San Marcos Like a Local

19 SMTXperiences To Do In 2019

January 4, 2019

The arrival of a new year typically inspires a new set of goals. Those goals may be of the usual “lose weight” or “stop biting nails” variety, but we challenge you to more in 2019. More adventure, more culture, more art, and most importantly, more San Marcos in the year to come. 

In fact, we’ve created a list of 19 SMTXperiences you should do in 2019. From mermaids and margaritas, to birding and breweries – there’s plenty of activities on our list to inspire your next visit to San Marcos.

1) Watch a Unicycle Football game
Unicycle Football is a San Marcos original you have to see to believe. Essentially, it's exactly what it sounds like - football played on, you guessed it, unicycles. Oh, and it starts with a joust... 

2) Visit all 8 San Marcos breweries
San Marcos is now home to eight, yes, EIGHT, breweries. Four of which are located in the heart of San Marcos. Each brewery has its own distinct flavor, so you have to try them all! 

3) Skydive at Skydive Spaceland San Marcos
For those who love adventure, you have to see San Marcos from above - way above. One of the only skydiving locations in the country where conditions are great for jumping year-round, you should schedule a jump on your next visit to San Marcos. 

4) Go up in a WWII plane
If jumping out of a plane isn't your thing, you should look into going up in a historic plane at the Commemorative Air Force Central Texas Wing. Home to airworthy historic military warbirds, there's a lot of history in the 1943 vintage wooden hangar. 

5) Dress up like a mermaid for the parade
Is the Mermaid Promenade fun without dressing up? Absolutely. However, everything is more fun when you're all dressed up. So go ahead and get all decked out for this uniquely San Marcos parade. 

6) Get in your steps at the outlets
Saying the San Marcos Outlets are big is quite an understatement. In fact, to shop the entire center would require walking about four miles. You can get your steps in and meet that boring goal of being healthier this year, while also finding a few things for yourself. We consider that a win-win in our book.

7) Visit both museums on the square
Visit the LBJ Museum of San Marcos and the Hays County Courthouse for a cultural/education activity. You'll learn all about the history of the area, as well as the larger-than-life president who called San Marcos home as a university student. 

8) Watch an artist at work on 3rd Thursday
If you've ever ventured to downtown San Marcos on the third Thursday of the month, you'll know it's a lively place to be! The boutiques and restaurants are full of activity, live music can be heard in the streets and local artists can be found producing and selling their masterpieces.

9) Dance to local live music
Live music in San Marcos is as unique as the city itself. From legendary career-launching stages to small hole-in-the-wall bars, you're sure to find a show every night of the week in San Marcos. 

10) Try Glow SUP
Enjoying the San Marcos River during the day is a no-brainer. But experiencing the river at night, atop a stand up paddleboard with LED lights underneath lighting up the crystal-clear waters, now that's a magical experience you can't miss. 

11) Join in on a First Saturday Birding Hike
Make sure you pack your binoculars for the First Saturday Birding Hike. Sure, you'll get to see lots of birds in some of San Marcos' most beautiful parkland, but it's also a great excuse to explore natural San Marcos first thing in the morning - it's a relaxing and interesting way to kick off your day! 

12) Explore a cave
Visit Wonder World Park to explore the Balcones Fault Line Cave - the nation's only true example of an earthquake-formed cave opened to the public.

13) Watch the Texas Water Safari
Dubbed the "World's Toughest Canoe Race," the Texas Water Safari kicks off at Spring Lake and follows the San Marcos River through town. Competitors will keep going until they hit the Gulf of Mexico! You can follow the canoes at each public park, or pick a spot and enjoy the energy. 

14) Take a selfie with all 10 mermaid statues
Have you heard? San Marcos is now home to ten 7-foot-tall mermaids who are placed in different locations around the city. You can find a downloadable map of the mermaids and their locations HERE.

15) Try a vegan meal at a local restaurant
We are an office of burger and taco lovers, however, there are some really yummy vegan-friendly options at local restaurants around town. This year is going to be the year we skip the queso for some healthy and yummy alternatives! 

16) Do a kayak tour of Spring Lake
Take in a new view of Spring Lake by taking a tour via kayak. This is one cool way to see Spring Lake's crystal-clear waters! 

17) Eat a crazy burger and a margarita
San Marcos is a city that embraces the extreme and our burgers are no exception. Tackle one of the city's extreme burgers and then wash it down with one of our tequila-filled favorites

18) Enjoy a leisurely hike at Spring Lake Natural Area
The Spring Lake Natural Area is located near the center of the city, although you won't be able to tell that once you're exploring the trailheads on the 4.3-mile loop. 

19) Watch native dancers at the Powwow 
The Sacred Springs Powwow, held each fall, celebrates the culture, arts, traditions and languages of the native population known as the Coahuiltecans. This event should absolutely be a must-do in 2019!