San Antonio is famous for its legendary Tex Mex restaurants, delicate balance of historic and just-plain-fun attractions, and luscious culture. Explore the downtown scene, or spend some quiet time with nature. San Antonio vacation deals on accommodations, attractions, and lodging means you can do all of that - and more! - on a budget.
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Relax along the River Walk, walk in the footsteps of Texan revolutionaries at the Alamo, or "ooh and aah" at Renaissance paintings.
- Boat tours with Rio San Antonio Cruises, 205 N Presa St B201, San Antonio — Small boats run along the river and provide beautiful views of the River Walk for as little as $5.
- River Walk — For a slower pace that allows for some impromptu exploring, walk the River Walk, using the picturesque bridges to zig zag through downtown.
- Morgan's Wonderland — If the $30 ticket for Fiesta Texas is a little much, check out this smaller, more laid-back alternative. Made for kids and the disabled, park attractions include the Wonder Works play area, butterfly and pirate-themed playgrounds, a train, and a carousel. Admission for adults is $15, and for kids, just $10.
- The Alamo, 300 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio — This mission turned 19th century battle zone is now a 4.3-acre tourist-friendly zone. Here you can put yourself in the shoes of Texan heroes like Davy Crockett.
- San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, 6701 San Jose Dr, San Antonio — Explore 1700s Spanish missions, like the famous San Jose Mission, for free. You can also get some scenic exercise along the River Beach Hike and Bike Trail.
- McNay Art Museum, 6000 N New Braunfels Ave, San Antonio— For $15, check out the latest exhibit at this much-loved gallery, with art works ranging from medieval paintings to modern outdoor sculptures.
- San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston Pl, San Antonio— For $8, find your inner peace in these sprawling gardens, with changing themes that make every visit brand-new.
- San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W Jones Ave, San Antonio —The collection here knows no bounds; expect everything from ancient to contemporary, and Asian to Islamic, works. Tours cost $10.
- Japanese Tea Gardens, 3853 N St Mary's St, San Antonio— Unwind in this gorgeously green public park, complete with lily ponds, waterfalls, and the dramatic Jingu House.
- San Antonio Zoo, 3903 N St Mary's St, San Antonio — One of the world's best zoos is fortunately quite affordable; tickets are an easy $12.
- San Antonio Children's Museum, 305 E Houston St, San Antonio— Got kids? Then don't miss out on this museum, where your little one can make their own art, pretend to grocery shop, dig for dino bones, and much more. Best part? Admission is only $8.
- Witte Museum, 3801 Broadway St, San Antonio — For $10, get the scoop on everything South Texas, from wildlife to art. There's always a new exhibit to check out.
While Tex Mex is king here, San Antonio has affordable restaurants of all kinds.
- Blanco Café, 1720 Blanco Road, San Antonio — This spot is known for its margaritas and enchiladas.
- Mi Tierra, 218 Produce Row, San Antonio — This restaurant has been around for years, and offers delish under-$5 bakery items, a fun atmosphere, and, of course, awesome Mexican food.
- Guajillo's The Shortcut to Mexico, 1001 NW Loop 410, San Antonio — Enjoy classic Mexican dishes, or try something new and interesting, like the "Meat Balls in Chipotle Pepper Sauce."
- Teka Molino, 7231 San Pedro Ave, San Antonio — Expect all the standard entrees, but try the specialty: corn tacos. Teko Molino also happens to serve up homemade or fresh ingredients.
For Meat Lovers
- Rudy’s BBQ, 10623 Westover Hills Boulevard, San Antonio — You can’t leave Texas without trying the barbecue, and this place offers some of the most tender and delicious around.
- Augie's Barbed Wire Smokehouse, 3709 N St Mary's St, San Antonio — Order a barbecue sandwich, or a half pound of brisket. The hot dogs and beer also come highly recommended.
- Jerry's Chicago Styles Hotdogs, 149 E Commerce St, San Antonio — Chicago-style hot dogs... enough said!
- Salt Grass, 502 River Walk Street, San Antonio — One of the many open air River Walk restaurants - save room for the chocolate cake.
- Anne Marie's Carriage House Bistro, 555 Funston Pl, San Antonio — Located at the entrance to the San Antonio Botanical Garden, this bistro has lighter, but no less delicious fare, like muffalettas and chicken salads.
- Costa Pacifica, 434 North Loop 1604 W, San Antonio — Get your seafood fix - with a Mexican twist - here. Entrees range from shrimp tacos to fish tostadas.
- America's Incredible Pizza Company, 11743 West Ave, San Antonio — Your kids will love the pizza buffet, but they might enjoy the distractions even more: go karts, arcade games, laser tag, mini golf, and more. With specials like the $21.99 "Weekend Eat & Play," you'll affordably satisfy your hunger for food and a good time.
You can also save money on food by buying some groceries at the local market and preparing meals at your vacation rental. With a full kitchen, this is quick and easy and you can involve the whole group to make the process easy and fun.
Why get a cramped hotel when you can stay in a spacious home with all the amenities you want? Have your choice of three-bedroom or larger homes, a quick ride away from top San Antonio attractions. Stay close to the River Walk and the nightlife with a downtown apartment or condo. Many San Antonio vacation rentals also come with community pools and workout centers.
Cool off every day with your own pool when you choose San Antonio vacation deals with extra amenities like a pool, hot tub, or amazing views!
Besides avoiding expensive attractions and restaurants, there are many more ways to save money during your San Antonio getaway. Here are some pointers:
- San Antonio is a laid-back town with mild weather year-round (except for the oppressively hot summers), so it's easier to time a vacation here. If you visit during a slower time of year, you can enjoy off season San Antonio vacation deals. Avoid the busiest month July, holidays, and the city-wide Fiesta San Antonio in April.
- Stay on the River Walk and there's a good chance you'll rarely, if ever, need a rental car.
- On the other hand, don't stay on the River Walk. By booking a vacation rental a little ways from top attractions and restaurants, you can save on your rate.
- Pack along bottled water and snacks as you're out and about. That way you're not out-of-pocket for these "must haves."