Couples looking for a romantic getaway will find plenty of fun things to do in Austin, from foodie favorites to active adventures. Get some tips for your next date with these 15 ideas.
Credit Geoff Duncan.
1. Get pampered with a luxurious spa treatment.
Enjoy a soothing massage alongside your sweetheart with a spa day at one of the many spas in Austin. For massages and body treatments, book the Delicious Duet Spa Package (2 hours, 20 minutes) at Viva Day Spa, or opt for the Couples Retreat (3 hours) at Milk + Honey.
2. Tantalize your taste buds with romantic restaurants in Austin.
From super-casual eateries to upscale restaurants, take your beloved out for a night of cuisine and conversation. Share a few slices of gourmet pizza at Bufalina or The Backspace, flirt over French dishes at late-night hot spot Justine’s, or try something wholesome at the rustic, farm-to-table spot Texas French Bread. At Fonda San Miguel, escape to an old-world hacienda for upscale Mexican specialties, or hang outside on the patio overlooking East Sixth Street at Suerte, known for its elevated Mexican cuisine. Dine lakeside at Arlo Grey located inside the hip LINE hotel, headed up by Top Chef 10 winner Kristen Kish who melds French and Italian traditions. Cult favorite wine bar and restaurant Aviary is home to an expansive selection of hand-selected wines, complemented by a pairing-focused, farm-to-table menu and raw bar.
3. Sip handcrafted cocktails in cozy cocktail bars.
Sip on classic cocktails and seasonal drinks at Live Oak, the sophisticated lounge inside the Four Seasons Hotel Austin, or try an innovative cocktail at the speakeasy-inspired Midnight Cowboy. Go for exotic tiki drinks at She’s Not Here, featuring charming decor inspired by 1920s hotel lobbies, or Anthem, which bills itself as a Tex-Asian pub. Snag a seat at the brand new Domo Alley-Gato, a patio bar-and-restaurant designed to look like a colorful Tokyo alley, mixing Japanese-inspired cocktails. At the ranch-style Contigo, head outdoors (yep, even in winter) to cozy up around the fire pit with a drink in hand. Or, go for a glass of exceptional wine at Vino Vino.
4. Experience the magic of the theater.
No matter what kind of show you’re in the mood for, you’re bound to find the perfect date night entertainment in Austin. Catch everything from ballet to Shakespeare at Long Center for the Performing Arts, laugh the night away with a comedy at Cap City Comedy Club, or jam out to an Austin City Limits Live concert at The Moody Theater.
5. Get your boogie on.
For cheap beers, “bomb tacos” and a whole lotta boot scootin’, get on over to the legendary Broken Spoke (a mainstay since 1964) or The White Horse, which boasts live country jams and some of the best two-steppers around (Insider Tip: if your moves could use a little help, show up early for a dance lesson).
6. Get artsy at a world-class art museum.
You’re bound to see something conversation-starting at the Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin, where more than 17,000 works comprise the permanent collection. Peruse the exhibits and then swap ideas on your own interpretations.
7. Score a hole in one.
Get a little competitive with a round or two of golf. Enjoy drinks and upscale golfing in your own private bay at Topgolf Austin, or go for a nostalgic experience at Peter Pan Mini-Golf.
8. Cozy up during a movie on the big screen.
Skip the mainstream blockbuster and opt for cult classics, limited-release films and artistic cinema when you visit one of the many specialty movie houses around town, such as AFS Cinema, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema or Violet Crown (Insider Tip: they all offer gourmet food, plus beer and cocktails).
9. Sip and sample your way through Austin’s wineries, breweries or cideries.
Get a taste of Austin’s booming craft beer scene with a pint of something unique at St. Elmo Brewing Co., Blue Owl Brewing or Lazarus Brewing Company. If handcrafted cider made from freshly pressed apples is more your style, bring your date to Texas Keeper Cider. Or, pull up a chair in the eclectic tap room of urban winery Infinite Monkey Theorem for a flight of Texas-made wine.
10. Delve into the delicious world of cheese.
Did you know there are seven basic styles of cheese? Learn all about them—all while tasting the differences, of course—with a cheese class at Antonelli’s Cheese Shop.
11. Learn a thing or two in the kitchen.
Want to get even more advanced with your culinary prowess? Sign up for a cooking class at Kitchen Underground to learn a variety of cooking and baking skills, from a crash course in Thai food to a fundamental skills class for making pasta from scratch. Maybe this will lead to more date nights in the kitchen.
12. Take in the gorgeous views from the Greenbelt.
Get your heart racing out in nature when you explore the 7.8-mile Barton Creek Greenbelt. Hike, mountain bike or just stroll through the scenic beauty, and stop at one of the swimming holes along the way to cool off.
13. Let your love reach new heights.
Seek a fun challenge with a bouldering session at the Austin Bouldering Project. Unlike climbing, you don’t need to use ropes or harnesses, but you still get all the thrill of problem-solving and overcoming obstacles. For newbies, take an Intro to ABP class, which is offered every Saturday for free with the purchase of a day pass.
15. Go for a long walk.
Want to keep it simple? Enjoy a leisurely stroll on South Congress, and stop in the shops along the way (Insider Tip: Amy’s Ice Creams is always a good choice). Make sure to pause by the “I love you so much” mural located on the side of Jo’s Coffee for a selfie with your sweetheart.
Need more ideas? How about a getaway in Austin, with these ideas for a perfect long weekend!