The past few years it has been tough to find a time to get all of my side of the family together. My parents are busy managing guests from all over (they have several Air Bnb properties in Lubbock!), and my sisters and I are right in the middle of building careers and raising kids- and at the time of this little vacation last month- BOTH of my sisters and their husbands were in the middle of moving houses. Yikes! So, it makes me so thankful when somehow, the stars align and we are able to all spend some precious time together.
This year, our goal was to do a bit of everything, but not too much of anything. :) We chose a large home by Lake Travis that had enough bedrooms for all (which is RARE), and a great kitchen and outdoor space to explore. We only had a few days so we did our best to carefully choose our activities!
Since having kids, we have decided that Air Bnb is the way to go when traveling as a family. Having the "real home" conveniences like a full size refrigerator, kitchen, and laundry are so helpful. I also LOVE having separate bedrooms for napping kids. If you haven't tried Air Bnb yet and would like to, here's $40 off your first reservation!
Our first meal stop was Opie's BBQ in Spicewood. It was just about 10 minutes away from our home, and the perfect place for lunch. Opie's is a open-till-we-run-out BBQ joint, and you literally pick out the meat you want from the cooker right when you walk in the door! It was delicious.
Our first adventure was Krause Springs. Initially, I wanted to visit Barton Springs, but found out that Krause Springs was closer to where we were staying, and possibly less crowded. The cost wasn't bad, either- $8 for adults, $5 for age 4-11, free for kids under 4. They only take cash though- just FYI!
There were quite a few people there, but it wasn't too bad. We brought towels/mexican blankets for the ground, floaties/pool toys, sunscreen/hats/change of clothes, a Yeti cooler full of beverages (alcohol is permitted), and a large bag of snacks. We also all wore Chacos or swim shoes- which are a necessity here.
There is actually a little "cave" pictured below that was fun to go inside as well as a huge rope swing.
Knox and Liv loved playing in the shallow pools on the rocks. The water was surprisingly clear and refreshingly cool. I put the kids in their "lake" swimsuits, and was glad I did because their booties ended up pretty dirty- totally worth it for the fun, though!
My niece, Hayden, was 5 months and I thought this pop-up tent that Layne brought was GENIUS ($25!). It stayed nice and cool, was easy to clean, and folded up so small. Here's the link to it on Amazon.
That night we came home to the MOST delicious pulled pork tacos, and then got to have some famous Milo biscuits in the morning. Having a chef for a brother-in-law definitely has its perks!
The next day we rented a ski boat from Briarcliff Marina and spent the day on Lake Travis. It was hot, but the water was like glass and it was so much fun to watch my brave 6 year old go tubing for the first time! He rode several times with an adult and then finally went a few times by himself! It was a blast.
Ever since I shot Michael + Cassidy's wedding, I've been wanting to go to Dai Due in Austin. So, we ventured into town that night and had the most incredible meal! We were a large party for the space (complete with stir-crazy kids), and the staff could not have been more accommodating. And of course, the food was unforgettable!
The last day, we had a girls/guys day. The guys booked a tee time thru golfnow.com and the ladies did a little shopping! My favorite stop was Revival TX in Bee Cave. We thought it looked cute from the road, and little did we know what we had stumbled upon! This shop had the cutest gifts and knick-knacks- and then it opens up to this huge courtyard with yet another boutique, a gorgeous succulent greenhouse and a VERY large pig named Hamlet. Definitely worth a stop!
That night, we ate on the patio at Angel's Icehouse. It was the perfect spot- they had a playground for the kids, washer pits, live music (throwback 70's, which my parents loved!) and we ended up staying for a while to play Sequence. It was the great ending to our quick trip!
All in all, we had a great trip and already have a list of things to do/places to see and eat when we are back in the Austin area! Reeeeaaaaalllly hoping we will get to book our friend's awesome property that boasts several modern tiny cabins! Seriously, go look at them!
Let me know if you have any questions about our trip or recs for future Austin area trips! I would love to start planning another adventure to this area!