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Five Places to Visit in Austin Before the School Year Ends


By Megan Menchaca

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As the semester comes to a close and temperatures begin to rise, the time for appreciating the natural wonders of Austin has begun to end. Although Austin may be one of the biggest cities in the United States, it’s also home to some beautiful places to explore outdoors. So, if you haven’t already spent time at these five iconic Austin locations, take some of your time out of “dead week” this month to check them out.

 

 

Barton Springs Pool

 

Barton Springs is a historic recreational outdoor swimming pool filled entirely with water from the nearby springs. Its temperature hovers around 68 °F and 74 °F year round, making it one the most popular venues for year-round swimming. At the pool, you can socialize, swim, relax and most importantly, cool off from the hot Texas sun. It always attracts a diverse crowd of people every year and it has seen record setting numbers of visitors of nearly 800,000 in recent years. You can find more information about the pool here.

 

 

Zilker Park

 

Zilker Metropolitan Park is considered “Austin’s most-loved park.” This 351-acre metropolitan park is home to a variety of recreation opportunities, facilities and special events for individuals and families. And in addition to general-purpose lawns, sports fields, historical markers, concession stands and picnic areas, the park also includes numerous public attractions, including the Zilker Botanical Garden, the Austin Nature & Science Center, the Umlauf Sculpture Garden and the Zilker Hillside Theater. You can find more information about the park here.

 

 

Lake Travis

 

Lake Travis is well-known for its outdoor recreation opportunities, like fishing, boating, swimming, scuba diving, picnicking, camping, and zip lining, making it one of the most visited recreational vacation destinations in the state. The parks at Lake Travis allow for a variety of activities, along with the abundance of watercraft rental options on Lake Travis as well. Its limestone bottom lead to the crystal clear blue waters, making it a unique freshwater haven for water enthusiasts. You can find more information about the lake here.

 

 

Covert Park At Mt. Bonnell

 

Mount Bonnell, also known as Covert Park, is a prominent point alongside the Lake Austin portion of the Colorado River in Austin, Texas. Mt. Bonnell is an Austin hotspot, popular with tourists and locals with out-of-town guests. At 775 feet, Mt. Bonnell is generally considered to be the highest point in Austin. The mount provides a vista for viewing the city of Austin, Lake Austin, and the surrounding area that spans the slope between Mount Bonnell Road and the trails at the top of the park.  You can find more information about the park here.

 

 

Lady Bird Lake

 

Lady Bird Lake is a river-like reservoir, created the reservoir as a cooling pond for a new city power plant. The reservoir is named in honor of former First Lady of the United States Lady Bird Johnson and it serves as a popular recreational area for paddle boards, kayaks, canoes, dragon boats, and rowing shells. The lake is surrounded by The Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike Trail, which is over 10 miles long and is one of the oldest urban hike and bike paths in Texas. For more information about the lake, click here.