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San Antonio Mini Guide
Tell me About San Antonio
San Antonio is America’s seventh largest city and was so named because the area was first discovered by the Spanish on the feast day of St Anthony. It has seen a huge amount of history made on its doorstep with the Battle of the Alamo, the Texas Revolution, the Mexican-American War and the American Civil War all impacting on the city. It was once the capital of Spanish and Mexican Texas before the state was annexed into the Union. Today it is a major commercial city but also one which is a very popular tourist destination. Popular attractions such as The River Walk, The Tower of the Americas and Alamo are all within the city or nearby.
How do I get to San Antonio?
Over eight million people arrived in San Antonio last year via its international airport on the outskirts of the city. The airport handles flights from all over the States as well as international flights from Mexico
. There are no flights from outside North America and European tourists wishing to visit San Antonio would need to fly to Chicago
before continuing their journey. From the airport you can take a bus, taxi, hotel and downtown shuttles or a rental car to get into the city. Car hire is recommended for some of the city’s attractions are outside the city boundaries.
What is There to See and Do in San Antonio?
The attraction most people stay in San Antonio to visit is the Alamo. It’s a former mission which was the scene of a fierce battle during the Texas Revolution and saw the likes of Davy Crockett putting up a heroic, yet futile, fight against the besieging Mexican army. It’s the most popular of Texas’ attractions and is seen as a state and national shrine to the spirit of Texans and Americans. The second most popular attraction is the River Walk in San Antonio itself. The walk follows the course of the river that flows through the city and is lined with shops, restaurants and other attractions including the historic ‘Aztec on the River’ 1920s cinema, one of the few themed cinemas left in the US.
What Should I buy as Souvenirs in San Antonio?
Many souvenirs from the city are based on the events at the Alamo so you can buy Davy Crockett beaver hats, models of the mission/fort whilst children will love the character models so they can re-enact the battle themselves. Other than that, typical Texan items include Stetson hats which look great when worn in the States but may not look quite so good elsewhere in the world.
Is There Anything Special I Should try for Dinner in San Antonio?
Being close to Mexico and with a large Mexican population, San Antonio can be expected to do great Tex-Mex and Mexican food and in many of the restaurants you won’t be disappointed. Far from the always fiery meals we think of as Mexican, many, cooked properly, have a subtle heat and delicious tastes. Make sure you try some whilst there!
Are There any Special Celebrations in San Antonio?
The ‘Fiesta’ in late April each year shouldn’t be missed. It’s a ten day festival which raises funds for charities and includes concerts, displays, food, drink, fireworks and above all, fun! In February, the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo comes to town for a thrilling display of cowboy skills and another excuse to party!