15 Finest Issues To Do in Austin in 2023

The capital of Texas, Austin is thought for its stay music, barbecue, tacos, and beer. That is exactly why I used to be in love with this metropolis earlier than I even traveled there! On this information, we’ll dive into these and several other extra of the sights and greatest issues to do in Austin, Texas.

Austin is a metropolis that prides itself on being just a bit completely different.

Certainly, the state capital feels worlds other than the remainder of Texas. Individuals right here embrace that, although. An unofficial slogan of town is “Maintain Austin Bizarre,” and I’d say they’re doing a nice job.

In all seriousness, although, the Texas capital packs a critical punch as a journey vacation spot and Austin is on our record of the perfect locations to go to within the US. Along with the wonderful meals, music, and beer, Austin is surrounded by rivers, lakes, and parks. I loved my journey to Austin and may’t wait to return.

Finest Issues To Do in Austin

things to do in austin

You will have loads of choices for having fun with the good outside in Austin. Go mountain climbing, kayaking, mountain biking, and way more, it’s exhausting to be bored on this metropolis.

When you’re able to plan an superior journey to ATX, learn on for an in depth take a look at the highest sights and what to do in Austin for each sort of traveler.

1. Strive an Escape Room

Escape rooms are all the trend as of late! Not solely are they a whole lot of enjoyable for crew constructing and teams, but it surely’s top-of-the-line issues to do in Austin for buddies and households.

The Escape Sport Austin gives 7 completely different rooms so that you can attempt to escape from – every surrounding a unique theme, and for varied ability ranges. A number of of the rooms that sound essentially the most fascinating to me are escaping from jail, finishing a profitable artwork heist, discovering a bunch of gold, or stopping a significant worldwide menace.

Essentially the most difficult room is the Jail Break, whereas the Categorized room (stopping the worldwide menace), is one in all solely two discovered across the USA. You will have only one hour to flee! E book your tickets right here.

Deal with: 405 Purple River St, Austin, TX 78701, United States. Click on right here for instructions.

2. Tour the Texas Capitol

texas state capitol in austin with the american flag and usa flag

Topping my record of issues to do in Austin is occurring a tour of the Texas State Capitol. This stunning Italian Renaissance Revival constructing is the seat of presidency for the state of Texas. It’s additionally a must-see for guests to Austin.

They are saying every little thing’s greater in Texas, and that’s definitely true of the state capitol. It’s truly greater than the USA Capitol in Washington, DC. Its well-known “sundown” colour comes from the crimson granite that was utilized in its building.

You’ll undoubtedly need to spend a while exploring the capitol grounds to take all of it in.

Head inside to admire the central rotunda, which is flanked by footage of previous governors. Search for on the spectacular dome, the place you’ll see an enormous star surrounded by the phrase “TEXAS” – a nod to its nickname of the Lone Star State.

The Texas Capitol is open Monday to Friday from 7 AM-10 PM, nevertheless, excursions solely run from 8:30-4:30 pm. On the weekend it’s open from 9 AM-8 PM, with excursions happening between 9:30-3:30 on Saturday and noon-3:30 on Sunday. These excursions are completely free and depart each 30-45 minutes from the South Lobby.

No worries in the event you don’t make it on a tour, as they’ve obtained some nice sources for making your individual self-guided tour. Simply head to their web site to obtain free brochures, or drop into the Customer Heart in the beginning of your go to. For one thing a little bit extra enjoyable, go to the Capito by segway with this tour.

Bonus: Governor’s Mansion

what to do in austin visit the capitol

Whilst you’re over right here, you would possibly as effectively try the Texas Governor’s Mansion as effectively. You want to join excursions not less than per week upfront, although, so click on right here to do this earlier than your journey.

When you’re visiting Austin for the primary time, you’ll most likely need to ebook lodging within the downtown space (which is the place the State Capitol is positioned). Take a look at this record of locations to remain in Austin for some nice suggestions. 

3. Go to Zilker Metropolitan Park

Zilker Park sunset in Austin Texas

One of many high Austin sights to go to is Zilker Metropolitan Park. This huge inexperienced area on the juncture of the Colorado River and Barton Creek is the right place to return get pleasure from a day full of outside actions.

The park covers round 350 acres and is filled with trails, gardens, pure springs, sports activities fields and courts, and way more.

Right here you’ll discover the Zilker Botanical Backyard, which is named the “jewel within the coronary heart of Austin.” It’s residence to many pretty theme gardens, together with rose, herb, and Japanese. It solely prices $3 for adults and $1 for teenagers, so it’s effectively price a go to!

One other well-liked place to go to within the park is the Umlauf Sculpture Backyard and Museum. It’s devoted to the work of Charles Umlauf and is residence to over 150 of his sculptures and works.

This one can be an excellent cut price at $3.50 for adults and $1 for youngsters. It’s open Tuesday-Friday from 10 AM-4 PM and on the weekend from 12-4.

I haven’t even scratched the floor of all of the enjoyable issues to do in or round Zilker Park. As a matter of truth, a couple of of the opposite actions on supply right here deserve its personal spot on the record!

☞ SEE ALSO: 15 Issues To Do in Boston – High Actions and Sights

4. Enjoyable On The River (top-of-the-line issues to do in Austin in the summertime)

zilker park austin floating

On a scorching day in Austin (there are many them!), there’s nothing higher than cooling off within the river. At Zilker Park, you could have loads of choices for enjoyable within the water. SUPing, kayaking, and canoeing are all on faucet right here.

Zilker Park Boat Leases has been in enterprise since 1969 serving to individuals benefit from the river in an environmentally-friendly manner.

They cost $18 an hour or $54 for the entire day and solely take money. They’re open each day from 9 AM till nightfall, so you’ll be able to undoubtedly get your cash’s price in the event you go for the complete day. An alternative choice is to be part of this enjoyable kayaking tour which takes you thru downtown to Barton Springs. Discover out extra right here.

When you’re on the lookout for a extra laid-back affair, then you’ll be able to benefit from the Homer Simpson of water sports activities as an alternative — tubing!

You may join with ATXcursions for a carefree day of floating down the river, ice-cold beer in hand. They supply all of the tools and also you carry your individual drinks. Oh yeah, don’t overlook sunscreen and shades, both.

They run tubing journeys on the weekends and on some holidays. Costs vary from $59 to $79 relying on the day of the week. Head to their web site to take a look at all of the choices.

☞ SEE ALSO: 21 Enjoyable Issues To Do in New Orleans

5. Hike Barton Creek Path (Barton Springs Pool)

things to do in austin go hiking

Subsequent up on our record of issues to do in Austin truly begins south of the park, however it will definitely finally ends up there. The Barton Creek Greenbelt Path stretches for over 12 miles and is taken into account top-of-the-line mountain climbing trails within the state.

For a comparatively straightforward hike, begin out on the trailhead on Spyglass Drive (click on right here for instructions). When you want some gasoline for the highway, drop into Tacodeli for some scrumptious brekky tacos earlier than heading out on the path. Click on right here to learn a full information to the Greenbelt and all its entry factors.

Head north on the path and earlier than lengthy you’ll arrive at Campbell’s Gap — an excellent spot to take a dip and funky off.

Maintain mountain climbing for about 20 minutes and also you’ll attain the Barton Springs Municipal Pool again within the park. The water right here is fed by a pure spring and it’s normally a pleasant cool 68 °F (20 °C). This makes for the right approach to cool off in that usually intense Texas warmth.

The pool is open from daybreak to nightfall each day, but it surely closes from 9 AM-7 PM on Thursday for rigorous cleansing. You’ll want to purchase a ticket to entry the pool between late April and late September. It prices $9 for adults and $4 for teenagers to enter.

6. Go Mountain Biking

mountain biking in austin texas

Mountaineering a brief a part of the path to the pool is a simple approach to benefit from the nice outside in Austin. When you’re up for extra of a problem, you too can strive some mountain biking alongside the path and several other different locations across the metropolis.

Along with the Greenbelt, different trails within the metropolis embody Slaughter Creek and McKinney Falls Park. You may test the MTB Undertaking for a map of mountain biking trails in Austin to get began.

When you’re actually critical about mountain biking, you might need to contemplate a day journey out to Spider Mountain Bike Park. It’s the one year-round chairlift-served mountain bike park within the nation and is residence to a number of completely different trails.

Positioned 60 miles northwest of town on Buchanan Lake, it’s an attractive place so as to add to your record of issues to do in Austin.

A full-day cross for the raise and path entry prices $50 for adults and $45 for youth. They even lease bikes, helmets, and pads, so that you don’t even want any gear.

For a extra chilled-out day of biking, try the Austin in a Nutshell Bike Tour, which takes you across the metropolis. The tour consists of the bike tools, information and park charges. You’ll be taught concerning the historical past of town and see the native landmarks. Or, add craft beer to your bike tour with Austin’s Gem Bike Tour!

☞ SEE ALSO: 27 Superior Issues To Do in Chicago

7. See The Bats

bats flying over austin best attractions

Keep in mind how I stated town’s unofficial slogan is “Maintain Austin Bizarre?” Nicely, one of many high issues to do in Austin is watching bats. Sure, these bats. The nocturnal flying mammals. There’s even a “Bat Fest” right here yearly in August!

Between March and November, almost one and a half million Mexican free-tailed bats emerge simply earlier than sundown.

They arrive out of crevices within the Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge (click on right here for instructions) about 20-Half-hour earlier than sundown. It’s a very talked-about factor to do right here, so make sure to get there a bit early to assert a good spot.

The walkway on the east aspect of the bridge gives the perfect vantage level, however the hill beneath the bridge can be good since you’ll be able to lay out a blanket.

When you go that route, simply make sure to carry one thing to cowl your head from potential falling guano (bat droppings).

One other enjoyable manner to soak up the spectacle is on the water. You may take a rented SUP or kayak out to see the bats, and a few native companies even have particular excursions. Take a look at this enjoyable, 2-hour, sundown kayak tour and luxuriate in an superior view of the bats flying above. Be taught extra right here.

8. Picture Ops

things to do in austin

You wouldn’t need to journey all the way in which to Austin and never have some superior images for the ‘gram! That’s why I’m together with some well-liked photograph ops on this record of the perfect issues to do in Austin Texas. Fortunately, there are a number of stable choices inside a brief stroll of one another.

First up is the Greetings From Austin mural. This colourful mural appears like a retro postcard and makes for an superior backdrop for a photograph.

One other go-to spot for pics is the I Love You So A lot Wall at Jo’s Espresso. It’s easy and to the purpose and lets you write a gushing publish about how a lot you like (insert identify right here).

It may very well be your important different, it may very well be town of Austin itself, or it may simply be tacos. Mmmm… tacos. Extra on them later.

Maybe my favourite is the Willie for President mural, which is only a block south. It depicts legendary singer-songwriter and native Texan Willie Nelson, who I feel would make a nice president!

Stroll a block east, and also you’ll discover the Earlier than I Die Wall. Seize a bit of chalk and write one thing that’s in your bucket record, then get to work crossing it off.

9. See Dwell Music

A huge crown in a bar with live music

In a metropolis that likes to name itself the Dwell Music Capital of the World, you already know I’m becoming some tunes into this record. Whether or not you’re into rocking out in a cramped dive or classing it up in a jazz membership, yow will discover it right here.

There are such a lot of decisions for stay music in Austin that it may be overwhelming. Apparently, there are over 250 completely different stay music venues right here.

A few of the greatest locations to catch a present in ATX embody ACL Dwell on the Moody Theater, the Continental Membership, Stubb’s Bar-B-Q, and the Elephant Room.

It doesn’t matter what evening of the week it’s, there are many choices for reveals on this metropolis.

Critically. I visited throughout the week in January when there was a freakish chilly spell, and the city was nonetheless rocking. Click on right here to take a look at a full record of upcoming live shows and add some stay music to your record of issues to do in Austin.

For a singular tour thought, take the “Austin Dwell Music Crawl” the place you’ll try 3 iconic music venues, some up-and-coming ones, and take heed to native, stay music. This highly-rated tour features a native information, transport, and funky vibes. Plus, your information is a musician in Austin. Discover out extra particulars right here.

☞ SEE ALSO: 21 Issues To Do in Asheville – An Insider’s Information

10. Expertise Native Festivals

what to do in austin go to austin city limits

Whilst you can catch some glorious stay music nearly any evening of the yr in Austin, you simply can’t beat experiencing a competition right here.

The town hosts a number of main festivals all year long, highlighted by SXSW (South By Southwest) and Austin Metropolis Limits.

The previous takes place in March and lasts for ten days. It’s a conglomeration of music, interactive media, movie, and conferences and it’s a very thrilling occasion to expertise. Examine their web site for all the main points.

One other behemoth of a competition, ACL (Austin Metropolis Limits) is such an enormous deal that it now occupies two weekends. This world-famous music competition takes place in Zilker Park and at all times brings in a ridiculously good lineup.

You might be questioning if this metropolis that prides itself on being bizarre has any bizarre festivals.

In fact it does!

Along with the aforementioned Bat Fest, Austin additionally has a Sizzling Sauce Competition, Comedian-Con Wizard World, and even a competition for Eeyore’s birthday. That’s proper, Eeyore, the unhappy donkey from Winnie the Pooh. I informed you this metropolis was bizarre…

11. Go Museum Hopping

visiting museums best things to do in austin

There are many museums you’ll be able to add to your record of issues to do in Austin Texas. Whether or not you’re serious about historical past, artwork, or simply some good outdated Austin quirkiness, there’s a museum for you right here.

First up, there’s the Bullock Texas State Historical past Museum.

By way of interactive displays, audio recordings, movies, and extra, you’ll get an in-depth take a look at the state from prehistoric occasions up till at the moment. As well as, the museum hosts a number of completely different occasions all year long and there’s an superior IMAX theater right here as effectively.

The historical past museum is open Monday to Saturday from 9 AM-5 PM and from noon-5 on Sunday. Admission prices $13 for adults and $9 for youngsters, and you may click on right here to ebook your tickets on-line.

Proper throughout the road, you’ll discover the Blanton Museum of Artwork on the campus of the College of Texas.

It’s residence to a formidable assortment of almost 20,000 completely different artistic endeavors from throughout the ages. A serious spotlight is seeing the constructing titled Austin by famend artist Ellsworth Kelly. Well-known for its rainbow of coloured home windows, that is the one constructing he ever designed.

Tickets are normally $12 for adults and $5 for teenagers, and it’s completely free to go to on Thursday. It’s open from 10 AM-5 PM Tuesday to Friday, 11-5 on Saturday, and 1-5 on Sunday.

That’s not all, although. It’s also possible to try the Mexic-Arte Museum, South Austin Museum of Pop Tradition, and even the Museum of the Bizarre.

The latter options issues like shrunken heads, fits of armor, and different random stuff. It’s positioned behind the Fortunate Lizard Curios & Items store (click on right here for instructions) and is open from 10 AM-midnight day-after-day.

12. Go to The College of Texas

university of texas things to do in austin

After visiting the historical past and artwork museums, it’s undoubtedly price it to discover the campus of the college. It’s an attractive school campus that’s stuffed with public artwork and historic landmarks, and it makes for a pleasant leisurely stroll.

One factor you received’t need to miss on UT’s campus is The Coloration Inside, a captivating Skyspace by artist James Turrell.

The most effective time to actually expertise it’s round sundown, however you’ll want to order your spot effectively upfront. Head to their web site to search out the subsequent obtainable time.

One other must-see whereas exploring campus is the UT Tower. You may join a self-guided tour of the tower the place you’ll go as much as the remark deck to soak up the views. Excursions final 45 minutes and value $6 per particular person. Click on right here to test the occasions and reserve your spot.

When you’re visiting throughout soccer season, it is best to undoubtedly attempt to get tickets for a recreation.

Be a part of the gang of over 100,000 to cheer the Longhorns on to victory. Residence video games happen on Saturdays from late August to late November, and you may head to their web site to search for tickets. Even in the event you’re not on the town on a recreation day, you’ll be able to nonetheless take a tour of the stadium.

13. Go to The LBJ Presidential Library

One of many high Austin sights to go to is the LBJ Presidential Library. Native Texan Lyndon Baines Johnson turned the thirty sixth President of the USA after the tragic assassination of John F. Kennedy.

This presidential library and museum is devoted to LBJ and the affect he had on the nation.

It’s residence to over 50,000 objects donated by the previous president and his spouse, from the clothes he wore at his inauguration to the desk he used to signal the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

There’s a lot to see and do right here to maintain you busy for a number of hours.

You may step into a reproduction of LBJ’s Oval Workplace, take heed to precise telephone calls he had throughout his time as president, and even try his stretch limousine.

The library and museum are open each day from 9 AM-5 PM. Tickets are $10 for adults and $3 for youngsters and you may click on right here to purchase them on-line upfront.

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14. Take pleasure in Woman Fowl Lake

kayaking on lady bird lake in austin

Subsequent up on our record is a spot that was truly named after the previous First Woman.

LBJ’s spouse was often called Woman Fowl and was a beloved public determine for her work in beautifying the nation’s cities, together with Austin. The town named Woman Fowl Lake after her, and it’s an excellent place to return get pleasure from some mountain climbing or biking.

The easiest way to expertise it’s on the Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Path, which makes a 10-mile loop. It’s a really scenic manner to soak up the sights of Austin whereas getting some train on the identical time! Click on right here to obtain a map of the path.

Even in the event you’re not up for a protracted hike or experience on the path, it is best to nonetheless come right here to take a look at the boardwalk part. It’s just one mile lengthy and is the right place to spend a while on a pleasant day.

Be certain you try the Belting It Out artwork set up when you’re right here. It is a assortment of bronze belts with track lyrics from well-known Texas musicians engraved on them.

In fact, you too can expertise Woman Fowl Lake out on the water. No motorized boats are allowed, so it’s fairly peaceable. As with different factors within the metropolis, it’s potential to lease kayaks, canoes, or stand-up paddle boards right here.

15. Dangle Out at SoCo (South Congress)

south congress austin texas

One of many coolest locations to hang around in Austin is the realm often called SoCo (South Congress). This purchasing and cultural district is residence to loads of eclectic boutiques, cafes, music and artwork venues, and way more.

For a splash of 80’s and 90’s nostalgia, you’ll be able to drop into the quirky Monkey See Monkey Do store. Right here you’ll discover classic motion figures and different random collector’s objects.

When you’re executed in right here, head subsequent door to Huge High — a circus-themed sweet retailer with an old-school soda fountain.

One other enjoyable place price testing is Lucy in Disguise With Diamonds. Initially, that needs to be the good store identify ever. Second, this has obtained to be one in all, if not the perfect, costume retailers within the land.

It’s far more than simply pre-assembled costumes, although. They’ve all types of clothes, jewellery, masks, equipment, and extra, so you will get actually inventive right here.

As of late, SoCo can be identified for its abundance of meals vans. This began with the arrival of Hey Cupcake! again in 2007. You may nonetheless get your cupcake repair right here, however in the event you want lunch earlier than dessert make sure to try Burro Cheese Kitchen for gourmand grilled cheese sandwiches.

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BONUS! Devour Tacos and BBQ

bbq meal in austin

Rounding out our record of issues to do in Austin is sampling town’s well-known tacos and BBQ. In spite of everything that mountain climbing, swimming, biking, and dancing you’ve been doing, you’re positive to have fairly the urge for food.

Some contemplate Austin to be the taco capital of the US, and so they undoubtedly have a powerful case. The town has genuine tacos from south of the border, basic Tex-Mex, Asian fusion, breakfast tacos — you identify it, you’ll discover it in Austin!

Along with the aforementioned Delitaco, different locations to take a look at embody Rosita’s al Pastor, Tamale Home East, and Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ.

Talking of BBQ, that final advice is the right place to mix two of the tastiest issues in Austin.

Placing Texas BBQ classics like pulled pork and beef brisket in a taco is an absolute genius thought! I’ve already talked about Stubb’s as a stay music venue, but it surely’s price repeating only for its well-known BBQ. Different well-liked decisions embody Franklin, La Barbecue, and Stiles Change.

When you want one thing tasty to scrub down all these tacos and BBQ, there are many glorious native craft beers in Austin. Click on right here for a stable record of breweries in Austin which might be price visiting.

Now You Know What to Do in Austin

I don’t find out about you, however I’m able to drop every little thing and head again to Austin after getting by way of this record.

It’s simply such an thrilling metropolis with a lot occurring. I particularly love all of the choices for having fun with the good outside and stay music there, plus the truth that Austinites are proud to be bizarre!

After listening to rave critiques about Austin for a few years, I lastly made it there throughout our bus journey right down to Mexico. Regardless of there being a freakish chilly entrance that got here by way of town, we nonetheless had a blast there.

I’m hoping to make it again for SXSW or Austin Metropolis Limits someday quickly, or possibly simply swing by way of on a random weekend to skip the crowds. Everytime you journey to the Texas capital, one factor’s for positive, you’ll have a good time.

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