Trying to craft an itinerary for your stay in San Antonio? Carve out some time for Alamo Heights. This refined area of historic homes and manicured gardens delivers ultimate relaxation for your Texas vacation.
Alamo Heights’ pretty tree-lined avenues are an emporium of boutiques, upscale restaurants, and art. Admire famous painters at the McNay Art Museum or get lost among mystical sculptures at the San Antonio Botanical Garden.
Alamo Heights is a family-friendly neighborhood with lots of activities to keep everybody in the family happy. Kids will have a fantastic time at Witte Museum and San Antonio Zoo. The laid-back area is also full of lush green spaces, including Olmos Basin Park and Brackenridge Park.
Want to see more of this underrated district? This complete guide to Alamo Heights will help you pick out what to see & do, places to eat and drink, and where to stay.
What to see & do in Alamo Heights
McNay Art Museum
Creatives can find inspiration on their Alamo Heights adventure at the McNay Art Museum. The first modern art museum in Texas is home to over 20,000 pieces, housed in a charming 1920s mansion in a Spanish Colonial Revival style.
Whether your medium of choice is photography, painting, or mixed media, you’ll find pieces on show at the McNay Art Museum to delight your senses. Light-filled rooms, pretty mosaic details, and period features create a serene atmosphere to take in all the creative energy.
The McNay Art Museum features work from some of the world’s greatest modern artists. Fall into the flowers of Georgia O’Keefe or unpick Picasso’s paintings. There’s also a wonderful selection of Medieval and Renaissance art and one of the finest collections of prints and drawings in the Southwest.
Head outside and enjoy the fabulous gardens at one of San Antonio’s favorite museums. As you weave between fountains and palm trees, you’ll find whimsical sculptures by modern artists.
If you want to take a deep dive into Texas history, culture, and nature, spend some time in the Witte Museum. There’s a reason this is San Antonio’s most visited museum: It’s rich in information, spans a wide variety of topics, and is full of interactive exhibits.
If you’re on a road trip through Texas, the Witte Museum is the perfect place to understand more about its vibrant history. Hundreds of artifacts explore the state from a century ago. Experience a busy plaza full of stores, theatres, and saloons. Learn from tribes, cattle drives, and ranchers and understand how they negotiated the rugged landscape.
Young and old alike will have a fantastic time in the dinosaur gallery. Bask in the glory of the giant Acrocanthosaurus skeleton or descend into the seas with mysterious turtles and reptiles.
Discover the lost culture of the People of the Pecos. Artifacts explore how these hunter-gatherers survived in Texas for 9,000 years.
San Antonio Zoo
Get up to some monkey business at the San Antonio Zoo! One of the most popular attractions in San Antonio, the zoo is home to 750 different animal species. With many of its animals endangered or extinct in the wild, the zoological park has a strong commitment to care, conservation, and education.
Visit the San Antonio Zoo to encounter animals from around the world. Meet kangaroos from the Australian outback, check out the residents in Big Cat Valley, or find a rare Komodo dragon.
Kids and grown-ups will have a fantastic time exploring the zoo’s many exciting animal experiences. Feed giraffes, hippos, and flamingos, or get up close and personal with exotic birds.
San Antonio Zoo also hosts some great workshops and events. Attend a weekend fiesta with lots of dancing and Latin music. Or try an onsite yoga class during your San Antonio trip itinerary for a chance to get in touch with nature while you master different animal poses.
Escape the bustle of Downtown San Antonio at Brackenridge Park. The 343 acres of green space include foresty landscapes and trickling waterside scenery. With walking trails, pretty gardens, and relaxing riverside activities, it’s the perfect place to switch off and soak up the Texas sunshine.
Start your Brackenridge Park visit by finding some zen at the Japanese tea garden. With a waterfall, pagoda, and kai pond, the garden will pull you into its serene fairytale ambiance. The onsite cafe serves lots of teas and tasty Asian food.
Idyllic walking trails will take you through some of the park’s prettiest areas. Along the way, you have the chance to spot many species of migrating birds. To cover more ground at Brackenridge Park, there’s a miniature train that takes you to top attractions like the San Antonio Zoo.
There’s a great choice of activities at Brackenridge Park, too. Fish by the river or practice your swing at the driving range.
San Antonio Botanical Garden
Escape to the magic of the San Antonio Botanical Garden. This living museum is home to over 200 types of plants from around the world. Spread across 38 acres, the garden teems with color and diversity.
Display gardens celebrate both culture and horticulture from around the world. Luxuriate in the colors and native plants of South Central Texas or the disciplined craft of Japanese landscaping. Spot birds like the Black-chinned Hummingbird at the observatory or visit a traditional German homestead.
Whimsical artwork at San Antonio Botanical Garden combines the art of gardening and creativity. Living sculptures include a towering bushy dragon and a flowering peacock. Hunt for mermaids and Pegasus as you embark on your garden adventure. Why not try it out for yourself by taking an art class? You could design a mosaic garden or create your own botanical wearables.
Olmos Basin Park
Olmos Basin Park is a green oasis in the heart of the city. Get active and relax as you spend time in nature. The park is home to a dam that has protected the city from flooding for almost a century.
Take a stroll along the 1.5-mile pathway to bask in Olmos Basin Park’s beauty. If you’re craving the wilderness, you’ll also find a network of dirt trails. The trails will take you through a thick forest and are great to ride on a mountain bike, too. Along the way, keep an eye out for wildlife. As well as native birds, the park is home to skunks, squirrels, and terrapins.
Olmos Basin Park has huge green lawns, ideal for relaxing, picnicking, and running around. Catch the games on the soccer fields, rugby fields, and baseball fields, or tuck into a feast in the picnic area. If you want to stay out of the sun, you’ll find lots of shady spots to cool off in, too
Where to eat & drink
Alamo Heights is a wealthy area that has attracted some impeccable high-end restaurants and bars. But these trendy establishments are far from snooty. The close-knit local community creates an inviting and relaxed atmosphere wherever you go. In true San Antonio style, the food scene has an international outlook with vibrant creative flair.
Get a stylish feast at Paloma Blanca Mexican Cuisine. The restaurant’s warm and plush decor creates an upscale but cozy feeling. Enjoy fine tequilas alongside hearty portions of dishes that are outside the box from your typical Tex-Mex.
SILO Alamo Heights is a trendy bistro with a thoughtful New American menu. An excellent wine selection and decadent presentation make this restaurant an ideal choice for date night
For something more laid-back, Cappy’s Restaurant offers fine dining dishes in a friendly and casual setting. Chow down on tasty steak and seafood alongside a choice of 40 different scotches and bourbons.
Party like a Brit at The Winchester. This cozy pub has a rustic interior, 17 beers on tap, and classic pub grub from across the pond.
‘The colorful decor of Cappyccino’s is guaranteed to put you in a great mood. Fabulous cocktails and a friendly neighborhood feeling make this a vibrant joint for an afternoon break.
Sit under the sparkling lights of the Bentley’s Bar beer garden. Live DJs, sports nights, and crawfish boils have made this chilled hangout a local favorite.
Where to stay
Although most visitors choose to base themselves in Downtown San Antonio, particularly around the Riverwalk, Alamo Heights is an good choice for where to stay in San Antonio if you’re looking for a more local vibe. Accommodations here are limited, however, to just a small handful of vacation rentals.
This adorable 1920s home is just 100 yards from the Witte Museum. The modern interior and charming porch and garden give you lots of space to rest and unwind during your break. Cook up a storm in the extensive kitchen or fire up the BBQ while you lounge by the pool.
This modern home is a wonderful place to bond with friends and family. Debrief on the sunny patio or spacious lounge. A full kitchen and dining area means you can have tasty family dinners at home. Get competitive with air hockey, ping pong, and cornhole, or have a movie night with complimentary Netflix and Hulu.
This stunning 1940s townhouse is a dreamy base for your San Antonio adventure. The exterior has kept its quaint period features, while the modern interior is light and airy. A huge backyard with pretty outdoor seating makes a lovely spot for some al fresco drinks after a day of sightseeing.