A suburban oasis just minutes from the city — while feeling a world away.
When most people think of Texas, they think of a land with wide-open spaces that go on for miles. That “everything’s bigger in Texas” ideal often feels untrue when it comes to the city of Austin — except for South Austin. No neighborhood in the city feels less city-like, and more suburban than here. But, don’t let the signs for PTA meetings and blood drives completely throw you off.
While the residential vibes of South Austin allow you to live the white-picket fantasy, its location, only minutes away from some of Austin’s best hot-spots, allows you to experience the best the city has to offer. So, while the bustling streets of South Congress’ bars and restaurants may be a few minutes drive up the road, you still get to come back home to a far less busy (i.e. – less noisy) place.
Traditionally, Austinites recognize this area for its strip malls, apartment complexes, and housing developments. However, over the past few years, businesses decided that its abundant space offers ample opportunity for weekend activities, and the Austin population responded in kind. Locals flock to bar and entertainment complex, Armadillo Den, with its vast expanse of food trucks, live music, an off-leash dog park, and corn hole boards as far as the eye can see.
The many health and wellness companies comprise another underrated feature of South Austin — there’s no place in the city with as many massage companies or acupuncture hideaways per square foot as this neighborhood, assuring its residents stay well-relaxed.
Our Favorite Spots
One of the best places to catch a show in the “Live Music Capital of the World,” is South Austin’s The Far Out Lounge & Stage. Not only providing a variety of rock bands for you to jam out to on a nightly basis, they also host pop-up markets, yoga classes, and poetry slams, making it a perfect place to bring pretty much any visitor who graces your door. Another stand-out is coffeeshop, The Hive, which feels more like a community hang than simply a business. Grab one of their energizing cold brews and a bacon-egg-and-cheese breakfast taco, and get ready to meet a neighbor you didn’t know you had.
Things to know
As mentioned, South Austin has land to spare: parking here should never pose a problem. That is, unless you try to hit up the popular Armadillo Den on a Saturday. Public transportation, in the form of buses, provides a good option for the days when driving in the car feels exhausting. The neighborhood offers an endless supply of apartment buildings for those who find South Austin a perfect fit.
You’ll discover most rental listings in older buildings, but they pack on the charm with balconies and green space galore. For single newcomers to Austin, these places not only function as an affordable option, but are also a great way to meet others in the community.
Image attribution: Carol M. Highsmith, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons