A Guide to Day Tripping in Austin
Updated: Aug 25, 2021
Looking for a fun day trip on your day off without having to splurge on a flight? Maybe you are just looking for a quick getaway to get a change from the Dallas scenery. We feel you. One of the best things about living in Dallas is how easy it is to treat yourself to a day trip at a nearby destination in or out of state.
On the top of our road trip destinations is the capital of the great state of Texas, Austin. Whether you're looking to spend some time in nature, find some art and culture to be immersed in, or to have a fun night on 6th Street, there's always a place for everyone in Austin.
If you're on a time crunch or simply have no idea where to start your planning, keep scrolling to see our top recommendations for a day trip to Austin. Get ready to experience the city and be an Austinite for a day. Don't forget to take pictures for the 'gram and to tag us at any of the suggested locations below!
6:00 AM Vroom Vroom! Get on the road nice and early.
Check out People’s Revolts Spotify for some hype playlists to get you in the mood for your full day of fun!
10:00 AM Most important meal of the day!
We’re all foodies here in Austin! So you have to check out our famous cafes and breakfast spots! Kerbey Lane is a UT Austin student favorite and my personal choice. The Paris Texas Platter with queso is my go-to and will not disappoint especially if you eat it in the comfort of their original location, a converted house on Kerbey Lane. If you want to try something different, Magnolia’s Cafe and Phoebe’s Dinner are great options too.
12:00 PM Can’t Come to Austin without paddleboarding on Lady Bird Lake!
Enjoy the sun shining on your back and the views of Austin from the water. Rowing Dock and Zilker Boat Rentals are great places to rent paddleboards and kayaks by the hour. An hour may not seem that long but I promise you by the end of 60 minutes you’ll need the break.
1:30 PM Fuel Time! Grab a cup of coffee at one of Austin’s MANY coffee shops.
You’ll definitely need a little pick-me-up to get you through your full day. Bandit Coffee & Matcha bar is a fun outdoor space that also has some amazing ice cream that’ll definitely cool you off on a hot day. Revival Coffee, one of two completely pink restaurants we have here in Austin, is another great place to get your caffeine fix!
Fun Fact: Austin is the Cold Brew Capital of the World
2:30 PM Walk down South Congress! Plenty of shops, new and old, cheap and boujee!
There’s a great view of the capital, some of the cutest boutiques ever, and so many picture opportunities! Sneak into Austin Motel for some eclectic and funky backgrounds or Hotel San Jose for a mysterious jungle feel for your next Insta post because if you didn’t post a picture from South Congress, did you even go to Austin? And be sure to stop by Big Top Candy to bring home a sweet treat for all your friends that didn’t get to have an amazing Austin adventure.
Pro Tip: Go on Saturday when they have a pop-up market with vintage clothes and handmade jewelry!
5:00 PM Grab a slice of pizza at Homeslice!
A conveniently located walk-up pizza stand or they have a sit-down restaurant next door if you want to relax. This is definitely one of my favorite pizza places in Austin and Austinites will know you’re legit if you tell them you ate at Homeslice.
Extra time? I highly recommend driving down Capital of Texas Highway for a view of the beautiful Austin hills and the opportunity to enjoy the gift of air conditioning on a hot day.
7:00 PM Watch the sunset from the best spot in Austin
Mount Bonnell is a must-do for any trip to Austin! Walk up a seemingly neverending staircase to a gorgeous view of Austin. Nothing else to say besides be ready to fall in love with the city.
8:30 PM Eat at Gordoughs for a fun twist on breakfast for dinner
There’s no other restaurant quite like this one! Also, every dish incorporates a soft biscuit-like donut. The Saussy Cock, a hot chicken sandwich on a donut bun, is always a good idea. And for dessert, they have loaded donuts with toppings that’ll make your mouth water.
10:00 PM Did someone say drinks?
If you haven’t gotten enough of Austin yet, stay late and experience bar hopping on Austin’s well-known 6th street. Dirty 6th is just like it sounds, dirty, crazy, and tons of fun. Not a fan of chaos? Try out Buford’s and the Ranch if you’re looking for a good time. And if stories of 6th street have made you swore to never visit, check out Rainey Street for a much more refined experience.
Now that your itinerary for Austin is set, pack some cute clothes, gas up your car, and get ready for a day of fun! Want even more cool things to do? Check out 365 Things To Do Austin for fun pop-ups, surprise events, drink specials, and so many other cool activities.