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20 Places Where an Out-of-Towner Can Actually Experience San Antonio 

Being a local allows you to show your friends and family visiting you the best meals, drinks and activities that San Antonio has to offer. Whether visiting for just a day trip or staying for a few weeks, there are some places your guests absolutely have to go to truly get a glimpse into the 210 life and be puro San Antonio.
Have a photoshoot at Hays Street Bridge
803 N Cherry Street, (210) 207-0970
What is a vacation without a badass new profile picture to commemorate the adventure? Do your guests a solid and take them to one of the most hip places in town to be seen. While you’re there, appreciate the beauty of the Texas sunset.
brittakutchera / Instagram
Spend a few hours in El Mercado
514 W Commerce Street, (210) 207-8600
Perhaps the unoffficial heart of the city, El Mercado (aka Market Square) is a perfect peek into the vibrant culture that makes up San Antonio. Sip on margs at Mi Tierra, shop around the indoor & outdoor markets and enjoy the vivid life that you can literally feel while here. Your guests will totally understand what makes San Antonio so attractive.
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Learn some history at San Fernando Cathedral
115 Main Plaza, (210) 227-1297, sfcathedral.org
If your old-school abuela is visiting, make her happy and take her to church. Even if your guests aren’t uber religious, they’ll be sure to love the stunning architecture of the cathedral. Grab some snacks and people watch out on the plaza, or catch the light show on select nights.
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Catch a show at Paper Tiger
2410 N. St. Mary's Street, (800) 513-7540, papertigersatx.com
Leave it to Paper Tiger to give the most accurate look into the San Antonio music scene. There’s a consistent stream of solid acts coming through what is arguably the city’s most poppin’ music venue. Whether a local favorite or famous-but-still-underground-so-it’s-cool act is on the bill, your visitor will thank you for letting them in on the prized spot.
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Train your eye at San Antonio Museum of Art
200 W Jones Ave., (210) 978-8100, samuseum.org
With puro San Antonio exhibits and artwork from all types of genres, SAMA is a top spot to see the creativity made within the city and appreciated by all those who live here. Well, mostly. Your guest’s visit won’t be complete without a few hours spent here.
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Treat them to dinner at Hotel Emma
136 E. Grayson Street, (210) 448-8300, thehotelemma.com
This Pearl-area hotel offers one of the best meals in San Antonio at Supper. This American eatery serves up a Midwestern approach to South Texas favorites. Trust us, it’s phenomenal. And of course, that includes after-dinner drinks at Sternewirth. Sip on your cocktail or craft beer of choice in this posh clubroom before exploring the rest of the Pearl, which is easily one of the coolest spots within San Antonio.
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Bike (or canoe, or run) the Mission Reach
sanantonioriver.org/mission_reach
The River Walk has never been as great as it is until Mission Reach came about a few years ago. While some may hit up the San Antonio namesake for the restaurants and other tourist traps, explore the beautiful side to the city’s prized body of water.
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Drink your way up the St. Mary’s Strip
Whether you’re looking for a night to remember or a night you have no chance at remembering, you’re guaranteed to have one or the other while hitting up the Strip. Make sure to hit up Faust Tavern, the Mix and Joey’s.
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Be one with nature at San Antonio Botanical Garden
555 Funston Pl., (210) 536-1400, sabot.org
While it might be wicked hot most of the year, San Antonio’s climate lets us have beauties like the botanical garden. Take a walk through the beautiful garden to see one of the most natural areas in the area.
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See the sights from the Tower of the Americas
739 E César E. Chávez Blvd., (210) 223-3101, toweroftheamericas.com
Get the greatest view of the city from the highest point possible! While San Antonio may not have the most impressive skyline, the fact that the city limits are so crazy far makes for an interesting sight that your guests can appreciate. While you’re there, slam back a few drinks and even have dinner.
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Get in the spirit at Fiesta on Main
2025 N. Main Ave., (210) 738-1188, alamofiesta.com
A lot of people outside of San Antonio don’t understand our fascination with Fiesta. Unless they experience it for themselves, it’s somewhat confusing. The entire city shuts down to party and celebrate a piece of history that no one actually remembers? Remember the Alamo, right? Yes! Even if it’s not April (aka the best time of the year), take your guests to the most colorful shop in all of San Antonio. For an extra bit of fun, buy a piñata and let loose at home.
makermama / Instagram
Track down MobileOm
Multiple locations, mobileomtx.com
What better way to explore San Antonio than by catching up with MobileOm? It’s a great way to see the sights and relax after a night of heaving drinking (which we know you’ll have). Just be sure to ‘gram your adventure.
mobileom / Instagram
Serve some looks at Paramour
102 9th Street, Suite 400, (210) 340-9880, paramourbar.com
Go for coffee, go for brunch, go for drinks, just make sure you and your visiting friends/family make your way to Paramour. Getting to taste Jason Dady’s creative inventions from the kitchen while being entertained by the happenings of the rooftop bar, y’all are bound to have a great time.
paramourbar / Instagram
See what’s going on at Brick at Blue Star
108 Blue Star, (210) 262-8653, brickatbluestar.com
Any time spent at Blue Star is time well spent, but hitting up the trendy Brick is the best way to prove to your visitors that you know what’s good. If there isn’t something creatively artistic going on, it’s guaranteed to be equally insightful and thought-provoking. Seriously. And while you’re there, head over to Bar 1919 for some sinfully delicious drinks.
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Take a ride on the Eagle Train
3903 N. St. Mary's Street, sazoo.org
If your guests includes little ones, well, this simple attraction will make their visit happier (and easier for you). Children 3 and younger ride for free, while everyone else is $4. The ride goes throughout Brackenridge Park (which keeps kids — and adults — entertained for hours) and runs while the San Antonio Zoo is open.
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Snack on sweets at Bakery Lorraine
Multiple locations, bakerylorraine.com
Not only is this bakery loved locally, it’s also recognized nationally. This spot is a must on your visitor’s itinerary. Whether you want to keep it light with macarons or go for a heartier pastry, these treats will have your guest’s eyes rolling back and thinking fondly of their trip to San Antonio.
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Play like a kid at Comanche Lookout Park
15551 Nacogdoches Road, (210) 207-7275, sanantonio.gov
Get some fresh air and a history lesson at this park, which happens to be one of the highest points in Bexar County. Previously inhabited by Comanche Indians (thanks colonization), the park offers free space to run wild and have let the child at heart in you out, perfect for childhood friends visiting you.
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Take in some culture at Artpace
445 N. Main Ave., (210) 212-4900, artpace.org
Even if your out-of-towner isn’t an art fan, this contemporary art museum is still definitely worth a visit. This spot offers exhibitions of both local and international artists, making for a refreshing mix of artwork. If they happen to be in town for Chalk It Up, even better.
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Drink up some fresh brews at Freetail Brewing Co.
2000 S. Presa Street, (210) 625-6000, freetailbrewing.com
Enjoy some of the best freshly-made beer available in the city with your visitors. After a pint or two, they’ll totally understand why San Antonio is made up of a bunch of borrachos.
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Relax at McAllister Park
13102 Jones Maltsberger Road, (210) 207-7275, sanantonio.gov
While most San Antonio parks are guaranteed to make your visitors thankful for a relaxing day in nature, McAllister Park is the go-to for a balance of uninterrupted scenery and fun activities. Equally attractive is the dog park, perfect for those bringing their cute pupper along on vacation.
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Have a photoshoot at Hays Street Bridge
803 N Cherry Street, (210) 207-0970
What is a vacation without a badass new profile picture to commemorate the adventure? Do your guests a solid and take them to one of the most hip places in town to be seen. While you’re there, appreciate the beauty of the Texas sunset.
brittakutchera / Instagram
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