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Best Things to Do and Eat In Austin, Texas

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Last Updated on October 19, 2022 by Leslie Stroud

For probably five years or more, I’ve heard how darling Austin, Texas is.  In fact, when my husband and I started our full-time travels around the world, we thought Austin might be a future home for us.

I finally just visited while doing a girl’s trip to Magnolia; sure enough, all those friends were right!  I loved Austin!

Top Things To Do in Austin, Texas

Waling up Congress Avenue in Austin, Texas

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Walk Around Downtown

We walked up Congress Avenue, which leads right to the capital.  Also, be sure to wander down 6th street.  You can find plenty of cute restaurants, shops, and street performers.

Austin, Texas capital building at night
Visit the Capitol

Cute Austin is the capital of Texas.  The capital building itself is worthy of a visit!  I’m not sure how close you can get with Covid restrictions, but we loved walking around and looking at it from afar.

Texas Toy Museum

We happened to wander into this museum amid our downtown exploration.  It’s like a toy hoarder decided to make a small museum instead of letting vintage toys sit in his garage.  

The toys are fun to reminisce over, and there are several vintage arcade games you can play for free with admission. And to top off your trip to childhood, make sure to visit the museum of Ice Cream.

Bats at Sunset

Imagine hundreds, maybe thousands of bats taking off at sunset to go hunt.  What a sight!  From late March through September, watching the bats at sunset at the 360 bridge is a must-do.  Read more about how to do it here.

Live Music

Austin is known as the live music capital.  Covid has dampened this for sure, but just strolling around downtown, you can get some musical fare.

Get Outside

We didn’t get to any outdoor activities during our visit, but I love this list of ideas!

The Oasis

If you have a car, go to The Oasis one evening. Set on a lake, this place has incredible sunsets.  It is like a small outdoor mall and a giant restaurant.  Mostly Mexican, the food is good, and the views are stellar.

Beautiful sunset dinner at the Oasis | Dinner on the lake in Austin, Texas

Best Food to Try in Austin, Texas

Just remembering some of the food in Austin makes my mouth water!  Seriously.

Torchy’s Tacos

Yummy tacos to mix and match together.  I couldn’t decide and got three.. that was too much!  I enjoyed sampling but couldn’t finish them.

Try the fried avocado and the steak.


My favorite Tex-Mex place.  Ask for some Jalapeño Ranch sauce with your chips and salsa.  I love the taquitos, but the Mexican Salad rocks too!

Salt Lick BBQ

Hands down the best BBQ I’ve had.  The name throws you off, but don’t let it.  I even had it at the Austin airport, and it was fabulous.

I tried the brisket and sausage.  The sauce they put on top is divine.

Rudy’s BBQ

The meat at Rudy’s is also very good, and some of their sides are amazing!  Try the creamed corn.

Food Trucks

You can find food trucks all over Austin!  We stayed in the Fairmont downtown and had several within walking distance.  They typically open late afternoon and stay open late.

We had amazing Greek and French crepes. I love how you can mix and match all kinds of food.

Amy’s Ice Cream

I kept reading “Mexican Vanilla” on other blogs and decided to try the Mexican Vanilla in a sundae.  Wow.  I can still remember its rich, delicious flavor.  

I’m not even a vanilla fan, but this knocked my socks off!  

Amy’s is a darling ice cream mix-in place.  Think Cold Stone before Cold Stone.

Tip: Don’t have time (or room in your tummy) for all of these?   Amy’s and Salt Lick at both at the Austin airport!  Come hungry!

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