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by Michelle Gage

Be sure to grab a meal and a cocktail at Perla’s. With a vast arrangement of outdoor seating, this is one of the city’s hottest spots. This South Congress establishment boasts an attractive and lengthy week day happy hour – perfect for anyone who enjoys oysters and an adult beverage.

An adventure is no fun if you can’t bring Fido along! Head over to Bull Creek District Park, pup in tow. Take a swim with your hairy best friend. Cool off in this Austin Creek after a hot day of exploring the city. Stay a little longer and have a Texas BBQ or fun game of volleyball.

Grab your group and head to do a day of paddle boarding at Lady Bird Lake. Slather on the sunscreen and grab your shades for a fun day spent on the water. This aquatic activity is one that all ages can enjoy.

You can’t take a trip to Texas and not try the barbeque. Stop by Stubb’s and try some of their famous chile sauces. Go for the sauces and stick around for the live outdoor music. There’s no better summer combination than good barbeque and live music on the lawn.

Take the crew to an amusement park. Get your group to Schlitterbahn and enjoy a magical water world. There’s not only tons of places for kids to play, but also picnic areas for parents to set up a lunch station for when the crew begins to grow tired. Exhaust the kids and then refuel them, with just one stop to this water park.

If the thought of an amusement park makes you anxious, perhaps tubing is more your speed. Float down the Guadalupe River with your best pals. Pack up your radio and stocked cooler for a fun and relaxing time. Lay back on your raft and work on your tan, anticipating a friendly splash or two under the hot Austin sun.

There is no denying, no matter who you are, you can’t not enjoy yourself at a place called Fun Fun Fun Fest! This three-day festival happens at the end of April. No need to attend the whole musical event. Plan for just one day of fun if that’s all you’ve got in you! Enjoy up-and-coming music acts from around the country.

Chances are if you’ve looked in to traveling to Austin, you’ve stumbled across a word or two on Austin City Limits. This show features some of the country’s most talented acts. It’s not only a musical performance, but it also is a taped program that airs on PBS. Attend a weekly taping while in town.

Looking back on all of our childhood career aspirations, we would have to say that operating a cupcake truck was certainly on the top of our lists (still is)! Hey Cupcake is a modern day food truck, outfitted with an icon bearing its name. Pop by their front window for a delicious summer treat.

Get yourself to the magical Krause Springs! Spend the day swimming in the local watering hole and the night warming up by a bonfire. Rest and relax by the water – a perfect summer day.

Head on over to Hamilton Pool and beat the heat by taking a swim. Soak up some hot summer sun and then cool off with a quick dip. At Hamilton Pool, you can not only hike a trail but also swim underneath waterfalls.

While not known for its shopping, Austin does have a lot to offer in that area. Window shop down South Congress. It’s an exciting street to walk and talk on – while occasionally peeking through windows to see what shops have to offer.

Stop by Jo’s coffee and take your picture in front of the iconic “I love you so much” mint green wall. It’s certainly not something that can be missed. If you’re only in Austin once, make sure this stop is on your list!

If live music is your thing, go to Blues on the Green. A local radio station hosts a series of free summertime concerts for all ages. Zilker Park is the perfect place to spend your summer days.

You don’t want to forget to take a Segway tour through Austin. Arguably the best way to see the city, this tour is great for the whole group. This ultimate tour takes you to all the city’s hot and historic spots. It is a great way to see the city when you only have a short amount of time to do so.