For the longest time, I heard great things about Austin; how vibrant and trendy the city is. When my husband and I traveled down there last month, I was excited to find that Austin lives up to its reputation.
During our multi-city tour of south Texas, we knew we really wanted to visit Austin. Our first stop, after rolling into the city, was at Juan in a Million, a local hot spot for traditional Mexican fare. Tucked away on East Cesar Chavez, you get nothing but the best Mexican food all hours of the day from oversized breakfast burritos to tacos and quesadillas. After filling up for lunch, we drove over to the Texas Capitol, known for its lightly pink façade and its height, towering taller than the U.S. Capitol. We strolled through the visitor’s center and legislative chambers, viewed the old Texas Supreme Court and admired the Texas stars scattered throughout the building.
Our next stop on our tour of Austin was a drive through the University of Texas towards the 360-degree bridge. On our way to the bridge, we stopped at Mount Bonnell and looked out over the city. A thunderstorm was rolling in out to the east providing a dramatic backdrop to the city.
As we made our way towards the 360-degree bridge, we soon discovered the downside of Austin living, the traffic. After spending significant time stuck on the Loop 360 Highway, we made our way back downtown to catch the Lonestar Riverboat Cruise to watch the notorious Mexico free-tailed bats. The bats reside in the South Congress Bridge and leave every night, traveling up to 60 miles per night, searching for food before returning at sunrise. It wasn’t long after floating around on the river as the sun set that the bats emerged and spiraled up and away from the bridge. Tiny as they were, the plumes of bats exiting the bridge were certainly a unique sight in the city.
After the bat show, we ended the night at Hopdoddy, a local burger joint, known for its all-natural burgers in the lively South Congress area. After waiting in line for an hour and a half for a tasty burger, we called it a night. One thing about Texas, there is surely a lot of lines, but it’s usually worth it in the end, at least when it comes to food! As expected, Austin proved to be uniquely inviting and a fun place to visit. It certainly made the list of places to return to.