When the stress and strain of being an adult gets to you, there’s nothing quite like pretending you’re a kid again. Even if just for a few moments, the worries of “adulting” can melt away if you allow yourself to transport back in time to when you had no responsibilities and no bills.
Oh, to be a kid again. What would you give to roll back the clock two or three decades?
Thankfully, Austin has plenty of places where you can slip out of your work-a-day world and into a headspace from way back when. If you find yourself with the need to indulge your inner child, try one of these Austin activities.
10.) Zoom through the air on a zipline
When you were a kid, you probably spun around and around until you were dizzy and fell down. As an adult, you can’t really do that without people worrying about you. But you can zipline through the treetops over some awesome Hill Country terrain. Book your thrilling trip at Lake Travis Zipline Adventures, Cypress Valley Canopy Tours, or Wimberley Zipline Adventures.
9.) Eat some fast food on your cheat day
Most people don’t like to admit they like fast food. But, hey, we all have guilty pleasures. After all, someone is buying all those Nickelback albums.
If you’re going to put some fast food in your face, it doesn’t have to be slapped together hamburgers from a national chain. You can get fast food that’s cooked with pride by employees working for a local company. Why go to the other guys when you can get good food from Austin fast food restaurants Flyrite Chicken, P. Terry’s Burger Stand, or Hat Creek Burger Company?
You’ll get your fast food fix and skip the guilt and tummy ache.
8.) Take in a classic movie
Old movies take you back into cinematic history, and some movies take you back into your own history. Do you remember the movie you saw on your first date? Or the first one that gave you nightmares?
Several movies theaters in town make a habit of playing old movies. Nostalgia is their game. Check the schedules for Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-In and Alamo Drafthouse to see if one of their upcoming screenings takes you back to your childhood.
7.) Chow down on some pancakes
What was the best breakfast you could have as a kid? If they don’t top your list, pancakes are surely a contender for a top-three spot. Austin has some amazing breakfast places, and if you’re in the mood for a short stack, you can’t go wrong at Kerbey Lane Cafe, The Omelettry, Magnolia Cafe, Austin Java, or Counter Cafe.
6.) Get brain freeze from a snow cone
Nothing makes you feel like a kid like a cup full of brightly colored ice. With an endless supply of flavor combinations, Austin snow cone vendors will keep your tastebuds tingling for something new. But you can still get your old favorite.
5.) Buy a big ol’ sack of candy
It doesn’t have to be Halloween for you to want a mountain of candy in front of you. At Big Top Candy Shop, you can walk out with all the sugary goodness you can handle. Plus, they have great made-to-order Italian sodas.
4.) Go to an adults-only party at a children’s museum
Most museums don’t want you touching the exhibits. But that isn’t the case with Thinkery, formerly known as Austin Children’s Museum. In fact, about once a month, they send the kids away and open up the museum for adults with their Thinkery21 events.
Thinkery21 is a ticketed party, and only adults 21 years and older can attend. The booze and live music are just for grownups.
3.) Shop for classic toys
Toys are a defining element of being a kid. Now that you’re an adult and have to spend money on decidedly unfun things like furniture and electricity, buying toys may feel foreign to you. But step inside Terra Toys or Toy Joy, and you’ll get the hang of it very quickly. You might say it’s just like riding a bike (which would be an awesome toy purchase).
2.) Plunge your spoon into a bowl of mac and cheese
If a restaurant has a kids menu, chances are one of the entrees available is mac and cheese. You don’t have to be a child to want to sidle up to a hot and steamy bowl of gooey goodness. In fact, Austin.com has a list of 10 bowls of mac and cheese you need to try. Get your spoon ready!
1.) Play some old school arcade games
Depending on your age, you may have grown up with video games predominantly in arcades, or perhaps you’re young enough to have had them in your home from the beginning. Either way, there’s something special about plunking your quarters down the chute of a classic arcade game. And Austin.com has your guide to the best arcades in Austin.
Feature photo courtesy Hat Creek Burger Company