We just got back from an amazing long weekend away visiting San Antonio, Texas! It had been 15 years since Brian and I were there last and this was the first time visiting for the kids. Our goal is to explore somewhere new with our kids as much as we can while they are still home with us. I know the next 7-10 years are going to go by quickly and I am holding on to every chance to create new memories with them! We took the 4.5 hour drive south and stayed at the JW San Antonio Hill Country Resort. It was nothing short of amazing.
I put a lot of effort into researching and planning our family trips, I am also so fortunate to get so much amazing feedback and recommendations from all of you, so I want to take a second a share a little bit about our trip, what we loved, what we would do differently and all of the things we didn’t get to that you recommended.
Tips For Visiting San Antonio
Where to Stay
We stayed at JW San Antonio Hill Country Resort and I can’t recommend it enough. This truly is a luxury, family oriented resort that is fun for all ages. It is about 30 minutes outside of downtown San Antonio in the Hill Country. It sits on an amazing golf course and has gorgeous views from every angle of the grounds.
My husband is a Marriott Bonvoy Member and I always have my eye on the best Marriott resorts to visit. I’ve had this resort on my list before we even decided to move to Texas and it didn’t disappoint. I don’t feel like I got enough pictures of the grounds to truly show how gorgeous this resort is. It HUGE, the water park is incredible and includes multiple water slide including a drop out bottom one (which we all tried!), tube rides, a lazy river and even a sandy beach for younger kids.
I was so impressed with the amenities, especially those for kids. They have a kids club in the evenings (we didn’t use it but it sounds great), multiple restaurants on site, a sports bar with huge screens, beautiful gym, arcade, nightly s’mores at the fire pit, glow stick parties, movie nights at the pool, scavenger hunt and more. You could easily spend a week here and never leave.
If I had ANY complaint, it would be that it took 1.5 hours to have our luggage brought to our room after check in. I know they were extremely busy over Labor Day weekend with over 1,000 rooms booked, but had we known it would take that long we would have just carried it ourselves. After a 5 hour drive and 3 anxious kids who wanted to swim, it was not ideal.
Other San Antonio Hotels:
The Hotel Emma – Downtown in Pearl District
Things To Do In San Antonio
Since we were only there for 2 full days, plus travel days on either side, we didn’t get to do a ton, but enough for us to explore the city and also have a good amount of pool time. Here are the activities we got in
I remember going on a cavern tour when I was a kid and it was something I will never forget! When I found out there were cavern tours in San Antonio I knew we had to do it! It’s something I really wanted our kids to experience and it would be something new for my husband too. We went on the Hidden Wonders Tour at Natural Bridge Caverns .
They do 3 different tours and this was a great one for our family. It was a little over an hour long, you go down 180ft under ground and truly experience some of the most unique and stunning natural formations. I definitely recommend this tour! I didn’t feel claustrophobic at all, you are in wide open spaces the whole time.
Twisted Trails Ropes Course
At the top of the Natural Bridge Caverns is the Twisted Trails Ropes Course. This is a ropes course with zip lining. It was fun for the whole family to try. I had never done anything like this before and it was so fun. 45 minutes is the perfect amount of time to explore all the levels and do all the zip lines.
If you are heading into the city, definitely do the river walk boat tour. There are several of them. We did a hop on hop off boat and learned through experience what we would do differently next time. We started the boat ride in the evening at the Pearl District and took the boat south into the city and the main area where all the restaurants were. Well, my son ended up having to go to the bathroom and we hopped off, and then found out that it was getting late and we had to hop on a boat back north to get back to our car and ended up missing out of a bunch of the river walk.
Here is what I would do differently next time: Visit the Alamo. Head to the river and do the tour and head North to the Pearl District. Hope off and grab lunch and ice cream at Lick, walk around and explore Hotel Emma, then hop back on the river shuttle and go south back to where you parked.
Other Thing To Do:
Visit Market Square
Places To Eat
We primarily ate at the resort, but we did venture out one night to The Pearl District and had a nice dinner, I highly recommend this area for a night out. There are tons of restaurants to eat at around here. We ate at Supper which was delicious. I especially liked the decor and ambiance.
I am absolutely obsessed with this area, I could have spent at least a full day here looking at all the architecture and exploring. Such a fun place for kids to run around too.
Here are tons of other places people recommended to us!
Box Street Social
Schilos for Sandwiches
Best Quality Daughter
Rosario’s Mexican Restaurant
Down on Grayson