For coffee, try Metro, Einstein Brothers Bagels, or Little City Roasting Co, all located on Guadalupe Street (also referred to as the Drag in the vicinity of campus). The Perry Castaneda Library on 21st Street and Speedway also hosts its own coffee shop called Prufrock’s Java City.
There are a number of options for food on campus. The Texas Union on Campus, located on Guadalupe, is home to Wendy's, Chick Fil-a, Quiznos, Field of Greens, and Hot Bowl, among other options. Dobie Mall on the corner of Guadalupe and 21st Street has locations such as the Hoa Hoa Restaurant, Niki's Pizza, Subway, Burrito Factory, Texas Burgers, and Gyro King. O's Campus Café is located in the ACES Building on the corner of 24th St. and Speedway.
Alternatively, there are a number of restaurants in the immediate vicinity on Guadalupe Street, including Austin's Pizza, Madam Mam's Thai restaurant, Texadelphia, Chipolte Mexican Grill Inc, Veggie Heaven Inc, where the entire menu is either vegetarian or vegan, the Pita Pit, and several sandwich shops.
Some places are a few blocks away, including a Kerbey Lane Cafe, located at 27th and Guadalupe, which is open 24 hours, and Trudy's Texas Star on West 30th, serving Tex-Mex food. Within half a mile from campus, one can find the Thai Noodles Etc House, the Texas Showdown, Thundercloud Subs, and Longhorn Poboys, which serves a large selection of Middle Eastern fare despite its name. Mangia Stuffed Pizza, also on Guadalupe, is priced a little higher, but has some of the best pizza in town.
For further information on restaurants that are located within a radius of 3 miles around UT, or downtown, go to Citysearch and enter "restaurants" and select the neighborhood labeled "University of Austin" or "downtown Austin". This will give you a list of choices, along with the address, distance, ratings and reviews, and web site and further information.
Entertainment and Dining
Austin offers a wide variety of places to eat out, go for coffee or drinks, listen to live music, enjoy the outdoors, or see something new at a museum or city center.
One popular coffeehouse is Spider House, at 2908 Fruth St., where the outdoor furniture set beneath the trees is delightfully mismatched, and they often have live music in the evenings. (www.spiderhousecafe.com)
If you’re in the mood to travel a little further, Mozart’s Coffee Roasters (located at 3825 Lake Austin Blvd.) offers gourmet coffees and a variety of desserts baked on-site, plus a nice view of Lake Austin and frequent live music performances. (www.mozartscoffee.com)
For drinks, a burger, and a game of pool or darts, try the Crown and Anchor Pub, located close to campus on San Jacinto Blvd. They have a good selection of domestic and imported beers, and a laid-back atmosphere.
The Live Music Capital of the World: If you’re looking for dozens of bars, clubs, restaurants and live music venues, you’ll want to explore Sixth Street and the Warehouse District. (See a map at http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/downtown/ware_map.htm). Sixth Street offers more than seven blocks of music, drinks and entertainment, and is considered the heart of Austin’s live music scene – from jazz and blues to country, rock, hip-hop, and more. The Warehouse District is “the upscale cousin” to Sixth Street: a bit trendier, and a bit more pricey, but with the same abundance of live music and entertainment. (For a list of music venues and web sites, visit http://www.austintexas.org/musicians/music_attractions, or check out The Austin Chronicle Music Listings for an up-to-date listing.)
Want to escape the city for a while? Many people enjoy going for drinks at the Oasis Restaurant at sundown, located at 6550 Comanche Trail (requires about half an hour’s drive from the UT campus). Not necessarily the best place to eat a meal, the Oasis does, however, boast a fantastic view of Lake Travis, especially with three tiers of hill-side decks overlooking the setting sun, as well as frequent live music performances and dancing. (www.oasis-austin.com)
For a unique dining experience, visit the Tree House Italian Grill (on Live Oak and South Congress). Home to one of Austin’s oldest and largest live oak trees, this restaurant offers fine wines and Italian cuisine, as well as excellent service. Combined with an enchanting atmosphere and live music (see if you can catch a performance by Aunt Ruby’s Sweet Jazz Babies!), an evening at the Tree House will be hard to forget. (www.treehousegrill.com)
To find where locals go for great Cuban, Puerto Rican and Caribbean dishes, and the best tres leches cake in Austin, try Habana, one location on 6th Street, one on South Congress. The atmosphere is lively, the food rich, plentiful, and not too spicy. It won’t be long before it feels like you’re on vacation somewhere in the Caribbean… (www.habana.com)
Museums and Centers
Below are a few of Austin’s many attractions. For more sites to visit, take a look at: http://www.10best.com/Austin/Sights_&_Activities/Museums/index.html
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center: Established by Lady Bird Johnson in 1982, this nonprofit center promotes and preserves native plants. It includes a reconstructed prairie, demonstration beds and wild-flower meadows. 4801 La Crosse Ave. 292-4200. (www.wildflower.org) This is a beautiful place to walk around and spend an afternoon, and learn about Texas’s environment and environmental preservation.
The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum in downtown Austin, Texas, tells the “Story of Texas” with three floors of interactive exhibits, the special effects show, The Star of Destiny, in the Texas Spirit Theater, and Austin's only IMAX Theatre, featuring the signature large-format film, Texas: The Big Picture.
Blanton Museum of Art: The Blanton ranks as the nation's largest university art museum, and its outstanding permanent collection – the largest in Central Texas – is comprised of more than 17,000 pieces, from priceless antiquities to more modern works. Strong holdings of American, Latin American, and European art, along with prints and drawings, comprise the backbone of the collection, which is also bolstered by new acquisitions of contemporary works.
Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center: This fascinating center features outstanding selections of modern American paintings, including the Mari and James A. Michener Collection of 20th Century Art. It also showcases a Gutenberg Bible, an impressive photography archive (including the first photograph ever produced), and a recreation of the study in which "Perry Mason" author, Erle Stanley Gardner, wrote.
SwimmingAustin wouldn’t be Austin without numerous places to escape the summer heat and go swimming. For the ten best places to go swimming in and around Austin, visit http://austin.citysearch.com/feature/2460/. For a couple suggestions right off the bat, read on.
If you’re looking for local and natural, visit Barton Springs pool, located in Zilker Park (2100 Barton Springs Road. 867-3080). The water may be chilly, but lie in the sun a while and you’ll be ready to dive into the clear spring water.
If you’re up for a 45 minute / 1 hour drive into the hill country west of Austin, you won’t be disappointed with a visit to Hamilton Pool. Once a cave, but with the roof long since collapsed and the interior now filled with clear water, it’s hard to imagine a more beautiful place to spend a day or an afternoon.
Daytrips around Austin
Visit San Antonio to see the Alamo and explore the popular River Walk, a two-mile tourist attraction that offers boat tours, shops, and restaurants. ((210) 227-4262)
Fredericksburg, one of the many hill country towns with strong German heritage, was settled by German immigrants starting 1845. There are museums and several German restaurants, shops, the Admiral Nimitz museum (with WWII displays), and several 'Sunday Houses' left from the late 1800's. About one and a half hours from Austin, and about 18 miles out of town is Enchanted Rock (far right), a great place to go hiking, rock climbing, picnicking and camping.
New Braunfels: another town with German roots, where “you can dine at bier gartens and dance to oompah music, tube down cool, clear rivers or sail across deep, blue lakes.” Nearby you can also find Natural Bridge Caverns. (www.naturalbridgecaverns.com).
Near Georgetown you will find Inner Space Cavern, an underground cave with guided tours, a picnic area, and a gift shop. (Exit 259 off Interstate 35, a half-mile south of downtown Georgetown. 931-CAVE. www.innerspace.com)
Pedernales Falls State Park: about 50 miles from Austin and on the way to Enchanted Rock (about a 30-mile detour). There's swimming, hiking, picnicking and more. The falls are very impressive after a big rain, and there are some nice hiking trails that parallel the river.
Transportation to and from the Airport
The Austin Bergstrom International Airport is located just southeast of the Austin downtown/university area. Taxi's, Supershuttle, and the public bus system all facilitate transportation to and from the airport.
The Capital Metro public bus system runs an airport flyer bus (No. 100). A schedule can found here.
Supershuttle provides an alternative that is more flexible than the public bus service, but cheaper than a taxi. A Supershuttle ride from the airport to the general vicinity of the University of Texas or downtown costs about $15 one way. Go to the Supershuttle website to book a ride, or simply proceed to the Super Shuttle counter at the same level as the bagage claim.
We have reserved a block of rooms at the AT&T conference center, located on the University of Texas at Austin campus
(http://www.meetattexas.com). From there it is a 5 minute walk to the
conference venue. Rooms are $150 per night. The conference center will
only open this summer and their on-line reservation system is not
running yet. To make reservations at this point, please call toll-free
1-877-744-8822 or 512-404-3626. Alternatively, you may contact the center's Group
Reservations Coordinator, Mallory Irizarry at
Alternatively, you may look for cheaper deals on hotels at expedia.com, orbitz.com, hotels.com, priceline.com, or hotwire.com.