These Are The Best Ways to Explore The Great Outdoors in Austin


There are so many ways to get outside and explore the great outdoors in and around Austin. From hiking and swimming to biking and kayaking, you name it and Austin’s got it. With so much to do, how do you narrow down the list of possibilities? Here’s a good place to start.

These are the best ways to explore the great outdoors in Austin!

Dog-Friendly Trails

Get your four legged friends in on the outdoor fun! There are plenty of parks and trails that dogs can run free in Austin. Here are just a few:

  • Lady Bird Lake – Auditorium Shores
  • Walnut Creek Metropolitan Park
  • Shoal Creek Greenbelt

Find more dog-friendly trails here.

Kayaking in Austin

Austin might not have the ocean but it’s still not lacking in bodies of water. Kayaking has become more and more popular over time here in Austin. Whether you’re renting or have your own, it’s the perfect summer activity.

Try these spots:

  • Lady Bird Lake
  • Lake Austin
  • Walter E. Long Lake

Find more Kayaking spots here.

Make it a Family Affair

Austin may be a college and music town, but it’s also very kid-friendly. Here are a few easy hikes y’all can do as a whole family!

  • Brushy Creek Regional Trail
  • Laguna Gloria
  • Balcones District Park

Find the full list of easy hikes here.

Picnic in the Park

With so many to-go options these days you really can have it all. Whether you want something casual or a little more gourmet, grab it to-go and enjoy it in one of the many green spaces Austin has to offer.

Try these:

  • Zilker Metropolitan Park
  • Mount Bonnell
  • Mueller Lake Park

More more picture perfect picnic parks, click here.

Go Camping!

Austin has the benefit of being close to Hill Country which provides plenty of lush greenery and wonderful camping spots. Pro tip, don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray.

Try these locales:

  • Pedernales State Park
  • Pace Bend
  • Palmetto State Park

For a full list of camping spots click here.

Swimming Holes

Another thing Austin isn’t lacking? Swimming holes. Jump into these swimming holes before the summer heat becomes unbearable.

Try these:

  • Barton Springs Pool
  • Twin Falls
  • Sculpture Falls

Find a complete list of swimming holes here.

Visit a National Park

Texas has four national parks. Though they might not be super close to Austin, they’re definitely worth mentioning. And who doesn’t love a good road trip?

Try these:

  • Big Bend National Park
  • Guadalupe Mountains Park
  • Fort Davis National Historic Site
  • Padre Island National Seashore

Get more info about the parks and find out when you can visit for free here.

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