yes, you can walk around with alcohol on River Walk. We highly suggest you visit the Bier Garten directly east of The Alamo. You can grab a drink here and trek around the River Walk at your leisure. Note that you can only carry drinks openly on the River Walk, not above on the street.

Are there any events or festivals happening at the River Walk?

Visitors are often curious about events, festivals, or performances that may be happening during their visit. The River Walk hosts events throughout the year, such as Fiesta San Antonio, the Ford Holiday River Parade, and the Texas Cavaliers River Parade.

What are some family-friendly activities at the River Walk?

Families visiting the Riverwalk frequently ask about activities suitable for children. The DoSeum, San Antonio Aquarium, and LEGOLAND Discovery Center are popular attractions for families with young children, while older kids might enjoy the Tower of the Americas, Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, and the Guinness World Records Museum.

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Enchanting Texas

Exploring San Antonio: A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Things to Do

Best Things to do in San Antonio Texas

Located in the heart of Texas, San Antonio stands as a city with a rich historical and cultural tapestry, making it not only essential to the Lone Star State but also an iconic destination for travelers across America. Its historical significance, iconic attractions, and diverse offerings render San Antonio a must-visit destination for anyone’s bucket list.

San Antonio’s historical importance is deeply ingrained in American history. It was here that the pivotal Battle of the Alamo took place in 1836, a defining moment in the Texas Revolution. The Alamo, now a revered symbol of Texan independence, remains a significant historic site. Additionally, the Alamo City played a vital role in the Spanish colonization of the region, as evidenced by the well-preserved San Antonio Missions, designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site. These missions offer a glimpse into the past, showcasing the melding of Spanish and indigenous cultures in the area.

Greetings from San Antonio mural in San Antonio Texas

Beyond its historical significance, San Antonio boasts a wealth of iconic attractions. The River Walk, a meandering network of scenic canals lined with restaurants, shops, and cultural venues, is a captivating urban oasis. The Tower of the Americas, an architectural marvel, offers panoramic views of the city. The vibrant Market Square showcases the city’s Mexican heritage, while the Pearl District blends history with modernity, featuring upscale shops and culinary delights. San Antonio’s iconic attractions cater to a diverse array of interests, from history buffs to food enthusiasts and art lovers.

San Antonio’s appeal extends beyond its historical and iconic sites; it is a city that offers something for everyone. The city’s vibrant arts scene is evident in its numerous museums, theaters, theme parks, and art galleries. Furthermore, the fusion of Tex-Mex and culinary innovation makes San Antonio a gastronomic paradise. Whether it’s indulging in authentic Mexican cuisine or savoring the latest culinary trends, the city tantalizes taste buds like few others.

For nature enthusiasts, the San Antonio Botanical Garden and nearby natural areas provide serene escapes. And for families, theme parks like SeaWorld and Six Flags Fiesta Texas offer thrilling experiences. San Antonio’s year-round pleasant weather makes it an ideal destination for outdoor activities and leisurely strolls through its charming neighborhoods.

San Antonio Christmas Tree at Travis Park

Top San Antonio Attractions & Activities

Best Time to visit San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio makes the perfect year round destination in Texas.

Visit the city in the sweltering heat of the summer and enjoy splashing fun at Six Flags theme park.

Plan a trip during fall to explore the spectacular colors in the surrounding state parks.

Christmas in San Antonio , TX is the best time to visit to see the gorgeous San Antonio River walk lights.

And of course, you must plan a road trip to San Antonio in spring to see the gorgeous Texas bluebonnets , Indian paintbrushes, and other wildflowers blooming along the roadsides.

We have visited the city in all seasons – and that’s why, are the very best people to tell you about all the cool and awesome things to do in San Antonio, TX!

Also Read: 16 Interesting Day Trips from San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio River Walk Dinner Cruise

Where to stay in San Antonio

The best places to stay in San Antonio are along the Riverwalk.

One of our favorites is the Hotel Valencia, which is a boutique hotel inspired by Valencia, Spain and really enjoyed our stay. 

The hotel building is Spanish colonial style and the rooms open out on their Central courtyards and the Riverwalk.

We recommend getting a Riverwalk room, you get to see the Riverwalk from above. 

Hotel Valencia has really nice decor, an amazing library, as well as a lavish buffet breakfast spread – perfect for a family vacation or a romantic holiday!

There are many other hotels on the San Antonio Riverwalk including Mokara Hotel & Spa, St. Anthony, Hotel Contessa, etc and it is a great central location for your stay in San Antonio.

Also Read: Romantic weekend getaways near San Antonio, Texas

Views of the San Antonio Riverwalk from the hotel room

Best Things to do in San Antonio

While the San Antonio Riverwalk is the first thing that comes to the mind when planning a trip to the city, there are many things to do in San Antonio besides the Riverwalk. 

We recommend planning a two to three day trip to check out the city’s best tourist attractions including the Alamo, Pearl District, and the Mercado. 

Here are our favorite things to do in and around San Antonio Downtown.

We have also included popular attractions located a few miles away from the city center including amusement parks and natural attractions. 

Take a stroll on the San Antonio Riverwalk

The San Antonio Riverwalk is the most popular tourist attraction in the city.

It has beautiful landscaping and architecture and is a striking place. 

Besides the architecture, there are many other things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk.

In the downtown section, you can dine along the river, take a narrated river cruise, people watch, go shopping, enjoy fine dining, and admire the artwork. 

Also Read: Best beaches near San Antonio, Texas

Tourists taking San Antonio river cruise in Texas

Or you could just drink a cold beer or a margarita and watch the world go by.

Whatever you choose to do, the time spent on the Riverwalk will make your trip the most memorable one. 

Travel Tip! There are so many things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk, that we have a separate post on the Best Things to do on the San Antonio Riverwalk . Read it before you go to plan your San Antonio trip!

Visit the historic and famous Alamo

After the Riverwalk, the Alamo is the second most popular San Antonio things to do for visitors.

The Alamo, originally known as Misión San Antonio de Valero, is a part of the San Antonio Missions UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Built in the 18th century, the historic mission was the site of the famous Battle of the Alamo that spurred the Texas War for Independence.

Visitors can visit the Alamo and pay respects to those that died during the 13 day historic battle including the texan heroes James Bowie, Davy Crockett, and William Travis. 

The Alamo in San Antonio is one of the most popular places to visit in Texas

The Alamo is also a national historic landmark.

Visiting the Alamo is a powerful moment.

It lets you relive Texas history and the iconic events that led up to the Battle of Alamo.

Inside the Alamo, you can admire its iconic façade, visit the Alamo Church, see the exhibits at the Long Barrack Museum, learn about the Texas Revolution, as well as walk around the courtyard.

Engraving of Col Travis Victory or Death letter in front of the Alamo

Explore the other San Antonio Missions

The San Antonio Missions UNESCO Site constitutes 5 different historic Spanish frontier missions.

They are together preserved as the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park. 

The five San Antonio, TX Missions are Mission Concepción, Mission San Jose, Mission San Juan, Mission Espada, and also the famous Alamo.

Mission San Juan Capistrano in San Antonio Texas USA. The Mission is a part of the San Antonio Missions UNESCO World Heritage Site

These were the outposts built by the Spanish empire to spread Christianity and for defense purposes.

The mission grounds included farmlands, church, residential areas, and granaries. 

While Alamo is the most famous and frequently visited of the San Antonio Missions, the rest are equally beautiful to explore.

They are one of the most important historical sites in America.

They can be easily accessed by walking or biking along the 10 miles of the Mission trail. 

The Alamo is now a museum but the other four missions continue to operate as active parishes of the Catholic church and are open to the public.

Interior of Mission Espada in San Antonio Texas

Each of the Missions is beautiful and unique.

The missions are built in a beautiful Spanish colonial style of architecture and very well-preserved.

Mission San Jose is decorated with beautiful examples of Spanish colonial embellishments.

In Mission Concepcion, you will get to see original frescos in some of the church rooms. 

Mission San Juan Capistrano is famous for its Romanesque entrance archway.

In Mission Espada, part of the original irrigation system is still in operation. 

Entrance to San Antonio Missions is free of cost and we definitely recommend seeing them if you are a history buff.

Mission Concepcion is a part of the San Antonio Missions UNESCO World Heritage Site

Cruise down the San Antonio River

While the Riverwalk looks beautiful from the banks, to enjoy it from the water, we recommend a boat ride down the river.

The cruises last about 30 to 40 minutes and the tour guides do an excellent job of explaining the city’s architecture and history. 

The tour is the best way to explore the entire river walk in the shortest amount of time.

You will pass by the lock fence and can take great photos of the historic buildings as well as structures that you will see along the river walk. 

Kids especially enjoy the boat cruise and this is one of our favorite family friendly things to do in San Antonio.

You can also book private tours for special occasions and proposals. 

Bright Fall Foliage on the San Antonio Riverwalk in Texas

Experience the Tejano culture at the El Mercado

El Mercado or the Historic Market Square of San Antonio is one of the liveliest places in the city.

It is more vibrant and authentic than the famous but touristy Riverwalk. 

The Market Square has an interesting and rich history.

The land where the market stands was gifted to the first settlers of San Antonio by the King of Spain in 1730.

The market is spread over three city blocks surrounded by Dolorosa, Santa Rosa, and West Commerce Streets. 

The Historic Market has beautiful Spanish colonial architecture and lots of colorful decorations to resemble an authentic Mexican market.

It has shops, restaurants, landscaping, fountains, and also benches for people to sit. 

The El Mercado is the largest Mexican market north of the border!

On weekends and during Hispanic festivals, the El Mercado is filled with festivities.

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on a large scale and is accompanied by music, dancing, heritage performances, as well as lots of authentic food. 

Even on weekends, you will find a festive atmosphere.

Traditional Mexican Mariachi bands play in the square and dancers in traditional attire entertain guests.

Even the visitors join in the dancing and fun. 

Visit Mi Tierra and enjoy Christmas year round

The Historic Market Square is known for its delicious Mexican and Tex-Mex fare.

The most popular restaurants in the Market are Mi Tierra Cafe and Bakery, La Margarita Restaurant and Oyster Bar, and the Viva Villa Taqueria. 

You should definitely visit the historic Mi Tierra Cafe. It is open 24/7 and renowned for its Tex-Mex cuisine.

A highlight of the visit is the decor. 

Mi Tierra has a festive atmosphere and Christmas lights twinkle year round in the cafe.

The iconic “American Dream” mural inside the cafe is also worth seeing.

It features over 100 influential Hispanic personalities.

A separate Food Court is located inside the Farmer’s Market Building.

On a visit to the market, you can enjoy a variety of Tex Mex and authentic Mexican food and drinks by local vendors. 

You can try tacos, enchiladas, tamales, chalupas, churros, empanada, as well as the popular street corn.

Do not forget to try the Michelada – Mexico’s famous spiced beer cocktail at the Mercado. 

Also Read: Best Restaurants in San Antonio, Texas

Shop for authentic Mexican goods and decor

Of course, you cannot leave San Antonio without shopping at the El Mercado or the San Antonio Market Square.

The public market has everything from produce, Mexican curios, jewelry, accessories, and home goods.

It is also the perfect place to buy some San Antonio souvenirs such as magnets, postcards, frames, hats, and more. 

The locally-owned shops offer a variety of products influenced by the American Southwest and Mexico. 

You can buy unique items like hand-crafted leather goods, pottery, glassware, wood carvings, candles, jewelry, portraits, and also spices. 

You can also see artists creating the products at the market.

We love shopping for curious and unique Texas souvenirs at the market and recommend it as a fun activity while in San Antonio. 

Also Read: San Antonio to Big Bend National Park road trip

Check out the stunning San Fernando Cathedral and the Main Plaza light show

The San Fernando cathedral of San Antonio is located in the city’s main plaza and is a must visit.

Built in 1873, the cathedral has very beautiful architecture. You can take a guided tour to see it from the inside. 

The remains of those who died in the battle of the Alamo are buried here.

The exterior facade of the church is also very striking and is one of the top places to photograph in San Antonio. 

In the evening and at night, you can see the San Fernando Cathedral Light Show.

The laser show is accompanied by music and takes place every 30 minutes.

The Main Plaza cathedral light show show depicts the history of Texas in pictures and lights and is a must for every Texan. 

San Fernando Cathedral And Christmas Tree Main Plaza - San Antonio Texas

See the beautiful collection of the San Antonio Museum of Art

The San Antonio Museum of Art, located in the Museum Reach of the San Antonio Riverwalk, is definitely worth a visit.

The museum is located in the historic Lone Star Brewery building and looks like a sprawling castle. 

The Museum of Art has more than 30,000 art pieces from across the world.

It has historic and cultural artifacts from Egypt, Greece, and Rome.

It also has a vast collection of Asian Art, Latin American Art, and post-war American art. 

The museum features a big collection of artwork by contemporary Texas artists. The museum also has many temporary exhibitions which are worth a visit.

Grotto sculpture near Pearl Brewery on the San Antonio Riverwalk in Texas

Enjoy the culinary side of San Antonio

Did you know that San Antonio is named a ‘Creative City of Gastronomy’ by UNESCO? 

This is a much-deserved honor since San Antonio has given delicious cuisine to the world – it is the birthplace of Tex-Mex dishes! 

This blend of Mexican and European cuisine is responsible for everyone’s favorite dishes including enchiladas, fajitas, nachos, hard-shell tacos, and even chili. 

The city’s gastronomy is always developing as new flavors from around the world are merged with its own. 

While the most popular restaurants are located along the Riverwalk, do not forget to try out other popular eateries in other areas of the city.

Read our post on Best Restaurants in San Antonio to know where to go.

Ice cream on the San Antonio River Walk, Texas

Take a horse carriage ride around the city

Visiting San Antonio for a romantic weekend or anniversary? Take a horse carriage ride around downtown!

When you visit the Alamo, you will be struck by the many horse carriages standing around the Alamo Plaza. 

Visitors can take a horse carriage ride to explore the San Antonio downtown and Riverwalk area.

It is definitely one of the more fun and romantic ways to see the popular places in San Antonio. 

We have taken the carriage ride many times and love it.

The horse carriage rides are about 20 minutes long and cost about $25 per person, kids ride free.

No bookings are necessary. To get a ride, you can simply walk up to the carriage and pay the driver. 

San Antonio downtown carriage rides

See the beautiful San Antonio Botanical Garden

To spend a day outdoors, visit the San Antonio Botanical Garden.

This 33-acre large oasis is located in the middle of the city and was conceived in the 1940s. 

The highlights of the San Antonio Botanical garden include the Sullivan Carriage House, formal and display gardens, native gardens, an overlook tower, and the Lucile Halsell Conservatory. 

The conservatory is our favorite place to visit.

It has alpine plants, aquatic plants, cacti and succulents, carnivorous plants, epiphytes, ferns and aroids, tropical fruits, and large palms! 

There is also a Japanese garden, known as Kumamoto En, that mirrors styles of Suizenji Park and Katsura Detached Palace garden in Kyoto. 

An interesting feature of the San Antonio Botanical garden is the Sullivan Carriage House.

It was designed by Alfred Giles for banker Daniel J. Sullivan in 1896 and serves as the main entrance to the garden.

Here, you will also find a restaurant and gift shop.

We recommend about 2 to 3 hours to explore the garden.

View the artwork along the Riverwalk Museum Reach

The Museum Reach of the San Antonio Riverwalk has plenty of sculptures and public artworks.

One of the most popular works is The Grotto.

This striking sculpture is carved in cement and has seashells, stalactites, stalagmites, waterfalls, and a face hidden on the inside of the sculpture.

The sculpture is three-story tall and immense, It makes a great photo opportunity in San Antonio. 

Explore the vibrant Pearl District

San Antonio’s lively and trendy pool district is fast becoming one of the top San Antonio attractions.

At the center of this neighborhood you will find the historic Pearl Brewery, one of Texas’ largest breweries.

The iconic Pearl beer was brewed here from the late 18th century to 2001. Today the brewery houses a food hall. 

A must-visit is Bakery Lorraine which is located just opposite the brewery.

You will also find many cafes, bars, and restaurants in the area. Paul is also known for boutique shopping, loft apartments, and office spaces.

The gorgeous Hotel Emma is also located in the brewery and is worth a look. 

The district hosts many events and festivals including the Monarch Butterfly festival and the Dia de Los Muertos Festival.

Even if nothing is going on, the Pearl is a great place to just hang out on the lawn, play games, and spend quality time with your loved ones. 

Shop at the Farmers Market in Pearl

On the weekends, the Pearl District is home to San Antonio’s famous farmers market.

We love visiting this market and it’s many stalls. You can easily find artisan goods, cheeses, baked goods, produce, local honey, wine as well as small eats.

That is always plenty to see, eat, and drink at the farmer’s market. 

Visit the Natural Bridge Caverns

The Natural Bridge Caverns is the largest underground attraction in Texas.

The caverns are stunning and feature a variety of geological formations.

San Antonios Natural Bridge Caverns entrance

Visitors can see the Natural Bridge caverns and explore its beautiful formations on a guided tour.

There are a couple of different types of tours depending on your interest. 

We recommend the popular Discovery tour if you are physically fit.

The tour is about 75 minutes long and takes you through several rooms inside the Natural Bridge caverns.

You can see stalactites, stalagmites, soda straws, flowstones, and chandeliers on the tour. 

The Natural Bridge Caverns are amazing to explore

Apart from the caverns there are many other attractions near the Natural Bridge.

Kids can have fun panning for gems and minerals at the Natural Bridge Mining Company Sluice. 

You can also see bats fly at Natural Bridge at sundown – in fact, this is one of the most popular bat watching sites in Texas .

They can also go zip lining or complete the obstacle course.

Mexican Free tailed Bats emerge from their cave at night

Spending a day in the Natural Bridge area is fun for the whole family. 

Natural Bridge Caverns is definitely one of the best things to do in Texas with kids .

Take a safari at the Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch

Our kids love visiting the Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch Safari.

This is a drive through African style safari. Families can watch and feed many different animals from the car. 

Natural Bridge Safari is one of the best drive through safaris in Texas

It is an amazing experience to drive through the park and get up close with so many free wild animals.

On different trips we have been lucky enough to feed zebras, goats, wildebeest, horned oryx, deer, antelope, and llamas. 

Kids can feed zebras at the Natural Bridge Caverns Widllife Safari

Apart from the drive-thru Safari area there are many other attractions at the ranch including a small zoo, the petting barn, the trading post gift shop, and a restaurant.

Tip: We really love the fries served at this restaurant! They are crunchy and delicious. 

See the marine life at SeaWorld San Diego

SeaWorld San Antonio is a marine theme park that is extremely popular with kids.

SeaWorld San Diego offers many thrilling roller coaster rides, fun animal performances and shows, and interactive experiences with marine animals such as dolphins, penguins, Beluga whale, and also sea lions.

This is a great place to visit for animal lovers.

Ride the thrilling roller coasters at Six Flags Fiesta Texas

Located around 16 miles away from downtown San Antonio, Six Flags Fiesta Texas is a must visit if you have more time in the city.

The amusement park has many thrill rides, family rides, kids rides, and water park rides for visitors to enjoy. 

The most popular and famous Six Flags Fiesta Texas rides including Batman, Goliath, Superman Krypton Coaster, White Water Rapids, and Kidee Koaster can be found in the San Antonio location.

We recommend spending an entire day here to get your money’s worth. 

Spend a day playing at the Doseum

The Doseum is San Antonio’s museum for kids and is a wonderful place to keep the little ones busy on a rainy or hot summer day. 

While there are not enough activities to keep older kids interested, toddlers and preschoolers have a blast at the museum. 

There are many toys, interactive exhibits, and activities and you can easily spend anywhere from a couple of hours to half a day at the museum. 

The museum is popular with both San Antonio residents as well as tourists.

See the animals at the San Antonio zoo

Located inside the urban Brackenridge Park, the San Antonio Zoo is great to visit with kids.

The San Antonio Zoo is quite large and has over 8,000 animals.

It also has a reptile house where you can see snakes and amphibians. 

Kids can see elephants, jaguars, lions, bald eagles, hippos, kangaroos, alligators, monkeys, zebras, giraffes, turtles, and many birds.

Kids can also feed the giraffes for an additional price. 

Other attractions in the San Antonio zoo include the carousel, a train ride, and the butterfly exhibit.

Take in the beauty of the Japanese Tea Garden

San Antonio’s Japanese Tea Garden is free to visit and hence, one of our favorite San Antonio attractions.

This beautiful Japanese garden is created in an unused rock quarry. Hence it is also called the Sunken Garden. 

You will find many beautiful trees, ponds, waterfalls, and even koi fish in the pond.

The garden looks beautiful year round, but our favorite time to visit it is during spring.

It also provides a great respite on a hot summer day. 

The garden has rocky paths and steps so we advise being cautious, especially if you have kids.

The garden is located right next to the zoo in Brackenridge Park and you can easily see both the attractions in a single visit. 

Be amazed by the dinosaurs at the Witte Museum

If you have kids who love dinosaurs, then make a beeline for the Witte Museum.

The small museum is nicely laid out and has enough displays to keep the kids interested for a couple of hours. 

This natural history museum is based on Texas and has exhibits on everything from the dinosaurs that were found here to the history of the state.

There are many interactive exhibits as well including feeling animal hides, digging for dinosaur bones, and more. 

That is also information about the weather, and native plants and animals, indigenous people of Texas, the first settlers, etc. 

See the view from the Tower of the Americas

The magnificent Tower of the Americas building was built for the 1968 HemisFair held in San Antonio.

The tower is 750 ft tall and has an observation deck that is open to visitors.

The view of the city from the top is just amazing. 

There is a revolving restaurant at the top of the door where you can go for drinks and appetizers during the happy hour.

If you are dining at the restaurant you can go to the top and admire the view for free, otherwise you will need tickets for the observation deck. 

Walk around the King William Historic District and dine at Guenther House

King William Historic District is one of the hidden gems of San Antonio.

This was the city’s first suburb and was settled by wealthy German merchants in the late 1800s.

The suburb is located by the river walk and is amazing to take a stroll. 

On a visit to the historic district you can admire the beautiful grand old mansions.

They have striking architecture and intricate details. Most of the houses are extremely photogenic.

They all have beautifully landscaped lawns and gardens. The neighborhood is peaceful and charming for a walk. 

You can end your visit at the Guenther House Museum and Restaurant.

They have amazing food and dining in the historical setting is great fun.

This is a great place to have breakfast in San Antonio . 

See the beautiful Majestic and Empire Theaters

If you are a history buff then you should definitely visit the beautiful Majestic theatre and Empire theatre in Downtown San Antonio.

Located in the heart of the city on Houston Street and St Mary’s Street, these theaters are beautiful works of architecture. 

Majestic theater was built in 1929 while the Empire Theater is slightly older and was built in 1914.

Both the theaters are national historic landmarks and are beautiful to look around and photograph. 

Seeing a performance in the magnificent old theater is an amazing experience.

The theaters have impressive decor and beautiful intricate designs while the show quality is equivalent to that of Broadway. 

Also Read: 10 Best German Towns near San Antonio, Texas

Step into the Wild West at the Buckhorn Saloon and Texas Ranger Museum

The Buckhorn Saloon and Museum is one of the most interesting museums to visit in Texas.

It offers a unique, fun, and intensive experience for the entire family. It is located right by the river walk and easily accessible. 

You can learn more about history in the Texas Ranger section.

Our favorite though is the oddities, curiosities, and mystery area.

The taxidermy animals are also amazing to see.

You will also see a lot of guns, relics, and an entire replica of an old Western city. 

After seeing the museum have a beer and some Texas style barbecue in the saloon.

Both the brisket and pulled pork served here is spot on.

The decor is that of an old time saloon and you can almost imagine cowboys sitting at the table with their horses tied outside in the days of the Wild West. 

We recommend this underrated San Antonio attraction for everyone and suggest keeping aside two to three hours to explore it fully. 

Take the kids to the San Antonio Fire Museum

The San Antonio fire museum is a great place to take kids of all ages.

The museum has many exhibits about narrating the history of the San Antonio firefighters.

Kids love seeing the variety of fire trucks and meeting retired firefighters who volunteer at the Museum.

We hope you enjoyed our post on the best things to do in San Antonio.

Did we miss out on any attraction? Please let us know in the comments.

Popular resources to plan your Texas trip

  • Looking for Best Road Trip Ideas in Texas.  Read this .
  • Want to plan your Texas road trip in a few easy steps? Read our  Texas Road Trip Planner  now. 
  • Best Places to Visit in Texas.  Read our list of favorites  including the San Antonio Riverwalk and the Bolivar Peninsula here.
  • Read  Things to Know Before you go to Texas  prior to planning your trip!

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We r visiting on 30th Dec 21 hope we will enjoy the best ..

Fantastic information about all .. great

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Note:  All travel is subject to frequently-changing governmental restrictions—please check federal, state, and local advisories before scheduling trips.

When you think of San Antonio, Texas, two things probably come to mind: The Alamo and the city’s famed River Walk. While the Alamo is of course a must-visit for any Texas trip, the River Walk offers enough sights, sounds and eats to spend a whole weekend. Next time you’re in San Antonio, use this handy illustrated map to check out the best attractions the famed stretch of pedestrian waterway has to offer.

RELATED: 7 kid-friendly hotels in San Antonio

San Antonio Riverwalk map with attractions

San Antonio Riverwalk map with attractions

Infographic transcript

San Antonio is the most visited city in Texas, and we’re here to tell y’all that’s for good reason. The city oozes Texas charm, is chock full of history (Remember the Alamo!), and offers no shortage of amazing spots serving housemade guac. The best way to sample it all is through its famous River Walk, a stretch of pedestrian waterway lined with cafes, shops, and boutique hotels. If you go, be sure to check out these essential stops along the walk!

Hotel Havana Oozing with old-school charm, this historic hotel lures guests with it’s retro Cuban flare and colorful common spaces overlooking the buzzing waterway below.

Acenar Duck into this contemporary eatery for some of the best modern Tex-Mex cuisine in town. Don’t miss their famous chile rellenos!

Museum Reach Meet the newest addition to the River Walk! This 1.3-mile stretch of pedestrian waterway leads to the Pearl Brewery area and is framed by native foliage and funky art installations.

Bier Garten Riverwalk This open-air beer garden is the perfect spot for a mid-day cold one paired with traditional German food and costumed, singing waiters.

Go Rio River Cruise : Gather the whole family aboard a river boat and do the River Walk via water. Go Rio offers fun and informative river cruises.

Shops at River Center Peruse 50+ stores housed within the historic Joske Building. Enjoy everything from retail favorites to Jimmy Buffet’s Margartiaville.

Pearl Brewery This former brewery is now home to the city’s hippest restaurants. It offers fun public spaces and an expansive green lawn that kids love.

The County Line Bring a bib when you stop at this BBQ hot spot. The funky roadhouse atmosphere will delight the entire group, as will the hefty, finger-licking platters.

Arneson River Theater Catch an outdoor music or theatrical performance. Arneson River Theater offers the stage on one side of the river and spectator seating on the other.

Drury Plaza Hotel Riverwalk Just steps from the river, this hotel boasts an outdoor pool and a nice bar and lounge. You’ll be shocked at the size of the rooms!

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Home » What to Do » San Antonio Riverwalk – The Best Things to Do, Travel Tips & Photos

San Antonio Riverwalk – The Best Things to Do, Travel Tips & Photos

San Antonio Riverwalk - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

Discovering the San Antonio Riverwalk

Since moving to Austin, Texas Peter and I have been making time on the weekends to explore our new city and state. Recently we had the opportunity to head south to San Antonio to explore the San Antonio Riverwalk. We absolutely loved it and wanted to share our discoveries and gorgeous photos of the area with you!

While San Antonio may not be as well known as the larger metropolis of Dallas or hipster Austin, it has a wonderful charm and successfully blends its Mexican/Spanish/Native American roots with modern big city influences. And the San Antonio Riverwalk is the perfect example of this.

I know the San Antonio Riverwalk is a “touristy” location but after looking through the cute Riverwalk photos on Pinterest we had to check it out. Actually, Peter and I usually always visit what many would deem as touristy, I mean why not, it’s so visited for a reason.

After spending just a day along the waterfront, we knew we’d be back to explore it at full length and attend some of the very cool events that take place on and around the river during the year.

Let’s take a look at what we found and what we look forward to on future visits!

San Antonio Riverwalk - Best time to Visit - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

San Antonio Riverwalk History

San Antonio and its river have a long and storied history, visited by early explorers and home to a large Spanish mission system, as well as a Native American population. The repeated flooding of the river over the centuries changed the landscape of this town and broadened its borders. It also changed the face of the population and how the town would evolve.

The largest change to the river took place from the 1920s to 1940s, after severe flooding damaged the town and resulted in numerous deaths. A small dam, floodgates, and a bypass were constructed to prevent future damage. In addition, they built walkways along the river, stairs up to street level, footbridges, and decorative rock walls. This became known as the San Antonio Riverwalk, for obvious reasons.

Over the years the Riverwalk has undergone renovations, additions, and extensions, including the addition of a botanical garden in 1956. But the biggest changes occurred when the architects of Disneyland drafted a report in the 1960s on how San Antonio could capitalize on the tourist traffic along their riverine pathway.

That report would act as the guiding influence to develop the San Antonio Riverwalk into what it is today: a beautiful setting, with hotels, restaurants, shops, lush greenery, pedestrian bridges, bike trails and so much more.

Currently, the San Antonio River Improvements Project is in its last phases, which will link over 2,000 acres of public land with the river, accessible to hikers, bikers, and a large number of visitors and citizens who enjoy this venue year round.

The San Antonio Riverwalk Today

Located one level down from the traditional auto roadway, the 15-mile Riverwalk is a network of pathways that hug and cross the river (on special pedestrian bridges). There’s no need for a car, as this pedestrian path connects many of the city’s tourist destinations, including 5 miles through downtown San Antonio.

In addition to the many shops and restaurants that line the Riverwalk, you can also access the five Spanish missions, the San Antonio Museum of Art, Arneson River Theater, the heart-shaped Marriage Island, and the Pearl.

The Best Things to Do – San Antonio Riverwalk

There is so much to see and so at the San Antonio Riverwalk that I could never do it justice in a blog post, but I want to give you a glimpse of some of the wonderful things we saw and experienced, so you can start to plan your journey to the Riverwalk.

Catholic Church in San Antonio - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

San Antonio Missions National Historical Park

There were 5 frontier missions created by the Catholic Church out of Spain in the 18th and 19th centuries. While the goal was to bring Christianity to the native population, these missions also created towns and served as outposts for a developing area. Four of the five missions are included in this national park and are all located on or within short walking distance of the Riverwalk. They are worth exploring, as they tell a great story on how this area developed over the centuries. And how often do you get to see buildings that are 300 years old?!?

san antonio activities - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

The fifth mission, not part of this park, is the Alamo . The mission became a Spanish military outpost in the early 1800s and remained so after Mexico became an independent nation. The famous battle for Texas Independence saw the Alamo in the thick of things. While the Alamo eventually fell, the famous line “Remember the Alamo” was uttered by General Sam Houston at an epic battle near what is now Houston. And the rest, as they say, is history.

The Alamo Tour - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

We weren’t able to take the guided tour (which I would recommend), but we did get to wander around the battlegrounds and compound. We saw the Alamo Church, the Long Barrack Museum, and even wandered around the gift shop. Every stone is steeped in history and I would highly recommend making a stop to get a better understanding of this piece of American history.

The Majestic Theater

This is truly a magnificent theater, both inside and out. A grand dame at 90 years old, she has held up well, thanks to a $15 million dollar facelift in the early 1990s. The theater plays host to musical giants, Broadway plays and musicals, national dance tours, and holiday special events. If you are an architectural buff, try and get a peak inside…it will take your breath away.

what to do in san antonio - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

This is a great example of revitalization along the Riverwalk. Originally a brewery founded in 1881, this property has seen a renaissance of sorts in the last decade. Buildings have undergone complete renovation and restoration and now house the Culinary Institute of America, 15 food venues, weekend farmer’s market, hotel and apartments, 13 retail venues, and a yoga studio.

This historical gem dates back to the 1880s when it was one of the first neighborhoods in San Antonio. While it fell into disrepair at different times in its life, it has been completely restored and now is host to an Arts Village.

We meandered among all the buildings and especially enjoyed the work by local artists at the galleries and shops. From pottery to stained glass, woodworking to oil paints, it was a feast for our eyes. You can also pop into the La Villita History Exhibit to get a better feel for the rich history behind this plaza or catch a performance at the outdoor Arneson River Theater.

San Antonio Riverwalk restaurants - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

San Antonio Riverwalk Restaurants

There is no shortage of restaurants, cafés, bistros, and bars along the Riverwalk, many of which have patio tables overlooking the water. No matter the time, what you’re hungry for, or your budget, you can find it here. While there are some national chain restaurants, many of the offerings are locally owned.

We especially liked Bakery Lorraine, a Viennese patisserie that made the most scrumptious macarons. (We tried pistachio and strawberry on our visit paired with a coffee from Local Coffee across the way.)

We also stopped in at Boudro’s for some guacamole, made tableside with the freshest of ingredients. I loved being able to tell the waiter exactly how spicy I wanted it! Perfect Tex-Mex cuisine.

I really wish we could have sampled a few more food venues. Maybe a margarita at Café Ole or frosty cold one at the BierGarten, dinner at Biga on the Banks (I read about this in Gourmet magazine), or some good ol’ Texas BBQ at The County Line. (Mmmm, I’m hungry now!) Anyway, there is no way you’ll go away hungry while trekking around the Riverwalk!

Shops at RiverCenter

This may be a shopping mall, but it’s one that far exceeds anything from my hometown! A modern mall with classic architecture, it houses over 100 retail shops and restaurants, multiplex cinema and large Marriott Hotel (complete with rooftop pool). It’s a nice detour off the Riverwalk and perfect for retail therapy.

riverwalk san antonio - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

San Antonio Riverwalk Boat Ride

A narrated boat ride that is the perfect way to start your day on the Riverwalk. These open-air boats give you a good glimpse of all there is to see and do on the Riverwalk. While it’s $10 for a one-way pass, you can splurge on a $12 pass and get a ride one way in the morning and another in the evening, or spend $16 and get a museum pass to boot!

Best Time to Visit San Antonio Riverwalk

There’s really no bad time to visit the Riverwalk, however, if you have an aversion to extreme heat, don’t like rainstorms, or want to see some of the more colorful events that happen on the river or on the Riverwalk, then we’ll narrow it down for you.

Weather in San Antonio The weather in San Antonio ranges from moderate winters to steaming hot summers. December through February, you’ll see daytime temps in the 60s, with very little rain. March and November run in the 70s during the day and see about 2 inches of rain. April, May, and October hit the 80s and get 3-4 inches of rain.

June through September you can expect HOT and humid. The weather will be in the 90s during the day and barely cooling off to 70 degrees at night. Humidity tends to be high. You’ll also see rain in the 2-4 inch range.

I should mention that rainstorms come and go in the blink of an eye. One minute you are walking in the sunshine, then a burst of thunderous rain hails down for 30 minutes, and then it’s gone, replaced by sunshine. (It’s like nature’s way of making you stop for a cappuccino or a glass of merlot!)

We visited in March and as you can see the sun is shining and I didn’t even need a sweater!

San Antonio Riverwalk Events

It’s never a dull moment on the San Antonio Riverwalk and there’s always something to celebrate! Both the river and the Riverwalk play host to a variety of festivals, parades, and activities throughout the year. Here is a glimpse of just some of the more popular events to plan your visit around.

April: Texas Cavaliers River Parade One of several river parades held throughout the year, this annual event began in 1941 and is now run by the Texas Cavaliers Charitable Foundation. A huge event, with over 250,000 spectators, you’ll witness festively decorated boats, a regatta of floating floral arrangements, hear some great music and eat some wonderful food. Proceeds from the event support local children’s charities.

April: Mariachi Festival This 3-day festival, sponsored by Ford, features mariachi bands and Folklorico dancers from local schools and communities performing up and down the river! That’s right, musicians and dancers board flat-bottomed boats to serenade and entertain diners and visitors along the Riverwalk.

May: Yellow Ribbon Project Throughout the month of April yellow ribbons are sold to honor our armed forces. Each ribbon is printed with the name of an honoree and hung on trees along the Riverwalk from May 7th to May 20th, when the Armed Forces River Parade takes place. Great weather, great cause, a great way to show your support for our troops, too!

August: Ford River Race The only day of the year where the river is taken over by canoes! This annual event, hosted by the Boy Scouts, pits different categories of participants against one another in a canoe challenge. Local celebrities battle it out in one race, Boy and Girl Scouts in another, and Corporate teams get cutthroat to see who can paddle to the finish line first. Even better, most of the teams dress up in costume! Sip on a cold beer and cheer on your favorite team!

November: Holiday River Parade This is one event that has become so well known that it is now televised across America! Held the day after the Thanksgiving, this spectacular event features 27 handpicked and lavishly decorated floats. Traveling along the river, you get to see some over-the-top costuming, listen to holiday music, and marvel and the decorating genius.

Artisan Shows Artists and craftspeople from near and far descend upon the Riverwalk on a regular basis for their artisan shows. There’s the Fiesta Artisan Show (April), Memorial Day Artisan Show (May), Fourth of July Artisan Show (July), Summer Artisan Show (July), Labor Day Artisan Show (September), Fall Artisan Show (October), and the Holiday Artisan Show (December).

As you can see, there is plenty to do and see at the San Antonio Riverwalk. One day was just not enough, so we’ll take a long weekend sometime soon to go back and explore more of what this beautiful area has to offer. I hope you’ll think about doing the same!

Happy Travels! – Vanessa

PS. If you’re planning on visiting San Antonio, make sure to take the short drive to Austin, Texas! I lived thre for a year and that city really has so much to offer! Check out my travel guide – The Best Things to do in Austin !

things to do in San Antonio Texas - love this quick and easy guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk - great pics too!

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Magic – las vegas convention center, yosemite in winter – amazing photos of california’s winter wonderland, the world’s giants, point lobos california state park.

San Antonio was one of those cities I never visited, but I did visit Austin before it became as popular as it is today. Texas seems to have a lot of hidden gems, but I honestly didn’t realize that the Riverwalk looked this lush until I saw your photos. Thanks for sharing.

Ethan Jackson

That looks beautiful. Very scenic and green. Thanks for sharing the information and pictures.

If you’re down by the Riverwalk you have to go to the Shops at the Broadway Newsstand! I’ve lived here my whole life and never knew about this place until just recently and it’s not huge tourist destination if you want to go where the locals are. Great jewelry and fashion and an overall awesome collective of people with an experience like nothing else!

Must be a fantastic place. Those macarons look yummi. 🙂

http://misspippisstyle.blogspot.hu/

Nadia Cohen

Hi Vanessa, I had the opportunity to visit San Antonio for the first time last Novemebr and it was breath-taking that Riverwalk. I only spent a few hours there but it’s definitely a goal to return for several days next time. Wonderful blog post by the way; very information 🙂 http://www.ubetterwork.blogspot.com

Victoria M.

I always wanted to go to San Antonio and this post of yours just made me run to buy the tickets! The riverwalk looks like an amazing experience, that is just one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen and as you said it has very cool mexican/spanish vibe, I am just a big fan of those places, full of culture and history, I just can’t wait to go next month! Thanks for this amazing post and those lovely pictures 🙂

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Frequently Asked Questions About The Riverwalk

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Frequently asked questions about the Riverwalk

We receive hundreds and hundreds of emails each year asking a wide variety of questions about the Riverwalk and visiting San Antonio in general. Some are very unique but many of you have questions about the same things. Here is a list of some of the most frequently asked questions about the Riverwalk that we receive, along with our answers!  If you do not find a specific question you have answered here, feel free to email us at [email protected] .  We will get back to you as quickly as we can! Have questions about the Riverwalk? We are happy to help!

Here Are Some Frequently Asked Questions About The Riverwalk

Q: How long is the Riverwalk? A. The downtown portion of the Riverwalk is roughly 1.5 miles. Including the Museum Reach section of the river and the Mission Reach section it now spans about 15 miles.

Q: What is the physical address of the Riverwalk? A: The Riverwalk does not have a physical address. With the addition of the Museum and Mission Reaches it runs for many, many miles. A central location would be the Hard Rock Cafe. Their address is 111 West Crockett Street, San Antonio, TX 78205.

Q. How deep is the Riverwalk? A. In the downtown (Horseshoe area) of the Riverwalk it is only 3 or 4 feet deep. It does get deeper in the main channel and near the lock and dam on the Museum Reach.

Q: How far is the Alamo from the Riverwalk? In the downtown area the Riverwalk is only a block or two away from the Alamo. They are very close together.

Q: Where is the Riverwalk in San Antonio? A: The main portion of the Riverwalk is located in downtown San Antonio. It flows from the north of downtown, through downtown and then exits and flows through Southtown and the King William Historic District.

Q: What time does the Riverwalk close? A: Technically the Riverwalk never closes. You can walk along it at any time, day or night. Of course the businesses on the Riverwalk do close at night. Most of the restaurants close around 10pm and the bars at 2am.

Q: Do I need a reservation to ride the Go Rio Cruises river boats or can we just walk up and buy a ticket? A: Individuals do not need a reservation to ride the river boats. There are 3 ticket booths conveniently located at various spots along the Riverwalk. Those locations are, at Rivercenter Mall, across from the Hilton Palacio del Rio Hotel, and at the Aztec Theatre. You can purchase tickets to ride the boats at any of these locations. Groups should have a reservation to ride the boats. You can make reservations by simply contacting Go Rio Cruises. Just click here to visit their website .

Q: What hours of the day do the boats operate? A: Weather permitting they operate from 10 am to 10 pm every day of the year.

Q: Where do we park to visit the Riverwalk? A: Downtown San Antonio has just over 10,000 city and privately owned parking spaces in garages, surface lots and parking meters. Click here to view our downtown parking page .

Q: How do I ride the River Shuttle/Taxi and how much does it cost? The River Shuttles are the boats that have a sign on the front and the back saying Go Rio River Shuttle. To ride them you just need to get the drivers attention as they pass by. The driver will then pull into the closest docking area to where you are. Costs of the River Shuttle are below. Go Rio Cruises Shuttle Passes One Day Shuttle Pass $19.50 3 Day Shuttle Pass $28.50

Q: How do we do a dinner cruise? A: You can do a dinner cruise in two different ways. To do a private/chartered dinner cruise you first contact a Riverwalk restaurant and then they assist you in chartering the boat and cater the meal for you. Click here for more information on dining cruises.

Q: We would like to do a private dinner cruise. How many people does a boat seat for dinner? A: A boat configured for dining holds a maximum of 20 people but most recommend 16-18 for comfort.

Q: We would like to do a dinner cruise. Can we just bring our own food? A: No. Food and beverages must be provided by a restaurant or catering company.

Q: We would like to do a cocktail cruise. Can we just bring a cooler with our own beer and wine? A: No. Food and beverages must be provided by a restaurant or catering company.

Q: What is the best hotel on the Riverwalk? A: That is a very subjective question and depends on the needs of the particular visitor. We have spa hotels, limited service hotels, suite hotels and others. The best hotel depends on what a specific traveler is comfortable with and what best meets the needs of their traveling party.

Q: What is the best restaurant on the Riverwalk? A: Again this is very subjective. We have all types of restaurants and the best one depends on what the individual travelers are looking for.

Q: Is there an outdoor place for people to get married on the Riverwalk? Yes. The popular wedding spot is called Marriage Island and is located directly behind the Hotel Contessa. It is a small peninsula that juts out into the river and is a perfect place for an outdoor wedding. To reserve it, you need to contact the City of San Antonio Department of Parks and Recreation. Their number is 210-207-7275.

Q: When is the Christmas/Holiday river parade? A: It is always the Friday after Thanksgiving at 7pm.

The Holiday River Parade on the Friday after Thanksgiving.

Q: Do we have to have a ticket to see the Holiday River Parade? Can’t we just watch if from a bridge or from the sidewalk? A: For the major river parades the walking area along the Riverwalk is closed at around 3pm in the afternoon. This allows time for the restaurants to set up their seating for customers who purchase parade packages from them. Yes some people will be able to watch the parade(s) from the bridges that cross the river but please understand that tens of thousands of people will be trying to do that. It may not be the experience you are hoping for.

Q: How do we take a carriage ride around downtown San Antonio and how much does it cost? A: The carriages line up along the North and South walls of the Alamo pretty much every day. The times they appear vary, but they are almost always there at night. Just approach them and inquire about a ride/tour. The cost is $25 for each adult that is riding. Do you have other questions about the Riverwalk? Just send us an email and we will be happy to answer!

Click here to view restaurants on the Riverwalk.

best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

Best part of San Antonio Riverwalk

American-venice

A visit to San Antonio Riverwalk is by far the best activity to do in the city. And that´s not easy to say, as there are many other things to do and see in san Antonio, like visiting the historic San Antonio Missions. Choosing the best part of San Antonio Riverwalk is not easy neither, as there all kind of fun activities. Therefore we have made a list with the best things to do on the Riverwalk in San Antonio:

Casa Rio and the colorful umbrellas of San Antonio Riverwalk

Casa-Rio-the-colorful-umbrellas

Hard to say if it´s the best part of San Antonio Riverwalk, but it´s for sure on the top. Although Casa Rio´s food is absolutely delicious, this time we are not talking about it´s food, but about the colorfull umbrellas. We can even consider them now a symbol of the area. Plus they are perfect to get some good photos. Of course, if you have the chance, you should also try Casa Rio´s mexican food. Casa Rio was also the first business located by the river in the whole city.   You will see all over the city, how much influence the mexican culture has over San Antonio , not just the restaurants, but many other things will remind you of Mexico.

San Antonio, the American Venice

Although it is not exactly the same, there is one thing that reminded us from Venice, which is the many canals you will find all over the river walk. If there´s one thing you need to do in Venice canals, that is getting lost while walking them. The same thing happens here in San Antonio. Of course make sure to bring the phone with you so you know how to go back to your hotel, but disconnecting for some hours and just exploring the around will surprise you and it will make you fall in love with it. For us, it was the best part of San Antonio Riverwalk.

San Antonio Riverwalk boat ride

San-Antonio-Riverwalk-boat-ride

We don´t usually like to do the touristic activities and we prefer to discover the city exploring them by ourselfs. But we had to try the San Antonio Riverwalk boat ride as it definetly seemed like something we couldn´t miss and it can be considered by many the best part of San Antonio. Now we can tell you, it was totally worth it. In despite of having to wait a little bit to get on the boat and being surrounded by the crowds, the boat ride is a completely different way to see the city. Another reason why we add it to the best part of San Antonio Riverwalk, is that it´s perfect to relax after a day walking through the city.

Hotels in San Antonio Riverwalk area

Hotels-in-San-Antonio-Riverwalk-area

You will not regret staying one or two nights at any of the hotels located right in the Riverwalk. There is nothing like waking up and right from the bed having such an impressive. We got to stay at the Westin Riverwalk San Antonio and we cannot complain at all. The services were amazing and when we arrived they even brought us some texan fruit teas to our room. They were delicious. Another important advantage of being located that close, is that we could just go walking to all the main touristic activities of San Antonio.

When is the best time to visit San Antonio Riverwalk?

When-is-the-best-time-to-visit-San-Antonio-Riverwalk

Due to how large the San Antonio Riverwalk is, you won´t have to worry about the big crowds. Unless you are planning to take a boat trip, in which we recommend you to either look for it with some time a head, or do it early in the morning when it will be more empty. That said, if you are visiting the city during summer months, the best time to visit San Antonio Riverwalk, will be early in the morning when it will not be so warm (it gets very hot during the day). The rest of the yeardon´t worry about it, you will enjoy it at any time of the day.

Getting from San Antonio airport to RiverWalk

There are 4 different way you can take to go from the Airport:

The most comon ones are either by car or by uber, which will cost you around 15$. Another option is of course taking a taxi, but it will be more expensive, around 30$. All of them will take you between 10 and 15 minutes. The last and cheapest option, is the one that takes longer, it will be 30 minutes by bus, taking the line 9, you will have to stop at Martin and Navarro, and then walk 5 more minutes, but he Price of it is just 2 €.

The-Alamo-san-antonio

A visit to the Alamo is probably the most famous thing you can do in San Antonio after the Riverwalk. You can literally go walking from the riverwalk and it will take you just two or three minutes. The hisoric mission of San Antonio is where the famous Batle of the Alamo took place in 1836. It is an historical monument of the city.

Alamo entrance fee

There is no Alamo entrance fee, it´s totally free.

Alamo visiting and opening hours

The Alamo visiting and opening hours are from 9:00 A.M. to 5:30 P.M during the year. During the summer months from 9:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk

Discover rich san antonio culture from our river walk hotel.

Centrally located on the vibrant River Walk, with direct access to the world-famous Alamo, the newly renovated rooms and suites at Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk places you in the heart of downtown’s entertainment, cultural and historic center. Indulge in our hotel’s multiple on-site restaurants and bars, shops and spa.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Hotel Exterior River Walk

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Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Fitness Center

Rooms & Suites

From your newly renovated room, relax and unwind while taking in River Walk or Alamo views through floor-to-ceiling windows. Upgrade to our Regency Suite and enjoy additional amenities, such as a separate bedroom and elegant dining area.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Riverbend Suite Living Room

Entertainer Suite

Work hard, play hard. This 1,100-square-foot suite, accommodating up to 2 guests in one-bedroom suites and 6 guests in two-bedroom suites, includes a billiards space with a full-size pool table, professional dart board, and views of San Antonio’s famous River Walk.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Entertainer Suite Living Room

Q Kitchen | Bar

Q Kitchen | Bar is open daily for breakfast, lunch, dinner and bar service. Experience chef-crafted food, locally brewed beers, specialty cocktails and more. Watch the game at our 55-foot granite bar, listen to local bands on weekends and catch up with friends in our lounge area. Plus, enjoy views of the vibrant River Walk right from our energetic and air-conditioned lobby bar. Live music Friday & Saturday, 6–9 p.m.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk MKT Place

Stop in and pick up a snack on your way out to explore, or have a seat for a casual meal in a café setting. MKT. PLACE specializes in good-for-you food, served all day (and night) long.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Pizza Food Truck Group

Sauced on Losoya

Sauced on Losoya is a one-of-a-kind food truck specializing in Neapolitan-style pizzas baked to perfection. Using our signature Texas White Oak dough on our hearthstone Barolo oven, it delivers a sensational aroma, unique flavor and the best dough on the River Walk. Whether you choose to get sauced with one of our 10 pizza options, our amazing on-the-go margaritas or local brews, our goal is to get you SAUCED.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Private Dining Room

Private Dining

Enjoy this intimate experience in the private dining room of Q Kitchen, our signature restaurant. The dining room accommodates as many as 10 guests for your special occasion.

Hyatt Regency HR_P099 Still Life Food and Beverage Oysters

On the Bend Oyster Bar & Lounge

Settle in and enjoy signature drinks and fresh seafood, including raw bar items. The casually upscale setting features a two-tiered patio with palm trees—a great spot for relaxing and taking in San Antonio’s River Walk scene.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Cocktail Pour

Nestled beneath the hotel on the iconic River Walk, Mad Dogs stands out as an authentic British-themed pub. With a variety of imported beers, refreshing cocktails, and live entertainment every day.

Meetings & Weddings

Meetings & events.

Host your next meeting or event at our centrally located San Antonio hotel. We offer 40,000 square feet of event space, including two ballrooms, multiple breakout rooms and an 8,000-square-foot private conference center.

Explore Meeting Spaces in a Virtual Tour

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Regency Ballroom

Weddings & Celebrations

Celebrate your wedding with the romance and excitement of the River Walk. Create your perfect San Antonio wedding—from intimate gatherings to elaborate celebrations—at the gorgeous venues at Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk.

Hyatt Regency San Antonio Riverwalk Rio Ballroom

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Dog-friendly rooms are limited; a minimum of 48 hours' reservation notice is required. Please call +1 210 222 1234. Dog tags required.

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+  $200   After the fifth night

Individual pet weight limit :   50   Pounds

Combined pets weight limit :  75   Pounds

Maximum number of pets is 2.

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We are committed to providing equal access and opportunity for individuals with disabilities. The features also make this hotel more accessible for older individuals with changing abilities to ensure a seamless experience. Our overall goal is to improve usability throughout the hotel for all guests.

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Earn 3,000 Bonus Points every three qualifying nights, up to 21 nights completed after registration and between March 1 and April 30, 2024. Register by April 15, 2024.

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Centrally located on the world-famous River Walk, our hotel puts you at the heart of all the entertainment, culture and history San Antonio has to offer. 

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best time to visit san antonio riverwalk

16+ Best Spring Break Destinations For Families (2024)

W ith winter coming to an end, families are ready to enjoy some warm weather on their spring break family vacation. Now is the best time to get started on researching destinations, finding prices, and booking your trip.

Wondering where to go on vacation with your kids during spring break? Here are some of the best spring break destinations for families.

Whether your spring break is in March or April, we’ve got you covered. This list offers European, Caribbean, and US destinations. If you are planning a last-minute trip, you’ll find some options that can be a great road trip so you can save money on flights and rental cars.

Did we miss any of your favorite spring break destinations for families? Leave us a comment and we’ll update this post.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. A purchase/click through one of these links may result in a commission paid to us at no cost to you. All opinions are my own. Note that we experienced some of these top spring break destinations as part of media trips or comped stays.

This post has been updated for the 2024 spring break.

Best Spring Break Destinations for Families

Grand cayman.

I’ve visited the Cayman Islands (on complimentary press trips twice) three times now, and I always love it. Our hotel picks are the Ritz-Carlton or the Westin Grand Cayman Resort – both located on Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman.

We’ve traveled there with JetBlue Vacations , which is a great option, and also on a cruise excursion. There’s so much to do – but you’ll also want to spend some time on the gorgeous beach. Spring would be a great time to visit.

Keep in mind that these two resorts aren’t all-inclusive vacations, so you’ll want to budget for food and drinks. They are beach resorts though, so you’ll be able to have a family-friendly spring break even if you don’t want to do any activities.

However, if you have the budget, you may want to visit a few local attractions while you are there. We recommend visiting Stingray City, the Cayman Turtle Farm, and Rum Point Beach.

See reviews of hotels in Grand Cayman here .

Turks and Caicos

Another one of my favorite spring break family destinations is Turks and Caicos. It was on my family travel bucket list for years, before I finally had the opportunity to visit. We loved our press trip stay at the West Bay Club, and found that there was so much to do in Turks and Caicos with kids. I have since returned four additional times and would go annually if possible.

It’s a relaxing place to visit, so you’ll want to spend plenty of time at the beach. If you are looking for an all-inclusive resort, one of our all-time favorite places to stay is Beaches Turks and Caicos , which offers 22 restaurants and over 700 rooms.

It’s one of the best places to stay with kids and would be a great family spring break trip.

Read reviews of Turks and Caicos resorts here .

San Antonio – one of our favorite spring break ideas

San Antonio, Texas is a great family travel destination, with lots of things to do with kids. We recently visited San Antonio for a spring break vacation and loved our stay. There’s so much to do with families, and it’s a bit of a hidden gem when it comes to spring break.

The San Antonio River Walk is a must-visit, with things for everyone to enjoy. Of course, I also recommend a visit to the Alamo – here are 4 surprising things when visiting the Alamo.  

You can also visit SeaWorld San Antonio , which is open at select times in the early spring. If possible, I’d recommend staying on the River Walk – there’s so much to do there, and it’s easy to walk around for dinner and shopping.

See hotel reviews on TripAdvisor.

Orlando, Florida

Orlando is one of the most popular family vacation spring break destinations, and right now, there is so much going on at Walt Disney World. You can stay on or off-property, and we have recommendations for the best hotels for your Walt Disney World vacation. Remember to book early, so that you can make your dining reservations well in advance.

There are lots of other great things to do in Orlando as well, including other theme parks, nature activities, the Orlando ICON Park, and so much more.

If you’d rather stick with a more relaxing beach vacation in Florida , the Fort Myers area may be the best destination for you.  If you fly into Fort Myers, there are lots of places you can stay just a short drive away. Consider visiting Marco Island , which is a relaxing and fun place to stay. 

While I just enjoy staying on the beach, the Dolphin Study Eco-Tour and Cruise is a must-do. If you are visiting during March, you may be able to catch a spring training baseball game in the area. Find hotels in the Fort Myers area on TripAdvisor .

Other Destinations for a Florida Spring Break for Families

Florida is one of the most popular 2024 family spring break destinations in the United States. It is filled with other great spring break destinations for families, including Amelia Island , Miami Beach, Sarasota, Clearwater Beach , Tampa , and Destin/Fort Walton.

Whether you want to relax on the beach, experience nature, or explore the local area, there are lots of options. We especially love the beaches on the Gulf Coast of Florida. The best Florida spring break destinations for families offer waterfront activities, museums, and other fun activities.

San Diego, California is a great option if you are looking for a relaxing beach vacation combined with some family activities. Attractions like the San Diego Zoo, Disneyland , and Legoland are just a short drive away. During our stay last year, we stayed at the Bahia Resort Hotel on Mission Bay and loved both the location and the hotel.

The weather in San Diego is fairly consistent throughout the year, so there’s never a bad time to visit. You could easily spend a whole week there. Check out other hotels in San Diego here .

Save on a Southern California trip from Get Away Today by using the code  FTM10. 

Spring break is also a fantastic time to enjoy a vacation in the Los Angeles/Anaheim area. In addition to Disneyland Resort (the very first Disney park), you’ll also find Knott’s Berry Farm and Universal Hollywood (with the brand new Super Nintendo World).

Save money on your theme park tickets by booking through  Get Away Today . They offer vacation packages as well as individual ticket sales. Disney travel agents don’t charge guests an extra commission and can help you find deals.

Phoenix, AZ

Phoenix is one of our favorite warm-weather destinations. There are so many fantastic, kid-friendly resorts. Although you may want to spend much of your time at the resort, there are so many other things to do in the area. This includes botanical gardens, zoos, aquariums, hiking trails, and so much more.

If you visit the greater Phoenix area in March, you have the opportunity to check out a variety of spring training baseball games. The Cactus League teams all play within a relatively small radius, making it easy to see multiple teams, regardless of where you are staying in the area. Find the best hotels in Phoenix at TripAdvisor.

The Azores, the closest and one of the most affordable European destinations is a temperate 65-70 degrees in April.  With family activities like whale watching, hiking, biking, gardens, forts, and museums, you’ll find plenty of things to do. 

Azores Airlines has traditionally offered great deals in the spring from many US destinations. You could also visit the Azores on the way to mainland Portugal, or just choose to visit the Azores.

Washington DC

We visited Washington DC on a family spring break getaway a few years ago. It’s perfect for kids who are old enough to appreciate the history and culture of our nation’s capital.

Of course, my kids’ favorite spot was the International Spy Museum, which moved to a new facility. You can stay right in the city or in one of the many nearby suburbs. We chose to stay in National Harbor, MD and enjoyed our stay. Read more about things to do in Washington DC here.

Family Cruise

Would you rather visit several Caribbean destinations?  Then choose a cruise – perhaps a Disney cruise leaving from Florida and stopping in the Bahamas? 

I love Castaway Cay – Disney’s private island in the Bahamas – and think it’s great for families. We’ve done both the Western Caribbean Itinerary and the Eastern Caribbean Itineraries on the Disney Fantasy – both are fabulous.

You could also choose to take a shorter cruise as well. We enjoy the 3 or 4 day trip on the Disney Dream, which leaves from Port Canaveral and goes to Nassau and Castaway Cay.

Puerto Rico

You won’t need a passport to travel to Puerto Rico, yet it’ll feel like a world away. Spring is a great time to visit because it falls in between the winter busy season and the rainy season. We visited a few years ago in February, and the weather was absolutely beautiful. I’ve since returned in March and also found perfect weather.

It’s so easy to go from the airport to your resort since you don’t have to go through customs. Since it’s a domestic flight, you also won’t have to arrive at the airport too early or bring a US passport. It’s also a beautiful island with many fun activities beyond the pool and beach.

I recently visited Bermuda and was so impressed with this beautiful island. Located just a 2-hour flight from Boston, Bermuda is a small island with lots of great restaurants, shops, and resorts.

Kids will love touring Crystal and Fantasy caves , located near the airport. There’s also an aquarium, a fort, and so much more. Be sure to save some time to visit the beautiful beaches. We especially enjoyed Horseshoe Bay, a public beach located in the Southampton area of the island.

Just keep in mind that the weather in Bermuda is more similar to the Carolinas than to the Caribbean. So it won’t necessarily be hot in the spring.

New York City

I love visiting New York City every time of year, but April is a great time to visit. There’s so much to do in New York, regardless of the ages of your kids. My kids love the Central Park Zoo, and we always try to see a Broadway show during our trips.

There are also countless museums, the Empire State Building, Circle Line boat tours, and so much more. You’ll want to check out these kid-friendly restaurants in NYC as well.

Music City has become a popular family vacation destination in recent years. Want to learn more about music? There’s the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Museum Hall of Fame, and the Ryman Auditorium – all of which are fun to visit. I love staying at the Gaylord Opryland , a huge resort with atriums, restaurants, and so much more.

This beautiful, historic city offers so much for families. From museums (including the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace Museum) to the nearby beaches ( Tybee Island ), Savannah is a great destination.

In your opinion, what are the best places to go for spring break? Do you prefer to hang out at the beach, or stay active?

The post 16+ Best Spring Break Destinations For Families (2024) appeared first on Family Travel Magazine .

With winter coming to an end, families are ready to enjoy some warm weather on their spring break family vacation. Now is the best time to get started on researching destinations, finding prices, and booking your trip. Wondering where to go on vacation with your kids during spring break? Here are some of the best …

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  • Fiesta Events Across the Alamo Colleges District

April 10, 2024

District Communications

People on the Alamo Colleges District Fiesta River Parade Float

Mark your calendar for some Fiesta fun across the Alamo Colleges District. When it comes to Fiesta time, the Alamo Colleges is home to three officially sanctioned Fiesta events and one unofficial Fiesta event.

Interested in attending any of our Alamo Colleges events?

To make things easy, we’ve rounded up a list of our family-friendly events that feature a tasty rib cook off, live music, food, mariachis, lots of fun – and cascarones – in between.

College Events

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  3. Top 25 San Antonio Attractions You Shouldn't Miss

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COMMENTS

  1. The best time of year to visit San Antonio, Texas

    Visit in May to August to get outdoors in San Antonio. If you associate heat with San Antonio, you are not alone. By the time May rolls around, daily highs typically average between 85-95°F, with humidity above 60%. Despite this extreme heat, many locals invite friends and family to visit each summer. Because that is when San Antonio's true ...

  2. The Best & Worst Times to Visit San Antonio in 2024 (Our Take)

    The best time to visit San Antonio is in the early spring (February-April), which has gorgeous weather and plenty to do. San Antonio is in south Texas, which means that its weather is fairly warm all year round. Even in February, average daily high temperatures are about 67 degrees. In early spring, temperatures creep up to the high 70s and low ...

  3. The Complete Guide to the San Antonio Riverwalk

    San Antonio, TX 78205, USA. Phone +1 210-227-4262. Web Visit website. A truly iconic part of the San Antonio cityscape, the River Walk is one of the most-visited tourist hotspots in the Lone Star State. Brimming with shops, eateries, bars, galleries, and museums, this sprawling, 15-mile network of walkways runs along the banks of the San ...

  4. The Best Time to Visit San Antonio

    San Antonio has a humid subtropical climate with mild temperatures and low humidity in winter and spring. The River Walk is best visited in spring, when the flowers are in bloom and the crowds are low. Summer is hot and humid, with frequent storms and rainfall. Fall and winter are cool and dry, with less rainfall and crowds.

  5. San Antonio River Walk: A Complete Visitors Guide

    The San Antonio River Walk (also referred to as the riverwalk or Paseo del Río in Spanish) is a 15 mile long network of walkways which run alongside the banks of the San Antonio River. Five miles of the River Walk runs through downtown San Antonio. The River Walk is home to attractions, shops, art, and restaurants, and is today a major San ...

  6. 27 Things To Do On The Riverwalk (The Venice of Texas)

    Sure, the Riverwalk is 100% a tourist destination in San Antonio. You could easily say it's THE tourist destination. Afterall, the Riverwalk is where you'll find the Alamo, historic Tex Mex restaurants, world-class museums, the San Fernando Cathedral, outdoor art, and miles and miles of biking and hiking trails. But despite the many (M-A-N-Y) tourist…

  7. San Antonio River Walk

    San Antonio River Walk. Also known as Paseo del Rio, this 15-mile-long river walk is a must-do in San Antonio. Opt for a self-guided walking or bike tour of the riverside paths, lined with beautiful cypress trees, shops, museums, hotels and of course, Tex-Mex restaurants. But one of the best ways to experience the River Walk is on a hop-on, hop ...

  8. Best Times to Visit San Antonio

    The best time to visit San Antonio is from November to April, when the weather is comfortable and the hotel rates are lower. Summer sees the largest influx of tourists from in- and out-of-state.

  9. 21 Fairy-tale Attractions on the San Antonio Riverwalk in Texas

    Visit the Legoland Discovery Center. Located in the Shops at Rivercenter mall in the Downtown Reach of the river walk, you will find the Legoland Discovery Center. This indoor Legoland attraction is the best thing to do in San Antonio for families. Toddlers, preschoolers, preteens, as well as teenagers love spending time here.

  10. 15 Fun & Best Things To Do On The San Antonio River Walk

    Things to Do on the San Antonio River Walk. 1. Find different activities to do at Brackenridge Park. Alyh M / Adobe Stock. Address: 3903 N. St. Mary's Street, San Antonio, Texas. Brackenridge Park is more than just your typical city amenity with a ton of green space, a playground, a picnic area, and walking trails.

  11. The Best Things To Do On San Antonio's Riverwalk

    5. Brackenridge Park. It's best to drive to Brackenridge Park, where you can spend the day with the trails, sports, picnic areas, and train rides. You'll also find an 18-hole golf course; the San Antonio Zoo and Education Center; the Japanese Tea Garden with its waterfall, pagoda, and cafe; and the Witt Museum.

  12. Best Time To Visit San Antonio Riverwalk: A Comprehensive Guide

    In conclusion, the best time to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk depends on what you're looking for. Spring offers festivals and mild weather, fall offers pleasant temperatures and events, and winter offers holiday charm and lower crowds. Visitors can enjoy the Riverwalk and the city's many attractions throughout the year, but these seasons ...

  13. 3-Day Guide To The San Antonio River Walk That ...

    The River Walk is a network of beautiful walkways running alongside the San Antonio River that's actually a story beneath the main city streets! It's a special oasis in the heart of this city giving locals and tourists alike a unique San Antonio experience! After a quick google search, you'll find that the River Walk is 15 miles long.

  14. 15 Best Things To Do On The San Antonio Riverwalk

    For fun things to do on San Antonio Riverwalk, watching a cultural performance at the Arneson River Theater is a good option. Located in the La Villita Historic Arts Village, the Arneson River Theater is an outdoor amphitheater with a capacity of 800 people. Here, you can catch different kinds of shows such as plays, music concerts, opera, and ...

  15. Best Time to Visit San Antonio, Texas

    The best times to visit San Antonio if you want to stroll on the River Walk are winter (December to March) and spring (March to June). The weather is mild, ranging between 64 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Winter and spring also tend to average about four days of rain per month, and most days are clear and sunny.

  16. 10 Best San Antonio River Walk Things to Do in 2024

    Guide to the Best Things to Do on River Walk in San Antonio. Top Things to Do on San Antonio's River Walk 2024. Take a Riverboat Tour Cruise. Get a Beer, Wine or Margarita To Go at the Bier Garten. Visit the Alamo. Take a Half-Day City Tour. Eat and Drink at Iron Cactus. Take a Ghost Tour and Pub Crawl.

  17. Exploring San Antonio: A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Things to Do

    Visit the historic and famous Alamo. After the Riverwalk, the Alamo is the second most popular San Antonio things to do for visitors. The Alamo, originally known as Misión San Antonio de Valero, is a part of the San Antonio Missions UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in the 18th century, the historic mission was the site of the famous Battle of ...

  18. 10 must-visit spots along the San Antonio River Walk

    While the Alamo is of course a must-visit for any Texas trip, the River Walk offers enough sights, sounds and eats to spend a whole weekend. Next time you're in San Antonio, use this handy illustrated map to check out the best attractions the famed stretch of pedestrian waterway has to offer. RELATED: 7 kid-friendly hotels in San Antonio

  19. 19+ Best Things to Do on the San Antonio Riverwalk

    Seal Your Love on the Love Lock Bridge. The Love Lock Bridge is a sweet spot along the San Antonio Riverwalk. It is perfect for couples looking to make their visit extra special. You can bring a padlock, write your names or a message on it, lock it to the bridge's railings, and then throw the key into the river.

  20. San Antonio Riverwalk

    Located one level down from the traditional auto roadway, the 15-mile Riverwalk is a network of pathways that hug and cross the river (on special pedestrian bridges). There's no need for a car, as this pedestrian path connects many of the city's tourist destinations, including 5 miles through downtown San Antonio.

  21. Questions about the Riverwalk. Frequently asked questions

    A: The main portion of the Riverwalk is located in downtown San Antonio. It flows from the north of downtown, through downtown and then exits and flows through Southtown and the King William Historic District. Q: What time does the Riverwalk close? A: Technically the Riverwalk never closes.

  22. Best Time to Visit San Antonio, Texas

    The best time to visit San Antonio, TX, is in April and from September to October. These spring and fall months fall within the city's tourism shoulder season and are the optimal time of year for most travelers in terms of budget, weather, and traveler experience. Located in Southern Texas, San Antonio is a destination that ranges from warm ...

  23. The best time to visit the River Walk is during the drain

    Visiting the River Walk while it's being drained is actually the most-interesting time for locals to go. The Great San Antonio River Walk drain, January 2022. Since the 1980s, the city has drained ...

  24. Best part of San Antonio Riverwalk

    The Alamo. A visit to the Alamo is probably the most famous thing you can do in San Antonio after the Riverwalk. You can literally go walking from the riverwalk and it will take you just two or three minutes. The hisoric mission of San Antonio is where the famous Batle of the Alamo took place in 1836. It is an historical monument of the city.

  25. San Antonio Riverwalk Hotel

    Experience chef-crafted food, locally brewed beers, specialty cocktails and more. Watch the game at our 55-foot granite bar, listen to local bands on weekends and catch up with friends in our lounge area. Plus, enjoy views of the vibrant River Walk right from our energetic and air-conditioned lobby bar. Live music Friday & Saturday, 6-9 p.m.

  26. 16+ Best Spring Break Destinations For Families (2024)

    The San Antonio River Walk is a must-visit, with things for everyone to enjoy. Of course, I also recommend a visit to the Alamo - here are 4 surprising things when visiting the Alamo.

  27. Fiesta Events Across the Alamo Colleges District

    This year, the Alamo Colleges float will be Denali National Park themed! Make sure to stake out your spot along the River Walk to watch our float, or catch the parade on KSAT. Ticket prices vary and are available for purchase online. Buy Tickets. Fiesta Flambeau Night Parade . Saturday, April 27. 7:15 - 11:30 p.m. Downtown San Antonio