Whether you are a visitor or a local resident of Austin, Texas, the city offers a wide variety of unusual things to see and do. Whether you’re looking for a unique way to see the sites, an out of the ordinary attraction or an activity you’re sure to find something in Austin that fits the bill. To help you choose between the many things to do, here is a list of ten of my favorite out of the ordinary things to see and do in Austin, Texas.
Ten Unusual Things To See And Do In Austin, Texas
1. Visit Austin’s Haunted Hot Spots
If you are interested in the paranormal and things that go bump in the night then you will love this unique Austin city tour provided by Austin Ghost Tours. Participants will hear tales of Austin’s ghosts and the city’s unique and sometimes unsavory history as they are guided through a 1 1/2 hour walk through downtown Austin. Tours take place on Friday and Saturday evenings and space is limited so make sure you call ahead.
2. Solve A Murder
If you’re visiting Austin and want to do something that’s a little bit different and exciting why not hop aboard the Austin Steam Train for a thrilling murder mystery ride. During the course of the three hour ride, passengers and actors will mingle and work together to solve a murder mystery. Murder mystery trains run one weekend a month so you will need to check the schedule ahead of time and make your reservation, as these events are extremely popular and sell out early.
3. Cruise The Water On A Real Paddle Boat
For a different perspective on the city of Austin, sit back and relax while you cruise Lake Lady Bird on an eco-friendly paddle boat. During the course of the cruise passengers will be able to view the beautiful city skyline, Ziker Park, Barton Creek, graceful, towering Cypress trees an an assortment of waterfowl. The one hour narrated tour departs at 3:00 p.m. on weekends.
4. Go Scuba Diving At Windy Point Park
For those who want a unique way to view one of the many lakes in and around Austin why not put on your scuba gear and go on a dive at Windy Point Park?Divers will love discovering the many boat wrecks and metal sculptures in the dive park. Forgot to bring your gear? No problem, you can rent everything you need or even arrange to take a scuba class and one of Austin’s many scuba equipment shops.
5. Come Face to Face With The Bizarre
Visitors in Austin who are looking for something a little different from the traditional museums and art galleries will love coming face to face with the bizarre at the Museum of the Weird. Located behind the Lucky Lizard curio shop, this museum features a collection of carnival freak show oddities such as the Fiji Mermaid, a preserved two headed cow, shrunken heads and various pictures and posters of oddities. There is a small entrance fee but if you purchase something from The Lucky Lizard your admission will be free.
6. Roller Derby
Looking for action on your visit to Austin? Then you might enjoy taking in a night of Roller Derby. Austin is home to two Roller Derby leagues, TXRD Lonestar Roller Girls who play on a banked track and Texas Roller Girls who play on a flat track. Roller Derby season starts in February and the proceeds from ticket sales go towards supporting the league and to aid local charities.
7. Go Back In Time
Visitors to Pioneer Farms in northeast Austin will literally step back in time as they explore the farms 90 wooded acres which contain five different examples of what life was like in the 1800s. Pioneer Farms features a Tonkawa Indian encampment, a German immigrant farm, an 1870s Texian farm, an 1880s cotton planters farm and a rural village. Pioneer Farms is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. If you have kids and want to give them a taste of what life was like before computers, cellphones and television then Pioneer Farms is definitely the place to go.
8. Explore Underground
Just north of the city of Austin is the beautiful and unusual Inner Space Cavern. This limestone cavern contains amazing stone formations that are millions and millions of years old. Kids and adults alike will be fascinated as they descend into an undergrounf limestone cavern that contains the bones of prehistoric animals. All tours are conducted by a guide who shares with visitors the cavern’s history and how it was discovered as they explore this unique cavern located over 40 feet underground. Inner Space Cavern’s hours of operation vary by day and season so make sure and call ahead to check the schedule before you visit.
9. Take A Sunset Bat Watching Cruise
Some people enjoy bird watching but in the city of Austin locals and visitors alike will enjoy bat watching while cruising Town Lake on an electric paddle wheel boat. Austin is home to the largest urban bat colony in North America with an estimated 1.5 million Mexican free-tail bats residing under the Congress bridge. Capital Cruises offers their bat watching cruise nightly during bat season which runs from March thru November.
10. Tour The City In A Whole New Way
Learn all about the city of Austin and see many of its famous landmarks while riding on a unique mode of transportation with Segway tours from Gliding Revolution. Anyone 12 and over can ride a Segway which makes this a great tour for families with teens since riding a Segway is much more fun than walking around looking at sights. Tours are offered seven days a week from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Austin Ghost Tours
Austin Steam Train Association
Lone Star River Boat
Windy Point Park
Museum of the Weird
Roller Derby-Austin Style
Inner Space Cavern
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