Just north of downtown in North Austin you’ll find a bevy of multicultural restaurants, kid-friendly activities, natural hiking trails and high-end shopping. Don't miss activities like Topgolf and iFly Indoor Skydiving, shopping destinations like the Arboretum,  The Domain and Domain NORTHSIDE or unique dining at Ramen Tatsu-Ya, the NXNW brewery and restaurant and more.

Culinary Dropout at Domain NORTHSIDE in austin texas
Culinary Dropout at Domain NORTHSIDE. Credit Alex Hayden.

Restaurants

North Austin is a go-to for families and groups who are looking for bigger restaurants, more parking and options for all tastes. You’ll find Southwestern flair at Z’Tejas, known for its margaritas and outdoor patio with a stellar view. Austin is obsessed with tacos, and Veracruz All Natural is the spot for regional Mexican food and aguas frescas. You may miss it the first time, but hidden in a strip mall you’ll discover Garbo’s, serving New England coastal cuisine. Their laid-back beachy vibe is a perfect backdrop for an afternoon spent munching on lobster rolls and sipping champagne. When you’re in Domain NORTHSIDE, turn up the heat with something spicy like the green papaya salad from Thai Kun. At Second Bar + Kitchen, the bacon-and-bleu pizza with truffles is a must-try.

One of Austin’s first breweries, you’ll find beer made on-site and hearty American dishes at NXNW. Take a seat at Culinary Dropout, a gastropub with a rebellious attitude, serving fried chicken and whiskey with a side of live music. One of America’s best ramen spots, slurp up traditional noodle dishes in an intimate environment at Ramen Tatsu-Ya. Take the kiddos and the pups to Hat Creek Burger Company, an indoor/outdoor spot featuring all natural juicy burgers, milkshakes for the kids, craft beer for the 'rents, picnic tables and a playground. Or, discover delightful dim sum every day of the week in New Fortune Chinese, which also specializes in seafood.

Domain NORTHSIDE plaza at night with lights in north austin texas
Domain NORTHSIDE. Credit Kenny Braun.

Shopping

North Austin is a shopping mecca, with two major outdoor lifestyle malls. The first is the Arboretum,where you can buy fancy olive oils at Austin-owned Con’ Olio, taste artisanal cheeses at Austin Cheese Company or shop bigger box stores like Sephora and Pottery Barn. Nearby, The Domain and Domain NORTHSIDE is a walkable mixed-use development with hotels, restaurants, bars and a ton of shops representing both local and well-known brands. Here’s where you’ll find high-end items at Nordstrom, fast-fashion at Frye, books at Texas’ first Amazon Books bookstore and organizers at the Erin Condren flagship store. Discerning buyers could find a signature piece by local jewelry designer Nina Berenato.

Nightlife

If you’re in search of a frosty beverage, you’ll find a number of places to choose from in the Rock Rose corridor. For a high energy DJ experience check out 77 Degrees, a Miami-style rooftop with craft cocktails. You can settle down with pub grub and a pint at Jack & Ginger’s, an Irish bar with 80+ beers on tap and an extensive selection of Irish whiskeys. For a hidden gem, wine aficionados will enjoy the extensive list at Baretto. This neighborhood corner spot also offers half-price bottles of wine on Sundays and Mondays.

iFly Indoor Skydiving in north austin texas
iFly Indoor Skydiving. Credit Jane Ko.

Entertainment

Take a swing at Topgolf, a multistory social golf experience that serves food and drinks. Try your hand at Austin’s original Highland Lanes, a vintage spot for bowling. While you’re there, make sure to try the legendary cheese enchiladas at Lebowski’s Grill. Or, play a game at Dart Bowl, a fun bowling alley with plenty of character and darn good enchiladas. For all of the adventure without the danger, iFly Indoor Skydiving is a one-of-a-kind skydiving simulator. Grown-ups and kids alike love Pinballz. Their two locations in North Austin offer Texas’ largest selection of classic pinball and video games, plus the original location on Burnet Road is BYOB.

What’s New

North Austin encompasses a lot of area, so there’s always something new popping up. NG Cafe makes some of the freshest and best bánh mì in the city. They’re famous for their breads and delectable Thai dishes. Try New Sitara Indian Cuisine for authentic Indian specialties in a warm and inviting atmosphere. For innovative comfort food, Austin’s original Moonshine Grill has opened a North Austin location where you can get the same delicious Sunday brunch without the wait.

St Edwards Park and Bull Creek in Austin Texas
St. Edward's Park. Courtesy of Austin Parks and Recreation Department.

Hidden Gems

Explore the pockets of this part of the city and you’ll find hidden gems like Julie’s Noodles, a Chinese restaurant that also serves the elusive soup dumpling. Sit outside on a picnic bench and opt for tortas or tacos at El Chilango, an authentic Mexican food truck. Walk all that food off at St. Edwards Park, a green oasis with hiking trails, shady trees and quiet swimming holes.

Find more insider recommendations in the Austin Insider Guide. Order your free copy or download the digital guide today!