Photo from Shutterstock – Sean Pavone
Most of us who have grown up in Texas have visited the city of San Antonio at least once. But Texas is so big, so vast, so wide and so long that getting there may not happen all that often. After a recent trip from up north to down south, I found myself feeling a little sad about that, because a relaxing weekend in San Antonio sure does a body good.
San Antonio is a Long Way from the Panhandle
Growing up in Amarillo, the Paseo del Rio of the south seemed mighty far away. Actually, it was. Not many times would a logical dad plan to pile all his kids into the back of a station wagon for an 8-hour summer vacation drive. My dad was pretty logical, so we only did it once.
The next time I visited San Antonio was when Mike and I got married. Oh, we were so grown up at 21 and 22! Seeing the world together was going to be so much fun, and we decided to start with a 7-day road trip around the Lone Star State.
Mike’s maroon Monte Carlo had a white vinyl roof, cool leather bucket seats and a good air conditioner, which made for a pretty comfortable ride. Sticking closely to our itinerary, we were able to hit all the high points, from Dallas to Houston to Odessa, and as many sites as we could cram in between.
Of course, we ate Mexican food along the San Antonio River Walk and rode the rides at Fiesta Texas. There was probably a lot more to see and do in the Alamo City even way back then, but you know, we HAD NO INTERNET, people. And no GPS, either. We were doing really good to read the map successfully enough to get where we got.
Remember the Alamo! Also, where you parked the car.
It’s Texas’ Second Largest City
Call me geographically challenged, but if I had been asked to rank the size of Texas’ major cities, I would have said Houston was biggest, and Dallas was number two. Seriously, it’s San Antonio? That’s right. With the 7th fastest growing population in the United States, this city is b-i-g.
But it sure doesn’t feel like it.
The Atmosphere is So Relaxing
Considering the size of this cultural conglomerate, one would expect to find a little faster frenzy going on. However, even last weekend when we were there for one of the largest rodeo/stock show events in the country, the vibe of this place was unhurried and way, way, way relaxing.
Now, I don’t live there, and I haven’t seen the Monday morning traffic, so I’m basing my assessment mostly on how the air smells.
You know, like when you take a deep breath and detect something earthy, almost mountainous in the fragrance? That’s the aroma of relaxation, my friend, and it seems to be the essence of San Antonio. So breathe deep.
If only we could bottle that stuff for the treacherous drive back home, north on I-35.
Photo – Texas Over Fifty
Wintry Weather? Not So Much
According to the record books, San Antonio had some very unusual weather back in the winter of 1985. Over two days’ time, 13.5 inches fell on the city, which prompted this quote in a local newspaper: “We were a city of a million people and 500,000 snowmen.”
While it can be a little chilly in the mornings, the average temperatures in San Antonio this time of year are in the mid ’60’s for a high. That means you can forget packing a big coat, but do plan on wearing long sleeves.
The sun burns big and bright in that San Antonio sky.
Siblings with sunny smiles.
There’s So Much to Do
Truly, there’s more to do in San Antonio than can be done in a weekend, but don’t worry. Whatever gets done will be fun. Or relaxing. Or both.
If that combination sounds as inviting to you as it did to us, you’re bound to enjoy an afternoon ride down the river on a GoRio water taxi. Talk about relaxing. The only downside is there’s not really a way to sprawl out for a nap. I wonder if they let tourists purchase ticket after ticket after ticket, just so they can stay on the thing all day long? Someone try it and let me know, ok?
Consider yourself warned, though. You’re gonna wish you could.
Photo – Texas Over Fifty
If a horse-drawn carriage is more your style, just wave ’em down.
It’s Texas, y’all. We’ve got horses.
Photo – Texas Over Fifty
Foodie Faves are Everywhere
San Antonio’s cultural climate lends itself very well to foodie finds galore. On the River Walk alone, there’s famous Mexican food, German schnitzel, and Texas-style barbeque. But don’t fill up, because you’ll also want to visit the Pearl District for a meal or two.
And if you really want to go whole hog, you’ve gotta try the world-renowned cinnamon roll at Lulu’s. I
t comes to your table right out of the oven, piping hot, powdered-sugar icing covering every little inch of the thing. Yep, this family-sized treat is as marvelous as they claim it to be.
Fortunately, our granddaughter doesn’t mind sharing with her Grammy and Grumpy.
And there it is in all its glory. The world-renowned 3-pound cinnamon roll.
What do you think? Are you in need of a little winter relaxation? Then head south, where the sun shines bright and the river runs slow.
A weekend in San Antonio sure does a body good.
Encouraging a life filled with everyday intentional adventure,
Have you signed up to receive my weekly newsletter? You can do it at the popup right here.