Surprising to everyone but the locals, San Antonio is an active city teeming with adventure opportunities beside just the Alamo. Far from boring, San Antonio’s contemporary cowboy culture allows you to don a 10-gallon hat and pretend you’re a regular sharpshooter like John Wayne, while still going out for a nice steak dinner afterwards. It’s a land of contrasts, big Texan style.

Ready to get going? Here are four of the best ways you can enjoy the city — and that extra taco at dinner — in the most active way possible:

Walk the River Walk…the locals’ way

No two ways about it, the 15-mile River Walk is a must-see in San Antonio, but the main drag is heavy with tourists, restaurants and retail therapy. A little further north will take you to the Museum Reach park segment that’ll connect you with top attractions like the Alamo, but heading south toward Mission Reach and you’ll find the local hangout. My suggestion? Start at the Alamo (you have to see it) and devote an entire day to walking toward some of the lesser-known attractions. With no agenda or schedule, you’ll feel more inclined to explore one of the prettiest cities in Texas.

Photo Credit: Mike Boeing

Hit the ground running — literally

Looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle while traveling? Sign up for a group run with City Running Tours. Each three-mile tour is mapped out with various landmarks and attractions to see along the way, designed with the motto, “sweat and sightsee simultaneously.” If you’re training for a marathon or looking for something a little more rigorous than just three miles, they can also create a personal running tour for you to see even more of the city. And at the end of the day, you’ve definitely earned that extra taco or margarita at dinner.

Tour the best of San Antonio below ground

The name is misleading because Natural Bridge Caverns is so much more than a few caverns in Texas. A natural amusement park, kids and kids at heart will love ziplining, mining for gems and fossils, and tackling the obstacle course...above and below ground. Ranging from full on Adventure Tours with just a miner’s hat to light the way to a morning lantern tour with, yes, real lanterns, the Natural Bridge Caverns are a day of fun for the whole family. Don’t miss the Bracken Bat Flight at the world’s largest bat colony up the road.

When in Rome…

Maybe it’s feeding the stereotype and Hollywood’s version of it, but there’s something just a little bit sexy about unleashing your inner cowboy in Texas. The folks at San Antonio Western Shooting have recreated an entire Western town fully stocked with replica firearms so you can live out the ultimate Wild West dream. Guests can select from handguns, revolvers, and rifles and choose from a variety of backdrops to put them to the test. The only requirement? Attend the safety seminar before you begin. BYO cowboy hat.