Zilker Metropolitan Park

Zilker Metropolitan Park is a sprawling urban park located in Austin, Texas. It covers over 350 acres and features a variety of recreational activities for visitors of all ages. The park is home to Barton Springs Pool, a natural spring-fed swimming pool that is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. The park also offers numerous trails for hiking and biking, as well as sports fields, playgrounds, and picnic areas. 

In addition, Zilker Metropolitan Park is home to several popular festivals and events throughout the year, including the Austin City Limits Music Festival and the Zilker Kite Festival. With its scenic beauty and abundance of activities, Zilker Metropolitan Park is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Austin.

Brief History Of Zilker Metropolitan Park

Zilker Metropolitan Park was established in 1917 when Andrew Jackson Zilker donated the land to the city of Austin. The park was originally called Zilker Park, and it quickly became a popular destination for picnics and outdoor activities. In the 1920s and 1930s, the park underwent a series of improvements, including the construction of Barton Springs Pool and the Zilker Botanical Garden. 

During World War II, the park was used as a training ground for soldiers. In the 1960s and 1970s, the park became a hub for counterculture movements and music festivals, including the first Austin City Limits Music Festival. Today, Zilker Metropolitan Park remains a beloved destination for locals and tourists alike, offering a wide variety of recreational activities and hosting many popular events throughout the year.

Zilker Metropolitan Park Today

Zilker Park is a recreational hub with major activities and amenities, including Zilker Botanical Garden, Barton Springs Pool, Zilker Clubhouse, Austin Nature & Science Center, Sunshine Camp, Zilker Hillside Theater, Girl Scout Lodge, Umlauf Sculpture Gardens, McBeth Recreational Center, among others. The Park hosts popular events like Austin City Limits and Zilker Park Kite festivals today and attracts both local and international tourists.

Zilker Park has three picnic sites, one shelter, a disc golf course, and volleyball courts. Amenities like the Zilker Clubhouse are open for rental. The science center offers many fun programs for adults and children. In addition, there is a pool fed by spring water throughout the year. The botanical gardens include Austin Area Garden and Taniguchi Oriental Garden.

Zilker Metropolitan Park’s theatre hosts a variety of concerts ranging from Jazz to Country. The theatre also hosts Shakespeare in the Park and the popular Zilker Summer Musical. There are countless things to do in Zilker Metropolitan Park regardless of a person’s tastes and preferences.

Zilker Botanical Garden

Zilker Botanical Garden is a 28-acre garden located within Zilker Metropolitan Park in Austin, Texas. The garden features a diverse collection of plant species from around the world. It also has several themed gardens, including a Japanese garden, a rose garden, and a cactus and succulent garden. There is also a butterfly garden and a prehistoric garden with dinosaur sculptures. 

The garden hosts several events throughout the year, including the Zilker Garden Festival and the Woodland Faerie Trail. Visitors can explore the garden on their own or take guided tours. The garden is open year-round and admission fees are nominal, making it an affordable and enjoyable outing for families, nature lovers, and gardening enthusiasts alike.

Zilker Clubhouse

The Zilker Clubhouse is a historic building originally built in the 1930s as a community center for residents. It has since been renovated and restored and is now used as an event venue for weddings, parties, and other gatherings. The clubhouse features a large ballroom with a stage, as well as several smaller rooms and a kitchen. The building is surrounded by a spacious lawn area with picnic tables and a playground. 

The clubhouse offers a picturesque setting for events, with views of the park and nearby downtown Austin. It is managed by the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department and is available for rent to the public.


Zilker Metropolitan Park in Austin, Texas was established in 1917 when Andrew Zilker donated the land. The park is home to the Zilker Botanical Garden, a 28-acre garden with themed areas and various plant species. The Zilker Clubhouse, built in the 1930s as a community center, now serves as an event venue with a ballroom, smaller rooms, and a kitchen. These three attractions make Zilker Metropolitan Park a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.

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