Friday, March 16, 2012

Riverwalk

Our first day in San Antonio was spent at the Riverwalk!!!  What a beautiful place!!!

First stop was lunch at La Gloria Ice House that was at one end of the Riverwalk!  We sat outside right beside the river, the kids got to play in the huge grassy area, and we got to enjoy our drinks, yummy food, and the beautiful scenery!  It was very relaxing and enjoyable!  They served one of the best margaritas I've ever had.... maybe it tasted extra good because it was vacation but whatever it was, I'd go back and order another one!!!  This is one of the restaurants that I highly recommend going to if you are visiting SA!
After eating we set out on foot to find the main part of the Riverwalk!  All along the way we saw several ducks and the kids spent a lot of time looking for fish!  One thing that is a must is sunscreen and hats!!!  Even though it is only mid-March the sun is hot and blazing!  I can't imagine what this trip would be like in June or July!
One of the neat parts about the Riverwalk is that each bridge has different artwork in it our around it!  The city put a call out for different artist to come and do their thing to decorate the path!  It is beautiful and neat to see different styles along our way!
As we were walking we saw a VFW post!  We were all getting tired and thirsty so we took advantage of Brad's lifetime membership and went up for a drink!  This post is the oldest post in Texas!!!  It was really neat to be there!
And the kids enjoyed the popcorn snack and being able to rest their feet!!!  Turns out the post is open to the public so if you are needing a stop along your walk feel free to stop in!!!  The hospitality is great!
We finally saw a water taxi coming so we quickly finished up our drinks and made our way to the stop!  The kids had been waiting for this all afternoon!!!!  You can buy a all day pass for half of the waterway for $10 or for the whole waterway for $15 or a 3 day pass for $25!  A nice lady gave me 4 $10 pass that we upgraded on the boat for a whole waterway pass and we were off!!!
One thing about the boat, it ISN'T fast!!!  If you have some place to go quickly you'll be better off walking!  Ethan was getting hungry and we had a ways to go so he just started chewing on his hat! : )  This silly baby LOVES cloth!  He is now finding tags on things and putting those in his mouth, neither of my big kids did that so I never understood taggie blankets... now I do! : )
After our (slow) boat ride, we made it to the main part of the Riverwalk!  The kids were excited to be out and free to run!!!
And Addyson found several opportunities to "walk the balance beam"!!!!
There is a crowded area of the Riverwalk loop with several restaurants and bars that we had to keep a close eye on the kids.  We stopped in one restaurant for drinks and dessert and were serenaded by a mariachi band!  They come around to the tables and will sing to you.... downtown it is $10 for ONE song! 
It was worth it to see the kids expression as we were sang to and it was neat to do it once for the experience but, I'm not sure if I would do it again.
After that we walked the rest of the loop.  It isn't as crowded and the kids were able to run... and get into things like this water fountain!
Don't mind Addyson.... she didn't get her bath this morning so she just thought she'd wash off in the fountain!
Our Silly Girl!
While Addyson was washing off, the other kids were waving to boats that were passing by.  In the Riverwalk loop, you can take a guided tour of the loop if you don't need the taxi option... I think we will do that next time so we can get some of the history of the Riverwalk.  We were ready to go so we waited for our taxi.  Turns out, you can be anywhere along the river and if you see a taxi (not a tour boat) you just have to wave it down and it will pull over for you.
Here we are headed into the Lock and Dam to go up river and back to our car.  See how dark it is... I swear it took over an hour to just get back to our car!!!  The kids were exhausted and ready to go home after a long day of walking!  This time in the Lock and Dam was much better than this afternoon!  Addyson was terrified as the boat sank to meet up with the lower level of the river.  She cried and said, "I don't want to go down".  I kept trying to reassure her that everything was going to be okay and she wasn't convinced until we were safely traveling down stream.  This time she knew what to expect and kept commenting on how she was big "I be brave" she said!
The upside to traveling the river this late at night is we got to see the Long-eared Sunfish from earlier lite up!!!  They were so pretty!  After making it to the van and back to our campsite, it was almost 9:30 and the kids passed out within 5 minutes of their heads hitting the pillow!  What a fun-filled first day in SA!

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