Zilker Metropolitan Park: An Oasis in Austin.

Zilker Metropolitan Park has been named 'Austin's most loved park'; and it certainly does deserve this praise as it boasts a large variety of things to see and do throughout the year for the whole family. Located in the heart of Austin, there are so many activities and events held in the park throughout the year that you are bound to want to come back at different times to visit again.

The 351 acre Zilker Metropolitan Park is a place for the whole family to enjoy. With a large variety of activities and recreational fun to partake in, it should be a stop on your next trip. Kids will have a ball on the many slides and swings that grace the parks more than ten playscapes. Many of them can even be reserved for large gatherings and thus a great place to host a family reunion or a birthday party. There is also several volleyball courts to enjoy, a nine whole disc golf course and many other sports fields to enjoy while visiting in the Park.

Another great thing to do while visiting the park is to explore the city while hiking or biking along its many trails. With over 50 miles of easy to travel scenic paths that take you into and around all areas of the city of Austin, it is a great place to enjoy. There are paths that follow along the Town Lake which allow you to take in the beauty of the river as well as see some of the cityscape. For those that would rather be away from the noise of the city there is a more secluded area of the park called Slaughter Creek Metropolitan Park. This is a biker's paradise with over a mile of trail with no walkers or runners allowed. A must stop haven for those who enjoy traveling on wheels.

There are many other ways to enjoy the park as well. For train enthusiasts riding the Zilker Zephyr miniature train that runs through the park is a treat. If you enjoy boating more, then you should check out Zilker Park Boat Rentals. Here, you can rent your own canoe and take a leisurely paddle along the river. Or visit the Rowing Dock where you can rent a kayak or paddle boat. You don't have to worry too much if you have no boating experience, they will give you lessons if you need them. No matter which you decide to check out, exploring Zilker Park on the water is definitely a must. If paddling is not your think, then you should take a trip up river on the Lone Star Riverboat. This is a great way to enjoy a leisurely ride on the river, see the park in all of its glory and also visit the Congress Avenue Bridge Bats. This is an Austin Original spectacle that you will not want to miss when visiting on Town Lake and Zilker Park. From April to October millions of Mexican Free tailed bats grace the sky with their presence at sunset. It is a spectacular site to see and made even better if you are on the river while it is occurring.

If you are looking for a little more water fun, there is the three acre Barton Springs Pool which is heated year round to 68 degrees by natural underground springs. There is also Deep Eddy another natural spring fed pool that has more shallow waters to enjoy. It is also a hot spot for gathering and watching a movie every Saturday evening in the summer.

If you are looking for something that is more along the educational lines then you are in luck. Zilker Park is home to the Zilker Botanical Gardens which has a beautiful Japanese oriental garden and the Austin Area Garden Center to explore. There is also the Austin Nature and Science Center which has activities for kids of all ages. You will be able to see some of the local animals as well as learn about dinosaurs and dig in a Dino Pit. It is also a great way to explore natural science by visiting the Naturalist Workshop. It is a great way to get up close and personal with the natural world around you. These are great places to visit to learn more about nature and science in a fun and entertaining environment.

If you are looking for a more relaxing laid back activity, then you need to check out the Zilker Hillside Theatre. From March to August, they host a wide range of music concerts that you can enjoy while eating a picnic. You can also catch a variety of other programs from dance groups to a Summer Musical. It is a fun and relaxing time for all.

While visiting in Austin you need to make sure that you spend a day or two in Zilker Metropolitan Park. Stop by one of the many authentic Austin restaurants in the area, pick up some good cuisine and head on over to Zilker Park to enjoy a truly Austin experience. You will find it a relaxing enjoyment that will take you away from the hustle and bustle of your busy life, like a real vacation should be.

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