Whether it’s Memorial Day, Labor Day or the Fourth of July, everyone loves long weekends. But there always seems to be a lot of pressure to plan the perfect weekend. And with so much happening within city limits, it’s hard to know where to go and what to do.
No matter which holiday is coming up, I’ve put together the ultimate long weekend itinerary for Austinites.
If you have Friday off work, that means festivities can really begin Thursday night. Why not begin your long weekend with live music?
I suggest you head over to C Boys Heart & Soul, recently voted best new club in Austin. There you’ll find the rare “Austin Unicorn,” Tameca Jones and her band Honey Gun. Not only is this a great way to kick off the upcoming long weekend, but it’s a great way to kick off every weekend since you can catch Honey Gun at C Boys every Thursday night.
Alternative Music Option: If sultry soul isn’t your thing, there are plenty of live music venues to choose from. The Continental Club and Gallery on South Congress are co-located right down the street with a variety of music, 7 days a week.
For me, a jaunt in nature is a must for any long weekend. We are completely spoiled in Austin with the Greenbelt, Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail and Barton Springs right in our backyard. But it’s also good to explore other natural beauties in our area.
So on the first full day of the long weekend, I suggest heading out to Pedernales Falls State Park in Texas Hill Country. It offers some of the best hiking, fishing, camping, swimming and mountain biking in Central Texas. And located only 30 miles from Austin, it’s the perfect place to explore for the day. You can even get a campsite – just be sure to reserve a spot in advance.
Alternative Nature Option: I would normally suggest Hamilton Pool Preserve. However, with the recent rains and floods, it’s closed until further notice. But Central Texas is full of amazing watering holes including Blue Hole and Jacob’s Well in Wimberley. Just be sure to call ahead for any closures.
We Austinites are spoiled (notice a trend?) because we have the best BBQ and amazing breweries right here in town. But part of the fun of a long weekend is exploring…and the meat coma that ensues.
Salt Lick is at the top of the BBQ list. With a pit that’ll give you the meat sweats by just looking at it, this is the perfect end to a weekend you won’t forget.
Luckily, Salt Lick is BYOB, so you can bring your brews over from Jester King. And if you time it right, you’ll make it back to Austin in time for fireworks.
Alternative Day 3 Option: My alternate Day 3 itinerary starts with BBQ in Lockhart and ends with dancing at Gruene Hall. Lockhart is a meat lovers heaven with three BBQ joints within walking distance of one another. Try one or all three. Then head down to Gruene, Texas to end the day with a little dancing at Texas’ oldest continuously operating dance hall.
Recover. I’m a big fan of leaving an entire day to recover from a long weekend such as this one I’ve described. My Sundays (or Mondays) are left to sleep in or do any chores which may have piled up over the weekend.
Alternative Day 4 Option: If you suffer from FOMO, you may not be able to use your last day of the long weekend for recovery. If this is the case, check out one of the many new restaurants or bars opening every week.
@jpino9 wants to know:
What’s your favorite long weekend activity?