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 Post subject: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sat 10, 2018 11:07 pm 
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Each year the family and I go to a different state in the US on a trip and have visited most states east of the Mississippi; this year we are flying into San Antonio Tx. and staying on the outskirts in a month or so.

I have read that the Riverwalk is supposed to be nice so we do plan on doing that but I was wondering if others had ideas for interesting things to do. We will do a little bit of the tourist trap stuff but we tend to gravitate towards the weird Americana stuff (ie) biggest ball of yarn in the world etc etc.

Anyone have some suggestions?

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sat 10, 2018 11:22 pm 
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Location: Omak,wa,usa
Hello John
yes I went last year to San Antonio remember the Alamo is in town too and the river walk
is cool there is also Sea world to go to too .
another fun place


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sat 10, 2018 11:34 pm 
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I should have also mentioned that I am not adverse to driving 2-3 hours if it is something worth while seeing. I do think that I would like to drive to the Mexican border just to say that I have seen it anyhow; possibly Laredo?

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sat 10, 2018 11:43 pm 
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Location: 42001 KY
The riverwalk, the Alamo.

If you like Tex Mex food, Casa Rio on the riverwalk is good ( if it is still there)

Laredo is your closest from SA to the border.

You might want to go down to Corpus Christi and South Padre island.

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sat 10, 2018 11:59 pm 
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If you're into visiting wineries, take 281 up to Blanco (a neat little town) then on to Stonewall where the wineries are. From there you can go on to Fredericksburg, where there are many things to see and do, including visiting the Admiral Nimitz Museum and the National Museum of the Pacific war. There are also many antique stores and great restaurants there as well.

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 1:13 am 
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I have lived in San Antonio for six months, twice in my life. As it has been so long, I doubt much I could tell you is currently accurate as things change in decades and what was good could be bad, what is new is unknown, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 1:27 am 
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How long will you be there?

Alamo is a must. Won't take that long, though. San Antonio Zoo is nice. Missions abound, and there may be mission tours. There's an open market near downtown that's not too touristy.

Couple things that might help. West of San Antonio is the Texas Hill Country. East is flatter, progressing to the Texas Coastal Plains, and as mentioned above, Corpus Christi is that direction. Going south heading to Mexico, the land gets flatter, less lush, more desolate, scrubbier and fewer big trees.

70 miles north is Austin. The Spanish/Mexican influence is much more obvious in San Antonio than Austin, which is more high-tech cosmopolitan. Like San Antonio, Austin has green hill country to the west, farmland to the east. Google Austin City Limits to see if they have a taping during the time you'll be near. The Texas State Museums are cool. Google Bob Bullock Museum to see what the exhibits will be. They should still have Lafayette's shipwrecked "Belle" that was recently dredged up from Matagorda Bay. The LBJ Presidential Museum is on the UT campus. If you spend a night in Austin, I HIGHLY recommend getting tickets now to Esther's Follies. It's a homegrown comedy variety show that will have you laughing long after you leave. Highly memorable. If you go to Austin, don't take IH 35. Instead head toward Blanco and Johnson City, but take 290 through Dripping Springs into Austin. It's a lovely drive. At Johnson City, you can visit the LBJ ranch, which, I believe, is now a national park. It's not that far from Fredericksburg, mentioned above. That's a classy town with early German-inspired architecture. The Nimitz museum is outstanding.

Because the hill country is limestone, rivers and creeks run clear. You should try the glass bottom boats in San Marcos, 35-40 miles north of San Antonio. That also is a memorable experience. All around the Hill County are caves, which can be pretty amazing. Just google them. Wonder Cave is in San Marcos. It's not one of the most spectacular, though, but it made a huge impression on me as child.

East of San Antonio are the historical and still little towns of Gonzales and Goliad. Goliad has huge art-deco era memorial next to an old Spanish mission. Gonzales is the site of the start of the Texas revolution and home of the "Come and Take It" cannon.

The weather should be fabulous. Enjoy!


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 2:30 am 
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I second the Hill Country

Fredricksburg does have lots of antique stores and such.

Don't forget the Kolaches

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 5:00 am 
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Fredericksburg is not far just northwest of SA and is a must if you are into World War II history at all. Admiral Chester Nimitz was born and raised around Fredericksburg and there is a museum dedicated to his life and career. Also the World War II in the Pacific museum is outstanding. Allow a full day to see it all. Your ticket is good for two days.

If you like vintage automobiles, there is a very nice museum in San Marcos just northeast of SA. On your way to San Marcos you will go through New Brunsfield. Just outside of NB (northeast) is the small town of
Gruene (pronounced Green). Stop there and get a really fine meal at the Grist Mill Restaurant (yes, it is a real grist mill no longer operating as such)

Don't know how much driving you want to do, but Brenham, between Austin and Houston, where Blue Bell ice cream is made and a tour of the plant is a good visit (and you get free Blue Bell).


Have a nice time in the beautiful and friendly Texas Hill Country


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 5:05 am 
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Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Macrohenry wrote:

Because the hill country is limestone, rivers and creeks run clear. You should try the glass bottom boats in San Marcos, 35-40 miles north of San Antonio. That also is a memorable experience. All around the Hill County are caves, which can be pretty amazing. !


The glass bottom boat tours are no longer available,


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 5:31 am 
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Bill Harris wrote:
The glass bottom boat tours are no longer available,

Good news, they appear to be running again, this time through Texas State University. Check on tickets here:

http://www.meadowscenter.txstate.edu/Ed ... Boats.html

Indeed, the original glass bottom boat venue, Aquarena Springs, closed 15 years ago, along with Ralph the Swimming Pig and the mermaids, and the submarine viewing stand. Too bad, for that's exactly the type of attraction the OP is interested in. For those who enjoyed it then, here's a slide show that will bring back memories of this kitchy place: https://www.mysanantonio.com/lifestyle/ ... 375618.php


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Feb Sun 11, 2018 6:08 am 
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Location: Hamilton, Ontario
These are some really good ideas so far. We will be there for a week.

The things we like, or are most memorable are for instance from the last couple trips:

Wisconsin - some guy (retired lawyer) in a semi-residential neighborhood started this Jurustic Park where he was making large mechanical sculptures of weird dinosaur-like creatures from rusted-out metal in his front yard.

Arkansas - we just happened to trip across a small scale Star Wars museum in Hot springs

Lousiana - just happened to be driving down a highway and notice Fouke, as in the Fouke Monster (Big Foot) from the early 70's documentary/drama; definitely had to stop there

Texas - happened to trip across a sort of homegrown Gone with the Wind Museum in Jefferson - my wife LOVED Jefferson!

We usually do a Presidential or Vice-Presidential Library as well so the LBJ Ranch will be on the list.

You get the idea - the weirder the better!

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Fri 16, 2018 7:48 pm 
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I thank everyone for the suggestions.

We spent a day in Fredricksburg, a day in Laredo, a day in Corpus Christi, a day in Austin and a day in downtown San Antonio.

Everything and everyone was very nice and helpful. WOW...busy...busy...busy. The amount of commercial and infrastructure construction is staggering!

A word to anyone going to San Antonio though is that you better bring your A game and a good GPS when it comes to driving there. I have driven in many of the larger US cities and none of them compares to the organized chaos of San Antonio

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Fri 16, 2018 7:56 pm 
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For sure the Admiral Nimitz museum in Fredericksburg: http://www.pacificwarmuseum.org/.

And the Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, TX, home of Shiner Bock. https://www.shiner.com/brewery/tours

Happy travels,

Tom


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 5:10 pm 
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Location: Brookings, SD
Sorry I didn't see this sooner.

Across the street from the Alamo is a bar where Teddy Roosevelt recruited for the Rough Riders. They have a picture of him riding his horse out of the bar. The story goes that they shot the place up, and there are what appear to be bullet holes still in the wood work. Very cool.

Russ


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 7:33 pm 
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jrs wrote:
Everything and everyone was very nice and helpful. WOW...busy...busy...busy. The amount of commercial and infrastructure construction is staggering!


Yep, howdy for shore, that's Texans for you. And you got to see the Jenga tower going up!

Image

A week from now the wildflowers will be overwhelming. Bluebonnets just coming out now. I hope you saw some.


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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 9:05 pm 
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It was a bit of a splurge (~$150.00 for 2) but a sunset dinner in the Chart-house Restaurant atop the Tower of the Americas was the highlight of our trip. It is a Landry's restaurant (There is also a Landry's on the RW)

http://www.toweroftheamericas.com/

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 9:24 pm 
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Enchanted rock is a pretty cool place. Hard to grasp its size from photos.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enchanted_Rock

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 Post subject: Re: San Antonio vacation help
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 9:55 pm 
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We did the ww2 (Nimiz) museum in Fredricksburg and it was very large and impressive. Had some really good quality German food just down the street from there and then toured the Hill country.

Visited the LBJ presidential library in Austin and then went around the city a little. The southbysouthwest concert was ramping up so the city was quite busy. In addition, that was the day of the mail bombings so we wanted to get out of dodge asap.

Downtown San Antonio we did the Riverwalk, which although it is touristy, is still very beautiful. Went to the Alamo and the line-ups were crazy large so we just took a pic and then did the horse-carriage ride and then left. It was March break so there were hoards of people everywhere. Went to the Art Museum afterwards and that was nice too.

Laredo was much larger then expected. One of the Universities had a planetarium running and then we drove around and saw the Rio Grande and the boarder. Got stopped at an ICE checkpoint on the way back; interesting.

Corpus Christi was just mobbed because of March Break. The whole city seems so low; it must get flooded easily during hurricane season. Saw the USS Lexington and Texas State Aquarium.

Finally wound up at the glass bottom boat tour in San Marco. Very cool! Beautiful College town.

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