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If you’re looking for free things to do in Austin this summer, here are five activities that the whole family will enjoy!
Austin Texas mural

Watch purple martins put on a show in the sky

You may have heard that Austin is home to the largest urban bat colony in the world, but did you know about the Purple Martin Parties? Join Travis Audubon Society to witness an impressive “hurricane of birds” as the purple martins return to their roosting site, evenings in July.

Explore the Barton Creek Greenbelt

Barton Springs, Austin’s renowned three-acre spring-fed pool, offers a refreshing respite from the heat at a reasonable price. But if you’re looking for a free adventure off the beaten path, follow Barton Creek away from Zilker Park, and enjoy a hike along the scenic greenbelt.

Barton Creek Hike Austin Texas

Nature Nights at the Wildflower Center

Nature Nights return to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center this summer, every Thursday in June. These special evenings offer a rare opportunity to explore the Wildflower Center, including the wonderful 4.5-acre Luci and Ian Family Garden, at no charge. Admission for Nature Nights will be free from 6 to 9 p.m.


Visit Austin museums for free

If you’re on the hunt for air-conditioned entertainment options, you may want to check out some of Austin’s free museums! Use this handy list to see when popular destinations like the Bullock Texas State History Museum and the Thinkery, Austin’s exemplary children’s museum, offer free admission.

Thinkery Austin Children's Museum

See Shrek the Musical in Zilker Park

Pack a picnic and lay your blanket on the Zilker Hillside, to enjoy a musical under the stars. Zilker Summer Musical returns for its 58th year with Shrek The Musical. Catch a free performance Thursday to Sunday from July 8 to August 13, 2016.

For more ideas to help plan your Austin getaway, check out 75+ Free Things to do in Austin This Summer.



Heidi Gollub is the founder and editor-in-chief of the award-winning website Free Fun in When not running around on adventures with her five children–ages three to 15–she volunteers for the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau and shares content with the local news. Recently, Heidi was a speaker at Mom 2.0 and the Texas Conference for Women.





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100+ free things for kids and families to do this summer in San Antonio