Gwyndow’s Favorite Summer Spots in Austin

July and the beginning of August has really flown by, but summer in Austin is just getting started. We’ve been in this city long enough to know that the best way to endure the heat is to embrace it by enjoying one of our favorite spots around town. Whether you relish the sunlight or prefer the comfort of air conditioning, there’s something fun you have to try in Austin this summer:

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Have A Shrub at Friends & Neighbors

No, we don’t mean a small tree—although there are plenty of tall ones lining the adorable Friends & Neighbors outdoor seating area, meaning plenty of shade for a cool sit down. We’re talking about the specialty drinking vinegars this hidden eastside gem boasts. Enjoy mixed with an ice cold Topo Chico or make it an adult shrub by ordering one made with sparkling wine. Either way, you can’t go wrong.
Friends & Neighbors also offers Stumptown coffee, beer, and snacks with a happy hour from 3-6 pm. Their outdoor seating area is spacious with an adorable teepee perfect for a snapshot. Inside, browse the curated selection of goods including vintage clothes, artisan crafts, and a selection of records gleaned from the collection of local record store End of an Ear.

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Keep Cool at The Blanton

Right in the heart of The University of Texas campus, The Blanton Museum of Art is an air conditioned haven for the indoor/artsy types. With a diverse permanent collection ranging from the classical to abstract expressionism, there’s more to see than one trip can manage. Don’t miss the latest exhibition: Natalie Frank: The Brothers Grimm, running through November 15th.

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Escape The City at Krause Springs

About an hour southwest of Austin is a little sanctuary called Krause Springs. This locals-favorite camping and swimming spot boasts lake access, a spring-fed pool, and an awesome grotto with a beautiful natural waterfall. Drive out there for a day of swimming and make it back to the city by nightfall or grab a tent and some friends and make it a weekend of camping. Either way, don’t forget to stop by Opie’s BBQ in Spicewood for some authentic Hill Country brisket and butterbeans.

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Sample The Guacamoles at La Condesa

We love the classic avocado dish all year long, but there’s something about the summer months that make guacamole even more crave-worthy. Downtown restaurant La Condesa takes guac to the next level four different ways. With chipotle puree and almonds you get the smoky-nutty combination that contrasts with the citrus perfectly. The jumbo lump crab, apple, and coconut vinegar version shouldn’t work, but it does. All the while you still have the classic guacamole or the choice of a seasonal topping. We prefer to go with the tasting and try them all paired with the Margarita La Condesa.