As the Live Music Capital of the World®, Austin, Texas, is full of nightlife and entertainment, outdoor events and activities, and world-class arts, music, and dining. Each year brings hundreds of concerts and world-famous festivals, like Austin City Limits and South by Southwest, ushered in from the moment you step off the plane at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. At the Blanton Museum of Art and the Harry Ransom Center, you can experience art in other forms, from painting and sculpting to writing, photography, and videography.
Known for strange houses and beautiful buildings, architectural tours run year-round featuring the Texas State Capitol as well as modern buildings that make up the Austin skyline. Directly north of Downtown Austin is another landmark: The University of Texas at Austin Main Building, also known as The Tower. Standing 307 feet high, this architectural emblem houses a carillon that rings on the quarter hour.
Austin is home to many tech companies, from established industry giants like Dell, IBM, and Apple, to innovative and thriving startups focusing on healthcare technology, ecommerce, robotics, and more. The high concentration of tech companies has led to nickname “Silicon Hills”—a nod to the hilly terrain that surrounds the city.
Avid outdoor lovers can partake in paddle boarding, kayaking, swimming, and other water sports in Austin’s various surrounding lakes like Lady Bird Lake, Lake Austin, and Lake Walter E. Long, all located along the Colorado River. Austin has over 300 days of sunshine a year, making it a perfect place to enjoy hiking, walking, and biking along the Butler Hike and Bike Trail, McKinney Falls State Park, and Pedernales Falls State Park. The Congress Avenue Bridge is home to one of the largest urban bat colonies in the world. Between March and November, visitors to the bridge can see approximately 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats emerge after dusk to take their nightly flight.