When is the best time to visit San Antonio?

when is the best time to visit san antonio

Are you planning a visit to San Antonio? As a person who’s lived here for 10+ years, let me be the first to say, “Howdy!”

If you have some wiggle room with planning your vacation to the Alamo City, it’s a good idea to plan your trip around the weather and local events.

While a quick Google search will tell you that the average temperature in San Antonio is 72 degrees year-round, locals know better. Depending on when you visit, you might be contending with torrential downpours, terrible heat, or an empty events calendar. And where’s the fun in that?

If it’s your first time in San Antonio, here are the best times of the year to visit, as well as what there is to do in San Antonio—courtesy of a longtime local.

The best time to visit: Spring (March – June)

In my humble opinion, the best time to visit San Antonio is in the spring. The temperatures are absolutely wonderful, ranging from a low in the 50s to a high of 70s – 80s by the afternoon. It’s also the only time of year when you’ll see hints of this green stuff people call “grass” growing in our usually-sparse parks and lawns.

Aside from the weather, spring is also the best time to visit San Antonio for one big reason: Fiesta!

Fiesta is a month-long, citywide party celebrating San Antonio’s Mexican heritage. But it’s about a lot more than that. Fiesta is equal parts a small business support campaign, beauty pageant, food extravaganza, dance party, and an all-around good time. It’s one of San Antonio’s most famous attractions, pulling even the most sheltered locals into bustling tourist areas of downtown San Antonio.

The biggest downside to visiting San Antonio in the spring, though, is the rain. May and June are the rainiest months in San Antonio, with an average of 4 – 5 inches of rain every month (or more). And it comes down in buckets.

As long as you pack a decent umbrella and a pair of rain boots, you’ll be all right. San Antonio rain showers rarely last all day, and even if they do, there’s a good chance your plans will simply move indoors.

The second-best time to visit: Fall (October – November)

Fall is remarkably short in San Antonio, which makes it a true treat for locals, who hate the 100-degree days of summer. While fall tends to be hotter than spring, it’s still a great time to be in San Antonio, with temperatures in the 70s – 90s. Sure, you might still want to wear shorts and flip-flops, but fall in San Antonio definitely beats the summer.

Thanks to the milder temperatures, fall in San Antonio makes for some great outdoor exploring. Our city has gorgeous outdoor spaces, so take advantage of them! I recommend going for a walk in Phil Hardberger Park, where you can enjoy natural South Texas flora and fauna. If you’re up for a bike ride, visit the Greenway trails, which stretch on for 20+ miles through San Antonio.

If you’re in the mood for festivals, you’re in luck! San Antonio puts on one of the best Dia De Los Muertos (Day of The Dead) celebrations in the United States. National Geographic said so!

Snack on a sugar skull, stuff your gullet with the best tamales, and watch processions of colorful dancers frolic to live music. Dia De Los Muertos is a colorful, family-friendly event that San Antonians love, so celebrate like a local if you’re in town in the fall.

The third-best time to visit: Winter (December – February)

How you feel about Texas winter is … relative. Texans think it’s miserable, while folks from the North tend to flock here for the milder temperatures.

The crazy thing about San Antonio in the winter is that the temps fluctuate wildly.

One Christmas, my family came to visit and we went to Sea World. It was December 26 and it was nearly 90 degrees. Another Christmas, it was windy, cold, and awful.

San Antonio winters are milder than winters up north, and you likely won’t see snow. But with temperatures in the 30s to the 80s, winters are unpredictable, which makes for tricky traveling.

The good news is that, even if it’s chilly, we get enough sunshine in San Antonio that colder temperatures are still much more bearable!

It’s more common to see indoor events, like concerts, in San Antonio during the winter. Events like San Antonio Zoo Lights and Christmas At The Caverns are a MUST, whether you’re a local or a visitor.

If you want to see the River Walk in all its glory, I recommend checking out the Holiday Lights on the River Walk. The city lights up over 100,000 lights across the River Walk, which makes for a gorgeous walk. They also do Holiday Boat Caroling down the San Antonio River!

There’s plenty to see in San Antonio during the winter, but I do recommend layering your clothes and buying a hot chocolate to overcome the chill.

The worst time to visit: Summer (July – September)

Yes, I know September is technically “fall,” but in San Antonio, I assure you it’s still summer. I knew how bad San Antonio summers would be when I moved here, but I never quite get over how H-O-T it is.

It isn’t unheard of for the temperatures to exceed 100 degrees by August. If you combine that with the high humidity and relentless sun, summer in San Antonio is awful.

I know people want to visit while the kids are out of school. There’s nothing wrong with that! But if you have to see San Antonio in the summer, I highly recommend going as early in the summer as possible. July temperatures are still somewhat reasonable, but August and September are one big, sunny hellscape.

San Antonio’s theme parks (Fiesta Texas and Sea World) are popular in the summer, but it’s so miserably hot that you’ll walk away with a sunburn—and possibly even dehydration.

If you do visit San Antonio in the summer, I recommend bringing a hat, sunblock, a misting fan, and a refillable water bottle.