Things to Do in Austin

UT Austin

Photo by Earl McGehee

UT Austin is home to the UT Tower and some other beautiful buildings. This campus is very large. Make sure to find the Turtle pond next to UT Tower, the sculpture of a pair of balls, and the fountain with the flying horses.

Texas State Capitol

Photo by Stuart Seeger

The Capitol in Austin is free to enter. Take a walk on the grounds and admire the interior of the building. For bonus points, count how many "Lone Stars" you can find.

Graffiti Park

Photo by A Yee

I haven't been here yet.

Lady Bird Lake

Photo by Shane Pope

Lady Bird Lake is named after Lady Bird Johnson, former First Lady of the United States. It's the portion of the Colorado River that runs through Austin just south of Caesar Chavez St. It's also commonly called Town Lake.

South Congress

Photo by Todd Dwyer

South Congress is home to numerous weird shops including Uncommon Objects and Lucy in Disguise as well as several food trucks such as Hey Cupcake!

The Drag

Photo by bigbirdz

"The Drag" is the nickname for the stretch of Guadalupe St between W 21st St and W 27th St. It forms the western border of UT Austin. There are several restaurants and book stores on the Drag.

Toy Joy

Photo by me and the sysop

Toy Joy is an Austin classic. They sell all kinds of toys, and it's a lot of fun to wander the shop discovering everything they have to offer. It has moved to 2nd St from it's old location on Guadalupe St, so the image above isn't representative of what the shop currently looks like.

Mayfield Park

Photo by Jane Hammons

Bring some food and you can have a picnic here. There are several short walking trails. Peacocks abound. Be careful in the parking lot because sometimes there will be peacocks wandering there. Wedding receptions are sometimes held here.

Mount Bonnell

Photo by Lars Plougmann

Climb about a hundred stairs to the top of Mount Bonnell for a view of the Colorado River and Austin's skyline. Great views during the day, at night, and for sunrise/sunset.

Salt Lick BBQ

Photo by vxla

Technically, Salt Lick is in Driftwood, not Austin. It's a humongous barbecue restaurant that offers all you can eat barbecue and sides for $25. You can also order plates/sandwiches for about $10 to $20. Tasty. Cash only!

6th St

Photo by Gary J. Wood

Sixth Street is home to a number of bars and clubs that are constantly changing to appeal to the the UT Austin student body. Most patrons are college-aged. For a more mature crowd, try 4th St. or East 6th Street. (I-35 divides the east and west sides of 6th St.) Most 6th St bars are between the Driskill Hotel (at Brazos and 6th) and I-35. This part of 6th St is also known as "Dirty 6th".

Hamilton Pool Preserve

Photo by SandraHintzman

I've never been here. I've heard that there is often a wait on Summer weekends to get in. Check the Hamilton Pool Preserve's website before going to make sure it's open for swimming.

Zilker Park

Photo by Matthew Rutledge

Zilker Park is a huge greenspace that's great for flying kites are having picnics. You can see the Austin skyline from the park. Zilker park is also home to the music festival Austin City Limits in October every year.

Barton Springs

Photo by Alex Archambault

Barton Springs is a natural spring near Zilker Park. Since the water comers from deep underground, it's very clean and the same cool temperature year-round. You can swim here for free in the winter, and in the summer, admission is about $3. Life guards are present when admission is charged.

Auditorium Shores

Photo by Kumar Appaiah

Auditorium Shores is home to free outdoor concerts. It's the place to be in Austin on the 4th of July when fireworks aren't banned by due to dry weather. There's a great view of the Austin skyline here with the Colorado River in the foreground.

Oasis at Lake Travis

Photo by fletcherjcm

I've never been here. I've heard the food is bad and expensive but the view at sunset is fantastic.

Congress Bridge Bats

Photo by Eric

The Congress St bridge is home to millions of bats in the summer. In the winter, these bats migrate to Mexico. The bats eat lots of insects like mosquitoes and keep the Town Lake an enjoyable place to be. The bats start leaving the bridge before sunset and slowly stream out for hours.

Photo by Stuart Seeger