Just 45 minutes southwest of Austin lies a quaint little college town called San Marcos. Here you find a broad mix of activities including art, music, recreation, a unicycle football league and more. As one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States this town manages to maintain its charm while still offering guests and residents plenty to stay busy. Speaking of staying busy, here are 3 unique things to do in San Marcos, Texas.
In the picturesque Hill Country near Austin Texas, small-town America is alive and well. San Marcos, a mere 45 minutes or so southwest of the capital city of Texas, has been inhabited for over 10,000 years. Yes, you read that right. If people have been living there that long there must be something to the place.
Indeed there is something to San Marcos, quite a lot in fact, but it begins and ends with the San Marcos River which winds through the town and is a source of water, recreation, and history. But, sandwiched between the famous water source are a host of other unique activities that make San Marcos a great place to visit. Plus, they have a unicycle football league, so there’s that. 🙂
Unique Things to do in San Marcos Texas
With urban trails, nature preserves, shopping (some would say the largest shopping center complex in the world), good eats, and friendly people, San Marcos is a hidden gem you need to visit on your next Texas visit. Here are 3 unique things to do in San Marcos Texas.
Take a night “Glow” Paddle Tour on the San Marcos River
The San Marcos River is both the namesake of the town and the predominant feature of this hamlet. Bubbling up from many nearby springs the river has played an integral part in this town’s history and remains a top recreational activity for those looking for a little fun. From kayaking to tubing, swimming, fishing, and other water-related fun the San Marcos river boasts plenty of fun things to do.
However, one truly unique thing to do is take a night “glow” paddle tour with a company like Paddle SMTX. Here, visitors will drift down the river in clear kayaks that are lit by multicolored LED lights.
Catch a band at the Marc Theater
One of the more unique things to do in San Marcos, Texas is to catch a live show at the mercurial Marc Theater.
We recently traveled in to see the first concert of the new Blue October tour which started at the historic Marc Theater. Blue October, of course, calls San Marcos home, and the Marc, despite its inauspicious exterior (below) is a sweet venue to catch a show.
See what events are coming through the Marc here.
Take a haunted cave tour in the Wonder Cave
Wonder World Park is an entire amusement / activity park built around the Wonder Cave. In addition to cave tours, the park offers a variety of other attractions including an anti-gravity house, gem mining, an arcade room, and an observation tour. It also features a “haunted” tour of the incredible cave.
For folks looking to spook things up a bit, take the haunted cave tour and prepare to be scared!
Are you ready for Wonder Worldâs Annual HAUNTED CAVE TOURS? Book your tickets now with the link in our bioð»#smtx #sanmarcostx #local #localbusiness #txst #TXST25 #trulylocalsmtx #cave #wondercave #adventure #spooky #hauntedcave #hauntedhouse #haunted #Halloween pic.twitter.com/lR55qO9vySâ Wonder World Cave & Adventure Park (@WonderWorldCave) September 11, 2021
Additional Unique Things to do in San Marcos Texas
Visitors or residents looking for more unique things to do in San Marcos, TX will be pleased to know we’ve only scratched the surface. Here are several more great ideas on how to have fun in San Marcos:
- Eat the Huevos Rancheros at the Cafe on the Square in downtown – I stopped in a for a quick bite and was treated to friendly service, a heaping helping of tasty food, and a great overall experience. Highly recommend!
- Visit the Historic Downtown area – the entire downtown area of San Marcos is well preserved and features a “town square” where the historic Hays County courthouse rises in the middle. Ringing the outside of the square are a mix of stores, eateries and yes, the Marc Theater. It’s fun just to walk around the square!
- Catch a Texas Bobcat football game – While the Bobcats aren’t Texas A&M it still is Texas football and the games are raucous events.
- See a unicycle football league game – wait, what? Yeah, you read the right. San Marcos is home to the Unicycle Football League, a full contact football game played on unicycles. Truly unique!
- See a P39 fighter plane up close and in person – the Central Texas wing of the Commemorative Air Force is a wonderful air musuem where guests can see several unique aircraft from days gone past.
Visiting San Marcos Texas – final thoughts
San Marcos remains a popular destination for those looking to mix it up a bit and while the fun really begins and ends with the amazing San Marcos River, there are plenty of neat things in between. The next time you are in Austin, give San Marcos a shot – remember it’s only a short drive from downtown, but it will feel like home before you know it.
Be sure to check out all the great destinations in our âUnique Things to Doâ Series and take a step out of the ordinary on your next trip.
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