“According to a Local” is a series of guides for different cities around the world. This time, we asked two random Couchsurfing member questions about the city they call home, Austin, Texas! Adriana and Ashley have graciously provided us with some great advice to make your trip to Austin perfect! Here is an INTERACTIVE MAP of all their suggestions.
1) Favorite Bar:
“Barbarella -Dancing Club/Bar. This is a very popular place. They have themed nights and even get packed on week nights after 11pm.” -Adriana
“Firehouse. The entrance is hidden, but that’s half the fun.” -Ashely
2) Favorite Restaurant:
“Torchy’s Tacos -My go to meal is a Crossroads taco (sub sauce with Diablo Hot Sauce) & Green Chile Queso & chips to share.” – Adriana
“Takoba. Hands down. Get the veggie tacos and thank me later.” -Ashley
3) Favorite coffee shop:
“Texas Coffee Traders. You get to sample coffees from all around the world before you buy. Super accommodating staff, far from the stereotypical pretentious baristas.” -Ashley
4) Favorite thing to do outside:
“Kayaking- Rentals of kayaks, canoes and stand-up paddleboards are available at the Texas Rowing Center on Lady Bird Lake.” -Adriana
“Hike the greenbelt to find undiscovered watering holes. Sail on Lake Travis. Cliff jump at Pace Bend. Play pickup soccer at Zilker.” -Ashely
5) Best spot for a view:
“Mount Bonnell and the Austin 360 Bridge are the favorites. I personally like the view from a Kayak on Lady Bird Lake.” -Adriana
“360 Overlook at sunset with some wine (unfortunately, you won’t be the only one there)” -Ashley
6) Some of your favorite local drinks/food:
“Texas BBQ” -Adriana
“TACOS. Seriously, we eat tacos for every meal. Queso. BBQ. Dr. Pepper. Bluebell Ice Cream. Amy’s Ice Cream. Craft Beer. Margaritas.” -Ashley
7) Where to get these local drinks/food:
“Terry Black’s Barbecue, Franklin’s (Long Lines but you can drink and lounge while you wait- Get there early!, La Barbecue (Long Lines but they serve free beer. Also get there early,) & Rudy’s Country Store & BBQ.” -Adriana
“You can find tacos anywhere and everywhere. Two chains in town are Torchy’s and Taco Deli (though it’s hotly debated which one is best). Best queso is at Magnolia Cafe. Best BBQ (that you don’t have to wait in an exuberantly long line for) is Mickelthwaits. Bluebell ice cream is at every gas station/grocery store. My favorite brewery is Hops and Grain, but Craft Pride is the bar with the best beer selection in town. Takoba has a mango habanero margarita that is to die for.” -Ashley
8) What you wish tourists knew coming to your home:
“We have wonderful hiking trails. Check out the Greenbelt trails.” -Adriana
“We’re the (self-proclaimed) live music capital of the world. We even have musicians playing a grocery stores. If you come here and don’t end up at a show, you’re doing it wrong. It’s the south, people are friendly, embrace it. Next thing you know, you’ll be tagging along to your bartender’s art show. Lastly, if you want stereotypical Texas… you’re in the wrong place.” -Ashley
9) Does your home have any good sweets? If so, where is a good place to get these sweets?
“Amy’s Ice Cream is a must. Skull and Cakebones is another favorite. They sell their stuff at a couple local grocers.” -Ashley
10) Fun local activity for tourists to try?
“Zilker Park is the place to go for multiple activities. Disc golf, Volleyball, Running Trails, Swimming at Barton Springs, Kayaking, Canoeing, Stand-up Paddle boarding & Biking.” -Adriana
“Hope Outdoor Gallery, kayak Town Lake, cliff jump at Pace Bend, swim at Hamilton Pool/Mckinney Falls/Jacob’s Well, hike the Greenbelt, visit the Cathedral of Junk, window shop down South Congress Ave” -Ashley
11) Do you have any names of yummy, local recipes that are fun to make?
“Tres Leches cake. Make a Bake a French Vanilla boxed cake per box instructions. Allow to cool then polk like 100 holes into the cake with a sturdy straw. In a bowl make an equal mixture of the following: 1 cup of any milk (Whole, 1%, Almond, Soy, etc.), 1 cup of evaporated milk and 1 cup of sweetened condensed milk. Pour evenly into holes of cake. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours then top with Cool Whip and Sliced Strawberries. Yum!” -Adriana
“Queso and breakfast tacos. They’re both kind of a catch-all. Throw in whatever leftovers you have, add guacamole, salsa and and enjoy!” -Ashley
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