While San Antonio, Texas is one of the largest cities in the United States, with a thriving economy and diverse population, it marches to a different, more relaxed beat. Perhaps this is because of its Tex Mex culture. It is a city steeped in history, as it is the site of the legendary Alamo. Ambitious and modern, San Antonio also has recent developments such as Riverwalk, which make it a pleasant place to visit or live.
In the winter of 1835, Texas troops aided by patriotic private citizens captured the Alamo from Mexican forces and fortified it. A couple of months later, they were attacked by an army of at least 2,500 Mexican troops, approximately 15 times the number of defenders they had. Rather than surrender or flee, they fought to the death, inflicting severe casualties on the Mexican forces. When the Mexicans finally fought their way into the fort, they summarily executed almost all of the few defenders still alive.
The product of a highly successful bit of redevelopment, Riverwalk used to be the site of decrepit canals. It is now a thriving and gentrified zone of condos, restaurants, and shops. A ride with Yanaguana River Cruises is one of several pleasant excursions.
If you enjoy Mexican or Tex Mex food at all, this is the place to try it. You may want to seek out your own little Tex Mex hole in the wall, but a safe bet is the excellent Mexican food at La Fonda in the Monte Vista Historic District. For lodging, you have many options, but the best advice is to book ahead wherever you stay--festivals and conventions held here occasionally result in a drought of available rooms.