Falling somewhere between the River Walk and Market Square (tourist-wise, not geographically) is La Villita (418 Villita St., 210/207-8610, www.lavillita.com, 10 a.m.–6 p.m. daily). Located adjacent to the River Walk, La Villita is known as much for its interesting heritage as its shopping opportunities, which run the gamut from trendy boutiques to upscale galleries to comfy cafés.
The vernacular architecture adds a charming appeal to this “little village,” as do the working artisans—glass blowers, pottery spinners, and the like—who create their wares for all to see.
One of the more popular shops is Casa Manos Alegres (418 Villita St. #600, 210/224-5107) offering Mexican and Guatemalan imports such as enormous colorful papier-mâché animals, quaint woodcarvings, and pottery.
Another intriguing shop is Sutler Country Store (418 Villita St. #2400, 210/475-9444) specializing in San Antonio history. The store offers demonstrations of skills and crafts from the 1840s, and features jewelry, silver, leather goods, and plenty of history books related to the city.
One of the best places to eat lunch in La Villita is Bolivar Cafe (418 Villita St. #900, 210/224-8400), which serves tasty tacos, meaty sandwiches, and frosty ice cream.
© Andy Rhodes from Moon Texas, 6th Edition