Austin

Austin Day Trip to Enchanted Rock

We recently took a half-day trip from Austin to Enchanted Rock State Park. I have been trying to take more day trips into the Texas Hill Country especially when we have free weekends. Because Enchanted Rock is an hour and 45 minutes away from Austin and it can fill up early, we left Austin at 7am to start the trek. The drive was super easy and we took the route through Llano and sure enough, 1 hour and 45 minutes later we arrived! You have to buy a permit when you arrive, which is $7 per adult (children are free). Once you have the permit, you drive to the parking lot and enjoy your day! Keep in mind that if the parking lot is full they won't let anymore cars in. I recommend getting their early to avoid this situation and to avoid the heat as well! We were hiking by 9am and it was already very hot.

IMG_3060
IMG_3060

We started out hiking the .67 miles to the summit along summit trail. It was definitely steep, but the view is really pretty and there are plenty of places to stop and take a break! I took a few breaks to enjoy the cool rock formations all along the hike. Finally we reached the top and it was pretty beautiful!

IMG_3070
IMG_3070

We enjoyed about 20 minutes up at the top relaxing and taking in the views. There are some very cool rare vernal pools at the top of Enchanted Rock, but they are dried up during the summer. At this point, I was super happy that we packed a lot of water. It was really hot and we each went through almost a full bottle of water.

After we hiked down most of the summit, we spent some time hiking on the Frontside trail, Turkey Pass trail and Loop trail. The map they give you at the entrance is super handy and it was fun to see a few other trails. At around 10am the trails were still mostly empty, but we noticed a lot more people heading up to the summit. We were really happy to be in the shade hiking by this point in the day.

IMG_3054
IMG_3054

I saw a lot of people with coolers in their cars and packed lunches, which would have been a great idea, except my husband was dying to eat at Cooper's BBQ in Llano! After we ate our fair share of brisket, we headed back to Austin for a nap.

This was an awesome day trip and one I definitely recommend. Where should we day trip next?

The Ultimate Austin Bachelorette Party Planning Guide

Updated May 2018!

Just as an FYI, you can purchase a digital download of a more detailed itinerary for only $4.99! It has a lot of great info and I'll always answer follow up questions regarding this itinerary! 

I've lived in Austin for over 13 years have been to countless bachelorette parties in the city. There are a lot of things to do, but planning can logistically be difficult due to the nature of the city. Here are my best tips for enjoying an awesome Austin bachelorette party!

Getting here:

Austin has an international airport and has direct flights from almost all locations. Here are the best airlines to check for flights into Austin:

Southwest

- Nonstop from LA, Chicago, Orlando, Ft Lauderdale, Atlanta, Denver, Last Vegas, Portland, Baltimore, Nashvile, New Orleans, Phoenix, St Louis

United

- Chicago, Denver, LA, Houston,

Delta

- Atlanta, Detroit, LA, New York

US Airways

- Philadelphia, Phoenix,

American

- Chicago, Dallas, Miami

JetBlue

- Long Beach, New York, Boston, Orlando, San Francisco

I also recommend checking out Frontier as they fly from a lot of new cities to Austin as of a few months ago. 

To get from the airport to where you are staying you can take a cab, take an Uber/Lyft or rent a car. The rental car area is in the airport, so it is super easy to and very little waiting. To most hotels it will only take you about 20 minutes from the airport.

Where to stay: 

Hotel: Austin has hotels, but not nearly as many as you would think! Depending on your price range and group size there are a couple of good hotel options.

The W

- This is a great hotel for a more luxury experience. They have a fantastic pool and bar that your group can take advantage of. It is also walking distance to a few great dinner restaurants and all of the bars.

Omni

- This hotel is also very close to all of the bars, but slightly further from the great restaurants. If you want to walk right out at night time, this is a great location.

Hilton

- This hotel is a great location for bars and restaurants, but is less expensive than The W.

The Radisson

- This hotel isn't walking distance to downtown, but it is walking distance to South Congress and is right on the lake and trail. This hotel has a beautiful view and you can see the bats directly from the hotel.

JW Marriott

- This is a brand new hotel in downtown Austin and great for Marriott loyalists! It is walking distance to going out options and to a bunch of hotels. It also has a fun bar!

Hotel Van Zandt

- This is a brand new hotel on Rainey Street! Amazing pool, perfect location and a fun restaurant called Geraldines right above the hotel. Definitely a little pricey but great for a fancy party. 

I also recently stayed at the Hyatt Place downtown for a bachelorette party. They include breakfast and each room also has a pull out couch (so you could do two queens and use the couch). 

Vacation Rental: There are also a ton of vacation rentals in Austin. You will likely have to take Uber more places, but you can stay on the lake, on the east side of town or downtown. There are plenty of houses for groups of 10+. Just be careful when booking as some can be far from downtown. Unless you are planning on driving to downtown every day, you will likely want to be closer. 

Airbnb

or

HomeAway

What to do during the day:  

Wine tasting in Dripping Springs or Fredericksburg- You'll definitely want to hire a company to drive you out there and take you to wineries. There are a bunch of fun wineries and you can hop from one to another. There also a handful of breweries in Dripping Springs if you are a more beer drinking group.

- Kayak or paddle board on town lake- You can rent kayaks or SUPS and go out on the lake for a few hours of fun in the sun. This is a really fun activity for an active group.

- Barton springs- If you come during the summer, spend some time in Austin's most beautiful natural spring. Swim, lay out and enjoy the sun. You can also visit Hamilton Pool, another beautiful swimming spot.

- Rent a boat on Lake Austin or Lake Travis- Again you will probably need to hire a van to take you out there. Pack a cooler and some food, enjoy Austin's lakes scene. 

- Sky Candy Trapeze and Circus Party- If you are looking for a fun and active activity, I highly recommend Sky Candy for your bachelorette party. Their Intro to Aerials class allows the bachelorette and her girls to try trapeze, hammock, silks and more! I tried the class recently and I know it would be SO fun for a bachelorette party (just don't drink before...trust me on this!). **Mention Give Me The Globe when you email them and I promise they will make your party super special. 

Pub Crawler- This is a moving bike with ten seats for your entire crew. You can ride downtown and stop off at all of the bars.

- Hipside Peddler- If you love craft beer, unique cocktails and great wine, this is a great alternative to the Pub Crawler! This group party bike goes around the East Side of Austin and stops at some amazing local bars and food trucks. They even have a microphone on the bike so you can sing along to your favorite songs! **Mention Give Me The Globe when you book for a little special Hipside treatment.**

- Movie at The Alamo Drafthouse- If you have a tame crew or it ends up raining, go see a movie! They serve food and drinks in the theater and often have special events like sing alongs at night.

- Head out to The Salt Lick for the ultimate BBQ experience (There is also a winery out there :)).

- Walk around South Congress- Enjoy the shops, take a picture in front of the "I love you so much" mural

- Check for festivals- Austin LOVES festivals so check if there is anything special going on while you are in town.

- See the bats- Depending on the time of year you can watch the bats fly out from under the Congress Bridge.

- Take a bike tour of the city- Very fun for a more active group.

- Tubing- I personally love Don's Fish Camp for a great tubing adventure.

What to do at night: 

- East 6th Street- You have to do this one night. Go to Pete's Piano Bar and let the bachelorette get up on the stage. Then you can go to Cheers and order flaming Dr. Peppers. Hit up Barbarella if people in your group want to dance.

- West 6th Street- A little bit of an older crowd, but also has lots of bars that are fun for a bachelorette.

- Rainey Street- You will probably want to do this on a more tame night. There are a bunch of fun little bars on a walking street.

- The Broken Spoke- If you want to line dance :)

- Lingerie Shower- I always recommend adding in a little shower for the bride, even if it is just for underwear or a few new bras. It's so nice to send your bachelorette into married life with a few small gifts. Here are my favorite little gifts I've been giving at showers. 

Where to Eat:

There are so many amazing places to eat in Austin. I recommend checking out the new restaurants on Eater Austin. New restaurants open up faster than I can update this blog. 

-Ranch 616 - This is on West 6th street and has a fun vibe for a bachelorette party. Make sure the bachelorette orders a fire in the hole shot. You can sit outside and enjoy the nice weather.

- Red Ash- Amazing Italian food and very close to bars downtown or on Rainey Street. 

- Fixe- Really, really great southern upscale food. Great drinks and good for large parties. 

- Wu Chow- Fancy Chinese food and fun cocktails. Fun atmosphere and nice patio for outdoor eating.

-2nd bar and kitchen - American style food and drinks in a fun downtown atmosphere

-Moonshine - Texas style food and room for big tables

-La Condesa - Sort of on the pricey side, but fun little Mexican food place

-Lamberts- Fancy style BBQ

- Trudys- If you want casual Tex-Mex, this is located near campus

- Bangers- This is located on Rainey Street, they mostly have fancy sausages and beer but it is a really fun place with a huge patio

-Taverna- $1 mimosas available downtown

- 24 Diner- Fun diner food near downtown

- Taco Deli- Not near downtown but worth going to. Jos coffee shop on South Congress sells taco deli, so that can be a good morning activity (tacos + coffee + shopping/walking).

-Italic - This is a newer Italian place in downtown. A great stop for pastas and pizzas if your group needs to carbo load!

-Salt Lick - If you want to go on a BBQ adventure, this is the place! It is a little bit of a drive outside of the city, but definitely an adventure. Be sure to BYOB or stop by one of the neighboring wineries in Driftwood first.

-Easy Tiger- Need an afternoon snack? Stop by Easy Tiger for a beer and a pretzel!

Most of the restaurants I recommend are downtown so that your group doesn't have to Uber to dinner, but if you want to venture outside of downtown some of my favorite restaurants are Pitchfork Pretty, Odd Duck, Peached Tortilla and TLC. 

These are my favorite tips for a Bachelorette Party in Austin. All of the recommendations are my own based on actual parties I have attended and had a blast attending. There are affiliate links in this post. Enjoy celebrating in Austin and feel free to comment with any bachelorette party questions or email blake@givemetheglobe.com with any questions! 

I also sell a more detailed itinerary digital download for just $4.99! You can click the button below to buy it.  

Planning a Bachelorette Party in Austin

This weekend I am lucky enough to be attending a bachelorette party in my home town of Austin, TX. It is an awesome location for a bachelorette party and this time of year (end of October) is still warm enough for a lot of fun activities. I didn't plan this bachelorette party (the MOHs did an amazing job), but if I did, here would be my recommendations!

1. Eat near going out- This is my BIGGEST recommendation. Pick a restaurant on 6th street (east or west) or on Rainey Street for easy access to going out. Austin isn't the best city for cabs and Uber is just starting to pick up steam. If you eat near where you are going out the entire group can easily make it out without much hassle.

2. Pick an extra day drinking activity- This is a bachelorette party after all ;) If you are looking for a great day time activity that involves drinking, Austin has a couple to pick from. I personally love a wine or brewery tour in Fredericksburg or Dripping Springs. You can also do the Pub-Crawler, a large drinking bicycle downtown, or visit a place like Painting with a Twist. There are also a few good beer gardens (Easy Tiger, ABGB, etc.) where you can relax and enjoy time with your girls.

3. Look into a vacation rental- I would always recommend looking into a vacation rental if you are visiting Austin. The hotel selection here is pretty weak (it's getting better), but the rental market is very hot. With a rental all of your girls can relax and party together without being in separate rooms.

4. If you have an active group, try stand up paddle boarding or kayaking- If you have a more active group, or a less drinking group, there are many active activities to try in Austin. If you aren't going in Fall there are opportunities to spend a day on the lake or go to Barton Springs. If it is too cold for those, you can still stand up paddle board or kayak in Town Lake, which is right downtown. You can pretty much kayak year round, so I recommend trying that out either way.

Fall is a great time to be in Austin. So gather your girls and come on down!

Traveling to Austin City Limits

Since I live in Austin I "technically" didn't travel to the Austin City Limits festival, but I figured since people I know ask for tips on traveling to Austin during this time that I would provide. Austin City Limits (ACL) is an awesome music festival that takes place in downtown Austin each October. This year, unlike years past, the festival is on two weekends with identical line-ups. There are a few important things to remember before booking your trip:

1. Book early- This is so obvious, but hotels in Austin get booked up very fast for ACL. Take a look at the transportation options when planning your hotel or vacation rental. There are shuttles from downtown and there are certain areas around town you can park and walk to the festival. Make sure you are near a transportation method before booking, because it isn't that easy for taxis and Ubers to get down to the festival. The earlier you book, the more options you will have.

2. Plan to stay at the festival all day- There isn't really much around Zilker Park (there are a bunch of restaurants, but most hotels are over 30 min walking back), so plan to stay at the park all day. Bring a backpack, wear light clothes, wear comfy shoes and bring cash for food. The food is part of the experience of the festival and there are a lot of great local restaurants with booths at the park. I highly recommend trying Mighty Cone. This year I ate at Chilantro BBQ and had some amazing kimchi fries. Also, bring tissue for the port-o-potties. You can also bring chairs, blankets or crazy creeks if you want to sit during the shows.

3. Plan for it to be very hot- It is really hot in Austin, even in October. Wear a hat, bring sunscreen and also bring water. You can bring two unopened bottles of water and there are re-filling stations throughout the festival. Hydrate, relax and enjoy the shows.

Those are the best tips I have for enjoying ACL. There are so many great, unknown bands that head to the festival, which makes for an awesome time. Great music in the best city in the world, what else could you ask for?