May 2, 2022 - Things to Do

Austin's perfect running route

This roughly 7-mile route winds through the Blunn Creek Greenbelt Trail and loops around the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail. Screenshot: Strava

There are so many great routes in Austin, but this one stands out, starting with a peaceful trail before heading into a picturesque loop around Lady Bird Lake.

But, but, but: You don't have to enjoy the sport to spend some time on this route, with options for 2, 5 or 7 miles.

To start: Begin near the corner of East Oltorf Street and East Side Drive, beside Curra's Grill and Con Madre. There's free street parking.

  • Run north along East Side Drive, crossing the East Live Oak Street intersection and continuing down the road.
  • After that, hop onto the Blunn Creek Greenbelt Trail, which travels for about a mile before you reach the incredible mosaic bridge and head into Little Stacy Park. (If you're looking for a shorter run, the park is a great spot to turn around and travel back through the Travis Heights neighborhood.)
  • Stride through Little Stacy, say hi to the basketball and tennis players and maybe catch a glimpse of a tiny pony. You'll reach the end of the park — on the north side of the tennis courts — and head to Alameda Drive. (There's often a nice man watching the birds near the intersection of Alameda and East Side Drive. You're legally required to say hello.)

Next up: Keep traveling north down Alameda Drive and run across the crosswalk on Riverside Drive.

  • After traversing the crosswalk, and doing the royal wave to all the cars that stopped for you, take a left, heading westbound along Riverside Drive until you reach the first trail entrance.
  • Time to jump on the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail. Keep traveling west, down the boardwalk and snap a pic of the skyline.

It's almost over: Cross over the bridge. We're at about 3 miles at this point.

  • Follow the trail back toward Congress. You'll run up to road-level and cruise over the Congress bridge.
  • Now, you can hop back on the trail back and backtrack, hitting the Riverside crosswalk and running through Travis Heights.

Pro tip: For 5 miles, stay on the sidewalk along Congress and Riverside to end at Thom's Market for a treat. Or keep running down Riverside and up through Travis Heights to hit 7 miles.

Flashback: We pulled together five fun trails to add to your list.


Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Austin.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more

More Austin stories

No stories could be found


Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Austin.


Support local journalism by becoming a member.

Learn more