Show out-of-town guests Austin really does live up to the hype.
By Kat Barclay
It’s no surprise a city as colorful and quirky as Austin draws thousands of tourists each year. Whether they come from another Texan city or even abroad, most visitors come seeking live music, great food and, of course, a little outdoor adventure. But with so many places to see in the capital city, it can be difficult to decide where to go. So, we’ve put together an easy and family-pleasing guide to Austin.
Barton Springs Pool
Located within the 358 acres of Zilker Park is a spring-fed pool known as Barton Springs, a gem for those hot Austin summers, as the water stays between 68 and 70 degrees year-round. There is also a large grassy area for catching rays and enjoying sunny afternoons with friends.
Mount Bonnell provides a panoramic view of the Colorado River, lush trees and the stunning Pennybacker Bridge. The 102-step climb to the top gets the blood flowing but is a manageable hike for just about anyone. A few minutes later, you’ll reach a pavilion that’s perfect for a picnicking and taking Instagram-worthy photos.
Rainey Street has gained popularity in recent years. The quaint street is filled with historic bungalows turned dog-friendly bars and emanates a relaxed vibe where locals can spend either day or night trying new restaurants or having a drink. Stop by the food-truck park as well.
While it’s most famous for soaking in sunset views over Lake Travis, the multilevel Oasis restaurant is a fun spot to grab a meal. Dine on classic Tex-Mex cuisine, seafood and steak, and don’t forget to order a margarita. Be sure to call ahead for reservations, as the restaurant fills up each night before the sun sets.
While visiting Austin, a stop at the Capitol, a building taller than the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C., is a must. It’s a great option for those traveling with kids and those interested in learning more about Texas’ rich history. There are free guided tours available daily, as well as various themed tours offered throughout the year, including the Women in Texas History tour and Heroes of the Texas Revolution tour.