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Colorful Nights and Green Days in Austin, Texas

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Sure, Austin, Texas, might be known as the “Live Music Capital of the World”, with a hopping musical performance calendar to support the sobriquet. But in addition to its aural assets, the Lone Star State’s capital city also boasts a day-time scene that is decidedly green - both ecologically speaking and literally. Courtesy of over 200 tree-lined parks and places like the Barton Creek Greenbelt, Austin, Texas, has also acquired of late a reputation as a green city, friendly to bikers, hikers and the good earth alike. And thanks to its abundant sunshine and groomed greens, it’s also a place pretty popular with golfers .

Clearly, there’s good reason to spend plenty of time outside. The question is, really, where to focus your attentions. During the warmer months, Lake Travis, northwest of Austin, sees plenty of water-based traffic, both houseboat and otherwise. But closer to home, within Austin itself, there a number of places to get a spot of exercise or cool off, as needed. Measuring in at three acres, spring-fed Barton Springs Pool is one of the best places to freshen up on a hot day, but you can also swim in Lake Austin and Lake Walter E. Long.

Prefer to stay dry? Laze away the day on a grassy stretch of Zilker Metropolitan Park, a 351-acre expanse that takes in botanical gardens, a sculpture garden and the Austin Nature and Science Center. Fancy a peddle or a long walk? Pack your snacks and beverage of choice for a cruise along some of the city’s 193 miles of maintained trails. Joggers and walkers often head for Town Lake Trail, while bikers and others wheel-equipped can cruise the Veloway through Slaughter Creek Metropolitan Park. The aforementioned Barton Creek Greenbelt takes in nearly 8 miles of trail, though that’s but a drop in the greenbelt bucket for the Austin area overall. In other words, between Austin’s cultural offerings and its outdoor assets you’ll be hard pressed to find time to catch one of those violet winter sunsets which gave Austin its other nickname - the “City of the Violet Crown”. Green with envy yet?

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