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Best Water Attractions in Austin

By: Cityseeker
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Barton Creek Greenbelt

This creek winds through Central and South Austin, featuring beautiful hiking and bike trails as well as many choice swimming holes. The natural surroundings have been left to flourish as only the Texas countryside can. One of the more popular areas is at the far north end of the park—the Scottish Woods Trails, a rocky path leading to a gorgeous private swimming hole at the base of a small waterfall. Barton Creek Greenbelt runs west and north from Zilker Park for nearly eight miles. Contact the Austin Parks and Recreation Department for a map of the greenbelt and access areas.

Austin, TX, United States
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Live Love Paddle

Want to see the Austin Congress Bridge bats up close? Take a tour with Live Love Paddle, a kayak tour where your guide will lead close to the bridge so you can watch as the bats wake up and fly away as the sun begins to set. If you don't want to see the bats, Live Love Paddle has other great tours. Take the Urban Kayaking Tour of Downtown Austin to explore the city in a new way or just paddle around Lady Bird Lake.

Austin, TX, United States
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Lady Bird Lake

A reservoir of the undulating Colorado River, Lady Bird Lake lies nestled in startling contrast with the cosmopolitan buildings that fringe it. Originally known as 'Town Lake', this reservoir was created in 1960, with the construction of the Longhorn Dam. For a decade, this lake was left in a derelict state, until it was transformed into a beautiful recreation zone in the 1970s. In 2007, the lake was given the name Lady Bird Lake, honoring the memory of the former First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson. Its glassy waters a wonderland for recreation, the lake is skirted by lush, emerald droves, winding trails, the sprawling Zilker Park and the rejuvenating Barton Springs. The lake enables an array of exhilarating activities like kayaking, canoeing, rowing, paddleboarding and recreational fishing. Lady Bird Lake has been host to a string of sporting events, while its bank is popular for musical performances.

Austin, TX, United States
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West Lake Beach

The West Lake Beach is a private area that is open for use by the public at a small cost. Located a short distance from the West Lake Hills area of Austin, this park has a number of activities to amuse you and your kids. The most striking feature about the park is its pier beach, where you can spend hours floating about. They also have several picnic areas, where you can enjoy a delicious meal when all the swimming makes you hungry. Or go with your friends, and enjoy a game of volleyball. The park has several areas that can be booked for birthday parties and other events.

Austin, TX, United States
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Emma Long Metropolitan Park

This park offers over 1,000 acres of land with nearly a mile of lakefront. Visitors can go boating and utilize the park's two boat ramps. Skiing, fishing and relaxing on the sandy waterfront are also options. There is a swimming area that employs lifeguards on summer weekends. Be sure to notice the ash, oak and juniper trees throughout the park. Sixty-six campsites are available, some along the waterfront, and pets on a leash are welcome.

Austin, TX, United States
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Walnut Creek Metropolitan Park

From challenging trails for mountain bikes to scenic paths along a lovely creek to an off-leash spot where dogs can run free, you'll find something for everyone at Walnut Creek Metropolitan Park! Bring the family during the summer to take a dip in the public pool. For a memorable day date bring a picnic and have lunch beside the water. And of course adrenaline seekers will love biking over hills or playing a game on one of the softball fields.

Austin, TX, United States
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Lake Austin

A reservoir in the Colorado River, Lake Austin is an ideal recreation spot. When the Tom Miller Dam was constructed in 1939, this reservoir was created. Though it serves a practical purpose like generation of electricity and flood control, it is also a popular attraction in the city. You will find many restaurants nearby, and the park along its banks offers fun activities such as canoeing. Lake Austin works for those who just feel like taking a walk, those who are looking to get their exercise for the day, those who feel like chatting with others, or just those who want a bit of peace.

Austin, TX, United States
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Just for Fun

Who doesn't think that riding a boat with a group of friends sounds like anything but fun? If you're into having a good time, doing something different, or just love the outdoors and get a high from adventures, then there's no other place you want to be but at this boat rental place. Just for Fun has a variety of boats to choose from, ranging from a small boat to a party boat that fits lots of people. They will teach you how to use it and give you instructions on which areas are safest for swimming. Don't forget your music playlist to get the party started!

Austin, TX, United States
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