Spanish Governor's Palace

#7 in Best Things To Do in San Antonio
Spanish Governor's Palace picture
Gabriel Perez/Getty Images

Key Info

105 Plaza de Armas

Details

Sightseeing Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
3.9

scorecard

  • 4.5Value
  • 2.0Facilities
  • 4.5Atmosphere

Although it was never actually a palace, this adobe building certainly looks the part with rooms heavily decorated in 18th-century furnishings and a spectacular cobblestone patio. This National Historic Landmark and former seat of the Spanish government (dating back to when San Antonio was the capital of Spain's Texas territory) caters to both history buffs and art lovers. You can explore the property on your own or tag along on a guided tour during which staff members can explain everything from the building's general history to the intricate carvings on the doorways.

Recent visitors discourage visiting this site with kids, however, as there's little here to keep tots entertained. They also warn the palace doesn't take too long to go through, so history enthusiasts may be a bit disappointed.

The Spanish Governor's Palace is located a few blocks west of the River Walk, near the San Fernando Cathedral, in downtown San Antonio. The property is open to visitors Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can get there on foot or by bike from downtown; several bus routes service the attraction as well. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for military, seniors and children ages 7 to 13, and free for children ages 6 and younger. For more information, check out the official website.

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Type
Time to Spend
#1 Brackenridge Park

When the River Walk seems too busy, seek refuge from the heat and the swarms of tourists in Brackenridge Park. Its 343 acres offer much in the way of relaxation: rustic stone bridges and shaded walkways are perfect for strolling, and the Japanese Tea Garden and San Antonio Botanical Garden beckon to botanists. Dress casual so you can take advantage of Brackenridge's jogging trails, golf course and athletic fields. The park also hosts outdoor concerts in the natural Sunken Garden Theater. In and around the park, you'll also find popular attractions like the San Antonio Zoo and the Witte Museum.

Past visitors appreciated the park's train, which runs through the zoo and offers an excellent opportunity to get around the large area. They also recommend bringing some bird seed to feed the ducks that float down the San Antonio River.

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