San Antonio Attractions
"Yanaguana" - "place of refreshing waters" - is what the first citizens of San Antonio, who were Native Americans, called the San Antonio River. In 1691, on the feast day of St. Anthony, Spanish explorers and missionaries arrived at the river, which they named "San Antonio" in honor of St. Anthony. The founding of the city is credited to Father Antonio Olivares, who established Mission San Antonio de Valero, in 1718. This mission became known as the Alamo in 1836, where 189 defenders held the old mission against some 4,000 Mexican troops for 13 days. One of America's truly great festivals, Fiesta San Antonio, is a 10-day celebration held every April to honor the memory of the heroes of the Alamo and the Battle of San Jacinto as well as recognize and celebrate San Antonio's rich and diverse cultures.
The Majestic Theater
Is a State and National Historic Landmark. One of the few remaining vintage atmospheric vaudeville movie palaces. Home to the Broadway in San Antonio Series.
The Paseo del Rio (the "River Walk")
In the heart of downtown, the Riverwalk is the pride of the city. Lush green foliage lines the banks of this peaceful jade-green historic river. Cobblestone walkways lead visitors to the river-level restaurants and shops. The river bubbles to the surface on the grounds of Incarnate Word College and flows to downtown, threading its way through the city one level below the hustle and bustle of city streets. Along the horseshoe shaped river, the river is shaded by towering cypresses, oaks and willows and bordered by gardens of flowering ornamental plants. European style sidewalk cafes, specialty boutiques, nightclubs and gleaming high-rise hotels adorn the banks of the River Walk. River cruisers travel the River Walk's three miles past unique retail shops, restaurants and nightclubs. It is also possible to dine aboard open-air, candle-lit river barges as they wind their way along the scenic waterway. Spanish Colonial Missions that date back to the 18th Century.
A beautifully landscaped historic district offers leisurely shopping, dining and venues for special events.
Market Square (El Mercado)
From early morning until late at night, Market Square is alive with activity. Visitors browse through 32 shops at El Mercado, an area patterned after an authentic Mexican market. In addition, thereare 80 specialty shops in Farmers Market Plaza. Market Square is also the scene of many Hispanic festivals where food and beverage booths spring up alongside the Victorian lamps and the strains of mariachi music blend with the excitement of Mexican dances.