There's nothing like heading to one of Austin's beautiful parks to get some fresh air and enjoy the incredible beauty. In fact, studies have shown that going to parks increases the levels in trust that people have in each other, the willingness that they have to help each other and the overall sense of community that they feel.
This attraction has historically been known as the highest point in Austin. Although that may not be factually true, it is still the best place to take in a picturesque vista of the city, the hills that surround the area and sunsets and sunrises. It may be a little bit of a workout to reach its top, which has an elevation of 775 feet and requires a climb up a long stone staircase. The views are worth the workout!
Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve
This 227-acre attraction is a great place to view foxes, coyotes, wildcats and a variety of birds in their natural setting. The preserve is also home to a beautiful waterfall during most times of the year, as long as it's not dried up after extensive periods of no or little rain. A total of 2.5 miles of hiking trails allow visitors to explore it. However, do note that bicycles, pets and picnics are not allowed here so that the natural setting can be more greatly enjoyed.
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Texas' official state botanical garden and arboretum is home to hundreds of species of plants that are native to the Lone Star State. This 284-acre attraction is also home to amazing sculptures and gorgeous streams. This place is popular year-round with both locals and visitors as an average of 385 visit it on an average day.
This conveniently-placed park is situated right in the heart of Austin, making it accessible for just about everybody living in the area. It's also sizable at 351 acres, allowing for plenty of exploration options. Disc golf and soccer are played here while areas are set up for picnicking. Meanwhile, canoeing and kayaking on the river are other fun activities that many take part in. However, an even more popular water-based attraction at Zilker Park is Barton Springs, a beautiful three-acre public pool that has water kept at around 69 degrees. Music lovers also head to this park on a regular basis to attend all of the outdoor concerts that take place at its outdoor amphitheater.
Umlauf Sculpture Garden and Museum
This gorgeous outdoor sculpture garden and museum is located next to Zilker Park, making it a great place to also visit when already in the area exploring everything that Zilker Park has to offer. This attraction is home to 168 sculptures that were created by Charles Umlauf, who lived from 1911-94 and spent 40 years of his life teaching at the University of Texas School of Art. This four-acre property was dedicated to him in 1991 and provides a perfect setting for his incredible pieces of work as they are set alongside ponds, streams, waterfalls, oak trees and native plants.