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This post was produced in partnership with Visit San Antonio and Travel Mindset.
San Antonio, Texas, is a lively city and a great vacation spot for families with teens. There is so much to do, see, and eat all in this one city. It’s always a good idea to have your teens do some research and decide what specific things they want to do on your visit. Getting them involved in the family vacation planning means that they’ll be that much more invested in having a great time together exploring a new place. San Antonio has a lot to offer, no matter what their interests might be.
THINGS TO DO IN SAN ANTONIO WITH TEENAGERS
We visited San Antonio for the first time a few weeks ago and all four of us loved it for different reasons. From adventure to food, San Antonio has plenty to offer all kinds of travelers. Teens can be a tougher crowd, but we found so much to do and see that the adults and teens will want to experience. Here are our top picks for things to do in San Antonio with teenagers in no particular order.
- Visit the Alamo and/or other important San Antonio Missions at the San Antonio Missions National Historic Park. You can’t miss the opportunity to snap a photo in front of the Alamo! Teens might be surprised to find that the Alamo is right in downtown San Antonio. You can learn about the Battle of the Alamo on-site or pull up info on the history on your phone during vacation downtime. You can also choose to tour a mission at your own pace at the National Historic Park. We loved exploring Mission San Jose and loved that they had bikes to rent right on the property if you wanted to explore on two wheels.
- Explore the historic Pearl District – we visited this mixed-use space twice over our weekend in San Antonio. Unique shops, live music on some evenings, restaurants and even a food hall with donuts and the best Prickly Pear margarita I had over the weekend (you can find this at the bar in the Bottling Dept.).
- Exploring the River Walk – teens will love just exploring the River Walk (especially when it comes alive at night), but you can also take narrated cruises or just use the river shuttle to get up and down the river. One night we walked from the Historic Pearl District to downtown via the River Walk and loved watching the sunset and the bars and restaurants come to life around us on our walk.
- Shops at Rivercenter – There is a mall right on the River Walk with not only great shops, but also entertainment options like an Imax theater, Dave and Buster’s (arcade games), and Battle for Texas.
- Eat – there are many great restaurants and snack spots that teens will have a hard time choosing. Don’t miss getting a Mexican pastry at Mi Tierra Cafe (open 24 hours), a Mexican pizza or quesadilla at La Gloria, a fresh frozen pop from Paleteria, or some amazing burrata at Dough Pizzeria Napoletana.
- Play lawn games in the Yanaguana Garden – We loved relaxing and playing Connect 4, bean bags, ping pong, and other lawn games here. It’s a beautiful mixed-use space that has a really cool playground and even a splash pad nearby so there’s something for the whole family.
- Visit the Witte Museum, The DoSeum, and/or the San Antonio Zoo with the rest of the family. Any of these are a great choice for families with any age combination of kids. We loved learning about Texas and so much more at the Witte Museum (and who doesn’t love dinosaur skeletons), The DoSeum is perfect for hands-on fun, and zoos are always a great spot to spend an afternoon.
- Ripley’s attractions in downtown San Antonio. My boys have always loved the Ripley’s Believe it or Not books and any chance they get to visit a Ripley’s attraction, they take! We spent quite a bit of time at Ripley’s Believe it or Not! All of us had quite a bit of fun reading each other descriptions of the different oddities.
- Six Flags and/or SeaWorld – an obvious choice for adventurous teens. My boys are always up for new wild roller coasters and if it’s a hot day, SeaWorld has a full separate water park for you to cool off.
- Projected Light Show The Saga is a 24-minute show projected onto the San Fernando Cathedral. It tells the story of San Antonio and is great to watch as entertainment or to talk through the history that you might have been looking up during your travels. The show is free and runs Tuesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings at 9, 9:30, and 10 pm.
With so many things to do all in San Antonio, it’s not difficult to fill up your schedule. Be sure to plan some downtime for the whole family, or even just for the teens, so that everyone can appreciate all that the city has to offer. There are some great places to stay right on the Riverwalk. We stayed at the Hotel Valencia and the teens loved the decor as much as they did the location.