I've lived in Texas all of my life and I must say that the city that I've always enjoyed visiting most is Austin. I currently live 1.5hours away from Austin and I make the drive down there often for various events or just to simply hangout. There are so many things that I enjoy about this city and its easy to see why so many recent graduates in Texas want to live there. I'll be visiting again this weekend for SXSW and I wanted to share some of my favorite things to do in the city. Here are some ways to enjoy Austin if you ever find yourself visiting.
1. Eat at the Food Trucks
This city has plenty of good restaurants, but food trucks are a staple in Austin. Try some of the unique food trucks that you see within the city. You MUST try Gourdough's, La Barbecue, and Biscuits & Groovy. Don't be fooled though- Food truck's don't mean cheaper or quicker here. There are so many to try that I have a long list in my phone for the times that I visit.
2. Enjoy Live Music
If you plan ahead, you can attend Austin's largest music festivals - SXSW(March) & Austin City Limits(October). I've attended numerous times and despite having completely different setups, they're both so much fun in their own ways. ATX is known for its live music scene, so you'll find live music in restaurants and on side-streets on any given weekend.
3. See the Street Art(and create some of your own)
I'm a big fan of street art, so its always cool to drive down various streets and discover murals or cheesy slogans on the side of ATX Buildings. The best area to see this is Hope Outdoor Gallery, where lies 3 levels of concrete filled with graffiti. Bring your own cans of spray paint for your own creations!
4. Get Wet
One of my favorite things about Austin is the wide range of activities available. While it is a city, you can also enjoy the natural lakes and rivers within the greenbelt. Visit the natural Barton Springs Pool, go Kayaking on Lady Bird Lake, or go boating on Lake Travis
5. Go Out
Austin has one of the best nightlife scenes in Texas. If you want to get crazy or simply people watch, go to 6th street. It's basically a smaller version of Bourbon St. in New Orleans. For something a little less crazy and a bit more charming, visit Rainey Street - a block of small houses that have been converted into bars.
6. Get Active
As you ride through the city, you'll see tons of people outdoors. Go hiking, running, or biking along Austin's many Greenbelts and parks. Hang out atZilker Park, Rent bikes, and take a short hike(ok, more like a walk) up Mount Bonell to catch the sunset.
7. Be a Stereotypical Texan
If you've never been two-stepping, you should experience it at least once. Go dancing at the Broken Spoke, try some of Austin's famous Barbecue(Franklin's, Salt Lick, Stiles Switch, La Barbecue), and try on Cowboy boots in Allen's. And if you simply want to learn more about Texas history, visit the Texas State Capitol or the Texas State History Museum.
8. Keep Austin Weird
The city's slogan is 'Keep Austin Weird'. This is intended to help promote local businesses but it also says a lot about the atmosphere in ATX. Check out the vintage shops on South Congress, see the Cathedral of Junk, and visit the Museum of the weird to see a more unique side Austin.
Okay, so you've probably read the word 'Austin' way too many times in this blog post. I really do apologize for that, but I'm sure that you get the point now. If you're coming down to Texas, Austin is the place to see.