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San Antonio

City Limits
Metro Area

Sources: World Population Review, Wikipedia

Known by many names
Alamo City, Mission City, the River City

San Antonio beautifully balances its complex American history with modern flair and innovation. The River City is home to many different arts and cultural organizations that enrich everyday life by bringing diverse groups of people together to teach about the old and new, and foster deeper community for all who are willing to play a role.

The San Antonio skylinePhoto by Max Valek

The open community is really at the core of what makes San Antonio so special—the people have a reputation for being friendly, are kind to strangers, and are quick to start a conversation. If you’ve ever considered visiting San Antonio, get ready to be warmly welcomed and to feel quickly at home amongst one and a half million people.

A tour down the famous River Walk will make you deeply question what ever stopped you from exploring the city sooner. Shaded pathways connect hundreds of potential spots to stop, snack, or shop. It makes getting around downtown an experience that can only be described as lovely. Oh, and a plus? The city also is easy to explore without a car thanks to its expanded bus service, shared bike service, and ride sharing apps.

“By the time I was four, we were living in San Antonio, Texas. And I just remember picking a bluebonnet and getting yelled at by some guy with a sheriff hat and a badge. I was traumatized. He told me it was the state flower, and I wasn’t supposed to be messin’ with it.”

Pedro PascalActor

This is a city that can also brag about food, and more importantly their brilliant chefs, who are eager to take you through gastronomic journeys with puffy tacos (San Antonio’s signature dish at Ray’s Drive-In), delicious Tex-Mex, and coffee festivals. You can start your day with a concha from Panifico Bake Shop and later savor twice-fried chicken wings made with crab fat caramel and peanuts at Hot Joy.

It’s Texas, don’t forget, so you’ll most likely need a midday break to cool off. You’ll want to wash down pretzel bites and a cold beer at Künstler Brewing, with their friendly staff and ever-changing menu. The city of San Antonio is actually only the second in the US to be named by UNESCO as a “Creative City of Gastronomy.” Not too shabby.

Of course, when considering a stay in San Antonio, there’s the more obvious draw of the balmy weather. In the warm months, the pavement stays hot long after the sun goes down. In the dead of winter, it’s surprisingly chilly. It’s a city built for curious explorers—those who want to follow their nose straight to new dives, beautiful parks, and vibrant public art.

Museums and long-standing art and culture institutions can be relied on nearly every day of the week, and cover contemporary art, vintage relics, and western craftsmanship. ArtPace attracts both local and international artists through residency programs, and Blue Star Complex (home to San Antonio’s longest-running contemporary art space) is a hotbed of inspiration given the varied collections of showrooms, shops, and venues. Across the city, you’ll find treasures like a Japanese Tea Garden, 40-foot-tall ostrich-skin cowboy boots (the world’s largest), and old saloons and missions that hold stories from centuries ago.

San Antonio sports stadiums feel like crowds of new friends, and their rodeos offer some of the biggest corn dogs one ever did see. As long as you’re open to new experiences and enthusiastic smiles, San Antonio could easily be at the top of your favorite places list.

A city good for… cherishing everything Tex-Mex can offer.

San Antonio RiverwalkPhoto by Shelly Collins
Though Tex-Mex might have been a longtime staple of the Tejanos, San Antonio was the catalyst for bringing the flavor to the masses. In the 1880s, rail lines brought new residents to the city, and San Antonio kept them fed on Tex-Mex, which helped spread the cuisine to the rest of the United States. And honestly? Top three culinary inventions, ever.