Strolling the River Walk

From The Alamo we walk over to San Antonio’s River Walk.  San Antonio, Texas, offers a vibrant downtown that’s beautiful, active, and full of history.River Walk

San Antonio Texas

Al and I find ourselves strolling the paths that meander along the river passing stone archways, fountains, and lush vegetation.  I can’t help but wonder about its history.  When was it built and why?  During lunch, I scoured through all the booklets and info on the area that I picked up at the visitor center and I found just the information I was looking for.

San Antonio River WalkRobert H. H. Hugman, an architect and a native of San Antonio, first conceived the river project in 1929 after a series of floods prompted the city to consider paving over the river, thus creating a concrete storm sewer system.

Can you imagine what a travesty that would have been?  Thank goodness Mr. Hugman had the vision to create such a beautiful masterpiece.

Hugman came up with a plan that detailed everything, including unique staircases, walkways, bridges, lush landscaping, restaurants, hotels, shops, all complete with Venetian-style boat rides.Venitian

Initial construction began in 1939 and due to disagreements with the city Hugman was fired a year later.  It wasn’t until 1961 when the city brought in some designers from Disneyland to determine the commercial potential of the river.  Hugman’s original details were used and the river was slowly transformed into the River Walk we know today.  Improvements and expansion continue to this day.

This is probably one of the cleanest, well-maintained downtowns I have ever visited.  Its beautiful, tranquil, and fun.  Al and I enjoy lunch at Casa Rio, a restaurant serving Mexican food along the River Walk since 1946.  We choose to dine inside as do most of the other guests.  At 45 degrees, it was just a tad too chilly to enjoy a meal outside along the river.  Outdoor seating at Casa Rio shown in the photos below.Casa Rio River Walk

Casa Rio

We thoroughly enjoyed our day in downtown San Antonio exploring The Alamo and the River Walk.  We wanted to take in some of the Missions and had a list of other things we wanted to see and do as well, but Mother Nature had other plans.  During our week-long stay, the weather was a roller coaster of breaking record low temperatures with on and off rain, occasionally freezing.

However, we did manage to take full advantage of those short breaks in the weather to get out and about and explore.River Walk

Next stop Fredericksburg……

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Comfort at Canyon Lake

As Al and I travel around, we occasionally stumble across a location that embodies comfort.  We find ourselves in such a location at a Corps of Engineer campground at Canyon Lake in Texas, just 45 minutes north of San Antonio’s River Walk.Canyon Lake

In spite of inclement weather with record low temperatures and persistent overcast skies, we thoroughly enjoyed our week long stay.  The view out my rear window is the kind of view I relish and routinely search for.

We love parking near water and Canyon Lake provided the perfect backdrop to a beautiful campsite.  The cold dreary weather kept us indoors the majority of our stay but that didn’t stop us from enjoying the area on the couple of somewhat nice weather days we did have.Canyon Lake

Canyon Lake

Our first excursion was a visit to The Alamo and San Antonio’s River Walk.  It’s a Tuesday morning.  We hop in the truck and head into the city around 9 in the morning hoping any rush hour traffic has long past.  It turns out to be a relatively easy drive taking us about 45 minutes from the time we leave Canyon Lake until the time we’re parked in a nice parking lot…..St. Mary’s east lot.

City parking isn’t always easy when driving a pick-up truck with an extended bed.  Fortunately, we have no trouble fitting into a parking spot near Broadway and Pecan and find the $5 for the entire day to be quite a bargain.  Score!The Alamo

It’s a short and easy walk over to The Alamo where I quickly start snapping away.  It’s a brisk overcast morning with few other visitors.Alamo

The battle of the Alamo was a pivotal event in the Texas revolution.  This epic battle for Texas independence took place in 1836.  There is no fee to tour this 300 year old structure, but there are a set of unique rules befitting The Alamos status as the Shrine of Texas Liberty.Alamo

Rules of Reverence –  Help Honor Their Memory

  • Gentlemen, please remove your hats inside the Shrine.
  • No open containers are allowed inside the buildings.
  • No food or drinks are allowed inside the buildings.
  • Photography is not allowed inside the buildings.
  • No camera or cell phone use is permitted inside the buildings.
  • Please do not touch the walls or display cases inside the Shrine.
  • No pets are allowed on Alamo Grounds (service animals allowed).
  • No restrooms inside the Shrine. Public restrooms located at back of grounds.
  • No obscene or offensive clothing is allowed.
  • No bikes or skateboards are allowed on the grounds.
  • Please lower your voice when speaking.
  • No unauthorized weapons are allowed. CHL allowed with permit.
  • Ice chests are allowed but must not be left unattended at any time.The Alamo

Al and I spend about an hour touring this historical landmark before venturing over to the River Walk……..

We are currently located in Benson, Arizona, making our way back to Phoenix.  The warmth of the desert is welcome but the lure of Texas is strong.  I see more Texas explorations in our future.  For now, we look forward to visiting our son in Phoenix.