What people consider “Central Austin'' is likely to change depending on who you ask. Loosely, Central Austin is South of 183 and North of 15th Street. It’s home to the gigantic University of Texas Austin (hook ‘em, horns!) and homes in Central Austin tend to vary from the austere and contemporary to 1950s Craftsmans. The neighborhood is brimming with people, including college kids renting with their roomies and young families with kids who love playing in the streets. The famous Hyde Park, Clarksville, and North Loop neighborhoods are also included in this part of town, all of which are noted for their rich history and lovely streets. Bear in mind, the neighborhoods in Central Austin can be pricey and many of the large lots have also been chopped in half and repurposed for multi-unit homes. Even if you wind up with less square footage than you thought, you’ll benefit from the fact that there are still plenty of lively patios to work remotely from in the area, including Quack’s, a bakery with cookies that shouldn’t be passed on, the coffee shop Epoch, and Uncle Nicky’s which really comes through when the lunchtime pasta craving hits.
Central Austin offers plenty to do, especially for foodies determined to try every good restaurant—Bufalina Pizza, Barley Swine, and Lick Ice Creams are all located within the same plaza on Burnet Road. There are several dive and cocktail bars to wet your whistle, including Barfly’s and The Tigress Pub, which is a great after-work spot across from The Commune coworking space on North Loop. For true Texas fun, you won’t find anywhere else, head to the famous Little Longhorn Saloon for Chicken Sh*t Bingo on Sundays. Every week, patrons place bets on where the chicken will…well, you can guess the rest. The game coincides with a huge tailgate party and the winner of the bingo gets a prize.
Given its central location, this part of town has easy access to almost the entire city and is a great place to bike to and from, including several coworking spaces on our list, including Vuka and Common Desk. At dusk, you’ll find plenty of joggers running the trails of Pease Park, as well as dogs roaming in the designated off-leash area. If you like cooking with fresh ingredients, H-E-B-owned Central Market is one of the best grocery stores in town.
This native Austinite has written for local publications like Tribeza and Austin Monthly. When she's not at her computer, you'll find her at a movie theater, practicing her crow pose, or snuggling with her cat.
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