San Antonio - Fall 2006


A trip to Texas the week of Thanksgiving.  We flew out on the Sunday before the holiday and flew back on Thanksgiving day, so the airport time was not terrible.  The weather was nice in southern Texas, with highs in the seventies each day.  Our hotel was on the Riverwalk, so we have plenty of pictures of that area.

We took one day and visited the 5 missions.  We started at The Alamo, only because it was within walking distance and the others would require a little driving.

The Shrine - cannot take photos inside so this is all you get

well not all, here is the rear of the building

Then it was off to Mission Concepcion:

Next one up is Mission San Jose.  A lot of work being done on this one.

the living quarters around the perimeter

the courtyard

  the famous (at least in Texas) Rose Window

the mill had been restored also

Entrance to the church

the entrance to the church

Mission San Juan:

I'm starting to get into the bell towers

A priest still lived here and this mission had a nature trail, complete with old tires.

Next up was Mission Espada:

priests lived at this mission also

another bell tower to photograph


even better, fire ants

It was a little disappointing to discover that a some of these sites had been rebuilt in the last 40 years or so.  A lot of these walls and structures were not centuries old.

If you want more info about the missions try the NPS site -

The next morning we drove south to Laredo Texas and walked into Mexico.  I had read about an historic district in Laredo and Nuevo Laredo, never saw either.  I saw a lot of little shops selling alcohol, blankets, clothing, hats, trinkets, electronics, and a lot of really poor people, but not much that looked historic.  There was a church that had some significance, but it had been painted hot pink.  So how sacred could it have been.  We did get to cross the garbage filled Rio Grande and watched a lot of people get their vehicles searched entering the US and we ate barbeque again. 

After this we took the car back to the hotel and walked over to the Tower of The Americas.  There were a lot of fountains all around this area, but because of the drought, they were all dry.  I guess we were meant to use our imaginations.

home of the San Antonio Spurs

you can see The Alamo. Just above the Marriott on the right side.

The next morning started with a trip to the Botanical Gardens and then over to the San Antonio Zoo.

they even had birds that would eat out of your hand.

There were nature trails depicting different climates and plantings and even a restored log cabin.

San Antonio Zoo

There was a lot of construction happening at the zoo.  They were creating a new African section and a lot of noise and debris from heavy moving equipment was all around.