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Things to do in Austin

Things to do in  Austin

Welcome to Austin

Dynamic and down-home, distinctly Texan but an entity all its own, Austin melds contrasts and contradictions into one transportative whole. Recent infusions of tech dollars—plus the SXSW cultural festival, which touches down every March—have fostered an ever-growing audience hungry for third-wave coffee shops, James Beard Award–winning restaurants, and slick boutique hotels, but the city’s barbecue hotspots, live music joints, taco trucks, and cowboy-boot emporiums evince its local pride. From its hidden swimming holes and Hill Country hideaways to its southern hospitality, the Lone Star State’s capital is worth getting to know.

Top 15 attractions in Austin

Congress Avenue Bridge (South Congress Bridge)

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Austin’s Congress Avenue Bridge is home to roughly 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats—the world’s largest urban bat colony. Spectators gather here on summer nights, cameras in hand, to watch these flying mammals emerge from beneath the bridge to hunt in the sky above Lady Bird Lake.More

Texas Capitol

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Everything is bigger in Texas, and the Texas Capitol building in Austin follows suit. It’s the largest by square footage of any state capitol, and is 15 feet (4.6 meters) taller than the US Capitol. Its rosy hue, stunning at sunset, comes from the red granite exterior. Texas Hill Country limestone and granite were used in the building’s construction.More

LBJ Presidential Library

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The LBJ Presidential Library chronicles the presidency of Lyndon B. Johnson from 1963 to 1969. Exhibits include multimedia presentations, photographs, and artifacts from the tumultuous social climate of those years, including the Vietnam War, civil rights movement, and LBJ’s Great Society programs.More

Driskill Hotel (The Driskill)

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The oldest operating hotel in Austin, the Driskill has been legendary in Texas since it was built in 1886. Celebrities have visited the historic landmark over the years, including former president Lyndon B. Johnson, who took Lady Bird there on their first date. Today the Driskill Grill and 1886 Cafe & Bakery restaurants are here as well.More

6th Street

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Austin’s 6th Street, sometimes known colloquially as Dirty Sixth, is the epicenter for late nights, free-flowing drinks, and all-around good times in the Live Music Capital of the World. This historical neighborhood is lined with bars, restaurants, and souvenir shops, and car traffic is blocked on weekends so pedestrians can take their party into the street.More

Lady Bird Lake

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The 416-acre (169-hectare) Lady Bird Lake, at the northeastern end of Zilker Metropolitan Park, anchors a host of outdoor recreational opportunities in downtown Austin. Locals and visitors alike hike, bike, and walk it, as well as birdwatch, canoe, paddleboard, and fish for carp, largemouth bass, catfish, and sunfish in and around this man-made reservoir once known as Town Lake.More

South Congress Avenue (SoCo)

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Austin’s South Congress Avenue (SoCo) comprises a slew of hip, funky restaurants and boutiques south of the Congress Avenue Bridge. Stroll down the main drag, people-watch and window-shop, and marvel at the retro neon signs including the Austin Motel and Jo’s Coffee (home of the iconic “I love you so much” mural).More

Texas Governor's Mansion

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The Texas Governor’s Mansion in downtown Austin has been the official home of the presiding governor of Texas and family since 1856, and it’s the fourth-oldest continuously operating governor’s house in the United States. The Greek Revival-style mansion, a national historic landmark, is open for free tours on select days.More

Bullock Texas State History Museum

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Greeting visitors with a 34-foot (10-meter) bronze star, the Bullock Texas State History Museum invites you to learn about the story of Texas. Its three floors of historical exhibits are as entertaining and engaging as they are informative. Also here are Austin’s only IMAX theater and a separate 4-D theater.More

Barton Springs

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A visit to Barton Springs Pool in Austin’s sprawling Zilker Park is a treasured experience for both Austin locals and visitors. The pool, which is more than 3 acres (1.2 hectares) in size is the result of a naturally occurring underground-fed spring. Generations have enjoyed the fresh, cool water, which stays a constant temperature of about 68°F (20°C).More

Austin Paramount Theatre

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The historic Paramount Theatre in Downtown Austin is a classic revival-style theater. First opened in 1915, the site has undergone many transformations and has hosted major theatrical events and stars over the years, from Houdini and Katharine Hepburn to Ira Glass and Wynton Marsalis. Take in a comedy show or a film screening and experience the history.More

Austin Convention Center

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Stretching more than six city blocks and housing almost 250,000 square feet of exhibit space, the sprawling Austin Convention Center hosts a variety of events and conferences. It’s an ideal location for meetings and conventions, with more than 54 meeting rooms and seven ballrooms, and it’s within close proximity to the hotels, restaurants, and bars of downtown Austin.More

Mayfield Park and Preserve

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Wander the grounds of Austin’s picturesque Mayfield Park and Preserve, a former privately owned estate that includes a historic cottage, gardens, walking trails, and several resident peafowl—a delight for young and old visitors. Mayfield Park is located next to two other popular city sights: the Contemporary Austin Laguna Gloria and Mt. Bonnell.More

2nd Street District

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The 2nd Street District in Downtown Austin is a trendy area of the city with the motto: “Where Texas Warmth Meets Austin Cool.” Here, you’ll find a variety of trendy and uniquely Austin boutiques, coffee shops, restaurants, and dessert shops on six city blocks.More

French Legation Museum

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The Republic of Texas, as it was known from 1836 to 1845, was host to a diplomatic outpost representing the government of France. The French Legation (now the French Legation Museum) was built in 1841 for Alphonse Dubois de Saligny, who was sent to the Republic of Texas by King Louis Philippe. Today it’s the oldest structure in Austin and an interesting museum.More
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All about Austin

Currency
US Dollar ($)
Time Zone
CST (UTC -6)
Country Code
+1
Language(s)
English
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