The Parks of San Antonio

Things to Do, Travel Tips — By laurajeanmoore on May 11, 2010 at 8:59 pm

1. Main Plaza
Located right downtown, this recently restored area includes a bevy of water fountains, strolling sidewalks, picnic tables, and shady trees in the city center. Take a break from your sight-seeing to people watch or have a picnic during the afternoon.

2. Riverwalk, aka Paseo del Rio
Right along the river and connecting many the city’s most popular tourist destinations, this network of sidewalks and trails will lead you past world class shopping and restaurants as you go from the Alamo to the San Antonio Museum of Art and more. Wear comfortable shoes, as these pathways will soon be 13 miles long.

3. Casa Navarro State Historic Site
This restored home of José Antonio Navarro is located downtown and commemorates the joint history of Mexico and Texas through the life of Navarro, a prominent rancher and merchant from the 19th century. Small admission fees apply.

4. San Antonio Botanical Garden
Considered a living museum, this 33 acre garden includes many themed exhibits showcasing flora from different climate regions. Be sure and see the Texas Native Trail so you can learn the names of the plants you’ll be seeing for the duration of your Texas trip.

5. San Antonio Missions State Park
The missions of the Southwest played a vital and important role in the settlement of Texas. These walled communities included a church, farms, ranches, and the people who worked and lived within them. San Antonio Missions State Park is an excellent place to learn about this rich part of Texas history, while enjoying yourself on the sprawling park grounds.

6. Brackenridge Park
This 343 acre park includes the San Antonio Zoo and a miniature train for the kiddies. Bring your golf clubs if you’re up for a round, and be sure and wear sunscreen, as this park has more sunny space than shade.

7. HemisFair Park
The original HemisFair in 1968 was the first international exposition held in the Southwest. The grounds of this fair are now a state park where you can play in the water fountains or ride to the top of the Tower of the Americas to see the best view of the city.

8. Japanese Tea Garden
A garden area within Brackenridge Park, this park is on the National Register of Historic Places. Constructed out of the leftovers of a 19th century mining operation, bits of the original construction can still be recognized by observant eyes. Bring your own tea in a thermos if you want the experience to be authentic Texas.

9. San Antonio Zoo
Considered one of the best zoos in the entire country, the San Antonio Zoo covers 35 acres and is open year-round. Children will love the interactive exhibits, including a petting zoo, and adults will enjoy the myriad animals and beaching area. Insider tip: bring a cooler or small picnic basket with drinks and food for lunch, and make it a day out to remember.

10. Morgan’s Wonderland
This family fun park is the world’s first amusement park designed to be fully accessible to children and adults with special needs. The park features a range of activities and rides including a wheelchair accessible carousel, a sensory village, water play area, and more. Family members and caregivers pay a $5 fee. Individuals with special needs get to play for free

Tags: area, botanical garden, brackenridge park, downtown, hemisfair park, japanese tea garden, main plaza, missions state park, morgan's wonderland, park, parks, paseo del rio, picnic, riverwalk, san antonio, Things to Do, tourism, tourist, zoo