5 Reasons You’ll Love Elmendorf Lake Park in San Antonio

There are plenty of cool parks to visit in San Antonio. This city has made a point of protecting green space. Just look at the massive Brackenridge Park in the middle of the city or the beautiful Hemisfair Park in downtown San Antonio! But while lots of the parks in San Antonio are overcrowded with both locals and tourists, Elmendorf Lake Park is just far enough away to be a quiet, sacred oasis in the city of San Antonio. 

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The 30-acre public park underwent a 16 million dollar renovation in 2017, which included cleaning up the space, renovating the playground, benches, splash pad, and trails, and transforming Elmendorf Lake Park into a community-building space that you’ll want to visit again and again. And then add the amazing new public pool that was built in 2019, and you’ll quickly see why you’re going to love this San Antonio gem. 

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Elmendorf Lake Park is located on the Westside of San Antonio. The land was purchased by San Antonio in 1917 in a neighborhood that was expected to be one of the most desirable places to live in the city. Really! This neighborhood was supposed to be the HOTTEST place to build a house…

…but that didn’t happen.

Instead, the neighborhoods surrounding Elmendorf Lake Park became a little bit run down. This area is not going to mimic the glitz and glam that you’ll see in The Pearl district or the touristy crowds that roam around Brackenridge Park. 

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However, this lovely little park provides the nearby communities with the calm, sacred outdoor space that they need and deserve. 

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5 Reasons You’ll Love Elmendorf Lake Park in San Antonio

Elemendorf Lake Park Map
Elemendorf Lake Park Bridge

1. Photo-Worthy Views of OLLU

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Elmendorf Lake Park is adjacent to Our Lady Of The Lake University (OLLU), a private Catholic university in San Antonio that was founded in 1895. It’s a beautiful university, and the park, bridges, and walking trails offer gorgeous views of the university’s buildings and steeples. 

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If you’re looking for a good place to take photos in SA, the walking trails, bridges, and grassy areas at the banks of Elmendorf Lake are the perfect spot. 

2. 1.25 Miles of Trails

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Love going jogging with your pup? These pet-friendly trails, made of decomposed granite, are well-maintained. You can head to Elmendorf Lake Park to walk, jog, or bike around the water. 

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There are a few bridges you can use to cross the lake and get to the island, see the floating pier, and view “bird island,” a tiny ¼-acre island where Cattle Egrets have been known to perch (up to 1,200 birds at a time!). 

3. One Of The Best Playgrounds In The City

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The city of San Antonio noticed that the residents in the Westside of San Antonio needed a space to gather…but Elemendorf Lake Park wasn’t aging very well. So when the park was renovated in 2017, a large, shaded playground was added. 

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It’s an awesome park! There’s a soft, squishy ground covering, plenty of nearby benches and picnic tables, and lots of shade added (because San Antonio summers are HOT).

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Not planning to bring any kids along? Great! You can use the workout equipment! It’s scattered along the edge of the playground. Move from station to station and work for every major muscle group along the way. 

4. An Epic Splash Pad and Pool

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If you’re looking for a FREE splash pad and public pool in San Antonio, then Elmendorf Lake Park is for you. The splash pad is adorable. It’s adjacent to the playground, so kiddos can run around and get all hot and sweaty before splashing around in the cool water at the end of the play day. 

5. You Can Fish Here!

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No permit is required! You can fish at Elmendorf Lake Park at any time of the day. There’s a floating dock in the middle of the lake that makes for the perfect spot to throw in a line and get lost in your own thoughts while you wait for a bite. The lake is stocked with largemouth bass and catfish. 

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