Things to do in Austin
When deciding what things to do in Austin, always go the live music route. Mohawk, located in downtown Austin, right on 10th and Red River, is consistently voted one of Austin’s best live music venues. It offers an eclectic variety of bands and artists at any time of year. East Side Showroom has a low-key vibe, perfect for relaxing and sipping on a beer or cocktail in Austin’s East Side neighborhood. It has live music on the weekends and also showcases local visual artists. For some history and sightseeing, the Texas State Capitol is the largest capitol in the US and offers guided tours and the option to stroll the grounds as well.
The Texas Memorial Museum houses one of the biggest dinosaur-finds ever, and many other wild and weird natural history discoveries. If you’re not afraid of creepy-crawlies, the bat colony under Congress Bridge is the largest urban colony in North America. Many people gather during the summer to watch the horde take off at sunset every night to forage for food- an eerie but exciting sight. Zilker Park is 350 acres of greenery, with hiking and biking trails along the Barton Creek Greenbelt. It also provides access to Barton Springs- the famous natural swimming pool.
The Alamo isn’t your average movie theater. Along with blockbuster hits, they play oldies and indies, and serve food and drinks during the show. The age minimum is usually 18, but select locations have Baby Day on Tuesdays before 2 p.m., when parents can bring their infants.
Catching Austin on a rainy weekend? Head to this indoor center filled with trampolines of all shapes and colors. Some rooms are set up as basketball and dodge ball courts. Best of all, even the most energetic little tikes are guaranteed to tucker out early after a day of jumps and tumbles.
This New York transplant is housed in a wood-paneled house and has a sprawling lawn dotted with vintage furnishings. Settle with a potent Revolution, made with rye whiskey, Benedictine, Ramazotti and Angostura bitters, and an order of piping hot duck fat fries with truffle aoli.
Texans’ love of all things big extends to its capitol building, which dominates the Austin skyline and is visible for miles driving up South Congress Avenue.
Strange Factor: Peek inside the Live Music Capital of the World’s henhouses on the Funky Chicken Coop Tour.
This noteworthy newcomer is outfitted with traditional Chippendale furniture.
Music strikes a note in Austin, known as the “Live Music Capital of the World,” so dance your way to this bar for blues, country rock, and rockabilly sounds.
Mount Bonnell, a municipal park located on the western edge of the city above Town Lake, is one of the highest points in the area at 775 feet, making it a popular spot for surveying the surrounding area.
On the edge of Lady Bird Lake, the Long Center for the Performing Arts houses the city's ballet company and symphony orchestra.
Coffeehouse by day and lounge by night, Halcyon stands on the corner of Fourth and Lavaca Streets, at the center of the Warehouse District.
The Austin City Limits Music Festival is an annual three-day event held every October in Zilker Park with more than 100 artists covering a wide spectrum of genres. Past acts have included Kings of Leon, the Zac Brown Band, Kanye West, Coldplay, and Sara Bareilles.
This coffee shop, which now distributes coffee to grocery stores throughout the state, was founded in Austin in 1990 with its “world headquarters” now on trendy South Congress Avenue.
Music-lover's scene. This bar's theme nights include Two-Bit Tuesdays, featuring 25-cent corn dogs and two-dollar premium drafts.
When it isn’t hosting concerts such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival, a three-day event held each October, Zilker Park is a popular spot for locals to enjoy the outdoors.
The Austin Nature & Science Center, located in Zilker Park, has a range of family friendly activities and hands-on exhibits. While special exhibits sometimes require an entrance fee, the center itself is free (although donations are encouraged).