Austin Essential Info

Overview

Headed to the Live Music Capital of the World for a long weekend? We’re here to help you squeeze some of Austin’s very best into a few days.
Spend your morning on the east side for breakfast at Counter Café or strolling South Congress with a coffee and pastry from Jo’s. Pop in to Heritage Boot, Parts & Labour, Big Top Candy Shop and all spots in between. Fresh air and stunning views beckon from the trail around Lady Bird Lake. Treat the kids to an afternoon at the Thinkery or the Austin Zoo.
For lunch, nothing but a juicy two-fisted burger from Hopdoddy Burger Bar or a slice from Home Slice will do. Or take your pick from more than 2,000 food trucks parked around the city. Take the crew to Peter Pan Mini-Golf and practice your putting skills. Then get some culture time in at the Bullock Texas State History Museum or the Texas State Capitol.
Wind down with dinner at Contigo and cupcakes at Sugar Mama's Bakeshop. Then walk any of Austin's popular entertainment districts, and see which live music venues, bars and shops pull you in.
View more itinerary ideas and plan your perfect Austin stay.

Basics

Best Time To Go

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Oct-May

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Fun Facts

  1. Live music, and music in many other forms, is everywhere in Austin. Musicians play in everything from grocery stores (Central Market, Whole Foods) to city council meetings. They play outdoors at the Blues on the Green series and at festivals: Austin City Limits and South by Southwest you've likely heard of, but there's also Urban Music Festival, Sound on Sound Festival, the Pecan Street Festival and many more worth checking out. Mostly, you'll find Austin musicians at clubs, coffeehouses, bars, taquerias, auditoriums and concert halls - and with more than 250 live music venues, it can be intimidating knowing where to start.
  2. Austin is a city with no shortage of history or legend. In fact, both are very much alive throughout Austin. But as you go exploring, take note that history isn't just found in our architecture, monuments and museums. It's in Texas' last true dance hall, the Broken Spoke. In the gas-station-turned-diner, Threadgill's, where Janis Joplin once sang. And in Barton Springs, a natural pool in the center of town, first discovered in the 17th century. And that's just to name a few.
  3. When we say "come as you are" in Austin, we mean it. The Live Music Capital of the World® plays to a diverse population of cultures, political leanings and lifestyles. The Mexican American Cultural Center anchors the Hispanic community, as does the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center for the city's African-American neighborhoods. An increasing Asian influence has resulted in many festivals, parades, marketplaces and cultural performances. And Austin has long been regarded as one of the friendliest cities in the country for LGBTQ travelers and residents.
  4. The foils to Austin's chic city life are the surrounding 14,000 square miles of Hill Country, where historic towns, like Gruene, Fredericksburg, & Wimberley to name a few, and more than two dozen vineyards meet a laid-back and soulful lifestyle.
  5. Starting in late March and continuing through early fall, Austin welcomes nearly 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats - North America's largest urban bat population - under the Congress Avenue Bridge. When the bridge was built in the 1980s, folks didn't realize the crevices under the bridge resembled model bat roosting nooks. Decades later, Austin bat numbers have swelled and locals have adopted the beloved creatures as neighbors who happily handle the city's bug mitigation and provide an amazing nightly show.

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