An eclectic pick-and-mix of retro funk and new-age entrepreneurial spirit, Austin’s best side is a mystic soup of social consciousness and capitalist development, tattoo-covered artists and internet millionaires. Quality of life reigns supreme. Here even the buttoned-down businessmen are likely to take a day off to go swimming in spring-fed pools, jogging along Town Lake or kayaking on the river. Almost any night here you can listen to live indie rock, jazz-funk, alt country, punk ska, acoustic rhythms, Latin sambas, Tejano trumpets, world beat…shall I go on? All this coolness has not gone unnoticed. Locals are concerned that too many cooks are spoiling the broth as more people continue to migrate here and suburbs spread further north. ‘Keep Austin Weird’ extol local bumper stickers, and so far the town isn’t overly gentrified – and the restaurant selection has noticeably improved.
The Texas capital, founded on a bend in the Colorado River in 1839, in large part took shape because of the University of Texas (UT), founded in 1883. All those longhorn tattoos and car-window stickers you see? Those are Bevo, the mascot: ‘Hook ’em horns!’ In the 1960s and ’70s, local beer joints launched the likes of rock diva Janis Joplin and cosmic cowboy Willie Nelson; a league of performers carry on the tradition today.
Best places to stay in Austin
Texas - Austin (Chapter)
You’ll see it on bumper stickers throughout the city: ‘Keep Austin Weird.’ And while old-timers grumble that Austin has lost its funky charm, the city has mostly managed to hang on to its laid-back vibe.
Austin during SXSW: escape the crowds
Every year, Austin's South by Southwest Festival gets bigger and bigger, while Austin stays the same size. Escape the crowds with this mini-guide to experiencing Austin’s famously chilled-out ethos even during the most delightfully insane time of the year...
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Austin destination guides
South By Southwest (SXSW): a guide to Austin's music & technology festival
'6th and red river' by Dave_B_. Creative Commons Attribution This is an excerpt from Lonely Planet's A Year of Festivals. Location: Venues throughout Austin, USA...
Downtown Austin Segway Tour
Get acquainted with the city of Austin on this downtown Austin Segway tour. Following your knowledgeable guide, cruise down Congress Avenue and discover historical sites like the Texas State Capitol Building and the Driskill Hotel. Explore the trendy Warehouse District, pedestrian-filled 2nd Street District and Lady Bird Lake set against the city skyline.
Private Departure Transfer: Hotel to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport
Avoid the stress of waiting for taxis or shuttle transfers and instead book this convenient private transfer from your Austin hotel to the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. This airport transportation service operates from your hotel in downtown Austin or greater Austin or Lakeway. Reach the airport relaxed, stress-free and with plenty of time to catch your flight.
Bourbon and beyond: North America's thriving craft distillery scene
Prohibition in North America never worked. Canada largely kept on quaffing and the US failed to temper its love for libations, and both nations never lost sight of where to find the next drink...