When you hear the word “Austin” most people think of The University of Texas Longhorns, Austin City Limits and maybe SXSW (South by Southwest). Besides being the “live music capital of the world” Austin has a lot more to offer. If you have a little free time before, during, or after TABS-NAIS Global Symposium here are a few highlights to check out.
Austin has great eats – BBQ, food trucks, Tex-Mex, breakfast tacos and more. You can even schedule time to check out Austin’s eateries by heading out on foot, bus, or bike with Austin Eats Food Tours. If getting up and taking a run before breakfast is your thing and you like to eat check out bRUNchRunning. Available on Sundays only you can partake in a 5k or 10k run then meet at one of Austin’s best brunch spots and enjoy good food and cold mimosas! And don’t miss the unique Austin spots: Kerbey Lane Café (known for their pancakes), Trudy’s (known for their migas) and Threadgill’s (known for their Southern home cookin’).
Close to the Hyatt
Within walking distance of the Hyatt Regency Hotel you can step outside and explore the shops along South Congress Avenue or SoCo for short, Zilker Park, or the Warehouse District.
Must See Spots
If your room doesn’t face Lady Bird Lake (or Town Lake as it used to be called), take some time to walk along the trails easily accessible from the hotel and take in the calm waters. The lake is actually one of five created by dams along the Colorado River.
If the weather isn’t to your liking, head inside the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum and step back in time. The LBJ Library and Museum is on the UT campus and a short hike north of the hotel. Also on the campus is the UT Tower. Tours are available, but tickets may be needed. Check out the Texas Capitol Building. Made of limestone, the building is said to be taller than the U.S. Capitol! There are a lot of stars in there, challenge yourself to count how many you see.
And if you find you have some time in the evening and want to try your hand at the Texas Two Step, The Broken Spoke is the place to go. Internationally known as a authentic honky-tonk you can grab a beer and dance on the floor to some good ol’ country music. George Strait, Dolly Parton, and Willie Nelson have graced the stage at this Austin favorite. Or make time to watch the bats one night under the Congress Avenue Bridge, just east of the hotel.
If you find yourself with some downtime during the Symposium head outside! Make sure to pack your sunglasses because you can expect average temperatures in the 80’s in April and generally sunny skies. That could be a nice break for many TABS member schools that will no doubt be visiting from snow struck areas such as the northeast!
-written by Kelly A. Brown
(Thanks to Rebecca Brooks archivist and head librarian at The Madeira School for contributing to this post. Rebecca attended graduate school at University of Texas at Austin. Hook ’em Horns!)