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10 Indoor Austin Activities for Family Fun, Date Nights and More

No matter the weather, these spots offer creative ways to enjoy the days and nights while staying inside

Austin Central Library (photo by Heidi Okla)

Our fair city has plenty of amazing experiences for indoor fun. Whether you want to tap into your artistic side, entertain the kiddos for hours, or just find some solitude, these excursions will keep you entertained during any season in Austin.

Go underground at Inner Space Cavern

Take a trip to the ’burbs for this natural wonder. Hidden for over 10,000 years, Inner Space Cavern is one of the best-preserved caves in Texas and has been opened to the public since 1966. The amazing cave has beautiful formations, large rooms, prehistoric animal bones, and, even better, it remains a constant 72 degrees.

Keep cool underground (photo courtesy of Inner Space Caverns)

Have a reel good time at Paramount Theatre

It’s hard not to feel like you’ve stepped back in time when you walk into the over-a-century-old Paramount Theatre where magician Harry Houdini once performed. Grab a popcorn and head to the balcony to catch an old-timey (or modern) classic film.

Best Austin Movie Theaters – Paramount Theatre
Paramount Theatre (photo by Bells and Whistles Productions)

Strike out at Bull & Bowl

What do you get when you combine duckpin bowling, billiards, private karaoke, shuffleboard, arcade games and even a mechanical bull? The answer is Bull & Bowl. For those not already in the know, duck pin bowling is played similarly to the “Big Lebowski’’ game we all know and love, except you get three rolls, the balls and pins are smaller and the lane is shorter. Better yet: you don’t have to rent shoes, which makes it already significantly less disgusting and more fun.

Bowling beats the heat (photo courtesy of Bull and Bowl)

Get lit at the Central Library

Not only is the downtown Austin Public Library simply stunning, there’s also the rooftop views, first floor art gallery, 5th floor Digital Maker Space, but there are also books here. That’s right, books. What more do you need to while away the day?

Austin Central Library (photo by Heidi Okla)

Reach the top at Austin Bouldering Project

Whether you’re an expert climber or a newbie, the Austin Bouldering Project is the perfect place to soar to new heights without having to actually be dangling off a cliff out in the Texas sun. With a second location off Westgate, it’s now easier than ever for South Austinites to get their climbing fix. In addition to different climbing options, there are fitness classes, yoga, weights and even walls specially designed for kids.

Austin Bouldering Project (photo by Stephen Hu)

Reenact “Ghost” at Broad Studios Club House

Saturday nights are even more romantic at this Springdale pottery studio, Broad Studios. The date night classes are a perfect way to learn how to throw clay on the wheel and make pots together. Each couple receives a lesson, two pre-centered balls of clay, a bottle of wine and a personal charcuterie or cheese board by Spread & Co. Don’t be surprised if you’re humming “Unchained Melody” the whole time.

(photo courtesy of Broad Studios)

Game on at Cidercade

Leave the quarters at home, folks. Pay the $12 admission fee and get unlimited game play on more than 150 arcade games. But this isn’t the mall arcade you grew up with – Cidercade also offers 45 taps of hard ciders, seltzers, kombuchas, beers and more, as well as cocktails, thin crust artisan pizza and wings.

Arcade games for all ages (photo courtesy of Cidercade Austin)

Be illuminated at Wonderspaces

No matter how you feel about Instagram photo-op pop-ups, Wonderspaces is definitely more interesting than just a selfie spot. The immersive and interactive art show presents 17 extraordinary art installations that make incredible use of lights, video and 3-D printing. Oh, and also there’s a full bar.

Get playful in Wonderspaces (photo by Devon Hutchins)

Learn Something New Every Day

While our city may be known more for its music than its museums, it’s hard not to feel like a kid again on a field trip when visiting one of these informative institutions. The Blanton Museum of Art offers world-class art displays, including the famous Ellsworth Kelly chapel. The Harry Ransom Center has free admission — and one of the last remaining Guttenburg bibles. The Bullock Texas State History Museum features important Texas history (and the best IMAX theater in town). The LBJ Presidential Library is not just for president buffs, as its temporary exhibits are usually as equally enthralling as the animatronic LBJ is creepy.

Best Austin Movie Theaters – Bullock
(photo courtesy of Bullock Texas State History Museum)

Set your kiddos free at the Thinkery

Just need to entertain your children and let them burn off energy without throwing them into the sweltering heat? With exhibits like Train Town, Light Lab and Fresh! Farmers Market, the Thinkery children’s museum is the perfect place to have fun while also learning at the same time.

Fun for the kiddos at Thinkery (photo by Michael Gail Photography)