Spring in Austin with kids is such a blast – it’s not quite hot enough to burn all of your thigh skin off on your car’s leather seats, and it’s not cold enough to avoid being outdoors. While we don’t have much in the way of seasons or seasonal transitions, spring in Austin means a resurgence of fun outdoors, and the ample activities that bloom like the Indian paintbrushes along Mopac.

“Great, but what are the best things to do in Austin with kids?” you ask. SO. MANY. THINGS.

The Texas hill country is filled to the brim with family-friendly fun! We’ve outlined all our favorites that we know kids will love!

two kid girls dressed in pink cowgirl outfits at a fair

Get Outside and Get Your Toes Wet!

Naturally we are biased, but we think the absolute most fun you can have in the spring is on the water!

Lake Travis

In the parts of spring that are still a little too chilly for a family swim party, be a hero and rent a party barge and take the family and kids out ON the water (here’s how).

Lake Travis offers tons of family fun from a water park to the state’s longest zip line, and we’ve crafted a guide filled with ideas on ways to enjoy Lake Travis with the whole family!

Zilker Park

But Lake Travis isn’t the only way you can enjoy the water in these parts – Zilker Park has playgrounds and a train, but more importantly, Barton Springs Pool which stays between 68 to 70 degrees year-round (and people swim there every day, even in the snow).

This famous swimming hole is a man-made pool fed by underground springs, and the shallow end is perfect for the littles.

Deep Eddy Pool

If you don’t want to drive through Zilker Park because little Zachy will start screaming about going on the choo choo and derail the entire day, hit up the nearby Deep Eddy Pool which is also a natural, spring-fed pool.

There’s a beautiful tile mural for an Instagram moment and plenty of shade alongside the wide grassy knolls where folks lay out and sun in all seasons. Plus, there’s a snack bar that serves hot dogs and empanadas, so that’s pretty rad, too.

Lady Bird Lake (Lake Austin)

We also love taking the fam to Lady Bird Lake (aka Lake Austin aka Town Lake aka The Other Lake). Renting stand-up paddle boards, kayaks, or canoes is a really inexpensive way to spend an afternoon, and is even dog friendly.

Lake Austin is amazing for these types of outings, and we like going to the Rowing Dock because the parking is close and easy, the rates are good, the equipment’s clean, and the location is near Red Bud Isle which is leash-free fun for the dogs.

Krause Springs

If you’re down for a day trip, we’re going to share with you our secret for getting in the spring mood – Krause Springs.

It’s got another natural pool with a stone diving board and natural springs downhill from the camping sites, so you can slide into part of the Colorado River system, or find the rope swings in the massively tall trees.

It’s a gem you won’t want to miss this spring – springs in the spring!

Take a Hike, Pal

Spring in Austin with kids can actually be pretty inexpensive if your kiddos are down to clown in nature. There are plenty of hiking options that range from simple to challenging, but all have options and areas for little ones, so load up on sunscreen and get some comfy shoes!

Enchanted Rock

One of the most famous hiking spots here is Enchanted Rock which are these gorgeously massive pink granite formations lined with cedar trees. Bring snacks and hydration, and allergy pills, and be prepared to soak up the most beautiful hill country views you can get.

Mount Bonnell

Speaking of views, if you’re in town and don’t want to drive far, Mount Bonnell is the highest point in the city and overlooks the famous Pennybacker Bridge and the winding Lake Austin.

After you climb the 102 hand-laid stone steps up to the top of the lookout point, you’ll see stone picnic tables and people taking selfies to try to get in shots of some of the most expensive residential real estate in Austin, lining the lake below.

Secret time: If you’re facing the stone steps, you can also park further downhill to the right, and there is a small pathway that cuts around the hill – take it to avoid that overwhelming trek!

Sculpture Falls

Everyone here knows about the Barton Creek Greenbelt, but let’s be honest, it can get a little crowded. When it does, we head out to Sculpture Falls, which is part of the same greenbelt, but lesser known (and less crowded).

The limestone formations are fascinating here and look like the most pock-marked regions of rock, perfect for the kids to find little pools of water and observe nature! It’s a fun hike with lots to see along the way.

bats flying over lady bird lake in austin, texas

Check Out the Bats

The Congress Avenue bridge (“Congress Bridge”) in downtown Austin is home to the largest urban bat colony in the entire continent (Canada and Mexico included). Starting in March, a million billion trillion bats fly out from underneath the bridge to find juicy bugs to eat at sunset.

We recommend parking at The Statesman and bringing a blanket for a picnic in the grass, but don’t even go walk under the bridge because it’s where the million billion trillion bats poop. It’s a great educational moment, but one every kid in or visiting Austin needs to experience at least once.

view of the outside of the bullock texas state history museum in austin texas

The State History Museum (it’s actually fun!)

The Bullock Texas State History Museum is a phenomenal educational destination that offers an enriching experience for both kids and adults alike. The museum provides an engaging and interactive way to learn about the rich history and diverse culture of Texas.

With exhibits covering everything from the state’s prehistoric past to its role in the space race, there’s something for everyone to enjoy and learn from. The museum offers hands-on activities and programs designed specifically for kids, making learning fun and accessible. For example, kids can experience what it was like to be a pioneer, or learn how to use a telegraph machine.

The stunning architecture and state-of-the-art facilities make for an exciting and memorable visit – plus there is an IMAX theater with normal movies and educational flicks to choose from. It’s a great air-conditioned destination for the warmer parts of spring.

Bring on the Spring Events

Spring means it’s finally time for festivals, and while you probably already know about all of the common kid-oriented events, there are two that are often overlooked by parents – SXSW and the Rodeo. Wait, hear us out!

The Austin Rodeo

The Austin Rodeo is actually designed as a fundraiser for children, and there are so many kid-friendly events as part of the broader Rodeo. It isn’t just buckin’ bulls and country music concerts, there is a petting zoo, fair foods, button bustin’ (all kids can give it a shot), and even a 1K fun run for the littles.

SXSW

SXSW can be a wild music festival, but did you know there are tons of family-friendly (and often free) events affiliated with the massive event?

There’s great live music on the shores of Lake Austin, a poster art event, and it’s pretty inexpensive to grab a pass for three days of SXSW Gaming (which is a must if any of your kids game, and there are no bikini girls at booths, it’s all family-friendly).

bunny and turtle sculptures at peter pan mini golf in austin texas

An Austin classic: Peter Pan Mini Golf

Have you ever driven down Barton Springs Road and seen that giant weird statue of Peter Pan on one knee, pleading with you to come up the hill for a visit? Well, there are tons of other weird statues at Peter Pan Mini Golf which is a staple for all Austin families, and a fun time for all.

This 18-hole mini-golf extravaganza will fill up the photo album, we promise.

Whichever adventure you choose, you’re going to have an amazing spring in Austin with the kids!