Whenever one visits San Antonio, Texas they always leave with remembering more than the Alamo. The lush Hill Country that surrounds the city—that hosts NBA champions the Spurs—has more to offer than that historic monument surrounded by the infamous San Antonio River Walk. The River Walk is renowned for winding its way through the city and past café style restaurants like Biga on the Banks—which was selected by Gourmet Magazine as one of the “top five restaurants in Texas.” There is also Bohanan’s, whose sommelier just earned the highly regarded international Wine Specialist Certification from the Court of Sommeliers, and New York transplant The Palm restaurant. If café style is not your idea of dining bliss, despite being surrounded by the lush vegetation of the River Walk, there are always dinner cruises that take place on the river as well.
After you’ve enjoyed the good food that you will always find in Texas, you’ll most likely feel the need to stretch your legs, and the many stores and boutiques along the river walk offer just the distraction. From the La Villita Historic Arts Village, to the Market Square full of authentic Mexican wares, to the River Center Mall there is no shortage of shopping. With the many artisanal craftsmen and cultural diversity of San Antonio it is not unusual to find one-of-a-kind pieces that can’t be found anywhere else in the world.
Once you are done exploring the delights of the many shops the River Walk has to offer, there are places like The Esquire Tavern, Mad Dog’s British Pub, and the Beirgarten. These night-life spots are the perfect place to cool your heels and quench your thirst with a drink or too as your heart thumps in time with the lively music often zinging through the air.
If you are wondering if San Antonio’s main attraction is just the Alamo and the stunning River Walk area, then you’ll be pleased to know that the area offers so much more. The city has museums and art galleries like the highly regarded and varied San Antonio Museum of Art, as well as the Texas-heritage-focused Witte Museum. If you feel the need to beat the Texas heat, there is always Splash Town and Sea World waiting to cool you off. Don’t forget that there is also the opportunity to embark on a lazy float in a tube down the refreshing Guadalupe River, just outside of town.
Another little known secret of the Hill Country area is the impressive wine reputation it is building. There are 42 wineries that stretch between San Antonio up to the quirky boutique laden German town of Fredericksburg. Some of these include the award winning Becker vineyards, whose hand crafted reds have been served at the White House; and Grape Creek Wines, whose Italian style wines have won over 100 medals in wine tasting in the last two years.
San Antonio is also well known for its many championship golf courses that are often linked to resorts within the city. One is the Hill Country Golf Club by Hyatt, whose 200 acre championship course has been ranked #1 in Texas and #17 in the world by Conde Nast Traveler. Another gem is the La Cantera Hill Country Golf Resort that houses two championship courses and has been a PGA tour destination for 15 years.
This is just a sliver of the many exciting and diverse features that makes a visit to San Antonio a refreshing experience. For even with all of its world class attractions and amenities it still puts out that cozy small town vibe.
Video courtesy of Expedia.