Austin is a city defined by its Texas barbeque food and a world famous music scene. Here, eclectic taste and an independent spirit rule and the sense of self expression suits the bohemian locals perfectly. Get a taste of Texas and discover this laid back city for yourself on an Austin holiday.
In a city known as the ‘Live Music Capital of the World’, Austinites know how to enjoy the sweet sounds of a music and they don’t discriminate: you can enjoy all kinds of music here. On any night of the week, East Sixth Street and the Red River district’s bars resonate with the sound of live bands and people dancing. But music is only part of Austin’s rich culture; head to Downtown Austin and take a guided tour of the Texas State Capitol Building and learn about the state’s history in the Bullock Texas State History Museum, or take a trip to the University of Texas campus and spend an afternoon wandering the Blanton Museum of Art.
A touch of tranquility in Austin
In Downtown Austin, Zilker Park calls visitors and locals alike to take a breather from the urbanity and luxuriate in the park’s many gems. Take an afternoon to relax in the Barton Springs pool, refreshing after a day in the Texas sunshine. See the city’s striking skyline as you glide over the water of Lady Bird Lake on a kayak or paddleboard and meander around the streams, waterfalls and stunning flora of the Zilker Botanical Gardens.
Why not hire a car and turn your Austin holiday into a classic United States road trip, stopping off at some of the Deep South states? As you go, learn about the pivotal historical events that have come to define the country and enjoy even more barbecue and Southern Fried cuisine.
Great sample itineraries
Gather some inspiration for your Austin holiday from our sample itineraries, then give our Destination Specialists a call and let us put together your ideal holiday, tailor made for you.
Fort Worth and Austin Multi Centre
New Orleans, Dallas and Austin Multi Centre
Known as the ‘Live Music Capital of the World’, the streets of Austin are brimming with live music venues and vibrant bars, however Texas’ state capital has plenty of other attractions to keep you entertained. Whether you are looking for outdoor adventure such as kayaking along Lady Bird Lake or hiking through the picturesque Texas Hills Country, want to experience the diverse dining options such as the newly opened food hall, Foreground at one eleven, are after fast paced thrills at the Circuits of the Americas, or want to embrace Texas’ cowboy heritage at Rodeo Austin, you’ll not be short of things to see and do. Experience of the city’s world famous festivals such as SXSW in March, Austin City Limits in October or the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix in November. No matter when you choose to visit Austin you will be certain to find something going on.
Austin is well known for its spirit of creativity which is expressed in the many fabulous art galleries, exhibits and live music venues, however one of the city’s most obvious examples of this free flowing artistic verve are the many wonderful murals. Have your photo taken in front of the Greetings from Austin mural at the corner of South First and Annie Street or send a message to your loved one at You’re my Butter Half at East Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd and Alamo Street.
Austin offers visitors six diverse entertainment districts to explore. Downtown is where you will find a thriving arts scene, galleries and museums along with a host of shopping, dining and lively bars. Head East to discover one of Austin’s most eclectic and fastest growing communities, rich with boutiques and pop-up restaurants. Take a stroll along historic Rainey Street and stop off at the unique bars which have made their home in former houses. It promises a night out unlike any other. Visit some of Austin’s hottest stages in Red River, this area is dripping with bars, nightclubs and concert venues. Sixth Street is renowned for its lively bars, restaurants and entertainment venues and is bursting with local character and funky South Congress with its homespun character is perfect for dipping in and out of local boutiques and eateries.
As you explore Texas’ capital city you’ll find no shortage of history or legend, from the impressive architecture and monuments to the fascinating museums. Discover the story of Texas at the Bullock Texas State History Museum in the heart of Downtown Austin, uncover the cultural archives at the Harry Ransom Center, take a tour of the Texas State Capitol and foster a meaningful understanding of Mexican American, Native American, Chicano and other Latino cultures at the Mexican American Cultural Center.
With 300 days of sunshine, it’s no wonder that Austin has such a love of outdoor activities. From the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail in the heart of the city which offers 10 miles of off-road trail set among lush scenery and with the city skyline as a back drop to stand-up paddle boarding and sailing. You can even try your hand at stand-up paddle-board yoga. Cool off in the natural spring-fed Barton Springs Pool. Learn about the city on a guided Segway tour or watch it drift past on a boat cruise along Lake Austin and be sure to head to Congress Avenue Bridge as dusk falls to see the bats start their nightly flight from late spring to early autumn.
Circuit of the Americas
Head to the Circuit of the Americas for some motorsports thrills, this world-class circuit is home to the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix, Pirelli World Challenge, Lone Star Le Mans and Austin MotoGP™ Championship. You can also take a walking tour of the Grand Plaza, Austin360 Amphitheatre and the Tower on weekends.
If you are up for a little sport action you’ll be spoiled for choice in Austin. Whether it’s the familiar like watching a rugby game at Huns Field, quintessentially American like baseball at Dell Diamond, or joining a tailgate party at the UT Austin Campus before a Texas Longhorns American Football game. Why not try something a bit different and head to the Texas Roller Derby or experience an Austin Sol’s professional ultimate Frisbee game.
"Every evening around dusk in Austin, approximately 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats fly out from the nooks and crannies of the Congress Avenue Bridge. It’s the largest urban bat colony in the world; it’s absolutely amazing watching them fill the sky."
"For a fantastic night out, head to Austin's Rainey Street. The historic houses have been transformed into unique bars. When hunger strikes, you can grab a bite to eat from a local food truck."
South by Southwest
Held in March, South by Southwest is one of the most important events in Austin, bringing together music, film and technology showcases and interactive conferences. Spread out over multiple venues, the event features lots of tech companies, musicians and filmmakers showcasing material to new and old fans who travel from all over the world to meet and network. You can expect live music, films, technology demonstrations, panels and pitches.
Austin City Limits Music Festival
The impressive Austin City Limits Music Festival plays out over two three-day weekends each October. Over 140 acts perform to huge crowds in the city’s Zilker Park, including some big names. There’s also a great choice of food to choose from, with food trucks dishing up all sorts of festival-friendly cuisine.
Austin Film Festival
Each October, Austin hosts an eight day long film festival with a focus on the art of screenwriting. Spend the days soaking up behind the scenes knowledge at panels with screenwriters and directors, then head to one of the downtown theatres to take in one of the many films screened throughout the festival.
Austin is a city obsessed with its homegrown delights: namely Tex-Mex and Texas barbecue. But there’s also a growing infusion of cuisine from all around the world.
Alongside Tex-Mex cuisine, barbecue meat is a staple in many Austinites’ diets. You won’t have to look far to find restaurants serving up other-worldy smokey brisket and delicious pork and chicken slathered in rubs and marinades.
Austin’s love of Tex-Mex even extends to breakfast. The breakfast taco is one of the most beloved dishes in the city. Have them filled with more traditional breakfast food, like scrambled eggs and bacon, or really embrace the mexican flavours and opt for chorizo.
You can’t walk far in Austin without breathing in the delicious scent of one of the city’s many food trucks. With trucks selling all sorts of cuisine, from Greek gyros to gourmet doughnuts, you’ll find something delicious for every taste.
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