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Lonesome for the Lone Star State? Are you remembering The Alamo? Whether you’d like to visit San Antonio again or are thinking about visiting for the first time, you can schedule your dialysis treatment to accommodate your travel plans. With 12 DaVita® dialysis centers in the San Antonio area, you can go and see why San Antonio is called the Heart of Texas.
The shores of the San Antonio River have served as a crossroads for different cultures for several hundred years. Early Native Americans called the river Yanaguana, or “refreshing waters.”
San Antonio is now the second largest city in Texas and a popular vacation destination. The city reflects the many cultures that helped shape American history and the Southwest. If you’re looking to take in beautiful historical sites, shop and relax, or have a blast at some premiere theme parks, San Antonio has something for you.
The Alamo (210-225-1391) is the Spanish mission where the famous Battle of Alamo took place. The mission, also known as Mission San Antonio Valero, is the oldest of the five missions established along the San Antonio River. It was built in 1718.
This historically significant site is the most popular tourist destination in San Antonio. Located in downtown and easily accessible through San Antonio’s famous River Walk, the remains of the site have been preserved. You can learn all about the battle and Texas’ struggle for independence through some of the exhibits at the Long Barracks Museum and Library, located near the Alamo’s chapel.
The Alamo was the first of five original missions in San Antonio. The other four are now part of San Antonio Missions National Historic Park (210-932-1001). Each is preserved and has its own charm: Mission Concepción, Mission San Francisco de la Espada, Mission San José and Mission San Juan Capistrano.
Together, the five missions established a Spanish presence in the New World and introduced innovations like irrigation, aqueducts and advances in agriculture. In addition, each of these sites is a tremendous example of Spanish and Mexican architecture and art. Intricate wood carvings and stunning wall and ceiling paintings decorate the inside and outside of these missions.
You can drive along the Mission Trail, or if you’re feeling adventurous, you can take the hike-and-bike trail.
Large cypress and oak trees line the banks of the San Antonio River and its famed River Walk (210-227-4262). Also known as Paseo del Rio, the River Walk is a popular destination for dining, entertainment and just for “hanging out.” There are many restaurants and attractions on the River Walk, but none are as beautiful as the river itself.
You can follow the river by strolling along the cobblestone streets on the walk, or you can tour the river by boat. Dining boats are also available if you’d like to dine al fresco while enjoying the sights and sounds of the river.
Throughout the year, San Antonio celebrates its multicultural heritage. Most of these celebrations take place at the River Walk.
The holiday season has fun festivities for all ages. The Holiday River Parade and Lighting Ceremony kicks off the holiday season the day after Thanksgiving. More than 100,000 lights illuminate the River Walk at night as decorated floats parade down the river. Another spectacular celebration of lights is the Fiesta de las Luminarias, a Mexican-American tradition. More than 7,000 candles light the river in commemoration of Mary and Joseph’s quest to find shelter in Bethlehem for the night.
Historical celebrations are also prevalent. San Antonians commemorate Cinco de Mayo by gathering at El Mercado (210-207–8600), a market square patterned after an authentic Mexican market.
But the biggest celebration is the Fiesta San Antonio (877-723-4378) held every April in honor of the heroes of the battles of the Alamo and San Jacinto. This 10-day, citywide festival features art exhibits, concerts, parades and sports events.
Looking for some family entertainment? SeaWorld San Antonio (1-800-700-7786) is a marine wildlife adventure park. Let the killer whale stars of Shamu Stadium entertain and amaze you.
If you’re a thrill-seeker, look no further than Six Flags Fiesta Texas (210-697-5050).
With its rich history and sense of tradition, San Antonio is a shining star of Texas. And with eleven DaVita dialysis facilities to accommodate your treatment needs, you don’t have to let dialysis get in the way of having a fantastic time in the Heart of Texas.
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