When in Texas a couple weeks ago, my friend Sasha and I rented a vehicle to drive out from Dallas to Austin, Texas. We had no idea what to expect, but we knew that we were in for a fun adventure. Turns out, Austin was a lot smaller than we thought, however, this small Texas Capital had many creative finds if you are the type who likes to get lost and explore.
First stop was this famous Texas mural (pictured above). Then we parked the car to walk around and find the other murals around th the city. Austin is known for their festivals, especially their SXSW Music Festival every year, but they are also known for their wall murals and graffiti on every corner. I recommend finding a safe place to park your vehicle and walking around the city to find them. For the best graffiti experience, I recommend Graffiti Park at Castle Hill or the HOPE Outdoor Gallery.
After all that walking and exploring you must be hungry. Austin has some up and coming areas where you can find some nice restaurants and cute bistros. We ate at the Blue Dahlia Bistro, a quaint French bistro with some really amazing lunches.
Boot shopping. If you are on the hunt for some authentic leather cowboy (or cowgirl) boots, then Austin is your place. You will find a number of boot outlets and stores around Austin. But be prepared, authentic leather boots are pricey. Expect to pay at least $130 for an affordable pair.
Berdoll Pecan Farm. This is where you will find the world’s only pecan pie vending machine. My friend Sasha had this on her wishlist, and it turned out to be one of our yummiest experiences in Austin. I picked up a pecan praline to take with me on the road and Sasha bought some flavored honey sticks. Its turns out, my New England accent wasn’t cutting it in Texas. Pecans here are pronounced “peh-con” instead of “pee-can.”
This is also the place you where you will meet Pearl, the 14 foot squirrel.
Not technically in Austin, but this beautiful place is close to the city and well worth a visit if you are in the area. The Hamilton Pool Preserve is one of many stunning parks in Texas. There is a $15 entrance fee per vehicle (and an additional $10 if you make a reservation ahead of time). On warmer days you can expect a 45 minute wait to get to this natural pool. On busy days you may even be turned away so plan to come during the week instead of a weekend, earlier in the day, and at a cooler time of the year. It was too cold for us to go for a swim on this visit, but in January the pool did not have a crowd.
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