Now that you’ve moved to Austin, you’re probably going to have a lot of out of town guests very soon. Of course friends and family will want to visit you -- you now live in one of the coolest cities in the U.S.! There’s always something going on, from music festivals to hot sauce festivals, depending on the time of year. We thought you might need some suggestions on places to take friends or family in Austin, so here’s a few of our favorite Austin places to visit when you have guests visiting.
The Texas Capitol
Located in downtown Austin on Congress Avenue and 11th Street, it’s full of Texas history and has a nice view of the UT Tower behind it. Free guided and audio tours are available Monday through Sunday at various times throughout the day. Or you can do a self-guided tour if you feel like impressing your guests. The architecture inside dates back to 1888 and is a must-see for art history buffs, but other visitors will also enjoy seeing the offices and chambers of the Texas Legislature. Also, within walking distance of the capitol is the Texas Capitol Visitors Center, which has some educational and interactive exhibits for children who want to learn more about Texas history. You can even walk in the footsteps of Texas Revolution soldiers and view a miniature model of the capitol’s double dome construction. It’s a fun way to give your guests some background on the history of Austin.
Master Pancake Theater
If your guests have never been to a movie theater where full meals and alcoholic beverages are allowed during a movie, then you definitely need to take them to an Alamo Drafthouse theater. What’s cool about Austin’s Alamo Drafthouses is they have a signature series called Master Pancake. It’s live comedy combined with “questionable movies" -- a lot like Mystery Science Theater. The comedy troupe that is Master Pancake is made up of John Erler and a rotation of some of Austin’s best comics. They’ve been voted Best Comedy Troupe by readers of the Austin Chronicle 7 years in a row and have been doing Master Pancake for 8 years now. Some of the movies that have been spoofed so far include Forrest Gump, The Breakfast Club, and Jaws. However, they’ve told audiences nothing is sacred, so you never know which movie will be up for mocking. They also periodically let the audience pick the movie to be spoofed, in what’s called “Choose Your Own Pancake." Go with your guests and see for yourself. You’ll probably leave a Fancake!
Zilker Metropolitan Park
If you’re looking to get outside in Austin, Zilker Park is a great, big place to start. Zilker Park is over 350 acres of land right next to Lady Bird Lake where Austin residents can go to jog, bike, swim, kayak, or just play some frisbee with their dog.
Parts of Zilker Park to Visit:
- Barton Springs Pool
- Zilker Botanical Gardens
- the Austin Nature and Science Center(great for kids!)
- the Umlauf Sculpture Garden and Museum
- the Zilker Hillside Theatre
University of Texas Football Game
Football is taken very seriously here in Austin and you’ll see a lot of burnt orange and white when you get here. Those colors stand for The University of Texas at Austin, which has a powerhouse of a football team. Last year the Longhorns were ranked third all time for total wins. The Darrell K. Royal--Texas Memorial Stadium, where games are held, can hold up to 100,119 people, making it one of the largest in the nation. Attending one of these games is like showing up to a giant party. And if you like football, you won’t be disappointed by the new additions to the UT game day experience.
New Changes to the Longhorn Game Day Experience
- More food options will be added to the menu, like Mighty Fine burgers, Austin Pizza, Torchy’s tacos, Hat Creek Burgers, and Daily Juice
- A live DJ will be there to play music for the pregame portion before the game actually starts
- Interactive games, like hacky sack
- Reservation packages for a tailgating spot, which can come equipped with chairs, tables, coolers, utensils, and catered food from local Austin restaurants. (This service is actually through the company The Tailgate Guys, who have partnered with UT
If you decide to buy tickets to a Longhorn football game, make sure you go say hi to Bevo XV, the Longhorn’s fifteenth version of their mascot, who is an actual longhorn steer. This is definitely an all-day Austin event that will give out-of-towners a great time. Hook ‘em!
Photo source: Thinkery
Thinkery is a children’s museum devoted to helping children learn about STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) through interactive exhibits and programs. This is a great place to spend a day in Austin if you have kids visiting. Children ages 0 - 12 and their parents can hang out in exhibits like the Kitchen Lab, where kids can learn about lab equipment and explosions, or the Spark Shop, which helps them discover concepts of aerodynamics. There are 8 exhibits total to explore, plus special event nights like community night.
Thinkery21 Adults Only Night
Thinkery isn’t just for kids. Every quarter they put on a special event for adults over 21 called Thinkery21. There’s always a different theme, like the science behind superheroes or a treasure hunt that involves solving puzzles. The adults are also allowed to wander around the exhibits and try them out for themselves. With a ticket to a Thinkery21 night adults also get special activities to go along with the theme, snacks from various local food trucks, and a cash-only bar. It’s another unique Austin establishment that’s been around since 1983. An oldie, but a goodie. There’s many more places to visit in Austin and a lot more to do too. If you have out of town guests visit again, we’ve got even more suggestions for you on our blog.
There’s many more places to visit in Austin and a lot more to do too. If you have out of town guests visit again, we’ve got even more suggestions for you on our blog. If any of your out of town family or friends visiting you fall in love with Austin (and we wouldn’t be surprised if they did) any of our agents here at Pauly Presley Realty would be happy to help them find a great Austin home.
Austin is a wonderful city to visit, but even better to live in. We’d love to hear what your favorite spots to take guests are in the comments!