Arts and Culture

There's an art to visiting San Marcos

No matter where you go, there it is - art, culture and history are entwined in the spirit of San Marcos. Whether sipping a cup of joe at a coffee shop or catching a bite to eat in downtown, you'll not only be surrounded by local art, but can take it home too. Rather spend time outdoors? You can soak up some art along with the sun along the banks of the San Marcos River. Run your fingers along the tile of the "Unity Mural" at City Park before tubing. Walk through the "Forest of Lost Souls," an exhibit of flip-flop trees made from shoes that were lost in the river located behind the Tourist Information Center. Then enjoy the outdoor Sculpture Garden and indoor Walkers' Gallery at the San Marcos Activity Center.

The campus of Texas State University is home to many fine cultural exhibits. See the work of prominent artist at Galleries I & II within the School of Art & Design. Find a world-class collection of literary works, Southwestern & Mexican Photography collection and the only complete collection of materials from the making of the "Lonesome Dove" series at The Wittliff Collections. Get to the roots of Texas music at the Center for Texas Music History.

Diverse history abounds at Centro Cultural Hispano de San Marcos and Calaboose African American Museum. A stroll through San Marcos Residential Historic Districts and the heritage sites at Veramendi Plaza will transport you back to a simpler time. At the Commemorative Air Force Exhibit, you can get up close to the actual planes used in the film Tora, Tora, Tora while the LBJ Museum of San Marcos provides a personal glimpse into the life of U.S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson's formative years as a student at what is now Texas State University.

All Arts and Culture Attractions:

218 Co-op Gallery

Downtown | Fourteen area artists together created the vibrant, artist-owned 218 Co-op Gallery. Housed in a historic downtown buildings, the gallery’s vintage brick and plaster walls provide a warm backdrop for the eclectic mix of art, jewelry sculpture and functional wares. 

Bower Bird Antiques & Curiosities

Downtown | Following the bower bird’s example, we travel unbeaten paths to select antiquated, uncommon, and timeworn wares to adorn yourself and your home.

Calaboose African American History Museum

Downtown | The Calaboose, Hays County’s first jailhouse, was built in 1873. The museum is a repository for artifacts and memories of the city’s African American past through letters, books and photographs.