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- 1 Travel & Tourism Tips
- 2 Getting There and Around
- 3 Main Attractions
- 4 State Capitol
- 5 Zilker Park
- 6 Governor’s Mansion
- 7 Jack S. Blanton Museum of Art
- 8 Events
- 9 Important Visitor Information
- 10 Useful Links & Resources
Travel & Tourism Tips
Being the capital of Texas, the city of Austin is found almost in the center of the state. It’s a big city with a small town feel, young populace, ordinary lifestyle & is known for being a Mecca of live music shows. Being a state capital since 1838, it is home to the University of Texas whose students are known for their vigor & enthusiasm synonymous with life in Austin. The annual South by Southwest music festival conference held every March beckons visitors who would want a sample of live musical repertoire of blues & country to reggae. One only has to drift along the famous Sixth Street section of its pubs and clubs any night of the week. The city also boasts of its extensive miles of hiking and biking trails, linking parks, preserves & greenbelt which lends beauty to the surroundings of its leafy streets.
Getting There and Around
Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) is situated 8 miles (13 km) from downtown Austin.
TIME: GMT-5 hours (GMT-6 between first Sunday in April & last Sunday in October)
Several local taxis are available aside from the Super Shuttle minibus which is a service of the airport itself. Car rentals include Advantage, Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National and Thrifty.
These include postal services, ATM’s, gift shops, dining places/bars within the terminal. For foreign currency exchange and standard airline trip insurance, the Business & Technology Center in the East Concourse is the place to go.
Complimentary shuttles are provided for passengers who park their cars at the airport. Disabled parking is also provided.
Impressive pink granite building encircled by original wrought-iron fences topped with gold Lone Stars stand proudly in 3 acres of ground. Visitors can avail of guided tours or attend legislative sessions open to the public.
Address: Congress Ave, between 11th Street and 14th Street
Includes a botanical garden which features dinosaur tracks, a nature reserve, the UMLAUF Sculpture garden and museum as well as 8 miles (13 km) of biking and walking trails. There are plenty of sports facilities, a miniature train for children and paddle boat rides.
Address: Barton Springs Road
Home to the Texas State governor when he is in town, the mansion is open to the public for limited hours each day. Historical artifacts include a portrait of Davy Crockett and Sam Houston plus a collection of mementoes from each administration.
Address: Colorado St
Jack S. Blanton Museum of Art
Featuring the Suida-Manning Collection of European painting which carries 250 works by the continental masters plus the collection of 20th Century American Art assembled by novelist James A. Michener.
Address: University of Texas,23rd & San Jacinto
Austin City Limits Music Festival
Caters to young and old audiences where more than 70 artists give ongoing performances.
Venue: Zilker Park
Started by a group of young homesick Brazilians students in 1975, it has become a tradition in the city and treats the crowd to an evening of samba to while away the cold winter.
Venue: Palmer Events Center
South by Southwest
Programs include 1000 performances on more than 50 stages within a five-day period. With the inclusion of film and multi-media,separate musical productions have made South by Southwest a meeting place of artists and media.
Venue: Austin Convention Center
Saveur Texas Hill Country Food & Wine Festival
Renowned chefs of Texas converge and show off their cooking prowess. Visitors are allowed to sample these culinary masterpieces as well as sample the best wine during the festival period which starts in April.
Venue: Four Seasons Hotel, Downtown Austin
Old Pecan Street Spring Arts Festival
Aside from live musical entertainment and a barrage of food and stalls this side of Texas (Austin’s Sixth St.) originally Pecan St., it boasts of a bigger arts and crafts street fair every May.
Venue: East 6th Street between Congress Avenue. and I.H. 35
Important Visitor Information
Summer: temperatures are more moderate than in other parts of the State. Winter: well above freezing with high humidity between May and September as well as the wet months.
Fall & Spring: mild & comfortable
GMT -4 hours (GMT-5 between the first Sunday in April and the last Sunday in October. )
US Dollars and divided into 100 cents. Credit cards & travellers cheques are accepted and only major banks exchange foreign currrency. Bank hours are from 9 A.M. to 3 P.M. (Monday to Friday)
The United States has excellent but expensive medical facilities. Only emergencies are treated without prior payment, but it can be declined in the absence of insurance or proof of funds.
15% on taxis, bartenders, waiters and hairdressers, except for fast food and self-service restaurants. 20% of the bill for expensive restaurants and large parties. It is normal to give tips to hotel staff. Bed tax as high as 15% is collected for more expanded accomodations.
The United States is not spared from terrorists attacks, hence safety measures are strictly enforced in airports. Travellers are advised not to be ostentatious in the display of jewellry in run-down areas and to stick to main roads. It is also not advisable to sleep inside vehicles on the roadside or rest areas.
There are different laws for each state and this includes speed limits, age of consent when you can legally purchase and consume alcohol, usually at age 21 years.
International dial code for the U.S. is +1. Outgoing code is 011 followed by the designated country code.
Useful Links & Resources
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