When we say Austin is hot, we're not talking about (only) the weather. People have been moving to and visiting our fair city by the zillions quite for quite some time now. They do so for a wide variety of reasons—to launch a startup, go to school, check out the live music or film scene, attend one of our many festivals, and other reasons too numerous to list.
Many also come here for the same reason the first people (that we know of) started settling around the Barton Springs area to begin with: The abundant natural beauty and the relative ease of living those natural conditions provide. Of course, the Austin area now boasts an embarrassment of riches on many fronts, from fantastic and unique public spaces to wildly inventive movie theaters with programming that never fails to surprise. We have a forward-thinking populace, ever-evolving architecture, a sophisticated and hopping restaurant scene, Texas history and traditions, and music everywhere, all swirled together in a beautiful but potentially overwhelming mix.
That is why we have the Curbed Austin Pocket Guide, a seasonal rundown of essential places in the city that everyone should at some point seek out should they want to understand what makes Austin such a lovely, complicated, fascinating place (not to mention a whole lot of fun).
We created our summer guide with a keen awareness that it's going to be ridiculously hot around here for the next few months: Most of the outdoor places here are near water or other places to cool off, and we still advise visiting most of them in the cooler morning hours.
We also included more places to take the kids (places they might enjoy, that is), since it's summer vacation for most of them. Some of the places here are familiar friends and some are recent discoveries, but they all have this in common: They are worth visiting again and again.
We publish these guide maps regularly, updating them with exciting new places and hidden gems. If you feel like something's missing or want to point us toward a new place or project, let us know in the comments or hit us up on the tipline.Read More