Austin has made its mark on the South as one of our region’s coolest, hippest cities. As America’s live-music capital, this vibrant cultural hub is bursting with entertainment and activity. From its booming nightlife to innovative food scene, you’ll have a hard time choosing what not to include on your itinerary. Summer is a big time for the city with music festivals and an abundance of outdoor activities. Schedule your trip to Austin over the Fourth of July for a front row seat to the city in all its patriotic glory.
Hill Country Galleria
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About 30 minutes outside of the city, the Hill Country Galleria Independence Day Celebration dubs its fireworks show the best in Central Texas. Parking and admission is free, so pack up the family for an event filled with fun for all ages to enjoy. Carnival games and vendors fill the streets, and live music plays into the night. Grab a plate of barbecue and your spot at the outdoor Amphitheater to watch the fireworks.
Austin Symphony July 4th Concert & Fireworks
This annual event draws hundreds of thousands of people each year. Austin’s largest Fourth of July celebration is free and open to the public, so you’ll want to arrive early to claim your spot. The Austin Symphony Orchestra kicks off its performance of patriotic tunes at Auditorium Shores at 8:30 p.m., and the fireworks show begins an hour later. You’ll also be able to watch this fireworks show from other places around the city, like Zilker Metropolitan Park, Ann W. Richards Congress Avenue Bridge, or Lady Bird Lake and its surrounding trails.
Head to Round Rock’s July Fourth Frontier Days Celebration & Sertoma July Fourth Parade for a full day of patriotic events. The parade makes its way through downtown starting at 10 a.m. And what’s a Texas celebration without a tribute to the state’s history? Staged shootouts, cowboy sing-a-longs, and pig races are just a few of the Wild West traditions on the schedule. (Don’t leave your cowboy hat at home.) Fireworks begin at dark, followed by a movie streamed in the park.
Austin 360 Bridge Overlook
Lace up your tennis shoes and take the short, 10-minute hike to the Austin 360 Bridge Overlook for unparalleled views of the city. On the banks of the Colorado River, the overlook offers a 360-degree view of Texas’ Hill Country and Austin’s downtown skyline. The spot is a major draw for locals and tourists alike on the Fourth, so get there early for a prime spot. Before you leave Austin, visit the overlook again to take in a picturesque sunset over the city.
Scope out a rooftop bar or restaurant to celebrate the Fourth in the middle of Austin’s booming nighttime scene. The open-air venues will probably have food and drink specials throughout the day, so you don’t have to wait until dark to enjoy the festivities. For other unobstructed views of Austin, go to the top of a parking garage or an apartment complex to watch fireworks shows taking off from around the city.