Stay and Play: San Antonio Riverwalk

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Having been to San Antonio many times, including Pearl District, this post will just focus on the new places where we ate, stayed and played. 

Where We Ate in San Antonio

Domingo Restaurant

We started at Domingo Restaurant on the Riverwalk. We ate inside as a group of eight and it was fabulous. Our group started with, and raved about, Elote Street Corn and Skillet Cornbread. We followed up the appetizers with Baja Fish Tacos, Poblano Burger, Short Rib Quesadilla and I can’t remember what else, but it and the drinks were all delicious. The Quesadilla was served with a napkin underneath on the plate. Fancy. Domingo gets 8/8 thumbs up from our group!

Boudro’s on the Riverwalk

Another restaurant that we dined at on this trip, and loved, was Boudro’s. Here we sat out on the patio and enjoyed the nite life on the River. It’s a fun place to be! We had so many wonderful dishes to brag about like the prepared at your table guacamole, Prickly Pear Margarita, Shrimp & Crab Enchiladas, …. You can’t go wrong here and you won’t go hungry!

Boiler House at The Pearl District

Boiler House, in Pearl District, was a wonderful dining experience sitting outside across from Mon Chou Chou with Edward taking excellent care of us. It’s either really good or really bad if I forget to take pictures. It must’ve been the fact that they started us off with BREAD and I was happy and distracted, so no food pics. Everyone that got the Sherry Salmon was thrilled and I’m pretty sure there was a fillet or two ordered-knowing our group. Would definitely return here. Maybe I’ll even get pics next time!

Sternewirth Bar at Hotel Emma

Sternewirth Bar at Hotel Emma was the setting for an afternoon 60th birthday celebration. So much character and history in this cellar bar. Put in your list to check out. The birthday boy, with his scotch, treated us all to drinks on the patio. Should be the other way around, right?! Just one example of what fun awesome friends we have. Cheers!

Bakery Lorraine at The Pearl

A must stop for me every time I go to the Pearl District is Bakery Lorraine. I’m not a coconut fan, but you wouldn’t know it the way I devoured this delectable (and pretty) German Chocolate fabulousness. That mini macaron on top was a rich bonus!

Where we stayed on the Riverwalk in San Antonio 

‘The Cabin’ on the Riverwalk, a 19th century rustic 5 bedroom/5 bath home with modern updates worked well for our group! It had a fully stocked kitchen and a large table so we could cook and enjoy a big breakfast together each morning. There was also a covered patio and an adjoining yard with plenty of tables and chairs for our group to hang out. It is located literally steps away from a beautiful and peaceful area of the river and only 10 min or so walk to the hopping touristy loop. We walked it several times and felt very safe. The owner was very friendly, taking care of our every need and sharing history/recommendations with us. He also owns the neighboring bed & breakfast, ‘Inn on the Riverwalk’.  

Where we Played at and Near the Riverwalk

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve visited San Antonio . We have had relatives living in SA most of my life and even my brother lived there at one point. But, the one thing I had not experienced, until this trip, is riding the river boats. Go Rio operates the narrated river boat cruises and the non-narrated shuttles. I know. I know. Most of you have done this even on your one and only San Antonio visit. 

Go Rio Narrated River Cruise

This  ticketed ride is an enjoyable and informative ctuise around the river ‘loop’ and leaves from several riverside locations every 15 minutes. It takes about 35 minutes round trip. Buy tickets online or at any of the boarding/off-boarding locations. It’s a good way to get your bearings, take in the riverwalk in a relaxing way and see all the places you want to go back to. You’ll learn some interesting history and trivia too. We are glad we did this and enjoyed it as much as our first-time visiting friends. 

Go Rio Riverwalk Shuttle

We learned about the river shuttle by accident. We were at the Pearl District and exploring the Riverwalk behind Hotel Emma and saw the barge there loading. This a pretty part of the river with it cascading over the rock ledges that we recommend exploring. So, we decided to get on the river boat to see where it would take us. We weren’t sure if it would go to the main loop, but it did! Even made the loop, so now that’s twice for us. Haha

Riverwalk Shuttle Ride

We were in the boat for an hour and a half round trip. It makes several stops, but we needed to be back at Pearl for dinner anyway. We rode by the Museum of Art, under the hanging fish underpass, other artsy underpasses, by Elsewhere Garden Bar, Oldest VFW Post in TX, The grotto, artsy tile and through the lock & dam. That was a cool new thing for us to experience.

AT&T Lock & Dam 

Because the river drops on the way to downtown, an impressive lock & dam was installed to lower the water from Pearl and raise it from downtown, so the river barges could pass all the way through. This makes for a wonderful round trip river cruise and access to some stops along the way. 

One stop was at The Hampton and while we were there a pickle ball had escaped the 2nd or 3rd floor outdoor deck above. One of our young passengers was able to lob it back up close enough for the player to reach out and snag it back in! Applause erupted for both of them. Yay!

Can You Walk Along the River From Downtown to Pearl? 

This new part (to us) of the Riverwalk is cemented, terraced and landscaped just like the commercialized loop and all the rest. It’s just much less populated with businesses and people-so far. You can absolutely walk along the River from Downtown to Pearl and people were. It was a beautiful Spring day for a stroll or a cruise!

The Alamo

Yes, we’ve been to The Alamo several times, but on this visit we spent more time here than in the past. It has expanded since I was a kid and my interest in it has expanded too. Lots of history documented inside of the ‘Alamo Church’ and Long Barrack. There is nice shady courtyard in the back with 150 year old amazing Live Oak, cannon, well, statues and demonstrations the day we visited. Besides all of the preservation, expansion includes The Collections Center, Gift Shop and Cenotaph out front. There are upcoming Education Center and Visitor Center & Museum buildings in the works too.

Couldn’t miss a change to get a group shot in ‘signature pose’ at this iconic locale. 

San Fernando Cathedral 

It might be irreverent to say we played here, but we did enjoy our visit both outside and inside at San Fernando Cathedral. We walked from our cabin on the Riverwalk, on Sunday morning, to San Fernando Cathedral. It was a short half mile stroll past Bexar County Courthouse. This is the area we saw these Canary Islander Statues and the plaque in honor of the 300th Anniversary of the Founding of Bejar. There was also a group of Canary Islanders attending mass on this special celebration Sunday. Love all of the history and that this cathedral still has a thriving congregation. We had only been to the Cathedral Plaza out front before and watched the San Antonio History Light Show, that is projected onto the cathedral.

Founders Monument between Bexar County Courthouse & San Fernando Cathedral

Hope you get to go to San Antonio soon and check out some of these new favorites of ours. We can’t wait to go back ourselves!

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