Summertime is an amazing time to be in Austin! The lakes and rivers are full, the greenbelt is thriving, live music is BACK, and the outdoor activities are endless. Whether you’ve been here 10 years, you’re looking to give us a visit, or you just love this city as much as we do, these Austin activities will have you talking about Summer 2021 for years to come.
Your Austin Summer 2021 Bucket List
1. SUP Paddle-boarding on Lady Bird Lake
The best view of Downtown is from the water! If you have your own kayak or inflatable paddle board you can use the public dock at the Texas Rowing Center to get in, or you can rent from them directly at an affordable fee per hour. Once you’re in, race your friends to the Congress Bridge and wave to the cars that pass overhead-jealous that they’re not out enjoying the gorgeous views! Winding all the way around Lady Bird Lake, formerly known as Town Lake, is the Ann and Roy Butler hike-and-bike trail. Spanning 10 miles, many Austinites use this beautiful area for exercising and sightseeing. If you won’t get out on the water, make sure to at least walk the trail down to it!
2. Hike the Greenbelt
While there are many access points to the Greenbelt, the Spyglass Trailhead Access is one of the most beloved for several reasons! 1. There’s actually a decent amount of parking in the area 2. Thom’s Market, a neighborhood grocery, has any last minute snacks you might need 3. TACODELI 4. Turn left and you’ll run into Campbell’s hole, which is great for swimming 5. To the right are the climbing walls and boulders of the Barton Creek Greenbelt. Make sure you have sturdy shoes!
3. Swim in Barton Springs Pool
With water fed from natural underground springs, Barton Springs Pool temperatures average from 68-70 degrees all year round. Basically, any time is the perfect time for a dip in this beautiful pool! Reservations are required for the time being so make sure to plan your trip accordingly and book in advance during Summer months.
4. Visit Zilker Botanical Garden
In the heart of downtown, 28 acres of beauty await you at the botanical gardens located within Zilker Park. Home to a japanese tea garden, a riparian streambed, and a prehistoric garden, you can spend hours here appreciating the forest-like gem that attracts folks from all over the world! Reservations are currently required and tickets must be purchased online in advance.
5. Have a boat day on Lake Travis or Lake Austin
Float On Boat Rentals offers the perfect packages for you and your gang to spend the day living it up out on the lake. All boats come with: An amazing captain, bluetooth radio, a YETI cooler, a lily pad float, and a Bimini shade cover! Sunset tours are also available now on both Lake Austin and Lake Travis.
6. Chow down at the Taco & Margarita Festival
For those 21 & Over, vendors from all over Austin will come to sell their delicious tacos at ACL Live at the Moody Theatre! Margaritas, beer, and more will also be available from the bars and beverage stations on site. LIVE MUSIC is also making a comeback, and you can catch Bri Bagwell, The Watters, and more performing artists throughout the festival. See you there!
7. Visit the Texas Farmers Market
Voted Austin’s favorite farmer’s market, the market at Mueller is situated on beautiful grounds that feature a gorgeous lake and picturesque park. Dozens of local artists, vendors, and producers sell their delicious meats and treats here every Sunday. You can usually hear live music here as well! We recommend grabbing some delicious treats and having yourself a small picnic in the park.
8. Escape the heat at Wonderspaces
Featuring a dozen immersive art experiences, lose yourself inside Wonderspaces Austin. 4 new art installations are open in Summer 2021 and are an amazing indoor experience if you’re looking to spend some time away from the Texas heat. The installations, made by world renowned artists, rotate semi-regularly so there’s almost always something new to see! A bar is also available inside for those 21 & over.
9. Watch the sunset from Mount Bonnell
There is no better view of the sunset in Austin. PERIOD. The best view is not from the Pfluger Pedestrian Bridge or the famous 360 Overlook- It’s hands down Mount Bonnell. You can either climb the epic steps to the top or take the lazy way around (Yes please), either way, you’ll know you made the right decision coming here at sunset.
10. Blues On the Green
Grab your lawn chair and your cooler, Austin’s annual FREE Blues festival in the infamous Zilker Park is back in person this year! Featuring shows on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from the end of July to the beginning of August, you have 3 weeks to be a part of live music returning to the live music capitol of the world. This year will be the 30th anniversary of this free summer concert series in Austin’s favorite park!