Thinking of going to Austin? Here are some helpful pointers from our team.
1. Allow for travel time
Austin is pretty spread out, so make sure to allow time to get between activities, as well as to/from the airport. Traffic is also notoriously bad. While not on the level of LA or Boston, Austin has expanded too rapidly for its road and highway infrastructure. Public transportation is virtually non-existent. But if you rent a car…
2. Austin drivers are terrible
Big trucks driving on the median, lack of signaling, left turns from the right lane: all of these will happen while you’re there. Be careful.
3. Austin isn’t so “Texasy”
Austin is made up of a large percentage of California ex-pats, so it doesn’t feel like you are in the stereotypical Texas heartland. You’ll see boots and hats, but not as much as if you…
San Antonio is only an hour and a half away by car, but the vibe is completely different. It’s worth exploring if just to feel that difference. And see the Alamo.
5. Make sure to listen to live music
This is one of the best music cities in the world. You are missing out if you don’t find a club and listen. Check out where Tomar and the FCs are playing for a real treat!
6. The food is good
Austin is known for good food, like Franklin BBQ. Don’t want BBQ? There is great sushi, Mexican food, ice cream, and more! (I had all those in just a weekend.)
Mornings are warm and humid, and afternoons drier but scorching. Thunderstorms aren’t unheard of, either, making humidity a beast. So to cool off…
8. Indulge in water activities
Barton Springs, the Colorado River, and countless lakes all offer swimming, boating, paddle boarding and more. Take advantage!
9. Keep Austin weird
Do the unique things. Eat from a good truck. Visit a bar in a bungalow on Rainey Street. Watch bats emerge from the Congress bridge. Complain about how all the folks from California are causing housing prices to go up.
10. Do your homework
Like all places, your Austin trip will be best if you do some research ahead of time on things you want to do. Especially with the city being so spread out, maximizing your time will be important.
4 thoughts on “Royal Tips: Austin”
As an Austinite who’s lived in several other parts of the country, I can attest to Austin’s scary/distracted drivers. The scariest are drivers texting in parking lots (one of whom nearly mowed me down when plowing through a stop sign without stopping). That being said, Austin is by far my favorite place I’ve been able to call home — and hopefully I’ll be here for many years to come. PS: Austin is awesome for hiking and other outdoor activities the majority of the year (my personal favorites are Barton Creek, as well as the wildflower gardens). But be forewarned that for most of July and August, temps here soar to the upper 90s and over 100 degrees. I’ve made these months my winter of sorts (the time to be inside), but much prefer to the subzero temps and snow of my Michigan upbringing.
I agree with all of this. Scary drivers, but an awesome city!