As the Airbnb community helps Austin welcome thousands of visitors for the live music capital’s largest event merging film, music, and technology, the variety of things to do, places to stay and restaurants to dine in has never been easier to navigate on Airbnb.
So in between sets from your favorite artists, actors, and entrepreneurs, here’s a breakdown of how to get yourself knee-deep in the wonderful and weird city of Austin through the eyes of locals. Below you’ll find a variety of things to do and what to know before you go from our homes and Experience hosts.
Where To Stay
With the launch of a new tier of homes in Austin and Airbnb’s expanded property types, there is truly something for every visitor. Guests can book one of the nearly 100 Airbnb Plus listings available in Austin, or choose from a broad variety of accommodation options to find the host and home that’s right for them.
“If you really want to do it like a local, start your morning at spring-fed Barton Springs Pool for a 68 degree swim before embarking on your adventure! For a completely different outdoor adventure, I suggest NLand Surf Park in southeast Austin where you can learn to surf reef, inside, or bay waves on a 10 acre lagoon in our landlocked city.”
– Host Jenn
“If you come to Austin, Texas, you absolutely must go out to hear our talented local musicians. We Austinites are spoiled by the multitude of talent performing any given night of week. A few favorite iconic spots are The Continental Club, Antones, Saxon Pub, The Broken Spoke and The Cactus Cafe.”
– Host Andrea
“Austin is very laid back, so no need to dress up. Bring your yoga mat and prepare to chill.”
– Host Cindy
“I’ve been in Austin for decades and the one thing that still amazes me is the unique experience of the Hike and Bike Trail around Lady Bird Lake — specifically the westernmost parts of the trail.”
– Host Dave
“Get a little outside of town and go to Salt Lick BBQ out in hill country – they are known all over the US and have some of the best barbecue anywhere. Also, enjoy the wine! There are wineries all around Austin in Dripping Springs and Driftwood area. We’ll give Napa Valley a run for their money!”
– Host Beverly
“The attitude of Austin’s locals is easy and laid back. There is something for everyone to do here. We have an absolutely beautiful park and gardens in the middle of town. It’s a 354-acre park with a natural spring fed swimming pool.”
– Host Christine
“Austin is great year round. Before visiting, check out what venues are having concerts, look for art events, and plan to spend some time in nature while here.”
– Host Antonio
What To Do
With the launch of Austin Experiences, there are more ways than ever for travelers and residents to immerse themselves in the city with one-of-a-kind, bookable activities handcrafted and led by local experts. Austin is the latest market to join the ranks of other Trips destinations in the US and beyond, including New York, Los Angeles, London, Paris, and Tokyo. With more than 45 unique experiences live on the platform, Airbnb connects guests to a different and authentic side of Austin they might have otherwise missed.
Below is just a sampling of the newly-launched Experiences now available on Airbnb.
“Before you go to Austin find a good source for transportation as traffic can be a pretty bad. Uber and Lyft are good and pedicabs and bike rentals are great ways to get around town.”
– Host Dane
“Austin’s nickname is ‘The Live Music Capital of the World’ and deservedly so. Incredible musicians play great shows all the time including a whole slew of weekly residencies at several centrally located venues. There are some wonderful independent record/CD/music video stores as well. Any day you go, Austin has something to show you. Fine music is always just down your street!”
– Host Tracy
“Definitely eat tacos, from Veracruz All Natural or Joe’s Bakery to Rosita’s Al Pastor or Las Trancas. You can wash the tacos down with some beer at Independence Brewing Company and get your Body Rock on with Riders Against the Storm, and DJ Chorizo Funk and get your cumbia on at the Peligrosa House at the North Door in East Austin.”
– Host Mando
“I think something that everyone must do while in Austin is go see the bats that fly out from underneath Congress Avenue Bridge! It’s a scenic view and you can either watch from the bridge, take a kayak or boat tour and see it or just walk down the paths along the lake.”
– Host Ben
“Enjoy the unique food truck fare! The food truck scene in Austin is like nowhere else in the country! From vegan Chinese food at The Great Y’all to the one-of-a-kind Biscuits and Groovy, there is something for every taste here.”
– Host J ared
“Driving is not the greatest way to get around the city. If you come to Austin, stay downtown and travel everywhere by bike – it’s the best way to get where you need to go while taking in all of what Austin has to offer.”
– Host Aaron
Where To Eat
From punk-rock inspired brunch, to unique Texas/Asian fusion, to hometown, quintessential Austin cuisine, this city does not disappoint with the myriad restaurant options available. Airbnb has dining desires covered for all of your tastes and cravings through our Resy integration. Restaurants below like Odd Duck, Launderette and Kemuri Tatsu-ya are gaining popularity and are the top three Austin restaurants available to book on Airbnb in both search traffic and booked reservations this week. Here is where you can find availability and book your table.
Holy Roller: Find brunch dishes inspired by the spirit of punk rock with a hint of religious kitsch at this downtown diner, which serves up a mash-up of nostalgic fare characteristic of the south. Enjoy hot biscuits and pastries, egg dishes, sandwiches and desserts all beautifully plated to fuel up before seeing your next big show.
Odd Duck: For those seeking cuisine prepared with an artisan approach, look no further than Odd Duck. This upscale eatery doles out locally sourced New American dishes and drinks in a contemporary setting that support local farmers and reflect the Texas seasons.
Italic: Relax and unwind at this approachable, Italian dining institution of Austin. Centrally located in downtown, this a mod space is known for pasta, wood-fired pizza and a wine mezzanine.
Launderette: Dive into what some people declare the best burger in Austin at this polished cafe space in a converted gas station and laundromat. Dine on gourmet New American fare from chef and pastry chef duo Rene Ortiz and Laura Sawicki, with creations including delicious small plates with international influence and birthday cake ice cream sandwiches.
Kemuri Tatsu-ya: If you come to Austin seeking the smoked meats essential to southern culture, but with an Eastern twist, Kemuri Tatsu-ya has you covered. This casual izakaya and bar serves meat-centric shareable plates with Japanese & Texan influences.