Mix and match, but here are some ideas on how to maximize your trip to the Valero Alamo Bowl when you are staying in one of the 14,000 downtown hotel rooms walk-able to the Alamodome, bowl events and San Antonio landmarks.
Tuesday, December 29
Both of San Antonio’s theme parks are decked out for holidays. You can join the Valero Alamo Bowl teams at SeaWorld San Antonio or head over to Six Flags Fiesta Texas to ride Batman, the world’s first 4D free-fly coaster.
For the history minded, experience the past as never before at San Antonio’s World Heritage Site missions. Start with the Alamo in the center of city and then head south along the new Mission Reach section of the River Walk to see the other four 18th century Spanish colonial missions: Concepción, San José, San Juan and Espada. Need a fun way to get there? Rent a Bycle or use Scooter Power.
After working up an appetite, take advantage of San Antonio’s offering burgeoning culinary scene to visit acclaimed restaurants and local diners as well as a thriving cocktail and local brewery scene. To start plan your adventure, consult Rick’s Picks for an insider’s view of the best restaurants and bars downtown San Antonio has to offer.
Wednesday, December 30
Head to Brackenridge Park where the family can ride the train before heading to the San Antonio Zoo or play a round of golf at Brack or any of the 50 area golf courses.
7:30 p.m. – Join the Valero Alamo Bowl teams to watch the 5-time NBA Champions San Antonio Spurs take on the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Thursday, December 31
9 a.m. to Noon: Kick off the New Year at San Antonio’s new world class museum for children: The DoSeum! Kids countdown is a chance for children to ring in the new year and watch the ball drop at the kid-friendly hour of noon. Dance to a kid-friendly DJ and enjoy themed arts and crafts activities. Toast in 2016 with complimentary sparkling juices and other festive touches.
Spend the early afternoon enjoying San Antonio’s new state-of-the-art playground: Yanaguana Garden at Hemisfair.
4 p.m. – Pep Rally at the Arneson River Theatre begins with a high school band competition and then at 5 p.m. players arrive on river cruises and coaches and team captains speak from the stage for this free event that always reaches capacity quickly.
6:30 pm – Midnight – Celebrate San Antonio’s New Year’s Eve Celebration One of the nation’s largest New Year’s Eve celebration is just outside your hotel lobby. Don’t miss the midnight fireworks that go off around the Tower of Americas.
Friday, January 1
The San Antonio River Walk is now 15 miles long and is the place to meet as all your friends arrive in town. Take the 35 minute river cruiser tour on the River Walk or sit on the banks enjoying guacamole and margaritas made tableside.
Noon – PrimeSport Kickoff Luncheon features all the pageantry of excitement of the big game. Emceed by ESPN’s broadcast crew, fans will be treated to first-hand insight from the two head coaches and the team captains, as well as revel in the pageantry from the cheerleaders and bands.
9 p.m. – Watch a free showing of “San Antonio—The Saga“. This world-class video art installation runs on the facade of San Fernando Cathedral (115 N. Main Avenue), the oldest operating sanctuary in North America, each Tuesday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday at 9 p.m., 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. Created by renowned French artist Xavier de Richemont, it showcases a breathtaking visual journey through the history of San Antonio.
Saturday, January 2: Game Day!
9 a.m. – Walk along to new Museum stretch of the River Walk to the Historic Pearl and visit their acclaimed Farmer’s Market
Noon – 5:45 p.m. Valero Alamo Bowl Fan Zone and Pregame Party in Sunset Station (downtown shuttle is $1.30 each way and drops off between this entertainment complex and the Alamodome)
5:45 p.m. – Valero Alamo Bowl Kickoff
Sunday, January 3
McNay Art Museum and San Antonio Museum of Art are free on the first Sunday of each month!
Shop for Mexican pottery, folk art and toys a at the colorful shops in Market Square downtown. Savor excellent nachos, tacos, enchiladas and pralines at one of the legendary Mi Tierra which is open 24/7 every day of the year.