Hello new friends! @rachel.lately here, and I'm so excited to show you around my city! I first came to Austin almost 8 years ago when I moved here for college at the University of Texas, and after I graduated I couldn't bring myself to leave! To be honest, I didn't truly get to fully experience everything the city has to offer until I left school which made me appreciate it even more. I started blogging in 2011 as a way to express my personal style with fellow women, but it has since become my space for sharing my travels, adventures around Austin, and bits of my personal life. I was born in England and have since been to 15 other countries with no plans to stop exploring the world. I'm a huge dork who doesn't take herself too seriously, an advocate for girl power, a not-so-secret Harry Potter fan girl, and I have never met a dog I didn't immediately love at first sight.
Austin is the smallest big city I have ever lived in. Everything is so close-knit that it takes almost no time to get where you need to go (as long as you avoid the dreaded rush hour, of course). Our motto is “Keep Austin Weird” and it genuinely fits this city’s vibe so well. We may be weird, but we’re also some of the nicest people you'll ever meet! In a city with sunshine all year round, how could we not be friendly? My favorite thing though is that there’s SO MUCH to do here! The live music every night, the bar scene, small business restaurants, food trucks, festivals, and plenty of spots to explore the outdoors are enough to make me never want to leave this amazing place I call home.
Our first stop is probably where you’re more than likely to find me on a weekend morning. Everyone has a coffee shop in their neighborhood that they frequent more than others, and Radio is mine! This place has only been around a couple years, but it has already simulated into the Austin culture so well that I don't think it could ever leave. Radio is also a bar that hosts lots of live music acts as well as outdoor movie and trivia nights. Great beer/coffee, good people, and a taco truck permanently parked out front. What more could you ask for?
The Barton Creek Greenbelt is my favorite place to cool off from the death heat of summer, but it's still a fun trail to explore when the weather cools down as well. The best part? It's free! The greenbelt runs throughout the city, so there are plenty of locations to check out. Dogs are welcome too (as they are most places in Austin)! :)
Lunch time! This place is pretty new, but it's already become one of my favorite places to grab a bite in Austin. I don't normally adventure up north, but this place has finally given me a reason. There aren't many restaurants in Austin that are strictly healthy food, so Flower Child is like a breath of fresh air. The “Mother Earth” is my go-to order.
Happy hour, anyone? There are a few good wine bars in Austin, but House Wine is definitely my favorite. Their outdoor patio is the cutest thing ever and their cheese plate is what dreams are made of. Their wine list is constantly changing, and I love how central the location is without being directly downtown. They also have live music every night which is a major plus in my book!
When the weather is nice in the fall and spring time, you can find me here pretty much every weekend. It's my favorite spot to sit and read a book by myself or have a picnic with friends. Austinites bring their dogs to play, and if you're lucky, one will come sniffing up to you and let you pet them. It's the peak of my day! I wish every city had a park like Zilker.
I can’t talk about Austin without mentioning tacos. It’s a HUGE part of our culture! We’re known for our innovative taco creations, that’s for sure. Everyone has an opinion about who has the best tacos in the city, and my vote goes to Tacodeli. Their food always tastes so fresh, and I've never had a taco I didn't enjoy from there. When my friends and I can't agree on a place to go eat, Tacodeli is there to save the day.
Austin wouldn’t be Austin without our wide variety of food trucks. I actually stumbled upon Paperboy because the wait at a nearby restaurant was too long, and now it has become one of my favorite food trucks in the city! They have the cutest shady spot to enjoy a quick breakfast while reading a newspaper (that they provide!). Try their Sweet Potato Hash for the next time you're on the east side.
If you're looking for a bar away from all the crowds and lack of free parking downtown, you have to check out Gibson Street Bar. It has a chill vibe with a friendly staff, and they almost always have some kind of special going on. I love coming here for trivia nights every Tuesday!
Here’s something you may not have known: Austinites LOVE plants, especially succulents. If you were born with a green thumb, you'll fall in love with this place. They don't just have succulents, but those are what I stick to since they require the least amount of work, haha! They have one of the best selections I've seen in Austin, so be sure to check it out.
This is where I first took my parents when I wanted to really impress them, haha. The whole place is so friggin’ cute! Most people come here for the amazing brunch specials, but I personally love to stop by during happy hour just for their grapefruit jalapeño margarita. It’s my favorite. Heck, I'll even order one for brunch! It's similar to a mimosa, right? ;)
Our last stop just happens to be my favorite view of the city skyline! Located right along the river that runs through the center of the city, Auditorium Shores is my favorite place to go for a run or ride my bike. People come here to play sports, exercise, or take their dog for a stroll, and a few times a year there are all sorts of festivals going on that you can check out. I hope y’all have enjoyed this little tour around my city, and if you’d like to check out more of my adventures around Austin then feel free to follow me at @rachel.lately! Adios! :)