When Norma Friedrich Ward donated 180 acres (73 hectares) of wild Texas Hill Country to the public, she wanted it to be a sanctuary away from busy urban life.
Today, the Friedrich Wilderness Park, just a short drive north of downtown, spans 240 acres (97 hectares). Not only does it protect the plant and animal life in the area, it’s an escape from the city and a place of recreation for locals and visitors alike. Forests and canyons provide the backdrop for a peaceful day out.
The well-marked 5.5 miles (8.8 kilometers) of trails are graded in terms of difficulty from one to four, and suitable for wheelchairs and strollers. It’s hilly country, so level four is a steep climb (though manageable to finish in about an hour). From the highest point, there’s a great view of the skyline of downtown San Antonio.
The park draws bird-watchers from around the world thanks to an abundance of wildlife, including endangered species such as the black-capped vireo and golden-cheeked warbler. Be on the lookout for other animals, including white-tail deer, roadrunners and raccoons.
Guides are available to lead educational and themed hikes. Spiders, fall colors and fossils are among the typical themes. Check the San Antonio Parks and Recreation website for details, and call ahead for a schedule and to make reservations.
Come armed with snacks, as there are no restaurants in the park but plenty of beautiful spots to spread a picnic blanket. This peaceful respite is a true escape from busy daily life, but be aware that bicycles aren’t allowed, nor are skateboards, scooters, rollerblades, smoking, camping or pets.
Less than 1 mile away via complimentary transportation are the Shops at La Cantera, offering a variety of luxury shopping and dining options, The Rim shopping center, and Six Flags Fiesta Texas. SeaWorld, downtown San Antonio, the airport and hill-country adventures such as wine tours are 20 minutes away.
Located in the heart of San Antonio, this hotel is 1.7 mi (2.8 km) from The Rim Shopping Center and 1.8 mi (2.9 km) from Six Flags Fiesta Texas. Friedrich Wilderness Park and Palmer Course at La Cantera are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Situated in San Antonio, this romantic vacation home is 1.1 mi (1.8 km) from Cedar Creek Golf Course and within 3 mi (5 km) of Friedrich Wilderness Park and Palmer Course at La Cantera. Six Flags Fiesta Texas and Leon Springs Dancehall are also within 6 mi (10 km).
Situated in San Antonio, this spa villa is 2.3 mi (3.8 km) from Leon Springs Dancehall and within 9 mi (15 km) of Six Flags Fiesta Texas and Friedrich Wilderness Park. Palmer Course at La Cantera and Cedar Creek Golf Course are also within 9 mi (15 km).
Set amid landscaped grounds and surrounded by rolling hills, Eilan Hotel Resort & Spa is a 20-minute drive from downtown San Antonio, including the Alamo and RiverWalk. Six Flags Fiesta Texas and La Cantera golf and shopping are within 2 miles.
Situated in San Antonio, this hotel is 0.9 mi (1.4 km) from The Rim Shopping Center and 1.4 mi (2.3 km) from Six Flags Fiesta Texas. Friedrich Wilderness Park and Shops of La Cantera are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Located in the heart of San Antonio, this hotel is 0.7 mi (1.1 km) from Leon Springs Dancehall and within 6 mi (10 km) of Six Flags Fiesta Texas and Friedrich Wilderness Park. Cedar Creek Golf Course and Palmer Course at La Cantera are also within 6 mi (10 km).
Situated in San Antonio, this apartment is within 1 mi (2 km) of The Rim Shopping Center and Six Flags Fiesta Texas. Shops of La Cantera and University of Texas-San Antonio are also within 3 mi (5 km).