Austin, TX has a vibrant culture, delicious food, and a lively music scene. It’s also a place where natural beauty abounds. From rolling hills and pristine lakes, to serene parks and lush wilderness preserves, there are plenty of beautiful places in Austin to escape from the city. So whether you’re a recent transplant renting an apartment in Austin or looking for homes in the area, read about the many beautiful places that await you while learning what it’s like living in Austin.
1. Mayfield Park and Nature Preserve
With its stunning gardens, historic cottage, and diverse wildlife, Mayfield Park and Nature Preserve is the perfect place to relax and unwind. Take a stroll through the park, observe the different species of birds, and enjoy the beauty of being immersed in nature.
2. HOPE Outdoor Gallery
If you’re looking for a truly unique experience in Austin that not many people know about, check out HOPE Outdoor Gallery. This public graffiti park is a canvas for local and visiting artists to showcase their talents, creating a colorful and ever changing display of murals and street art.
3. Central Library
Austin’s Central Library is a state-of-the-art public library located in the downtown area of Austin. The library features a stunning architectural design, a six-story atrium, and a rooftop garden.
“Built in the last decade, this library is quite beautiful for a library,” remarks Custom Critter. “On the outside, it looks more like an Architect’s headquarters than a place to borrow books. It is airy and has multiple levels to explore and has various rooms, balconies, and equipment rentals. There are also events and author talks, not to mention the views of downtown and Ladybird Lake.”
4. Mozart’s on Lake Austin Blvd
Mozart’s on Lake Austin Blvd is a popular coffee shop and bakery known for its beautiful lakeside location and relaxing atmosphere.
“We recommend Mozart’s on Lake Austin Blvd because it’s right on Lake Austin and they are locally owned and operated. They have gorgeous views of the lake, live music, roasted coffee, and delicious baked goods,” shares Dolce Salon.
5. South Congress Avenue
South Congress Avenue is a street known for its eclectic boutiques, vintage shops, and vendors selling handmade and vintage goods. When you’re done shopping, you can enjoy a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants and food trucks that line the street or catch a live music performance at one of the many venues in the area.
“We love the sights and sounds of South Congress,” says DivaDance. “It’s got the best of old and new Austin. Our favorite ‘old Austin’ spot there is the Austin Motel – the signage alone brings a smile to your face. Our favorite ‘new Austin’ spot is Jeni’s Ice Creams.”
6. Sammie’s Italian Restaurant
Sammie’s Italian Restaurant is a family-owned and operated Italian restaurant. The restaurant offers a cozy and welcoming atmosphere, along with a menu of classic Italian dishes made with fresh ingredients and homemade sauces.
That’s Amore Films notes “Growing up in an Italian American household, Italian food was always destined to be my favorite type of cuisine. That’s why Sammies Italian Restaurant on West 6th is one of the most beautiful places in Austin. The building itself is as red as the delicious pasta sauce they serve, and the dimly lit booths create a cozy and warm setting. I consider Sammies to have the best Italian food in Austin, but it’s the festive atmosphere that sets this place apart for me.”
7. P6 Rooftop
P6 Rooftop is a stylish rooftop bar that offers a chic and sophisticated atmosphere, with craft cocktails, delicious small plates, and stunning views of the Austin skyline.
“Good food and good views are hard to beat,” remarks K.DMC Austin. “The P6 rooftop, inside of The Line Hotel, boasts some of the best overlooks of Ladybird Lake, the South Congress Bridge, and the growing cityscape. With tapas-style bites and swoon-worthy cocktails, guests are sure to leave with some Insta-worthy pics and a smile on their faces.
8. Barton Springs Pool
This iconic spring-fed pool is a popular spot for swimming and sunbathing, and is surrounded by towering trees and rolling hills, giving it a true oasis feel.
“Barton Springs is one of Austin’s most treasured spots for locals and tourists alike,” continues K.DMC Austin. “A place that beautifully blends city history, wholesome fun, and beautiful views. Located within Zilker Park, Barton Springs boasts year-round swimming in Austin with temperatures staying around 70 degrees. Filled entirely with water from nearby natural springs, this one-of-a-kind spot attracts over 800,000 visitors annually.”
9. Red Bud Isle
Red Bud Isle is a popular off-leash dog park located on a small island in the middle of Lady Bird Lake in Austin, TX. The park offers a scenic and peaceful setting for dogs and their owners to enjoy, with plenty of trails, swimming areas, and beautiful views of the lake. “This small island on Lady Bird Lake is a great spot for bird-watching, picnicking, and a scenic stroll,” shares BrAsh Haus Beauty.
10. Hike and Bike Trails along Lady Bird Lake
The hike and bike trails along Lady Bird Lake are popular outdoor destinations in Austin, TX, offering scenic views of the city skyline, the lake, and the surrounding nature.
“We love throwing running events in Austin, TX, which is home to the largest running trade show, The Running Event. The city boasts numerous amazing running trails along Lady Bird Lake, right downtown, making it perfect for all runners,” shares Verde Brand Communications.
“My favorite beautiful place in Austin would have to be the Lady Bird Lake Hike-and-Bike Trail. This trail offers stunning views of the city skyline and the lake, and it’s a local favorite for outdoor enthusiasts and city dwellers alike. The trail is perfect for walking, running, or biking, and it’s surrounded by parks and greenery, making it a unique and beautiful escape from the city,” adds Pedro C Lopes.
11. Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve
If you’re looking for a chance to escape city life and immerse yourself in nature, then pay a visit to Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve. The trails are well-maintained, making it easy to explore the preserve and take in the beauty of the surrounding landscape. With its beautiful hiking trails, scenic creek, and diverse wildlife, it’s a peaceful oasis to reconnect.
12. Blanton Museum of Art
“The Blanton Museum of Art is always a great stop if you enjoy art as much as I do. It brings an amazing collection of modern, contemporary, and medieval, films and photography art. Be on the lookout for the events they have every month,” notes Malleret Designs
13. Hamilton Pool Preserve
If you’re looking for a truly unforgettable experience in Austin, then you won’t want to miss the stunning Hamilton Pool Preserve. This natural pool, formed by a collapsing grotto, is surrounded by scenic cliffs and lush greenery, creating a breathtaking and tranquil environment. Whether you’re a nature lover, want to take a dip, or just looking for a beautiful place to relax, Hamilton Pool has something to offer. The pool is a popular spot for swimming and picnicking, and the surrounding cliffs provide a perfect backdrop for photos. And with its peaceful atmosphere and stunning scenery, Hamilton Pool is the perfect place to escape the chaos of city life and reconnect with the natural world.
14. Texas Coffee Traders atmosphere
Texas Coffee Traders is a specialty coffee roaster that has been providing high-quality coffee since 1994. They source and roast their coffee in small batches, and prioritize sustainable and ethical practices.
“Texas Coffee Traders is a local favorite for coffee lovers.” notes Ryan Gallego of Media Pouch. “It is a unique cafe that is loved for its passion for specialty coffee and commitment to sourcing high-quality beans from around the world. The atmosphere is warm and inviting, and the baristas are knowledgeable and passionate about their craft.