South Congress was a haven for retro clothing before it became SoCo. Lucy in Disguise with Diamonds and Electric Ladyland (that's the store's complete name) is where Bob Dylan is rumored to have shopped for retro outfits. New Bohemia is another retro spot for clothes and home furnishings, plus there are boutiques including Blackmail, for all things black, and Vivid, for all things... well vivid. The avenue is lined with funky, unique to Austin stores and restaurants with an Austin friendly feel. All you need to fill your Austin shopping desires is located along The Street of SoCo. Need that funky new item for the house, stop by Uncommon Objects. Need a new fabulous pair of shoes, drop in to Goodie Two Shoes. What about that crazy costume you've been wanting to strut, you will definitely snag it at Lucy's In Disguise.
First Thursday on South Congress
First Thursday is not just a day on the monthly calendar in SoCo, but marks a local tradition when South Congress shops stay open late, playing host to an array of events and activities. A unique to Austin event for shopping, eating, and listening to local Austin music. SoCo is home to many fantastic food venues also. Including Guero's, Mars, Zen, Joe's Coffee Shop, and, of course, you can't go without Amy's Ice Cream. See everyone on First Thursday down at SoCo!
Cool Places to Eat on South Congress
Vinaigrette off South Congress Avenue
Newcomer to the Austin dining scene in 2016, Vinaigrette offers a refreshing style of dining focusing on well crafted salads. Originating from New Mexico with locations in Albuquerque and Sante Fe, Vinaigrette owner Erin Wade strives to source all vegetables and meats from local organic farms and the Texas gulf. Salad dressings are mixed into the salad at just the perfect amount to pack each salad with unique and distinct flavor. A modern, clean interior adds a refreshing touch for indoor dining and the outdoor patio beneath the "tree of life" shown in the picture is one of Austin’s best patio dining. Learn more about Vinaigrette off South Congress here.
Guero’s Taco Bar on South Congress
Guero's Taco Bar in Austin's South Congress shopping district has been a popular South Austin taqueria since 1986. We recommend you start off with one of their hand-shaken margaritas made with fresh-squeezed lime juice or choose from just about any Mexican beer you name can think of served up icy cold. The menu features handmade corn tortillas, specialty dishes and fresh salsa bar. Caldo de pollo and tacos al pastor are just a few of their tried-and-true favorites. Guero’s can get busy, but there’s live music, full bar, and appetizers available next door in the Oak Garden Wednesday through Sunday. Use this link to learn more about Guero’s on South Congress.
Hopdoddy Burger Bar in South Austin
Hopdoddy Burger Bar has taken Austin by storm consistenly earning awards for the best burger in Austin. Lines can stretch outside the building with burger connoisseurs waiting their turn for these craft burgers. Don’t worry, if you see a line just know that it moves relatively quickly and it’s worth the wait. You order from the bar take a number and somebody will deliver your custom craft burger to the table. They also serve up quite a list of craft beers to match their crafty burgers. We recommend something like from the 512 Brewing Company since they’re local and South Congress is all about keeping it local. You can read more about Hopdoddy Burger Bar on South Congress here..
A Few Great Shopping Stops
The Yeti Flagship Store
Located a few blocks closer to downtown from the traditional stretch of the South Congress Shopping District, the Yeti Flagship Store elevates the consumer experience by inspiring visitors to go out and explore the wild as it captures a core tenet of the brand in 8,000 square feet. It's a gathering spot for locals and out-of-towners to enjoy a cold beer, listen to music, watch a film or learn from a pro. There's plenty of mercandise to explore and purchase and the store features an energy that is unique to Austin and the Yeti brand. It's definitely worth dropping by on your way over to the South Congress shopping district. Use this link to learn more about The Yeti Flagship Store on South Congress Avenue.
Legendary Boot Store Allens Boots
Having opened its doors in 1977 Allens Boots stands as a South Congress landmark. The giant red boot above its store sets it apart from all the other shops and boutiques you'll encounter. Inside you will be amazed by their incredible selection of boots and knowledgeable staff eager to help you find your perfect pair. No visit to Austin is complete without stopping by South Congress Avenue and checking out a few of the shops. And Allens Boots is one you won't want to miss. Use this link to learn more about Allens Boots on South Congress.
Located in Austins popular South Congress shopping district, Maya Star has a reputation as one of the best boutiques in the city. Featuring a distinctly unique and constantly changing selection of clothing, gifts, and jewelry made by independent designer from around the world, Maya Star’s excellent selection of clothing and accessories for any occasion, age, shape, style, and budget make it a must stop when browsing the shops and boutiques on SoCo. Use this link to learn more about Maya Star Boutique on South Congress Avenue.
The #1 Rated Escape Game in Austin!
Looking for a super fun adventure while visiting Austin? Don't miss the Escape Game. You and your team are locked in a room and have one hour to complete a mission and escape. Escaping will require teamwork, quick thinking, determination and a sense of urgency! From the moment you step into your game, you'll be totally immersed in their world. With 5 games to chose from, it's one of the most entertaining ways to kill some time, dodge the rain, or just have fun. Use this link to learn more about the Escape Game in Austin.
Barton Springs Pool in Austin's favorite swimming hole. Located on the edge of Zilker Park its a great place to escape the heat and enjoy the outdoors.
Check out the Austins locals love on a bicycle. Mike's Bikes and Tours features 6 Austin tours including a bat watching tour, Lady Bird Lake, Barton Springs Pool, Barton Creek, Walnut Creek and more. We also rent bikes!
Austin Water Bikes rentals and tours is the premier way to view Lady Bird Lake in gorgeous downtown Austin. You and your friends or family can explore the lake area, taking in all the sights and sounds that downtown Austin has to offer.
Austin Duck Adventures offers a combined land and water tour of Austin sights with amphibious vehicles. It's the ultimate Austin adventure.
Inner Space Cavern outside of Austin, TX offers an adventure into an exciting cavern below the earth's surface filled with history, mystery and chemistry!
The Escape Game in Austin, TX offers one of Austin's newest and most engaging activities. You and your friends are locked up in precarious situations, given clues and left to find your way out! We offer an escape from ordinary life that allows you to live the stories you love.
Austin's Lady Bird Lake winds 10 miles through downtown Austin featuring spectacular views, photo opportunities, and a great place for some exercise!
Nestled on the shores of Scenic Town Lake at the Hyatt Regency, Capital Cruises offers bat watching, dinner cruises, party boats, sightseeing tours, boat rentals and group events and outings!
Come kayak with Live Love Paddle for a variety of Austin kayak tours and rentals. We offer daily kayaking tours to view the Congress Ave Bats! We also offer guided tours on local rivers, overnight trips, team building adventures, kayak rentals!
Check out these 4 fun ways to view the Congress Bridge Bats in Austin Texas. This is the largest urban bat colony in North America and we outline ways to view them by boat, kayak, water bike, and more!