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Best Fun Things to Do in San Antonio TX this Weekend

If you’re a local, we sometimes overlook all the unique and fun things to do in San Antonio TX, especially when you’re looking to change up your weekend plans.

Or, maybe you’re trying to plan where to take visiting friends and family that isn’t Seaworld San Antonio or Six Flags Fiesta Texas.

In reality, there is a lot of value in our rich history, vibrant culture, one-of-a-kind dining experiences, and other fun places to visit in San Antonio.

If you’re a native Texan looking for an exciting day trip or a tourist searching for fun places to visit in San Antonio, there is plenty to experience within a short walk or bus ride of the iconic Alamo! It will only enrich your time in one of the most historic cities in America!

We hope you’ll walk away from your next trip with a new appreciation for my hometown with this list as your guide.

With our latest edition of our Texas Travel Guide, you can take an exciting vacation every weekend without breaking the bank and still have more to do! And in just one trip, the guide pays for itself! You’ll be amazed at all the hidden gems, international influence, and wacky attractions you’ll find all over Texas!

Not ready to purchase quite yet? We wanted to make this guide as accessible as possible, so we’ve shared our 1st edition of our guide, 50 Texas Trips Under $50. Click the button below to get yours for FREE!

Best Tours of San Antonio

Click here to purchase tickets for a bus tour of San Antonio. There are a total of 19 stops, including the San Antonio Museum of Art, the Pearl District, Buckhorn Saloon and more! Simply hop on and off at your leisure!

If you’re low on time, try this San Antonio bus tour. Sit back and see San Antonio at a much faster pace. This option only lasts one hour, but you’ll still get a great taste of the Alamo City!

On the San Antonio Highlights & Alamo Guided Tour, children younger than 5 can ride along for free. Your ticket includes access to the Tower of the Americas, a guided tour of the Alamo, and a 35-minute river cruise.

Related Posts: 50+ Day Trips from San Antonio

Walk Around the Pearl District

This former brewery has been transformed into a fun, bustling neighborhood in San Antonio with eateries, shops, and a weekend farmers market.

Below are only a few of the things there are to do here, so come with a sense of adventure and your best walking shoes!

Pearl Farmers Market

Held rain or shine, the Pearl Farmers Market is the best place to find local produce, meat, and more, all from within a150-mile radius of San Antonio!

Drop in on Saturday and/or Sunday from 9am to 1pm for a chance to experience one of the top 10 farmers markets in the country according to USA Today! Saturdays are typically focused on food goods while Sundays are filled with handcrafted items from local artisans.

Jazz TX

You can find this snazzy jazz lounge in the basement of the Pearl Brewery. Their ticketed, 90-minute shows occur seven times a week and are complemented by a dance floor, on-site kitchen, and adult beverages.

You can enjoy a variety of jazz genres, from Latin and blues to Texas swing and modern jazz. The venue is open Tuesday through Saturday, but check their calendar if you’re looking to visit during a show.

Adelante Boutique

Adelante Boutique is a local, family-owned business that has been open since 1975. Choose from a unique selection of chic women’s clothing and accessories with a boho flair. They even sell an Oprah must-have, Chickies Cleavage Coverage!

Ten Thousand Villages

Shop for fair trade, handmade items from around the world at Ten Thousand Villages, a non-profit shop in the Pearl District. You’ll find unique jewelry, home decor, and gifts from dozens of artisans and 20+ countries.

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Explore Downtown San Antonio

San Antonio River Walk

This iconic urban waterway is lined with shops, restaurants, and beautiful scenery. Stroll along the river or take a charming boat ride for a different perspective. During the holidays, the River Walk and its hanging trees are decked out in colorful Christmas lights. During holidays like Día de Muertos, you can also catch river parades with beautiful floats and live music.

Rio Cruises

See San Antonio from a new perspective on a Rio Cruise. These narrated boat tours offer a relaxing and informative way to explore the iconic San Antonio River Walk. Tours depart daily from 10am to 10pm, with tours lasting 35 minutes. 

You can also hop on board simply to traverse the area, with River Shuttles operating from 12pm to 8pm daily. Look for the Go Rio Shuttle schedule signs along the River Walk and boats labeled with Go Rio Shuttle signs.

If you contact one of the participating restaurants along the River Walk, you can also plan a dinner cruise in partnership with Rio Cruises. Dinners can host anywhere from 2 to 20 passengers. See their booking site for participating restaurants and available dates.

La Villita Historic Arts Village

As one of San Antonio’s first neighborhoods, La Villita is now filled with galleries, shops, and restaurants.

Esquire Tavern (Hyatt Regency) + Speakeasy “Downstairs”

Step back in time at the Esquire Tavern. The oldest bar on the River Walk, it opened right after Prohibition ended in 1933, and possesses the longest bar top in Texas.

To match its rich wood and leather finishings, the Esquire Tavern has an extensive history and is even rumored to have ghosts in the basement. Then head “Downstairs” for a secret speakeasy experience.

The San Antonio Missions

Most everyone has heard of the Alamo, but did you know it is only a part of the San Antonio Missions? It’s original name was actually Mission San Antonio de Valero.

A National Park Service site and the only UNESCO World Heritage Site in Texas, this collection of historic, former Spanish missions are vital parts of Texas history. They not only tell the story of the colonization of Texas, but most importantly, the displacement and suffering of the Natives who originally inhabited it.

Park Rangers offer guided walks of Mission San José at 10am and 11am daily (excluding the first Wednesday of the month), beginning at the Visitor Center. In the afternoons, Park Rangers are also out and about. Perhaps you’ll catch them doing different demonstrations.

A self-guided tour is also a great option! The Mission Trails hike and bike trail within the San Antonio Missions National Historic Park includes five of the missions: Mission Concepción, San Jose, the Alamo, Mission San Juan, and Espada.

Although the Alamo is considered a stop along this path as well, it is excluded as a part of the Missions Historical Park. This is because it is actually owned by the State of Texas.

Immerse yourself in San Antonio’s history even further and see how many of the 101 total historic sites you can visit. Even better, snap a photo of each one along the way!

Acequia Park

An additional stop along the Mission Trails hike and bike trail is Acequia Park. Visitors are welcome to fish, kayak, and picnic, with Espada Dam just across the way. This is the only remaining Spanish colonial dam in the city that is still functional.

The accompanying Espada Aqueduct also still exists! It is considered one of the most significant contributions of the Spanish colonials to the area.

Historic Market Square

Known as the largest Mexican market outside Mexico, this three-block area of historic, downtown San Antonio is filled with locally made goods, festive music, and an array of food stalls. It includes El Mercado and the Farmers Market Plaza, which is made up of 32 shops and 80 specialty shops respectively.

Hemisfair Park

Once the site of the 1968 World’s Fair, Hemisfair Park has undergone a fair amount of revitalization. It now boasts playgrounds, gardens, a busy event calendar, and of course, the Tower of the Americas.

This event marked the 250th anniversary of San Antonio’s founding and lasted six months.

Tower of the Americas

Offering panoramic views of the city from the 750-foot high Observation Deck, the Tower of the Americas is a fun, must-visit place in San Antonio. There’s also a revolving restaurant at the top for a one of a kind dining experience, best served at sunset or after the city lights turn on.

Yanaguana Garden

This family-friendly park features a toddler play area, playground, splash pad, central plaza with events and games, sand play area, green spaces, and interactive water features.

Mexican Cultural Institute

The Mexican Cultural Institute was one of the many venues at the World’s Fair, used to display art from several periods of history. Today, it also hosts exhibitions, film screenings, and events dedicated to promoting Mexican culture in San Antonio.

Admission is free. Follow/visit their social media to see their current offerings and scheduled events.

San Antonio Museum of Art

At the heart of downtown San Antonio, you’ll find the San Antonio Museum of Art. Housed in a historic brewery building, the museum boasts an extensive collection that spans 5,000 years of global culture.

From ancient Greek pottery to contemporary American paintings, there’s something here to captivate every art lover. Don’t miss the comprehensive collection of Latin American art, one of the finest in the United States.

Free admission on Tuesdays from 4pm – 7pm and Sundays 10am-12pm (for residents of Bexar County only). You can find other free events on their online calendar.

The Majestic Theatre

Step back in time at the Majestic Theatre, one of the oldest and largest atmospheric theaters in the U.S. This historic venue, adorned with Baroque-style architecture and old-world charm, hosts a variety of performances, from Broadway shows to concerts.

A night at the Majestic Theatre is more than just a show; it’s an experience that transports you to a bygone era of glamour and elegance.

Ripley’s

With over 19 galleries in one location, Ripley’s offers a wax museum with over 200 wax figures, a 4D moving theater, an “Odditorium” filled with 600+ strange and unusual exhibits, and more!

While you’re at it stop by the Alamo, located just across the street, or even better, tackle the Mission Trails hike and bike trail!

Ruby City

This contemporary art center showcases innovative exhibitions in a striking red building. Ruby City also hosts public events like meditation, artist talks, and live music. It’s a must-visit for art enthusiasts!

The on-site green space, Chris Park, is home to exotic plant species native to South Texas, along with outdoor art pieces, LED light displays (best viewed at night), and Tumble Hill for the kiddos.

Blue Star Arts Complex

You could spend an entire afternoon filled with fun here in San Antonio! You’ll find several art galleries, performance spaces, shops, and restaurants including:

  • Bar 1919 – speakeasy with craft cocktails
  • Halycon – coffee shop with cocktails and comfort food
  • Sukeban – sushi and champagne bar
  • South Alamode – Italian gelato and sandwiches
  • Joe Blue’s – local lounge
  • Blue Star Provisions – small, local market
  • Stella Public House – pizza with craft beer and wine
  • Helotes Creek Studio – art and vintage boutique
  • Brick at Blue Star – art gallery with beer and wine bar
  • Divine Sunshine Collective – vintage and art shop
  • Slab Cinema Art House – art space and theater
  • ArtMatter’s – handcrafted jewelry store
  • Blue Star Brewing Co. – San Antonio’s first brewpub

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Spend the Day at Brackenridge Park

San Antonio Zoo

Home to over 750 species, the San Antonio Zoo offers a fun, exciting day out for families and couples alike! Don’t miss their unique interactive exhibits like the butterfly house and giraffe feeding station! Or, experience once in a lifetime animal encounters with kangaroos, tortoises, and more!

The San Antonio Zoo also hosts community events like Yoga at the Zoo, Beastly Breakfasts, and Zoo Lights during the holidays.

The Kiddie Park

The oldest children’s amusement park in the U.S., the Kiddie Park, now located at the San Antonio Zoo, continues to delight with its vintage charm and classic rides.

Japanese Tea Garden

Located in Brackenridge Park, this tranquil spot is free to visit and features beautiful floral displays, a waterfall, and koi-filled ponds. It’s a serene retreat from the city’s hustle and bustle, as well as an awesome photo spot!

Make a stop at the Jingu House, an on-site cafe that serves boba, coffee, ice cream, Japanese snacks, and more!

Witte Museum

As a kid, the Witte Museum was a personal favorite of mine (and still is)! You’ll learn about everything from biology and archaeology to Texas history and wildlife! There are also ever-changing special exhibits, including interactive ones that are perfect for the energetic kiddos in your life.

Be sure to check their online calendar as well for unique, immersive events like their Fall Rock Art Tours at the White Shaman Preserve. Here, you’ll have the chance to see the White Shaman Mural, painted by a once living hunter-gatherer society, on a guided, 1.5-hour hike for just $25 (non-members)!

There is free admission on Tuesdays from 3pm – 6pm.

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Fun Places to Eat in San Antonio

Voodoo Doughnuts

Voodoo Doughnuts is a nationally recognized brand, well-known for their iconic pink box and 50+ extravagant, ever-changing plays on the traditional donut. Flavors range from the Glazed Old Fashioned to the Bacon Maple Bar, including 25 vegan options!

I love their little donut carousel with all of their creations on display! Whether you’re exploring downtown San Antonio late at night or you’re up early to catch a flight, Voodoo Doughnuts is an easy, worthwhile choice!