San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio RiverWalk

You work hard all year and look forward to finally taking that two week vacation. You dream of visiting somewhere warm and spending your time balancing absolute rest and relaxation with discovery and making memories with the family.

But before you can enjoy the perfect vacation, you’ve got to first PLAN the darn thing! And that can be work in and of itself. You’ve got to choose the right destination (domestic vs international?), book hotel accommodations and figure out what activities everyone in your family can agree on. That’s not always an easy task!

Well we’re about to make things really simple and plan your vacation for you! Keep reading to learn about an awesome location right here in the good ol’ USA, plus where to stay and what to do.

OK, we know the suspense is killing you so we’ll spill the beans: We’re heading to San Antonio, Texas to swim with dolphins!

There is something for everyone here !

Visit San Antonio Texas

San Antonio – Where History Meets Striking Beauty

San Antonio has been called Texas’s most beautiful and atmospheric city. Gateway to the Hill Country, the city’s landscape is punctuated with wildflowers, shimmering lakes and majestic old oak trees.

In addition to this natural eye candy, there is also so much to see and do in this dynamic city. The historic Alamo is right downtown, so you can easily walk to it from your hotel and spend the day reliving the stories it whispers.

While this historic mission is a focal point of many visitors’ itinerary, it’s hardly the only worthwhile attraction in San Antonio. For many, the vibrant Paseo del Ria – the River Walk – is one of the most magical places in the entire country! Located 20 feet below street level, this tranquil river winds through the many downtown hotels, boutique shops, and charming restaurants.

Families visiting San Antonio are drawn to the large theme parks, with SeaWorld being one of the biggest crowd pleasers. What many don’t know is, within SeaWorld is another amazing park called Discovery Point where you and your family can swim with dolphins.

Discovery Point San Antonio Texas

dolphin pull san antonio texas

Making Memories That Last a Lifetime

SeaWorld’s Discovery Point is a breathtaking oasis tucked away, ready to be explored. Once inside, guests have access to the stunning and expansive Dolphin Lagoon that is home to a playful pod of bottlenose dolphins.

There are a lot of wonderful programs and attractions inside Discovery Point. You can simply sit and watch the dolphins play from the sandy shores of the lagoon. There is also a spectacular underwater viewing area where you can see dolphin antics from their POV.

Of course, if you want a truly unique and memorable experience, we suggest you sign up for one of the park’s signature programs:

In-Water Dolphin Interaction

Dolphins are incredibly special animals and many people have been fascinated with them from childhood. If you can relate and would like to get up close and personal, this is the right program for you!

Taking place in a shallow end of the Dolphin Lagoon, you’ll have roughly a half hour to interact with the friendly dolphins. Before slipping into the temperature-controlled lagoon, you’ll suit up in your complementary wetsuit and then meet the dolphin trainer who will spend a bit of time teaching you about dolphin behavior and communication. There will also be a Q&A so you can ask any questions you may have.

When all questions have been finished, you’ll wade into the water to meet your new best friend. You will not believe the feeling of meeting a dolphin in-person. There really is something so magical about these creatures that you feel like you are meeting a being from another realm or dimension.

Once you’ve gotten acquainted you’ll get to feed the dolphins, watch their behaviors up close, and finally experience a dorsal fin tow through the shallow water. What an feeling!

In-Water Dolphin Beach Interaction

If you’ll have very little ones in your group, you may want to consider signing up for the In-Water Dolphin Beach Interaction. This Swim with Dolphins San Antonio Texas program takes place in just 20 inches of water, so it’s perfect for young children or those people who are not comfortable in water.

But just because there is less water doesn’t mean there will be less fun. Hardly! You and your group will still make unforgettable memories along with lifelong friends.

Though the water is shallow, you will still be provided with a complimentary wetsuit. Your program will also start out with a bit of an introduction to dolphin behavior and communication patterns. And you’ll also have the opportunity to ask questions.

When it’s finally time to walk into the water, you’ll meet your dolphin friends and get a chance to feed and interact with them.

Beluga Whale In-Water Interaction

We recommend you plan on spending the entire day exploring Discovery Point, because there are just too many wonderful programs. For instance, it would be a shame if you missed out on interacting with Beluga whales!

This is one of the only immersive programs of its kind in the entire world! Belugas are amazing and gentle creatures. You’ll swear they are intentionally trying to make you laugh!

Belugas like cold water so you’ll definitely want to take advantage of those complimentary wetsuits. Once suited, you’ll have a brief orientation where you’ll learn about these cool animals. Then it’s time to hop aboard a private shuttle that will take you to Beluga Bay.

Before you know it you’ll arrive and wade into the cool water and wait to meet your Beluga pals. Get ready to laugh and have the time of your life. You’ll get to hug and feed your new friends and give them some nice rubs. Once your interaction is over, you’ll hop back on the shuttle and head over to the changing rooms with your head spinning with memories!

In-Water Sea Lion Interaction

Okay, let’s get one thing straight – sea lions are ADORABLE! So much so they are often referred to as “puppies of the sea.” If you’ve ever thought it would be cool to meet one, here’s your chance!

This is another sea creature that will most likely make you laugh your head off. They are just so playful and boisterous and they have those sweet, brown eyes.

Once you’ve gotten suited-up and had your orientation, you’ll take a shuttle to Sea Lion Shallows, then wade into the shallow water where you’ll meet and interact with sea lions. This is truly a remarkable experience and one you’ll be talking about for years!

These aren’t even all of the programs offered at Discovery Point! So again, be sure to plan on spending at least one full day at the park if not two!

Transportation Options

Getting to Discovery Point

If you’ll be staying right in downtown San Antonio, it will be very easy for you to get to Discovery Point within SeaWorld Park. Depending on your hotel, they may actually have access to a free shuttle that will take you to SeaWorld and drop you back off at the hotel at the end of the day. If that’s not possible at your hotel, then you have two other options:

The address for SeaWorld San Antonio
10500 SeaWorld Dr
San Antonio, TX 78251

Rent a Car

If you are flying into San Antonio, then you may want to consider renting a car for the duration of your stay. This will make getting to and from attractions very easy.


And finally, there’s always hiring someone to take you to Discovery Point. It’s only a 25 minute drive from downtown San Antonio.


Downtown San Antonio to SeaWorld

San Antonio Accommodations

Hotel Valencia Riverwalk

San Antonio has no shortage of wonderful accommodations. Here are a few we personally recommend:

Hotel Valencia Riverwalk, San Antonio

Located on a quiet stretch of the famous San Antonio Riverwalk, Hotel Valencia will put you near all of the action but provide you a bit of tranquility. Some of the best shopping, dining and entertainment will be just steps from your door.

Impeccably appointed, Hotel Valencia offers true luxury. Enjoy custom-made beds topped with  designer Egyptian cotton linens. You’ll also have complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi access, 50” LED smart TVs, an honor bar and plush bathrobes.

If you feel like staying put after a long day of interacting with sea creatures, the hotel has numerous on-site restaurants boasting tapas, inventive Argentinian fare and more!

150 E Houston St
San Antonio, TX 78205
Phone: (855) 596-3387

Hotel Contessa – Suites on the Riverwalk

Another awesome hotel right on the river, Hotel Contessa offers class and true Texas hospitality. Accommodations are luxurious and amenities are first-class. The hotel has a newly-renovated spa and on-site restaurant and bar serving up agave cocktails and authentic Texas fare. There is also a fantastic rooftop pool where you can have access to panoramic views of the city.

The suites at this hotel are spacious. You might even say they are Texas-sized. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer fantastic city views, and fine linens and local artwork make the entire space feel cozy.

306 W Market St
San Antonio, TX 78205
Phone: (210) 229-9222

La Quinta Inn by Wyndham San Antonio

For those families that may be on a bit of a budget, the La Quinta Inn is a great option. While you won’t have any fancy linens or spa service here, you will have nice, clean rooms and everything you need to have an enjoyable vacation. Rooms have flatscreen TVs and free Wi-Fi. There is also a nice-sized pool onsite and free breakfast during your stay. And if you will be renting a car, La Quinta offers free parking, which is great when on a budget.

There are plenty of restaurants nearby, some of them even within walking distance. All-in-all, La Quinta is a great choice for families who want a clean and comfortable place to stay without breaking the budget.

900 Dolorosa St
San Antonio, TX 78207
Phone number (210) 271-0001

Things to Do in San Antonio, TX

While we definitely think you should make it a priority to spend time at Discovery Point, swimming with dolphins and other amazing sea creatures, there are some other fantastic things to do in and around San Antonio!


SeaWorld San Antonio

I mean, you’ll be right there so you might as well also plan on spending at least a day or more exploring SeaWorld park! SeaWorld, of course, has their own animal interactions that you should definitely check out. They also have thrilling rides like the Great White Coaster. Something cool to mention is that when you purchase tickets to SeaWorld you have free access to Discovery Point. That’s a win/win!

10500 SeaWorld Dr
San Antonio, TX 78251


Something else SeaWorld offers is an AWESOME waterpark that only SeaWorld could come up with! This waterpark has something for everyone of every age. There are attractions with calm and serene waters, and also rides and attractions with extreme waters. If you end up visiting San Antonio during the hot months (we’ll get to the best months to visit in just a little bit), then you and your family will definitely enjoy cooling down at Aquatica!

 San Antonio River Walk Cruise, Hop-On Hop-Off Tour & Tower of Americas

This tour offers you three, count ‘em THREE ways to see the great city of San Antonio. Explore by bus, boat and viewing tower and conveniently hop on and off where and when you want. Highlights include the Alamo, Pearl Brewery, San Antonio Museum of Art, and more. The sightseeing boat cruises down the scenic San Antonio River Walk and just the right pace to take in all of the people and shops. Also included is admission to the Tower of the Americas, a 750-foot (229-meter) tower with panoramic city views.

The Haunted Ghost Bus Tour in San Antonio

You’ve visited SeaWorld and Discovery Point for thrills, now it’s time for chills. If you love a good ghost story, then sign up for the Haunted Ghost Bus Tour of the city. The guide for this tour comes across as a bit…sinister, so it adds to the entire experience. Famed haunted sites you will visit include the Menger Hotel, the old Red Light District, the former Bexar County Jail, an historic cemetery, and more.

204 Alamo Plaza suite j
San Antonio, TX 78205
Phone: (210) 638-1338

Local Information

the alamo

Weather in San Antonio

So now you know where to go, where to stay and what to do. The final question is WHEN is the best time to visit San Antonio? The answer to that question is between the months of November and April, when the weather is cooler and the hotel rates and attraction tickets are also on the lower end.

Summer is just too hot with temperatures averaging above 90 degrees. And it’s also when the city sees the biggest influx of tourists. Kids are out of school during these months so you’ll also be spending more time in line at the theme parks. Oh, and it’s also when Texas gets the most rain, so you’ll definitely need to pack an umbrella and have plenty of indoor backup activities planned, just to be safe.

But during the months between November and April, the weather is usually in the 60s to low 80s and dry, and you don’t have to fight off the crowds or high prices!

Festivals & More!

We’ve already listed some of the fun activities you and your family can enjoy while visiting San Antonio. But our list certainly couldn’t possibly include every single thing going on in the city. No matter what time of year you head to Alamo City, there is always something cool going on. In fact, during that ideal time of November to April is usually when the most festivals are going on.

If you want to plan your vacation around any kind of big event or festival that may be going on, you can visit this link to view the activities calendar and get an idea of the fun waiting for you and your family.

Helpful Travel Links

We’ve done our best to arm you with all of the information you’ll need to plan an extraordinary vacation for your family in San Antonio. But, because we want to be sure you have everything you need to start planning your ideal vacation, we’ll leave you with a few other helpful links to use for research and planning.

Chamber of Commerce


Discovery Point

Final Thoughts

For most people, a family vacation is only something that comes around once a year. And so you want to be sure you plan something really special the whole family will love and remember for a very long time.

In our humble opinion, you really can’t go wrong planning a trip to San Antonio. It is such a lovely city with so much to see and do. The city boasts a rich history and natural beauty. And while there you HAVE to go to Discovery Point to swim with dolphins. Don’t forget to plan on spending a couple of days so you can also interact with sea lions and Beluga whales! Talk about memorable!

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