Day 1 of 3 Days in Austin
I could easily spend over a week here and still not feel like I explored enough but I’m going to try to put together the best itinerary for 3 days in Austin to give you the most for your time.
I know. It practically kills me to type that I went to something with the word zoo in the name.
However, try to get past the unfortunate name and know that I did my homework and this place is, in fact, a sanctuary – not a zoo.
I knew that I really wanted to visit a sanctuary during my time in Austin and had a few options but limited time.
I asked around the Austin Vegans Facebook group and got some great suggestions – one of which was the Austin Zoo.
Naturally, I immediately said, “No, I don’t visit or support zoos.” To this, I got basically a version of what I said above.
This place is worth supporting, they said. I have to say after researching, asking questions and visiting myself that I also agree. The Austin Zoo is a sanctuary and worth supporting.
Unlike for-profit zoos, Austin Zoo is a non-profit that does not breed, sell, buy, or trade the animals. They all come from unfortunate circumstances, were abandoned in some way, or come from the exotic pet industry – legally and illegally.
I’ll be touching on this a lot more in my ethical animal tourism guide for Austin that I’ll be putting together soon!
Address // 10808 Rawhide Trail, Austin
Hours // 9:30-5:30 daily (Nov-Jan) + 9:30-6 daily (Feb-Oct)
Website // www.austinzoo.org
It’s going to be hard to pick just the places I would eat in 3 days in Austin because I could have eaten for 3 days straight and still not even started to cover the vegan scene in Austin. It’s truly one of the best in the country and I only scraped the surface, unfortunately.
I thoroughly enjoyed Counter Culture. It was the first all-vegan spot I tried on my trip and ended up being one of my favorites.
Counter Culture serves internationally inspired vegan comfort food. The restaurant also attempts to always purchase organic, fair-trade and locally grown food.
Additionally, you’ll find gluten-free, soy-free, oil-free items on their menu.
Address // 2337 East Cesar Chavez Street, Austin
Hours // daily (11a-10p); brunch served on weekends from 11a-3p
Website // www.countercultureaustin.com
Hamilton Pool Preserve
One of the more unique things to do while in Austin is visiting all the different natural pools in the area. Unfortunately, I visited during a time that they had a lot of rain which can cause the bacteria levels to rise meaning no swimming was allowed.
However, since we already had a reservation and you’re still able to visit, we decided to check it out anyway and I’m glad!
I would definitely add this to your list – swimming or not.
Address // 24300 Hamilton Road, Dripping Springs
Hours // time slots (9-1 OR 2-6) – daily (March-October); weekends and holidays only (November-February)
Website // click here
Cost // $11 for PREPAID reservation (cc) + $15 CASH PAID ON ARRIVAL (both of these are per CAR not per person)
Sunset at Mount Bonnell
I won’t lie – I thought this was a legitimate hike. What I had read said it takes 30 minutes to get to the top.
Not true at all. It takes about five minutes.
Despite it not being as exciting of a hike, the view is 100% worth a visit.
Definitely go here to check out the sunset during your 3 days in Austin.
Address // 3800 Mount Bonell Road, Austin
Dinner at The Beer Plant
The Beer Plant is another all-vegan gastropub with a large selection of beers, wines, and spirits – all vegan!
They’re only open for dinner (and brunch on the weekends) so if you need to alter this itinerary somewhat, just remember that!
These buffalo cauliflower bites were probably the best I’ve ever had; however, their spiciness level is absolutely no joke.
There were so many things I wanted to try but I was basically forcing food down my throat at this point.
Address // 3110 Windsor Road, Austin
Hours // M-Th (5p-12a); F (3p-12a); Sat (5p-12a); Sun (5p-10p) – Brunch Sat-Sun (10a-3p)
Website // www.thebeerplant.com