Top Four Things to Do in Austin, TX

Austin has something for everyone of any age; from parks and trails to museums and theaters, there’s no shortage of attractions and activities. Whether you’re new to the area, a life-long resident, or visiting for a week or two, you’ll find something to enjoy in and around Austin. The team at MAXIM Hair Restoration has compiled a list of the top four things to do in Austin, Texas, to help point you in the right direction.

Lady Bird Lake Hike-and-Bike Trail and Boardwalk

4551482983_d5b6bf11c5.jpgImage via Flickr by Gary J Wood

Located at the First Street Bridge at Lady Bird Lake, you’ll find the Ann and Roy Butler hike-and-bike trail with a boardwalk to enjoy. This 10-mile stretch of trails border Lady Bird Lake, offering an oasis for cyclists, runners, and walkers alike. Between West Cesar Chavez Street and West Riverside Drive, you can cross Lady Bird Lake via the Ann and Roy Butler pedestrian bridge. You’ll pass by skyscrapers, ball fields, neighborhoods, and cultural attractions as you wander along the water’s edge.

The 7,250-foot Boardwalk at Lady Bird Lake offers more than 300 piers, 13,000 LED lights to brighten your path, 2,200 pre-cast concrete deck planks, and 1.3 million pounds of structural steel. All of this is used to create viewing areas, including an ADA-accessible pier and a new restroom. You can also enjoy the beautiful displays at the Boardwalk for Art in Public Places, a Cultural Arts Division of the Economic Development Department program that commissioned artist Ken Little.

You can visit the Boardwalk from 5 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week. Parking is available in many places around the trail. Fishing is not allowed on the main trail, but you can cast off from any rest areas. You can get to the Boardwalk via several access points for a day of hiking, fishing, or fun in the sun.

Bullock Texas State History Museum

To experience innovative films, ever-changing exhibits, and unique events and programs, check out the Bullock Texas State History Museum located at 1800 Congress Ave. in Austin. The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with various exhibitions, IMAX film series and programs, and events and programs available. The four current exhibits include Texas History Galleries, Texas Oil and Gas, Becoming Texas, and Austin City Limits Theater. Coming soon is an exhibit titled Mental Health: Mind Matters Exhibition.

The IMAX film series and programs have current offerings from Texas Focus, Reel Women in Film, B Movies and Bad History, Viva Cinema, and Francophone Film Series. The Summer Family Film Series includes “Magnificent Homespun Brown” and “I Can Be President, A Kid’s Eye View.” You can also view current feature films, such as “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” at the IMAX. The Bullox Museum Texas Spirit Theater is also open and showing “Shipwrecked” and “The Star of Destiny.”

Austin Aquarium

The Austin Aquarium offers you and your family an interactive experience with marine life, mammals, birds, and reptiles Sunday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 8 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. You can purchase an annual pass to visit as much as you want throughout the year or a daily pass for a single visit. At the Austin Aquarium, you can experience animal encounters, participate in the morning rounds, view mermaids, and get a princess makeover.

Animal encounters range from feeding the fish to spending time with a sloth, kinkajou, or lemur. You can also feed the octopus, stingray, otter, sharks, and more. Morning-round participants may assist with water quality, feeding, prepping meals, or helping maintain the filtration system. It’s a great way to experience a day in the life of an aquarium staff member. Austin Aquarium also has its own mermaid who performs both at the aquarium and is available for private bookings outside of the aquarium. A princess makeover includes hair, makeup, dress, and being named Austin Aquarium’s princess for the day.

You can even book your next birthday party at the Austin Aquarium for a special per guest fee, with a mermaid visit, face painting, mammal, or sloth interactions as possible add-ons for a unique birthday. Visit the aquarium today at 13530 N. Highway 183, #101 in Austin.

McKinney Falls State Park

Quite possibly, one of the most beautiful sights in Austin is the McKinney Falls State Park, offering views of rugged beauty as Onion Creek flows over the limestone edge into the pools below. You can also explore the remains of an ancient rock shelter and early Texas homestead at McKinney Falls State Park. With camping, hiking, mountain biking, geocaching, and picnicking available, there’s no shortage of activities at McKinney Falls.

You can stay in one of 81 campsites with electricity and water or rent one of the six cabins, newly remodeled for your convenience. The park offers more than nine miles of trails, including the Onion Creek Hike and Bike Trail with a hard surface for bikes or strollers, offering 2.8 miles of exercise and scenic views. Fish from the shore in Williamson or Onion creeks, and, as long as you stay onshore, you don’t even need a fishing license in a Texas state park.

McKinney Falls State Park is located at 5808 McKinney Falls Pkwy. in Austin, with hours from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. There is a $6 per adult daily fee and free admission for children ages 12 and younger. The park regularly reaches full capacity, so reservations are highly recommended for daily park use and camping. You can reserve passes and camping sites online.

There it is. The MAXIM Hair Restoration team has touched on the numerous activities, events, places to visit, and more in Austin, Texas, with these top four picks. If you have something you’d like to add, reach out to us at 802-370-3227 or fill out our convenient online contact us form. We love exploring and enjoying the Austin area and look forward to checking out your favorite things to do.

7 Best Bakeries in Austin, TX

Are you looking to satisfy that sweet tooth? Well, a trip to a local bakery may be the perfect adventure for you. Whether you’re craving pastries, muffins, and doughnuts for breakfast or scrumptious cookies, cakes, and brownies for dinner, you have plenty of options for something delicious to eat. We created this list of some of the best bakeries in Austin, Texas, to help you find local businesses to support the next time you want a sugar rush.

Upper Crust Bakery

For nearly 30 years, Upper Crust Bakery has been a local community staple here in Austin. Its laid-back cafe offers the perfect location to enjoy a cup of coffee with a croissant or danish in the morning. You can also easily stop by for a cookie or brownie on your lunch break. If you’re in a pinch and looking for a dessert to share, Upper Crust Bakery stocks pies and 9-inch cakes every day, plus a yummy selection of parfaits, cupcakes, and loaves of bread.

You can find Upper Crust Bakery at 4508 Burnet Road. It’s open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. Consider ordering a cake for a special event through its catering services. 

OMG Squee

OMG Squee is a family-owned and operated bakery specializing  in Asian-American treats, including Asian-inspired macarons, pastries, doughnuts, and ice cream. Every item on the menu is also completely gluten free, so it’s the perfect location for anyone with food allergies or sensitives. Besides its delicious and unique flavor combinations, the bakery also shapes baked goods into adorable animals, like cats, bunnies, and fish. You can even find items decorated like your favorite characters from the movies. They also offer a selection of boba tea to pair with your sweet treat.

OMG Squee is located at 4607 Bolm Road. It’s open Thursday through Sunday from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. or until it sells out of the daily selection. It also offers online ordering for curbside pickup for Austin locals.

Capital City Bakery

Capital City Bakery is a vegan bakery that bakes fresh goods daily and uses as many locally sourced ingredients as possible. Its owner, Kristen Davenport, began the bakery as a home business in 2010 before opening the first all-vegan bakery food trailer in Austin. In 2012, she opened the storefront that now offers a daily selection of cupcakes, kolaches, cookies, and brownies. It also offers a signature selection of coffees and teas to pair with your treat and a line of layered cakes to order in advance for special occasions.

Find Capital City Bakery at 2211 E. Cesar Chavez Street. It’s open on Thursday from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. However, online ordering for pickup begins at 9 a.m. each day, allowing you to check out the special offerings and beat the crowds.

Quack’s 43rd Street Bakery

Quack’s 43rd Street Bakery first opened in Austin in 1983 as a full-service espresso cafe and bakery. It offers breakfast options like croissants, kolaches, cinnamon rolls, scones, danishes, and muffins. Other treats available include cookies, brownies, macaroons, truffles, cupcakes, layered cakes, pies, and more. The menu changes slightly each day and is subject to both availability and seasonal options. Quack’s 43rd Street Bakery is located at 411 E. 43rd Street in historic Hyde Park and it’s open daily from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. 

While this is the flagship location, you may also visit Captain Quackenbush’s Coffeehouse or Lady Quackenbush’s Cakery for a similar selection of delicious offerings. You can find Captain Quakenbush’s Coffeehouse at 5326 Menchaca Road and it’s open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. until 9 p.m. and Sunday from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Lady Quackenbush’s Cakerym, meanwhile, is at 1900 Simond Avenue #300 and it’s open Wednesday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Word of Mouth Bakery

Word of Mouth Bakery is a cafe, bakery, and catering company. While you can find a wide selection of in-house desserts, you can also place larger orders online in advance. It offers a variety of cupcakes, cookies, tarts, brownies, and bars, plus a gluten-free menu with a selection of cupcakes, cookies, and brownies. If you’re looking for a full meal, consider starting with one of their sandwiches or salads.

Word of Mouth Bakery has two locations in Austin, and both offer full-service and to-go catering options. The first location is at 917 W. 12th Street, and it’s open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The other location at 1506 S. 1st Street is open Tuesday through Sunday from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Paper Route Bakery

Named the Best Bakery in Texas in 2020 by MSN, Paper Route Bakery specializes in preparing delicious, beautifully designed cakes. It offers a variety of cakes sold by the slice, and you can order one of their signature cakes or a custom creation in advance. Paper Route Bakery aims to use only ethically sourced and organic ingredients.

You can find Paper Route Bakery at 1010 E. Cesar Chavez Street in Suite D. It’s open Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. However, it only sells cake by the slice Friday through Sunday.

Mi Tradición

Mi Tradición is an authentic Mexican bakery and restaurant. The staff crafts every menu item according to Mexican traditions, offering a variety of cakes, cookies, and pastries. Some specific offerings include conchas, pan dulce, pan blanco, kolaches, and a selection of tres leches cakes. It also offers a selection of treats to satisfy certain dietary restrictions, such as gluten-free, sugar-free, and low-sugar needs.

Mi Tradición has two locations in Austin. The North Austin bakery, located at 8716 Research Boulevard in Suite 290, is open daily from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m. The South Austin bakery, located at 801 E. William Cannon Drive in Suite 125, is open daily from 6 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. instead.We’ve listed some of the best bakeries in Austin, Texas. Didn’t see your favorite sweet treat? Let us know today at MAXIM Hair Restoration and we’ll update our list. We’re proud to serve Texas residents and hope you found a new local eatery to try.

Best Hiking Trails in Dallas, TX

We love getting out to enjoy nature, and what better way to soak in the sunshine and greenery than by hiking one of Dallas’s many trails in the great State of Texas. With a variety of paths ranging from dirt trails wending their way through natural preserves to urban pedestrian highways, Dallas, TX, has a trail for any age and level of expertise. Check out our list of the best hiking trails Dallas, Texas, has to offer. 

Cedar Ridge Preserve

Image via Flickr by Sonnia Hill | CC 2.0

Cedar Ridge Preserve features multiple trails that interconnect and loop through a designated ecological sanctuary. Unlike traditional parks, a preserve seeks to protect and restore a natural area, making a hike through the preserve full of untouched ecological beauty. Cedar Ridge’s Cattail Pond Trail is a scenic 2.4-mile loop around the lake with more remote trails branching off from access points at different points along the trail. One of the trail’s highlights is an observation tower with views of Grand Prairie and Joe Pool Lake. 

The Cedar Brake Trail, also located within the preserve, offers a 2.7-mile loop with changing elevations that are considered easy to traverse. For a challenging and lengthy hike, try the outer loop trail at the preserve. The 5.4-mile trail features wooden steps and beautiful scenery in the tranquility of the natural environment surrounding you.

Dogwood Canyon Audobon Center

With three miles of trails ranging in difficulty, the Dogwood Canyon Audobon Center offers three distinct trail loops through oak and wild growth. The Canyon Floor trail offers an easy hike, perfect for a relaxing jog or moms with strollers. It also offers plenty of birdwatching and wildlife viewing opportunities. For a more challenging hike, try the Dogwood Trail, a moderate 1.1-mile trek across the canyon and beside the meandering creek. Take the West Loop Trail for the most difficult hike, which climbs 150 feet in elevation for extensive views of the canyon from above. 

The Dogwood Canyon Audobon Center also offers paid guided hikes for trail enthusiasts of all ages. Your naturalist guide will offer an interpretive walk based on your interest in groups of up to 25 people with room for additions. 

Oak Cliff Nature Preserve

Nestled in 121 acres of preservation land, Oak Cliff Nature Preserve features eight miles of trails. With gravel trails populated by vegetation and wildlife, this escape from the city gives hikers the chance to travel on several trail loops through lush green pathways carved in the middle of Dallas’s urban center. Maintained by the Texas Land Conservancy, Oak Cliff Nature Preserve offers a protective sanctuary to many species of wildlife you can often view from the trails. 

Trinity River Audobon Center

Purchase admission to access seven trails all under a mile at the Trinity River Audobon Center. Trails include a primitive forest and pond trek or a longer trail through the center’s wetlands. Bring your binoculars for spectacular birdwatching opportunities throughout the preserve. You can also enjoy the pollinator garden and nature center when you’re ready to take a break from the trail. 

Spring Creek Nature Area

With views of the creek and a winding trek through dense woods, the Spring Creek Nature Trail offers a 4.5-mile loop for hikers. The paved trail provides an easy surface for running, jogging, and pushing a stroller with park and picnic benches where you can stop and take a rest. 

Spring Creek also connects to other trails like Renner and Central. Although it’s located close to a major highway system, the trail offers a tranquil place to exercise and enjoy nature. An extension now continues the trail even further to the north to connect with The George Bush Freeway and Alma Drive. To access trail parking, head to the paved lot located at Central/Renner Road. 

L.B. Houston Nature Trail

A trek through L.B. Houston Park offers a more rustic walk considered easy enough for beginners with the length to please seasoned hikers. Located in parts of the Elm Fork and L. B. Houston Greenbelt, most of the 10-mile trail loops through the forest with the occasional section winding beside the Trinity River. The trail offers several loops if you choose to shorten your walk. Mountain bikers also use the trail so be prepared to enjoy watching them whir past as you share the road. 

Fish Creek Trail 

This paved trail offers 7.3 miles of hiking trail between the suburbs of Arlington and Grand Prairie. Unlike other suburban trials through neighborhoods and retail areas, this trek follows a more secluded path with areas of dense vegetation that make you feel more like you’re in a preserve. Fish Creek Trail also connects to recreational areas, schools, and parks. 

Trinity Skyline Trail

For an urban trail experience, the Trinity Skyline Trail runs through the Dallas floodway. Offering city views, the trail winds for over 10 miles beside the river, under and over city bridges. Walkers and joggers share the paved surface with bikers on this popular trail with views of downtown. You can join the trail at multiple points, but trailheads like East 8th Street, the Continental Avenue Bridge, and South Riverfront Boulevard offer paved parking lots. 

Trinity Strand Trail

Another track winding through the city, Trinity Strand Trail, is part of an ongoing restoration project to create a recreational space out of the original watercourse of the Trinity River. The first completed phase features 2. 5 miles of paved trail through the Dallas Design District. Another phase of the trail will open and continue through the Medical District. The urban trail passes by restaurants and shops in some areas while meandering through quiet pockets of nature in others. 

Huck Finn Trail

Located within the Prairie Creek Greenbelt, this trail offers an easy hike through greenery to several scenic areas, including a cascading waterfall. With quaint pedestrian bridges and a gravel and dirt track, this trip is a fun trek through nature for all ages. Located in neighboring Richardson, this neighborhood park features acres of preserved land once home to the oldest schoolhouse in the area. Huck Finn Trail offers a shaded walk all year with colorful changing leaves in the fall and vibrant wildflowers in the springtime. We just shared our favorite hiking trails in the Dallas, Texas, area. Did we miss one of your preferred green spaces? Contact us so we can update our list! We’d love to hear from you.