You Won’t Want to Miss This: Bat Watching in Austin

If you’ve ever intended to visit Austin you probably did some research into the local attractions. In that case, you already know that bats fly out from underneath Congress Avenue Bridge into the evening skies.

With the sunset backdrop, the flying mammals offer a fine view to finish off days filled with music, Tex-Mex, and Texan history offered by the state capital. The Congress Avenue Bridge was renovated in 1980 and became a regular “bat cave” that attracted the migrating Mexican free-tailed bats. This was great for the city’s human residents as it both provided spectacular sunset entertainment and acted as natural bug infestation.

There are a few ways to watch the bats ascend. If you’re planning on simply showing up to sit on the curb, make sure you arrive early, since it gets rather busy. You can also hike along the Butler Trail until you find a spot that overlooks the bridge or if you’re feeling really sporty rent a kayak.

To see the bats, arrive at the location between March and September from 7.30 p.m. and plan to stick around for the better part of an hour, so that you can see as much of the show as possible.