5 Reasons Why Austin Really Is America’s Coolest City

AWOL, Qantas' youth travel website , August 2015

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Nothing beats Texas for a truly authentic Southern experience and Austin, the Lone Star state’s capital, shows off what it’s all about. A city of less than 900,000 people, it’s got that small town feeling — friendly people and a relaxed vibe — and despite its rapid growth and recognition as one of the USA’s hottest music and food destinations, it’s kept the unique and quirky style it’s become known for.

Eye-catching flashing neon signs inspired by the American roadhouse add a retro flair to the city’s shops while hipsters in vintage and cowboy hat-toting Texans mingle on street corners. There’s a reason the city’s slogan is ‘Keep Austin Weird’ — weird in a good way — and here’s what you shouldn’t miss.