Grab this Widget ~ Blogger Accessories

Austin - More Than Just Live Music Capital Of The World

Many of the tourists that visit Austin come for its vibrant nightlife; it is after all, the 'Live Music Capital of the World'. However, there are many other attractions in Austin that don't involve music..

Austin offers a wealth of museums and art galleries. The Texas Memorial Museum is the main exhibit hall of the Texas Natural Science Centre. Since it opened in 1939, it has assembled a collection of 5.7 million specimens in the disciplines of palaeontology, geology and biology. The Blanton Museum of Art is the largest university arts museum in the entire U.S.A, and houses some 17,000 works from Europe, the United States and Latin America.

The Harry Ransom Humanities Research Centre is a library and public archive, specialising in the collection of literary and cultural artfacts from all around the world. It houses 36 million literary manuscripts, 1 million rare books, 5 million photographs, and more than 100,000 works of art.

For a deeper look into the history of the state, The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum is dedicated to telling 'the Story of Texas' and is named after former Texas Lieutenant Governor, Bob Bullock. Austin is also home to the O. Henry House Museum. O. Henry is the pen name of writer William Sydney Porter, who lived in Austin for much of his adult life. Porter's 400 short stories are known for their wit and wordplay and he is also credited as being the inventor of the 'twist ending' in literature. The O. Henry House Museum hosts the annual O. Henry Pun Off, which is a pun contest where Henry enthusiasts exhibit their wit and wordplay skills in honour of their hero.

The Congress Avenue Bridge houses the world's largest urban population of Mexican free-tailed bats. Starting in late February, up to 1.5 million bats take up residence inside the bridge's expansion and contraction zones as well as in long horizontal grooves running the length of the bridge's underside - an environment ideally suited for raising their young. Every evening around sunset, the bats emerge in search of insects. Watching the bat emergence is an event that is popular with locals and tourists, with more than 100,000 viewers per year.

As Austin's official slogan is 'The Live Music Capital of the World', the city has a vibrant live music scene, with more music venues per capita than any other American city. Austin's music revolves around the many nightclubs on 6th Street and an annual film/music/multimedia festival called South By Southwest (SXSW). There are also a burgeoning circle of live performance venues in theatres, bars and hotels in Austin.

Austin is full of historic landmarks and unusual tourist attractions, from the beautiful Texas State Capitol building to the Congress Avenue Bridge and its nightly bat flights. There are plenty of museums, places to eat, and of course there's live music just around every corner. So it's no wonder that Austin gets high marks for sightseeing and family trips.