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San Antonio River Walk

Updated on September 11, 2014

My Mom's Favorite Haunt

Everytime my mother would come down to San Antonio, TX, she would want us to take her to two places....The River walk and Pancho's (very hard to find now). She used to love to take the boat ride around the city on the River walk. I wish I had taken her on one of the dinner boat rides. She would have really loved that. I went on one with a Senior's group one time and it was really cool. They would pick up the first course when we got on the boat. Then would stop at various points down the river walk to get the next course. Great scenery and a great meal all at one time. Couldn't get any better than that.

Photo Credit: This is a Creative Commons Commercial photo taken from

Riverwalk From A Different View
Riverwalk From A Different View

About The River Walk

The Beautiful Paths and Riverway

The river walk is one level below downtown. It is surrounded by wonderful shops, bars, restaurants, and hotels. Take the taxi boat around the river walk to get from one place to another if you do not want to walk. You can get to the Rivercenter mall, Arneson River Theatre, Marriage Island, La Villita, the HemisFair Park, San Antonio Museum of Art, and the Pearl Brewery from the river walk.

In April, there is even a beautiful night parade on the river walk, which features flowery floats that float down the river.

The river walk was not always there. Back in 1921, the San Antonio River overflowed it banks and killed 50 people. The local people knew something had to be done about this situation before it happened again. In 1929, an architect, Robert Hugman recommended the plans for a commercial development that would include commercial enterprises all along the river with flood gates set up at critical spots to control the water. The people did not receive this well at first because that area was known to be dangerous. Eventually, the people came around. In 1939, under the WPA plan, a lot of his dream came true.

Over the years, the system has improved and been extended.

Photo Credit: This is a Creative Commons Share alike photo taken from wikipedia

Night Parade Float
Night Parade Float

Fiesta Flambeau Parade

On the Riverwalk

San Antonio has a fiesta called "Fiesta San Antonio" every year during April. Sometimes it falls on my birthday and I tell everyone that San Antonio is celebrating my birthday. LOL At sundown on the second Saturday of the fiesta, San Antonio holds a parade on the riverwalk. It is a sight to be seen. If you ever get a chance to come to San Antonio toward the end of April, you just need to stop and see the lovely parades.

This parade started in 1948. Approximately 600,000 people lined the riverwalk to watch the Fiesta Flambeau parade in 2011. As with the Battle of The Flowers parade held the day before this parade, all floats must be covered with flowers (usually paper flowers). Each one will float down the river past all the by-standers.

Photo Credit: My San Antonio, Creative Commons Commercial

Prom Dinner Cruise
Prom Dinner Cruise

Rio San Antonio Cruises

A great way to see the Riverwalk

Since the river walk is now 13 miles long, it is a little far to walk. Why not take one of the Rio Taxis. It will take you from one point to another on the river walk so you won't miss anything. This taxi has over 39 places where it will pick you up and drop you off. The prices of the tickets vary upon where you are wanting to go. Planning a trip to San Antonio? Why not go ahead and order your tickets online before you come.

Take one of the narrated tours of the San Antonio River. These tours start every 15-20 minutes from 9 am til 9 pm. If they have enough interest, they will stay open later. My mother used to like to take these tours as she could see more of the river walk than if we had to walk. Again, you can order your tickets in advance online. Even though you order your tickets online, you are not guaranteed a ticket on a specific boat as this is a first come, first board system.

Have an event you want to celebrate some way special? Well, Rio San Antonio Cruises has two very special ways for you to celebrate your event. First, you can take a dinner cruise for up to 20 people. All you have to do is contact the restaurant that you want to cater your affair and they will take care of the boat for you. You will receive one bill for the catering and the boat. The second way is to have a cocktail cruise for up to 30 people. The cocktail cruise includes appetizers and drinks. Again, contact one of the above restaurants to schedule your cocktail party.

If you have a group of people coming with you to San Antonio, you can schedule a chartered tour of the river walk. You can have up to 40 people in your group for one of these tours. The tour will be for approximately 40 minutes.

So that you can be sure you are doing everything right, the Rio San Antonio Cruises has a policy page for you to check out.

Photo courtesy of Mike Whaling

Boat Tours
Boat Tours

River Walk Extended

3 miles open now

The original part of the river walk was just the downtown area. They are now planning extensions to other tourist attractions. They are up to 3 miles of the project so far. The have the downtown area, the Roosevelt park, and the Mission Conception areas open now. To see a map of the planned river walk, get this pdf.

The plan is to have the river walk to extend to 13 miles of tourist attractions.

This photo courtesy of Mike Overall

San Antonio Riverwalk in Video - See it's splendid beauty.

I was going to have a voting plexo but the module wouldn't work. Hope you enjoy these videos of the beauty of the riverwalk in San Antonio, TX.

If you have been to the riverwalk, please let us know what you thought about it and what you enjoyed the most.

Have You Ever Been To The River walk? - Do You Think You Would Like To Visit It?

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    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago

      You are welcome, Bill. It makes me smile, too.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image

      William Leverne Smith 

      4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      The simple mention of the The River Walk makes me smile. Thanks for sharing this interesting article! ;-)

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago

      Thank you, john. It is really beautiful and they have extended it even further since I was there. It is definitely a must see.

    • john000 profile image

      John R Wilsdon 

      4 years ago from Superior, Arizona

      I have never been to San Antonio, but if I ever cross Texas, I will be sure to stop and see the River Walk. Your article truly wetted my appetite. Thanks.

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @anonymous: You are welcome. There is so much to the River Walk now that I need to get more information to add about it. Check out all of the places to see before you go as the River Walk is only one place to visit in San Antonio.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      we've been wanting to visit, but haven't got near San Antonio yet. It's on our list and hopefully we'll be there soon, thank you for all this wonderful info

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago

      @MelRootsNWrites: Yes, I was really fascinated when I found out how the riverwalk got started, too. You are welcome

    • MelRootsNWrites profile image

      Melody Lassalle 

      7 years ago from California

      The Riverwalk sounds wonderful. It's interesting to note that it came together under the WPA. We achieved quite a bit as a country during those Depression years. Many of those things are still around for us to enjoy. Thanks for sharing this!

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @LissaKlar LM: Thank you for the wonderful comment. I hope to someday replace all of these with my own pictures. I might go up to San Antonio in September if I can.

    • LissaKlar LM profile image

      LissaKlar LM 

      7 years ago

      I really enjoyed this lens. Good job! Beautiful pictures and descriptions.

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @dahlia369: Than you for the compliment and the blessing.

    • dahlia369 profile image


      7 years ago

      Beautiful lens, nice images and good info. Blessed! :)

    • Grandma-Marilyn profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      @mbgphoto: I miss being able to go there myself.

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 

      7 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      I really enjoyed my visits to the Riverwalk. Thanks for the memories. Blessed


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