September 30th, 2021

Things to Do in New Braunfels & Things to Do in San Antonio

 

Things to do in New Braunfels, Texas, Just 15 minutes Away

New Braunfels and San Antonio offer much to do! Whether it’s a spring break day trip or a weekend getaway, for family fun or otherwise, there’s a lot to do in the area. Enjoy the outdoors, the arts, dining, sports, shopping, history, and more. You can even go on a ghost tour in San Antonio. Here are some of the fun activities and highlights to enjoy.

Wurstfest

This annual festival in Comal county takes place on November 5th – November 14th, 2021. You’ll have the opportunity to enjoy some traditional German culture–Texas style!

  • Food
  • Music & dancing
  • Carnival rides and games
  • German, Texan and domestic beer
  • Special events
  • Alpine and Bavarian Style Entertainment
  • Naegelin’s Bakery

Comal River

The Comal River (AKA the “longest shortest river in the world”) is the shortest navigable river in Texas. The river is a popular tubing and scuba diving destination because it’s around 72 °F year round. Thousands come every spring and summer, with some families coming for generations.

Guadalupe River New Braunfels Texas

Guadalupe River

The Guadalupe River is popular for rafting, fly fishing, tailrace fishing, and canoeing. There’s an abundance of trout and bass.

Schlitterbahn Waterpark

First opened in 1979, “Schlitterbahn ” means “slippery road” in German, a nod to the large German population in New Braunfels. The park has a combined 51 rivers, rides, slides, and chutes. In total, the New Braunfels Schlitterbahn has won Amusement Today’s Golden Ticket Award 39 times. And, as of 2019, the park won the award 22 years in a row (the award for Best Waterpark was not handed out in 2020).

McKenna Children’s Museum

McKenna Children’s Museum is where kids go to learn, be creative, and have fun! There’s a variety of playscapes to enjoy: a town square, a kids medical clinic, space, a grocery store, and more. There’s also day camps!

Gruene Historic District

Gruene Historic District

Gruene (German for “green”) is a former German town and cotton-production hub along the Guadalupe. These days, Gruene is primarily a tourist destination and a showcase of German-Texan culture and history. It’s been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1975. It’s a place where you can walk around, have dinner, shop, as well as visit attractions like Gruene Hall, a 6,000 square-foot, open-air dance hall that’s over 140 years-old.

Landa Park

Landa Park is a 51-acre destination for nature walks, swimming, picnics, paddle boating, and mini-golf. There’s also a miniature train that takes you on a 15 minute, one and one-half mile ride around the park!

Canyon Lake

There are eight parks around Canyon Lake’s 80 miles of shoreline where, depending on the destination, you can swim, camp, boat, or picnic There are both public and private boat ramps, and two marinas where you can rent boats and jet skis.

Ernest Eikel SkatePark 

Ernest Eikel SkatePark is great if you’re into skateboarding, whether you’re a beginner or an expert. The park is more than just a local attraction; it hosts contests, expositions by world-famous pro skateboarding teams, and more.

Stars and Stripes Drive In Theatre

The drive in of yesteryear has been updated for the modern era. The theater is modern, but with plenty of vintage vibes, including a 50’s style cafe.

New Braunfels Buc-ee’s

The Buc-ee’s Convenience Store in New Braunfels is no small town convenience store; it’s the biggest convenience store in the world! It’s a sight to behold.

  • 68,000 square feet
  • 120 fueling stations
  • 1,0000 parking spots
  • 64 ice freezers
  • 83 toilets
  • 31 cash registers
  • 4 Icee machines
  • 80 fountain dispensers

 

Things to do in San Antonio, Texas Only 15 Minutes From Schertz

The Alamo

The Alamo

Sitting at the top of any San Antonio itinerary is the Alamo, one of the most frequently visited historic landmarks in the US. The long history of the Alamo plays a big part in the story of Texas, particularly in the origins of San Antonio. The first iteration of the Alamo was built in 1718 by Spanish Roman Catholic missionaries. The governor of Spanish Texas wanted a place people could stop between Spanish settlements along the Rio Grande and new missions in East Texas. Just one mile north of the first Alamo, a fort was built, and nearby the first civilian community in Texas, San Antonio de Béxar, which would later become San Antonio, Texas.

In 1724, the original Alamo was washed away and had to be rebuilt. Its new location was across the San Antonio River, on the opposite side of San Antonio de Béxar.

The Alamo has a long history of military use. During the Mexican War of Independence, the Alamo was both a political prison and later San Antonio’s first hospital. After Mexico won its independence from Spain, the Mexican army would house soldiers at the Alamo. The Alamo had been abandoned by Mexican troops at one point during the Texas Revolution. Texan colonists occupied the Alamo, only to find themselves under siege soon after.

The ensuing Battle of the Alamo was bloody, with all the Texans being killed during the process. At one point, a Texan soldier was moments away from destroying the entire Alamo, but he was shot to death before he was able to light the fuse to a bundle of powder kegs. About 400 to 600 Mexican soldiers, roughly a third of those who participated in the battle, had died or been wounded. It’s this battle that gave birth to the famous rallying cry of, “Remember the Alamo.”

This is just a snippet of the Alamo’s long, storied history, which you can explore, along with the entire complex and many historic artifacts, when you visit the Alamo.

SeaWorld San Antonio

San Antonio Riverwalk

This city park weaves under bridges and along a river. There are many restaurants and shops along the way, plus major tourist attractions such as museums, theaters, and more. There’s also a hop-on-hop-off cruise and bus tour on the RiverWalk. Whether you call it the “RiverWalk” or the “River Walk”, this park has been very successful, inspiring similar attractions in Charlotte, North Carolina, Denver, Colorado, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and more.

SeaWorld San Antonio

Located an hour and a half away from Austin, SeaWorld San Antonio is the biggest of the three SeaWorld marine mammal parks, oceanariums, and animal theme parks. There are many shows and rides to experience, as well as Aquatica, an attached water park.

  • Texas Stingray: Texas’s tallest, longest, fastest wooden roller coaster.
  • Orca Encounter: A 7,000,000 US gallon environment that houses five killer whales. You can see several shows there, including summer and winter seasonal shows.
  • Animals: Beluga whales, dolphins, sea lions, seals, otters, and sea turtles.
  • Aquatica: A companion water park with rides and animal attractions, including:
    • Roy’s Aviary: A 34,000 square-foot home for multiple species of birds.
    • Stingray Falls: A group raft ride that, after a series of twists and turns, goes through an underwater tunnel where you can see stingrays and tropical fish.

Buckhorn Saloon & Museum

At first, this San Antonio attraction began as a place where you could pay for a drink with antlers, horns, pelts, and other game trophies. It was 1881, so it was more common to have such items on hand. The owner, Albert Friedrich, would turn these items into chairs and tables, while his wife, Emile, would make folk art out of rattlesnake rattles and more.

When Prohibition came, the Friedriches were able to maintain their saloon just by charging admission to see their growing collection. Then, when Prohibition ended, the saloon returned. To this day, you can still enjoy a drink at the oldest saloon in Texas while browsing the collection. There’s also a Texas Ranger Museum, a hall of fake taxidermy (featuring such creatures as a “Manboon” and a half monkey half fish mermaid), wax figures that depix events in Texan history, and more!

The Pearl District

The Pearl District 

From 1883 to 2001, the Historic Pearl (AKA the Pearl Brewery District or the Pearl District), was one of the largest Breweries in Texas, and home to the iconic Pearl Beer. The brewery was closed in 2001, but the building later became home to several attractions.

  • Culinary Institute of America (CIA): The CIA has one of its three US campuses inside of the Pearl.
  • Hotel Emma: A boutique hotel with an impressive building design by architect August Martizen.
  • Restaurants: There are many great places to eat in the Pearl, including a few places where you can taste the work of CIA graduates.
  • Weekly Farmer’s Market: The farmer’s market is every Saturday and Sunday. It only features vendors from within a 150 mile radius. The San Antonio Current once awarded it the title of “Best Farmers Market ”.
  • Museum Reach River Development: The Pearl houses a 1.33-mile extension of the RiverWalk where you can appreciate public art, native plants, and local events.

San Antonio Japanese Tea Garden

What was once a rock quarry is now a popular tourist attraction found in the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. The transformation began in 1917, when walkways, stone arch bridges, an island, and a Japanese pagoda were constructed. In 1926, a local Japanese-American artist named Kimi Eizo Jingu, who had been living in the tea garden, began to sell light lunches and tea.

While the park later fell into disrepair, it was restored in 2009, which included updating the ponds and waterfall. Today, you can still buy light lunches at the tea garden. There’s also an amphitheater that can hold upwards of 6,000 attendees.

Yanaguana Garden

The vacant space of the 1968 World’s Fair has been redeveloped into a community with residences, businesses, and three public parks. Yanaguana Garden is one of the highlights, where there’s a large outdoor playscape. There’s opportunities for fun for people of all ages and abilities, including adaptive play equipment that’s designed for wheelchair users. There’s plenty of opportunity to climb and swing, as well as play in sand as well as enjoy a splash pad. There’s also ping pong and cornhole.

Southtown & the King William Historic District

Southtown & the King William Historic District

In the King William Historic District, you can enjoy victorian-inspired architecture and mansions that date back to the 1800s from the outside or book a guided tour.

There’s a lot of art in Southtown. Enjoy over 900 artworks at Ruby City; see Blue Star Contemporary, the first and longest operated nonprofit gallery of contemporary art; or check out San Antonio Art League & Museum, which has over 600 works of art.

There’s also the Blue Star Arts Complex, which dedicates its 160,000-square-feet to studios, art galleries, shops, bars and restaurants, and more.

The San Antonio Spurs

If you’re into basketball then the Spurs are an exciting team to follow. As of 2017, had the best winning game percentage of any professional sports team in any sport in America and Canada. And in the 2018-2019 season, the Spurs 22nd appearance in the playoffs matched the current NBA record for most consecutive playoff appearances.

Fiesta San Antonio

Every year in April, over 100 events take place around San Antonio and beyond as part of the Fiesta, which celebrates the Battle of the Alamo and the Battle of San Jacinto, which allowed Texas to establish its independence from Mexico in 1836. There are three major parades, including a boat parade at the RiverWalk and the Battle of the Flowers Parade, the only parade in the U.S. organized solely by women, all on a strictly volunteer basis. There are also six performance stages that host music and cultural events over two days, as well as a four-evening block party.

Luminaria Contemporary Arts Festival

Currently scheduled for November 13, 2021, this yearly arts festival brings together artists from across the US, around the world, and throughout the region. Streets, buildings, and theaters become their stage and pallet.

Fiesta Noche del Río 

Spanish for “Party Night on the River ”, this outdoor dance performance is the oldest of its kind in the US, having begun in 1957. This yearly fundraising event is usually held from June to August. It features authentic Mexican, Spanish, and Texas singing and dancing performed by local professionals, hosted by the Arneson Outdoor River Theater. It’s a great way to experience several Texan cultures together at once.

San Antonio Film Festival (SAFILM) 

Since 1994, SAFILM has aimed to be an inclusive and accessible opportunity for filmmakers to showcase their work. The event is held every summer at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts.

San Antonio Museum of Art (SAMA)

SAMA has over 30,000 artifacts spanning 5,000 years of global history. This includes Egyptian, Greek and Roman antiquities, Asian art, Latin American art, and Contemporary art. The museum is housed in the former Lone Star Brewery, which was built in 1886, and can be reached from the RiverWalk.

San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo

In addition to being one of the top Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) rodeos in the US, there’s also a carnival, a horse and livestock show, family-friendly educational activities and exhibits, and shopping.

Morgan’s Wonderland

Morgan’s Wonderland is a 25-acre non-profit theme park designed with accessibility in mind for guests of all ages and abilities. Opened in 2021, Morgan’s Wonderland is the first attraction of its type in the world. It’s attracted over a million guests from across the US and around the world. The entire park, which is wheelchair-accessible, has 25 attractions so far.

  • 18,000 square foot special-event center
  • 575-seat amphitheater
  • 8-acre catch-and-release fishing lake
  • Gardens
  • Picnic area
  • Playgrounds
  • Rest areas.
  • Rides

Splashtown San Antonio

Residents of Homestead have a lot of choices when it comes to water parks and amusement parks! Splashtown San Antonio, found in San Antonio’s downtown area, has many thrilling rides and attractions.

  • 40 water slides and tube rides
  • Activity pool with lily pads and balance logs
  • Basketball
  • Half-million-gallon wave pool
  • Quarter-mile-long lazy river
  • Water and beach volleyball

 

Six Flags Fiesta Texas

Six Flags Fiesta Texas

Fiesta Texas is 200 acres of thrill rides and attractions, as well as including performers dressed as characters from Looney Tunes and DC Comics. And, during Halloween, there’s Fright Fest, which is when performers dressed as monsters haunt the park.

San Antonio Zoo and Aquarium

Over 3,500 animals from over 750 species across 35 acres. See your favorites!

  • Bears
  • Elephants
  • Hippopotami
  • Lions
  • Monkeys
  • Rhinoceros
  • Zebras

San Antonio Missions National Historical Park

In addition to the Alamo, there are four other Spanish frontier missions in San Antonio: the Mission Concepción, Mission San Jose, Mission San Juan, and Mission Espada. All four are part of the same UNESCO World Heritage Site (the Alamo is found elsewhere in downtown San Antonio. Take a guided walking tour, or enjoy the Mission Trail, 15 miles of hiking, biking, and paddling trails around the Missions. There’s also a pedestrian connection to the RiverWalk.

San Antonio Botanical Garden

The official botanical garden of San Antonio features a conservatory designed by award-winning Argentinian architect Emilio Ambasz. It features five climate-specific greenhouses. Elsewhere in the garden you can find a Japanese garden that’s inspired by the 300-year-old Suizenji Park in Japan.

Explore New Braunfels and San Antonio

This is just a taste of some of the fun things to do in San Antonio, New Braunfels, and other places around Homestead and central Texas. The San Antonio area is also a popular destination for touring musicians, so if you like live music and concerts, make sure to check out venues like the Alamodome, the Majestic Theatre, the Sunken Garden Theater, the Aztec Theater, and more.

If you’re visiting the area to find a new home, check out Homestead homes. It’s small-town living with big-city convenience, top schools, and amenities to boot. Contact us today for more information.