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Travis County

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Top 10 Travel Destinations Travis County

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  • Day63

    Day 62 - The Bats Have Fled.........

    June 23, 2019 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 27 °C

    Struggled to get out of bed for a 9.30 breakfast & it was hardly worth it, particularly as some simpleton opposite was putting me off my food. After breakfast I tried to catch up with my blog, before we had to vacate our room.

    We headed east back to Stonewall, passing numerous wineries, including Fat Ass Ranch & Winery, Six Shooter Cellars & Armadillo’s Leap Winery. The Stonewall Peach JAMboree was just starting up again for a full day of events.

    We continued on to Johnson City, famous for being the home town of Lyndon B. Johnson. It was a bit arty, but not enough going for it to justify us stopping. Eastbound we continued through the wonderfully named Dripping Springs, which disappointingly turned out to be a town solely selling farm equipment. One sign boldly claimed ‘Patriot Erectors of Dripping Springs’. The mind boggles!!

    Our SatNav took us on a diversion via Bee Cave so that we could approach Austin, Texas via the relatively famous Pennybacker Bridge. From there we went drove to Umlauf Sculpture Garden, we parked up & saw it had a $5 entry fee, so we gave it a miss. To be fair we had seen a lot of the sculptures on the way in & Jackie is not a fan.

    Instead we drove to Zilker Park, which was heaving with cars & people all visiting Barton Natural Springs Pool. This is why we hate weekends.

    Without stopping, we continued to HOPE Outdoor Gallery, described as an Austin Graffiti Mecca. I don’t know why, but it had a fence & barbed wire around it, however the Graffiti could be clearly seen. It was ok, nothing amazing, but there seemed a steady stream of people arriving to see it.

    Next was The Bullock Texas State History Museum & State Capitol that we viewed from the outside only. By now it was mid-afternoon & we were looking for a suitable Downtown hotel. They were either ridiculously expensive or not very nice looking & probably not clean enough!

    As a result we drove several miles south & picked up a nice Ramada hotel for a lot less. Again we spent the last couple of hours of the afternoon by the pool.

    Close to 7.00pm we took an Uber+ back into town, which dropped us off on South Congressional Avenue Bridge, also known as Bat Bridge. People were already waiting on the the bridge & along the riverbank, so we bagged ourselves what we considered to be a perfect spot & waited for dusk.

    We, with everyone else, were here to witness the natural phenomena of nearly a million & a half Mexican free tailed bats leaving their roost in the crevices under the bridge sometime shortly before dusk. They are the largest colony of urban bats in the world. Their departure each night lasts about 20 minutes & they eat 30,000lb of insects nightly, which is important for the ecology of Austin.

    Over the next hour, the crowds massed 4 deep on the bridge & the river banks were chocker-block. On the Colorado River below, the official Bat Bridge Tour Boats were out & cruising up & down, there were flotillas of kayaks & even a couple of swan pedaloes. We all waited & waited, some people were forced to leave as they had dinner reservations, then the rumour mill started. We heard that last night the bats came out at 8.30pm, then 8.40pm & then that they didn’t come out at all.

    At 9.15pm, it wasn’t looking good. It was nearly dark, the Bat Bridge Tour Boats were departing, so after a further 5 minutes we called it a day. We had waited on the bridge for a total of 2 hours 10 minutes for nothing, the unpredictability of nature is a wonderful thing!!

    We found a rough Aussie bar for a beer & more importantly a wee. Then headed out in search of pizza. I directed us to Rainey Street where it looked like there were a few bars & food joints. What we hadn’t anticipated was the sheer volume of youngsters heading to the same street. Despite this we found an outside bar immediately that had a pizza van in it’s grounds. So we had a slice of pizza & a beer.

    Jackie didn’t feel comfortable in all the crowds (she is not a city girl, we are discovering!) & expressed a desire to go back to the hotel. I was keen to see where all the crowds were going, so we compromised. We would walk the length of Rainey Street which was heaving with bars & clubs heaving with youngsters, then I would order an Uber. Unfortunately the other end of Rainey Street was a bit less salubrious, it was unlit, with blocks of flats & people hanging round in the shadows. This didn’t help Jackie’s nerves!

    Luckily we got to a crossroads, a suitable pick up point & ordered an Uber which arrived within a minute to take us back to the hotel & bed.

    Song of the Day - Bat Shit Crazy by The Amorettes.

    Bonus Song of the Day :-

    Graffiti by The Cadillac Three
    Under The Bridge by All Saints
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  • Day159


    March 26, 2019 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Zug fahren hier ist eine ernsthafte Angelegenheit und nicht die schnellste Reisemöglichkeit von A nach B. Das Perron ist abgesperrt. Zutritt nur mit Ticket. Der Wagon wird einem zugewiesen. Dann bekommt man den Sitzplatz zugewiesen. Güterzüge haben Vorrang. Dafür gibt es einen Panoramawagen und ein Zeitfenster fürs Essen: 30 Minuten pro Schicht im Speisewagen. Von Tucson nach Austin: 24 Stunden Zugfahrt. Mit 75 Min. Abgangsverspätung.
    Meine Zugfahrt führte mich vorbei an er mexikanischen Grenze und der Stadt Él Paso. Da es in manchen Gegenden schon mehr geregnet hat als sonst das ganze Jahr über, blühte auch die Wüste.
    Austin ist eine Stadt in Texas aber eine interessante Stadt und es wird betont, die Stadt sei anders. Viel Musik und viele Studenten (allein Studierende 50000) ausserdem Dell als grösster privater Arbeitgeber (13000 Personen).
    Mein nächstes Ziel: New Orleans, mit dem Flugzeug.
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  • Day1396

    USA Tour - Austin - Texas

    January 7, 2019 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 21 °C

    I got my coach today from Dallas down to Austin. But as per usual, it was delayed!

    I ended up getting into Austin 2 hours later than expected and the coach doesn’t stop in Austin, it stops aaaaaages away so I had to get a Uber to my hostel.

    First impression of the hostel was - stoners! The place reeked of weed.

    Upon checking in To my room I was greeted by David from Sweden and Michelle from Singapore, who are both waiting for their dorms to be ready at the university of Texas which was about a 5 minute walk from the hostel. I asked them where was good for a bevvy.... they had no idea what that meant. So I asked where was good for a beer. They recommended a place called pluckers which was 10 mins away.

    It did not disappoint.

    Cool sports bar with steins for $6 and buffalo wings for $5 - heaven!

    I was in there for a few hours and got a scooter back to the hostel. If I thought it reeked of weed this morning, now it was 10 times worse. Kinda annoying but sometimes that’s the chance you take with a hostel... especially one so close to a university full of students!
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  • Day1397

    USA Tour - Austin - Texas

    January 8, 2019 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

    Exploring day today!

    Sun was shining, heat was blazing down it would be a shame to waste it!

    I had no particular plan today - I just wanted to walk around Austin. I didn’t google or look into things to do or see, I just wanted to see what I would discover.

    Much better city than Dallas, easier to walk around, and just prettier in general.

    I walked EVERYWHERE, my legs where killing me.

    I ended up in this saloon bar which was awesome, proper cowboy feel to it. Cowboys walking in with their guns strapped to them and that, proper sick like!

    I ended up seeing state capitol (which is bigger than DC) which is cool, and I walked about 20 miles in total according to my phone


    I love you
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  • Day0

    Travel day to Austin — via Charlotte!

    April 14 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 22 °C

    I hadn’t planned to write a Find Penguins for this test-drive-trip, but two friends in Spain asked me to. Since one of the features of this new mode of travel is that I always have a few hours in the afternoon while Joe takes a nap, I decided to go for it.

    Now that we are both vaccinated, and since I wanted to see how travel goes for us now with a slower mojo, I booked a flight to Austin, Joe’s home town. We usually go with the 9 other members of the family, but this year it wasn’t possible.

    Travel was weird, I had almost forgotten how to check in. Both the AA and TSA staff welcomed us back with a “Where’ve you been???” Just one of the advantages of living in a small town with four or five flights a day. The airports were mobbed (our best connection was through Charlotte, and if you know anything about US geography, you will know that Charlotte is in the exact opposite direction from Austin). But we had no real issues and everyone was wearing masks. I had ordered a wheelchair for Joe because we had a very short connection, but no one was there when we got there. The gate agent gave me a wheelchair and told me to head out and push him myself.

    First stop in Texas was to pick up a loaner wheelchair at a friend’s house. It has been a challenge learning to use it. After hotel check-in (my two criteria were good location near I-35 and an elliptical), we went the short distance to Torchy’s, our favorite taco place. Then off to bed. Uneventful day, thankfully!
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  • Day1

    First day in Austin

    April 15 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 22 °C

    My modus operandi is to plan to do two things a day. That leaves plenty of down time for naps and just chill-axing as my kids would say.

    The weather wasn’t spectacular, but there was no rain forecast for the morning, so we headed to the Capitol. Got to see the place where Joe was a page, way back in the Stone Age, and the building is beautiful. It was interesting to note that the Senate required visitors to the floor to have proof or vaccine or negative covid test. This is the same body that voted to oppose Austin’s mask mandate, if you can figure that out.

    In the afternoon, we went to the Blanton, the UT art museum. It is a very nice place. I particularly liked the Latin American room, which both had a Santiago and some festive Virgin Marys.

    We met Joe’s high school BFF for dinner at Fonda San Miguel. Probably the best Chile Relleno I’ve ever had. When I went to pay the bill, the waiter told me Armando had paid it. Turns out Armando is a good friend of the owner who eats there frequently. He was sitting at a table near us and we had a nice chat. He told us he thought we seemed like really nice people. I was kind of gobsmacked.
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  • Day39

    Weird Austin.

    September 5, 2019 in the United States ⋅ ☀️ 33 °C

    I visited the way too hot Austin for a few days as it is probably the city I know the most about. Following a local production company called Rooster Teeth for many years, I recognized all the streets, sights, restaurants, and oddities as if I had been here before. Also, I didn't plan on doing so, but I actually got to visit Rooster Teeth and be part of the live audience of my favorite comedy show called On The Spot. Definitely a highlight! As the "blueberry in the tomato soup", Austin defies the conservative Texan stereotypes. To do my part for "Keep Austin Weird", I didn't edit any of the photos for today's footprint. Or maybe I am just in a rush to get to the airport? We will never know.Read more

  • Day73


    November 10, 2017 in the United States ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

    We left New Mexico after visiting the International UFO Museum in Roswell. It was fun and pretty amateurish. Then we entered Texas. .

    In Texas, flags were at half mast for the church massacre by a former American soldier. The hopeless split between the Gun-lovin’ rednecks and reasonable people meant we travelers simply did not discuss it — with strangers, anyway. (Headline: “Hometown Hero Uses Gun on Gunman”). In fact, when Tarjei became irritated with another driver, I had to warn him “That guy is probably armed, so just cool it.”

    On a cheerier note, we saw the Abilene International Short Film Festival — really great. Very eclectic mix. A Syrian man in a refugee camp tossed his young daughter off the wharf into the sea to teach her to swim because he knew she had to learn to survive on the boat journey accross the Mediterranean. A quirky animated film showed chameleon romance in a subway station.

    We went to a great little bar in downtown Abilene and discovered (much to my disappointment) Abilene Texas is NOT the “prettiest town that I ever seen” — that song is about Abilene Kansas. But there were some very interesting women there, and they didn’t “treat us mean” so we had fun.

    In Austin, we had booked an Air BnB on a whim — an Airstream Trailer in somebody’s backyard. The on-line photo was taken at an angle which made it look quite large, which shows how clever the photographer was. There was barely space for the 4 of us to be in the structure at one time. If Tarjei and I were lying in bed, Boots and Jabba could fit on the floor. So we were very snug.

    We met up with Charlotte (my med school friend) and her husband Barry — they were visiting their son who is doing his PhD in Austin. Charlotte and I went swimming in Barton Springs — a huge natural spring — and the Guys & Dogs went to a canine-friendly bar for local brew. Both the beer and Barton Springs were very large, very cold, and lovely. All of Austin seemed to be dog-friendly. The restaurants had outdoor patios where every table had one or two dogs on leash, and dogs were expected to treat people & other dogs with civility. Jabba and Boots adjusted quickly except for the occasional raised hackles and throaty growl by Boots.

    We had an evening kayak paddle on LadyBird Lake in downtown Austin and watched thousands of bats emerge from under a bridge.

    In San Antonio We visited the Museum of Art and the Zoo. We saw one of my favorite singers, Iris Dement, in concert. (“Let the Mystery Be”, brilliant song, will be heard at my funeral.) She galvanized the audience and had us singing along with protest songs like it was 1968.

    Right now we are driving to Wimberly, Texas to visit our friend Angier Peavy for a couple of days. Who knows what adventures we will have with Angier, who used to be in the American foreign service.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Travis County, مقاطعة ترافيز, Травис, ট্রাভিস কাউন্টি, Kantono Travis, Condado de Travis, Travis konderria, شهرستان تراویس، تگزاس, Comté de Travis, Travis megye, Թրևիս շրջան, Contea di Travis, トラヴィス郡, Travis Comitatus, Travis Kūn, Hrabstwo Travis, ٹریووس کاؤنٹی, Comitatul Travis, Тревис, Округ Травис, Тревіс, ٹریوس کاؤنٹی، ٹیکساس, Quận Travis, Condado han Travis, 特拉維斯縣