When you’ve never been to Austin, and you have a wedding in San Antonio, you obviously tack on an extra 1.5 days for a visit. I’m happy I did it, but I think Austin would be more fun with friends, since so much of the city revolves around food and music. Plus, it’s still hotter than blazes in early September. Regardless, I dove in like I always do – seeing as much as possible and trying all of the good food along the way!
Breakfast was at Kerbey Lane Cafe. I had Fried Chicken & Pancakes, which was delicious!
A panoramic view of Austin from the terrace at the Performing Arts Center…
The Texas State Capitol…
I was surprised by how spread out the city is. I spent a lot of time driving from place to place. I visited the Whole Foods Flagship Store as well as a number of fun shops in a couple of different neighborhoods before stopping for a late lunch at Elizabeth Street Cafe…
The setting was adorable. I sat outside on the patio. Their spring rolls and Bahn Mi were delicious, but I should’ve known better than to order a macron. It was disappointing.
I stopped at Gordough’s for a donut on the way back to the hotel. They all sounded so good, so I ordered three! (Don’t worry; I didn’t eat them all!)
Gordough’s is an example of an Austin phenomenon…food trucks. They are EVERYWHERE! Anywhere from one, three, or five are wedged into empty corner lots, parking lots, or basically anywhere they can find space. They don’t move around like food trucks in St. Louis. This is where they are located, and they have tables and chairs like an outdoor food court for people to sit and eat. I was amazed by the sheer number of them around town.
After dropping my donuts at my hotel, I walked down to the Congress Avenue Bridge to watch something wild – the flying of the bats! 1.5 million bats live under this bridge. It’s the largest urban bat colony in the world! Every night, they fly out around sunset. The bridge was lined with people, and there were others who watched from boats or kayaks below the bridge. The water is a dangerous place to view in my opinion, because the bats are likely to poop on you when they fly out!
[Look at all of them!!]
[Can you see the black “clouds” in the distance? All bats!]
After the bats, I watched an epic football game – Tennessee vs. Georgia Tech, where Tennessee won in double overtime! I’m sure my hotel neighbors wondered what was happening, because I was yelling at the tv so much!
The next morning, I had a delicious breakfast taco at Torchy’s Tacos before heading back to San Antonio to catch my flight.
And I stopped at Rudy’s for “the worst bar-b-q in Texas” as I was pulling into San Antonio. By this time, I was so full from all the food in Austin that I just had a sliver of barbecue and then some sides. After all, there’s always room for sides!
I’d be game to go back to Austin during a cooler time of year and with friends. It’s a little too quirky for me, but I guess that’s part of its charm. Until next time…stay weird, Austin.