A trip to Austin presents hundreds of opportunities, especially if you bring the kids along. While we had a blast in Dallas, Waco (especially Magnolia Silos), Houston and San Antonio, Austin was our favorite city to visit in Texas.
With so many things to do, planning out an itinerary can be a bit overwhelming. Luckily, we have some experience in this beautiful city.
Come dive in with us as we explore the top 22 things to do in Austin with kids!
Our list of things to do in Austin with Kids!
Austin, Texas is a fantastic city for families to visit with plenty of exciting things to do for children. Here are a few fun activities that kids will love!
Have Breakfast with a Goat!
Let’s start off with something unusual, because hey, we are in Austin! If you head up to hill country you will not only find some incredible homes, but also an adorable breakfast place called Civil Goat Coffee where you can enjoy breakfast with the resident goat “butters”…. and you’ll see some chickens too.
“Butters” the goat will hang out on the patio with you as you enjoy a delicious meal.
Make sure to visit the 704 Cuernavaca Dr N Austin, TX 78733 location as that is the one with “Butters the Goat”
Shop at South Congress
Why You Should Go
South Congress Ave has plenty to offer the entire family. The funky stores and restaurants here have a very unique vibe.
During your shopping spree, you can head to the I Love You So Much mural and get a family photo, or head to the Big Top Candy Shop to let your little ones pick out candies.
Get an Incredible Milkshake from the Yard
After a long day of sightseeing, there is nothing better than some delicious Ice Cream. The Yard is one great place to check out as they have some incredible towering milkshakes and sundaes.
I would recommend having your kids split one as none of us could finish it.
Take a dip in Barton Springs
Located in the heart of the city is the Barton Springs Pool, one of Austin’s spring-fed swimming holes. All year-round, this spring retains a 68-70-degree temperature, perfect for swimming. Plus, there is tons of green space surrounding the pool, perfect for a picnic.
Rent a Boat
Another awesome activity with the family is renting a boat and cruising Lake Austin or Lake Travis. We recommend Float On Boat Rentals they have great rates, amazing reviews (so you don’t just have to take our word for it), and their boats are nice and new too!
We also love that their rental comes complete with a captain so if you know nothing about boats, like us, you can still have an awesome (and safe) time on the lake together.
Sightseeing With Austin’s Duck Adventures
One of the coolest ways to explore the city with the kids is by hopping on the Austin Duck Adventures tour, where you can travel by land and water.
Ride this amphibious vehicle around the city and head to some of the most significant spots in Austin, including the Texas State Capitol and Sixth Street before you end up splashing into Lake Austin.
Enjoy one of the top 5 Restaurants in America According to Yelp!
You don’t have to be fancy to visit one of the top 5 restaurants in all of America. The Bird Bird Biscuit sandwich shop is simply incredible.
Enjoy delicious biscuit sandwiches at this little slice of heaven. I recommend ordering online in advance as wait times can get upwards of 90 minutes.
Work On Your Form at Peter Pan Mini-Golf
Peter Pan Mini-Golf came around back in 1948 and has been an Austin family tradition ever since. Both parents and kids enjoy getting a few rounds in!
There are two 18-hole courses filled to the brim with challenging obstacles and colorful characters, including Peter Pan and a massive T-Rex!
Visit The Thinkery
The Thinkery is a unique hands-on Childen’s Museum in the heart of East Austin’s Mueller community. It is the perfect place for your little ones to experience a mixture of science and technology with engaging activities and interactive exhibits.
Plus, you can head to the playground that is just across the street to visit the ducks when your museum trip comes to an end.
Watch a Show at the Zilker Hillside Theater
With free performances all summer long, the Zilker theater is the perfect way to spend a lovely evening in Austin. You’ll have to check out the calendar to see when shows are happening, typically Thursdays through Sundays.
This theater has been running since 1871, which is the same year Austin became Texas’ capital.
See the Wildlife at Austin Zoo
With more than 300 animals to see, the Austin Zoo is a must-visit. Here you’ll find everything from monkeys to big cats to foxes and beyond. Plus, all of the animals are rescues here, so you know they are receiving the best possible treatment!
Enjoy an Outing at Lady Bird Lake
Lady Bird Lake is an excellent destination for a family outing. We recommend getting on the water with some rented kayaks or paddleboards to enjoy gorgeous views of the city.
However, you can also take the 10-mile Ann and Roy Butler Hike-and-Bike trail if you feel like sticking to land.
Run Around at Zilker Park
If the weather permits, head out to Zilker Park for the day and let the kids run around. Plus, there is so much to do at Zilker Park, including the Zilker Botanical Garden and the Austin Nature and Science Center.
While you’re there, you may even consider heading over to the indoor exhibit for the UMLAUF Sculpture Garden and Museum.
Have the World’s Best Chai Latte
Ok, this might be more for the parents, but then again my teens love coffee drinks so, it could be for everyone. If you love chai lattes, or any coffee beverage for that matter, you need to hit up Jo’s.
It’s a staple of Austin, and seriously the best iced chai latte I have ever had in my life. They have multiple locations, you can grab one on South Congress if you do some shopping there.
Enjoy Food at Food Truck Park
Food truck parks are a quintessential part of the Austin experience, and there are several parks throughout the city where visitors can indulge in delicious food from local vendors.
Bringing kids to a food truck park can be a great way to expose them to new and exciting cuisines while also enjoying some outdoor time. Visiting these food trucks are a MUST when it comes to our list of things to do in Austin with kids!
Learn More About Austin’s History
Enjoy one of the free tours offered by the staff at the Texas State Capitol to take in a bit of Austin history. Plus, just a block away from the Capitol is the Bullock Texas State History Museum.
Here you’ll find three floors of unique, interactive exhibits, including the IMAX Theatre and the Texas Spirit Theater.
Immerse Yourself In Austin’s Biggest Independent Bookstore
If you know my daughter, you know she is obseed with books. Bookpeople is the largest independent bookstore in Austin, offering a massive collection of children’s books and gifts, perfect for a low-key Austin afternoon.
They even have children’s Zoom-based story time regularly. When you’re done there, head to the rooftop plaza of Austin’s flagship Whole Foods to spend some time at the playground.
Watch The Bats at Congress Avenue Bridge
If you visit Austin between April and October, make sure to check out the natural sunset show over at Bat Bridge. Here you’ll see over a million Mexican free-tailed bats fly out from under the Congress Ave Bridge into the evening sky.
While you can watch from the bridge, we also recommend heading to the Statesman Bat Observation Center for a unique perspective.
We were there in April which is the low season for the bats, but as the summer rolls along you will start to see millions fly out from the bridge. Use the austin bat refuge site to see what time the bats will emerge that day.
Also, there is a parking lot on the south side of the bridge which makes it it easy to park and check out the bats.
Ride Horseback At Texas Trail Rides
Giddyup on over to Texas Hill County to enjoy a beautiful horseback ride with Texas Trail Rides. Not only will you and your kids get into the cowboy spirit, but you’ll also pass by some gorgeous scenery, including Onion Creek and several picturesque spring-fed lakes.
Go Rock Climbing
Get a workout in at the Austin Bouldering Project, the largest bouldering gym on Earth. The kids can safely climb around until they are completely exhausted.
Plus, there isn’t a minimum age, meaning even the little ones can enjoy scampering up the walls! The floors are safely padded for hours of fun!
Where to Stay in Austin, Texas
If you have kids, there is one place that stands out from the rest.
The Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort & S
This resort has it all for a family, incredible rooms, an amazing pool with a massive lazy river, yard games, complimentary s’mores every night, a huge fishing pond, free bike rentals. It is only 15 minutes outside of
Austin, but you feel completely away from everything. It is simply amazing. Check out my full review here.
Map of Things to Do in Austin with Kids
Frequently Asked Questions about Things to do in Austin with Kids
What can I do in Austin for fun?
Walk, run, or bike at Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail
Play a round of Peter Pan Mini Golf
Go Paddle Board on Lady Bird Lake
Rent a boat
Visit all those famous murals
Go on a food crawl
What can I do in Austin for free?
Go on a Historic Tour. Get out there and experience Austin history
Rent a Bike
Visit Zilker Park
Play a Round of Disc Golf
Explore the Texas Hill Country
Hear Live Music Outdoors
See the Cathedral of Junk
Visit the UMLAUF Sculpture Garden
What are the must-try foods in Austin?
Micklethwait Craft Meats
Lucy’s Fried Chicken
Tamale House East
Austin Kolache & Koffee
Pin-it for later: Things to do in Austin with Kids
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