Davy Crockett may have perished at the Alamo, but San Antonio clings to the Texan pride shown by the “King of the Wild Frontier” and his compatriots in 1836. This modern city’s history especially rears its noble head throughout downtown. In addition to the Alamo, you’ll find several other famous missions, all of which are now a part of the San Antonio Missions National Historic Park. And among the gleaming skyscrapers, the austere San Fernando Cathedral still stands as a testament to the city’s religious past. But, don’t be fooled: You don’t need a hankering for history to enjoy this city. With theme parks, top-notch museums, professional sports teams and the famous River Walk, you might have too much to do to “Remember the Alamo.”
How To Save Money in San Antonio
- Be a weekend warrior : An influx of business travelers cause hotel room rates to surge during the week. Stay on the weekend and you could save big.
- Check the calendar : Conventions lead to sold-out hotels across town. These travelers have probably booked their accommodations months before San Antonio popped into your head as a viable vacation spot. Check the city’s tourism bureau website and try to avoid convention-heavy weeks and weekends.
- Eat around the corner : Restaurants around the River Walk and other touristy areas will have higher prices than those only a few blocks away.
San Antonio Culture & Customs
San Antonio is a mix of the old and the new: the Alamo stands strong among contemporary skyscrapers and the banks of the San Antonio River are populated with the River Walk‘s burgeoning businesses and restaurants. San Antonio residents are proud of their history, with many shops selling memorabilia engraved with the words “Remember the Alamo.”
But this city isn’t just about the Wild West anymore. San Antonio has been heavily influenced by Mexican culture. Travel experts recommend stopping by Market Square (or El Mercado) to find a variety of tasty Mexican foods, homemade goods and south of the border crafts. Mexican art is displayed everywhere you turn and Spanish widely spoken. For a more festive taste of Tex-Mex culture, head to the Mexican Rodeo or plan your trip during Fiesta in April.
San Antonio Dining
San Antonio dining primarily revolves around two types of food: Tex-Mex and meat. Those craving spicy enchiladas or cheesy chimichangas from below the border are encouraged to dine in Southtown or South Side. Recent visitors highly recommendRosario’s, which receives top marks for its prompt service and delectable plates like ceviche and chicken flautas.
However, the large influx of business and recreational travelers has boosted the diversity of cuisine. Downtown restaurants cater to carnivores, offering local favorites like prime rib and chicken-fried steak, and feature some of the more upscale eateries like Bliss andBohanan’s. When you make your way to the River Walk, consider calling the restaurant you select ahead for a reservation since this area is quite popular. Some visitor favorites along the river include Texas bistro Budro’s for its steaks and Ácenar for its contemporary Mexican cuisine.
Keep in Mind…
- An educated citySan Antonio boasts several institutions of higher education, including Trinity University, San Antonio College and UT-San Antonio, that surround the downtown area.
- A true taste of TexasFiesta San Antonio takes over the entire city for 10 days in April to honor Texan heroes of the past. Visit during the fiesta to get a dose of Texas pride.
- Mexican influencesAlthough Texas gained independence from Mexico long ago, Mexican influences abound. The current Mexican-American population is proud of its ancestry and you’ll find frequent displays of it in the form of parades, artwork and local cuisine.