Words and Photos by Kristen Olson
There’s nothing quite like a Texas sunset. Living in a city like Austin, you might think you’ll be sacrificing the chance to see those glorious colors changing in the big Texas sky every evening. But there’s no need to drive far away from the city for a sunset experience—there are plenty of places right here in Austin that offer beautiful views of the sky that this state is known for.
An obvious choice but beautiful nonetheless, Mount Bonnell offers an aerial view of the Colorado River and plenty of wide-open sky space (pictured above). Legend has it that when Sam Houston visited the summit in the 1850s, he remarked, “This must be the very identical spot where the devil took our Savior to show and tempt Him with the riches and beauties of the world!” Once you perch up on the cliffs and see the sun setting over the river and hills, you’ll understand.
6550 Comanche Trail
Located on Lake Travis, The Oasis is a Tex-Mex restaurant—but enchiladas will be the last thing on your mind when the golden hour strikes. Levels of tiered decks ensure everyone has a spectacular view of the sun dipping below the lake water, with nothing but sky surrounding it. Soon enough, your dinner table and margaritas will be drenched in pink sunlight.
Mozart’s Coffee Roasters
3825 Lake Austin Blvd
To enjoy the sunset with a pastry in one hand and latte in the other, go to Mozart’s on Lake Austin. Their patio is the perfect place to sit a spell, and you could catch sight of some turtles swimming around over the ledge. Stay past sunset, and live music acts might join the party too. If it’s wintertime, you’re in for a double feature—watch the sunset first, and then enjoy a sparkling Christmas lights show.
Sprawl out on the grass at Zilker Park with some Topo Chicos and settle in for a sublime Austin sunset. This location has a clear view of the city skyline, so your sunset experience will be extra special. Watch the sky changing colors behind the glittering buildings and keep your eyes peeled for a rainbow as well. Zilker tends to lean towards the magical side when it comes to matters of the sky.