San Antonio lies about 150 miles north of the Gulf of Mexico and 100 miles south of the geographical center of Texas in Bexar County.
The first Spaniard to reach the area did so on the feast day of Saint Anthony of Padua in 1691. He named the area for the saint. Permanent settlement did not begin until 1718, when the Spanish established the Mission of San Antonio de Vlero, now called the Alamo. San Antonio entered history as the site of the Battle of the Alamo during the war for Texas independence in 1836. The city celebrated its 250th anniversary with HemisFair in 1968.
Today San Antonio, population 1,144,646, enjoys a diversified economy. The San Antonio River winds through the heart of the city and is a major feature of its urban life. Average temperatures range from 50 degrees in January to the mid-90s in July and August. The normal annual rainfall is about 28 inches. A campus of the University of Texas is in San Antonio.
San Antonio is part of the San Antonio, Texas metro area.