Things to Do in and Around Austin, Texas

Emma Long Park in Austin
Emma Long Park in Austin

From the Horse's Mouth

Unless you live in Texas, you may be forced to rely on tv shows or the big screen to depict the Lone Star State, but I can assure you, as a born and raised Texan, there is a lot more to this great state than cowboys, horses and gun fights.

Truth be told, there are a lot of things to do in Texas that you would never think you could do in this country state.

Did you know you can go scuba diving near Downtown Austin or go surfing in the Gulf of Mexico?

How many people actually know about the dinosaur tracks scattered throughout the state or that Dallas is becoming the central hub of technology for the world?

There are many things people don't realize about Texas; which is why you have to visit to find out for yourself! Texas would love to have you!

Even if you are blessed enough to be a resident of this great state, chances are, you are still looking for things to do this weekend in Texas. Since there is so much going on throughout the state at any given time; finding something to do is not impossible.

Join each Texas county for their local fairs, flea markets, city days and more.

Below is a list of visitor centers to get you started as well.

Hope this list is helpful in planning your next vacation or day trip to Texas!

Welcome Ya'll.

Top Places to Visit in Texas

Austin Country Flea Market is open every weekend from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Saturdays and Sundays)

Bob Bullock Museum is located in downtown Austin and holds a lot of Texas history and a 3D theatre for educational films and new release movies!

SXSW is a huge music, film and technology festival that takes place every March in Austin.

Formula 1 is new to the Austin area but already a huge hit. Race car lovers will enjoy the new facilities and awesome talent at the track.

The Texas Relays brings all track and field together in one place and is open to the public.

Rodeo Austin usually takes place in the springtime.

Inner Space Caverns in Georgetown is a great place to take the entire family to see the oldest rock formations in Texas and their NEW petting zoo!

Zilker Park holds the Barton Springs, Botanical Gardens, Dinosaur footprints and more; lots of events take place here throughout the year.

State Fair of Texas is yet another fair in Texas because we love our fairs and rodeos to be honest.

Fiesta Texas in San Antonio is one of the best amusement parks in Texas.

Big Bend National Park is located in West Texas and to be honest, it' a lot of rocks and rivers when they aren't dried up thanks to our droughts. Since it's in the area of Marfa, be sure to stop by Alice's Cafe for the best food this side of the border. And while you are there look for the mysterious Marfa Lights!

Kayaking on Town Lake in Austin
Kayaking on Town Lake in Austin

Fun on the Water in Texas

Most of the tumbleweed has been pushed out by all the water activities there are to do in Texas. Beat the Texas heat on the local area lakes and water parks. Believe it or not there is jet skiing, tubing, scuba diving and even kayaking in the city and that's just the beginning of all the fun.

Emma Long Park on Lake Travisis one of the locals favorite places to relax on the water in Austin. Located at 1706 City Park Rd, Austin, TX 78730.

Schlitterbaun is located in New Braunfels, just south of Austin, is the best water park.

McKinney Falls is hiking fun just outside of Austin that you has nice relaxing springs and waterfalls that you can cool off in.

Kayaking on Town Lake, also called Lady Bird Lake in Downtown Austin, is a great daytime activity but there are also boat rides on the lake that allow you to watch the sunset and enjoy a nice dinner.

Take a leisurely float down the Guadalupe River just south of Austin, Texas.

Learn to scuba dive on Lake Travis with Deep Blue Scuba.

Volente Beach is Austin's very own water park located at 16107 Farm to Market 2769 Volente, TX 78641 and you can call them with additional questions. (512) 258-5110

Rent a jet ski on Lake Travis.

Krause Springs is located just outside of Austin in Spicewood. Krause Springs is the perfect destination for fun on the water. 404 Krause Spring Rd. Spicewood, TX 78669

Barton Springs, located in Zilker Park and is known as the fourth largest spring in Texas. Main Barton Spring flows into the manmade pool of Barton Creek Pool. Parthenia is the Main Barton Spring then there are Eliza, Old Mill and Upper Barton Spring that make up the rest of Barton Springs. 2201 Barton Springs Rd. Austin, TX 78746

Go surfing in Port Aransas on the coast of Texas at the Gulf of Mexico.

Texas Resorts

Silverleaf Resort

Great Wolf Lodge

Texas Hill Country Resort

W Dallas Victory and Bliss Spa

The Crossings

Heart of Texas Lake Resort

Barton Creek Resort and Spa

Horseshoe Bay

Lake LBJ Resort and Marina

Isla Grand Beach Resort

The Inn at Dos Brisas

Canyon of the Eagles

Lake Austin Spa Resort

The Greenhouse

The Menger Hotel and Alamo Plaza Spa

Bluebonnets are the State Flower of Texas
Bluebonnets are the State Flower of Texas | Source

More Texas Travel Posts by Sydney

Once you get to the area you may be in need of a Luxury Hotels in Downtown Austin.

For Things to Do in Austin With the Kids, check out this hub.

If you are looking for more information about SXSW then read this blog post.

I've written an extensive blog post on Things to Do in Round Rock, Texas that you'll want to check out since it's just north of Austin. Since being named Texas most romantic city, many are heading to Round Rock to see what the big deal is. Find out more here.

Here is a separate list of some of my favorite Places to Eat in Round Rock.

Port Aransas is a great place to visit if you are looking for the beach experience, check out this post Visit Port Aransas.

For Things to Do in Port Aransas and Places to Eat in Port Aransas, check out these posts.

For the best hamburger in the area stop by Moonie's in Pflugerville, Texas.

If you are considering a college in Texas for continuing your education after high school or you are an adult wishing to go back to school then check out this list of all Texas Colleges.

Family Friendly Fun

There is so much more to Texas than depicted in the western movies. Not everyone here is walking around in cowboy boots, the majority of the population doesn’t have a ranch and believe it or not we have a great city at the heart of it all. You'll be quite surprised at the great mix of culture here (and yes, we are still keeping it weird).

So the next time you are visiting the Austin area be sure to check out some of the area's things to do.

Austin, Texas - Some of the Austin area annual events include SXSW, The Austin Rodeo and The Texas Relays,but there are things happening all year long.

Mount Bonnell is Austin's tallest peak. Visitors take the hike to the top for great views.

Innerspace Caverns is located in Georgetown, just a few minutes north of Austin. Not only do you get to check out some of our oldest caverns but they have a petting zoo too!

Main Event and Austin Park and Pizza are great family venues filled with food, fun and more. Main Event hosts a rock climbing area and bowling while Austin Park hosts a go-cart track and miniature golf.

Flix Movie Theatre is fairly new to the North Austin/Round Rock area and is considered to be a more upscale movie theatre with bar and food.

Take a carriage ride in downtown Austin most any evening. Though they have many pick up spots, my favorite and most convenient is in front of the Driskell Hotel in downtown Austin. You can also contact Austin Carriage to make a reservation or plan a special event.

You might not even know it but Austin also has hot air balloon rides available through Airwold Adventures, Austin Aeronauts and Austin Balloon Rides.

Messina Hoff is highly recommended
Messina Hoff is highly recommended

Wineries in Texas

Texas Tropical Trail

Alamo Drafthouse

Grapevine Wine Trail

Broken Spoke

Way Out Wineries

Tiniest Bar in Texas

Cross Timbers Wine Trail

Texas Bluebonnet Wine Trail

Moonshine Patio and Bar

San Gabriel Wine Trail

Messina Hoff Wineries

Texas Visitor Centers

Ok so here is here is the list of visitor centers in Texas. This isn't a complete list but give me time and it will be :) These are some great areas to check out and will have their local events listed on their sites.

Typically each city website will promote their own local events to assist you in planning your trip to Texas.


Aransas Pass Visitor Center

Athens Visitor Center

Austin Visitor Center

Beaumont Visitor Center

Brazosport Visitor Center

Bryan College Station

Conroe Visitor Center

Corpus Christi

Corsicana Visitor Center

Dallas Visitor Center

Del Rio Chamber of Commerce

Denison Visitor Center

Denton Visitor Center

El Paso Visitor Center

Ennis Visitor Center

Fort Davis Visitor Center

Fort Worth


Gainesville Visitor Center

Galveston Visitor Center

Georgetown Visitors Bureau

Glen Rose Visitor Center

Houston Visitor Center

Huntsville, Texas

Killeen Visitor Center

Kingsville Visitor Center

Zoos in Texas

Though it started out as a goat zoo in 1990, Austin Zoo has grown to tigers, monkeys, reptiles, birds and other mammals. I'm sure I'm leaving out a few so be sure to check them out for yourself. They are a non-profit organization so you're helping a good cause just by paying the low ticket price.

More zoos in Texas are:

San Antonio Zoo

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center

Dallas Zoo

Animal World and Snake Farm Zoo (New Braunfels)

Hey Ya'll ...

What Do You Like About Texas the Most?

  • Cowboys
  • Music
  • Food
See results without voting

Things to Do This Weekend in Austin

Austin Poetry Slam

FLIX Movie Theater

Austin Balloon Rides

Sixth Street

Main Event

Texas Roller Derby

Austin Steam Train

Austin Ghost Tours

Austin Carriage Rides

Towers of the UT Tower

Texas Roller Derby

Congress Avenue Bat Bridge

Museum of the Weird

Genesis Flight Academy

Living-History Farm Outings – Pioneer Farms

The Riding School at Winnerhaven

Texas Paintball

Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-In

Go-Karting at K1 Speed

Point Venture Golf Club

Thunderhill Raceway

Austin Handmade Arts Market

Capitol City Crawler (Party bus with winery tour)

Austin Sports Arena

Lake Country Lanes in Marble Falls

Thermalriders – Hang gliding in Luling

Zaytouna Lounge – Hookah Bar

Austin Karaoke

Edwin Watts Golf Academy (Round Rock)

Main Event

Austin Steam Train

Towers of the UT Tower

Texas Roller Derby

Museum of the Weird

Genesis Flight Academy

Living-History Farm Outings – Pioneer Farms

The Riding School at Winnerhaven

Texas Paintball

Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-In

Go-Karting at K1 Speed

Point Venture Golf Club

Thunderhill Raceway

Surfing in Port Aransas along the Gulf of Mexico
Surfing in Port Aransas along the Gulf of Mexico | Source

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

A marker3600 Presidential Blvd. Austin TX 78719 -
3600 Presidential Boulevard, South Terminal Austin, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, Austin,
[get directions]

DFW International Airport

A marker3200 E Airfield Drive DFW Airport, Grapevine, TX 76051 -
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, 3200 East Airfield Drive DFW Airport, Grapevine, TX 76051,
[get directions]

More by this Author

Comments 22 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

Wow! No comments? This is such a wealth of information. You know, I have never been to Texas. I have visited forty states but never made it that far south. I'll have to rectify that soon, don't you think?

Great job with this hub. We really need to get you more active followers. If you are interested in becoming a member of the HP Facebook groups, friend me (Bill Holland) on Facebook and I'll invite you. Good way to get to know more of the Hubbers and form a relationship.

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

Thanks for the comment billybuc! I've sent that friend request and I would love any help you can give. I appreciate any and all feedback. Maybe there are things I need to do to improve this or other hubs? And yes! You HAVE to visit Texas at least once in your life! If you are ever in the Austin area I'm happy to show you around!

billybuc profile image

billybuc 3 years ago from Olympia, WA

I sent the will see them on the left side of your Facebook page...share your work there...share the work of other Hubbers there...get to know some people. I think you will find it helpful.

UberGeekGirl profile image

UberGeekGirl 3 years ago from Calgary

Mmmm cowboys... :D

bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida

Sydney, both my brother and I were born in Texas, but only because that's where our Dad was stationed at the time (USAF). I was born in Dennison, way up at the top of the state, and my brother was born in Waco. I've never been to Texas as an adult.

Have you ever been to one of Willy's 4th of July parties? That would be something I'd like to experience!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

Thanks for stopping by UberGeekGirl !!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@bravewarrior ~ I have not had the pleasure of attending Willie's parties but I did have the pleasure of meeting him a few years back ... if he is as nice at his parties as he was in person then I'm sure it'd be a hoot! If I ever get an invite I'll be sure to let you know!! lol Thanks for stopping by!

bravewarrior profile image

bravewarrior 3 years ago from Central Florida

Sydney, attending one of Willie's parties would be the ultimate experience for me!

Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 3 years ago from Brownsville,TX

wow you are talking my state.. LOVE TEXAS.. especially south Padre Island , San Antonio and Galveston.. lol.. love it all

love your hub..

Blessings to you.. bill says you are new so welcome to the hub.. I will check you out.

voted up and sharing


prettynutjob30 profile image

prettynutjob30 3 years ago from From the land of Chocolate Chips,and all other things sweet.

Great hub, voted up and shared. Me and my hubby drive through Texas every time we go to visit his family in California, I will have to check out some of the spots you talked about in your hub the next time we drive through.

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@Deborah Brooks ~ awe thank you so much for stopping by! Bill has been instrumental to me in learning Hubpages :) Thank you for voting up too! I appreciate that!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@ prettynutjob30 ~ thank you for leaving a comment! Where do you guys come from when you are driving through to CA? I was just out in CA a couple of years ago and wow, such a beautiful drive! Thanks for stopping by!! :) Safe journey the next time you are on the road!

MountainManJake profile image

MountainManJake 3 years ago from Seattle

Things is a terrible keyword! You'll get more traffic if you edit your title.

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@ MountainManJake I would love to hear another suggestion as Things to Do in Texas gets over 110,000 monthly local searches and that's what I based it on :) Anything you think would be better? Thanks for stopping by!

Mike Robbers profile image

Mike Robbers 3 years ago from London

Pretty informative hub about Texas. Texas is probably one of the 2-3 U.S. states I would have like to visit first even if most Europeans tend to prefer New York or San Francisco!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@Mike Robbers ~ you have to visit Texas! It's like having five states in one :) Of course I'm partial but on the west side of Texas is the scenery most people are familiar with like tumbleweeds and dry desert but there is the Big Bend National Park! On the east side of Texas is beautiful green areas that will remind you of Washington state in my opinion :) Then down by the Gulf is the ocean life where you could go parasailing or camping on the beach. Central Texas of course if the music scene of Austin that the world has come to know. Up in the Panhandle is beautiful green acres perfect for horseback riding :) Thanks for stopping by and I hope you'll enjoy your visit should you make it to the state!

INFJay profile image

INFJay 3 years ago from Santa Rosa, California

Texas is a wonderful place to visit and certainly has something for everyone. My favorite place to visit is Port A where we've rented a condo during the off season (November/December) to become a "Winter Texan." However, the summer weather is a major negative (thus why we visit in winter). Excellent list of resources too!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@INFJay thank you for your comment! My kiddos and I are in Port A every chance we get ~ we rent a cottage when we go. I do agree that the heat is a major negative. Even as a Texan I would prefer much cooler weather lol.

khmazz profile image

khmazz 3 years ago from South Florida

I want to visit Texas even more now! Great information!

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@khmazz I recommend anyone that hasn't to do so lol! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

Kasman profile image

Kasman 3 years ago from Bartlett, Tennessee

Wow, very detailed on everything Texas. I'm driving down there this weekend into next week anyway, might have to look into some of these spots as I go. Voting this up! Great job Sydney.

sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@Kasman ~ that's so great! Have a safe trip!! I hope you enjoy your stay in Texas and thanks for stopping by my hub!!

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