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Zilker Metropolitan Park

Zilker Metropolitan Park

Zilker Metropolitan Park is a cherished oasis in the heart of Austin, Texas that has captivated locals and visitors for over a century. Nestled in 351 acres of pristine greenery, the park offers an array of recreational activities, facilities, and events that cater to the welfare of its patrons.

Whether seeking a peaceful retreat from the hustle of city life or an adventure with friends and family, Zilker Metropolitan Park has something for everyone.

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As the oldest metropolitan park in Austin, Zilker Metropolitan Park holds a special place in the hearts of its residents. Named after the philanthropist Andrew Jackson Zilker, who donated parcels of land to the city in 1917, the park has been a beloved hub of community life for generations.

From picnicking under the shade of towering trees to playing a game of disc golf or volleyball, from strolling along the banks of Lady Bird Lake to attending famous events like the Austin City Limits Music Festival and the Trail of Lights, Zilker Metropolitan Park is a timeless symbol of the city’s vibrant culture and spirit.


Looking for a fantastic spot to enjoy nature, recreation, and special events in Austin? Look no further than Zilker Metropolitan Park, located in the city’s heart.

This 351-acre green oasis is Austin’s most-loved park, offering visitors many facilities and recreation opportunities. From the Zilker Playscape and Disc Golf Course to the Austin Nature and Science Center and Barton Springs Pool, there’s something for everyone at Zilker Metropolitan Park.

Zilker Metropolitan Park is currently undergoing a planning process, which will help ensure that the park continues to meet the community’s needs. Despite this ongoing work, the park remains open and accessible. Visitors can park at one of the park-wide pay stations for a small fee or take advantage of the free Zilker Shuttle service, which runs every weekend and during certain holidays. Pets are not allowed on the shuttle.

If you are digging for a location to relax with your friends and loved ones, exercise, or attend a special event, Zilker Metropolitan Park is the perfect destination. The park’s rich history, beautiful scenery, and many facilities make it one of Austin’s most iconic attractions.

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So why plan a visit today and see what makes Zilker Metropolitan Park such a special place?

Facilities and Activities

You’ll find plenty of options for recreation and relaxation at Zilker Metropolitan Park. The park boasts a playscape, a favorite among young children, and a disc golf course for those who enjoy a challenging game. Five reservable volleyball courts are also for groups wanting to enjoy friendly competition.

Zilker Metropolitan Park also has several facilities perfect for hosting events and celebrations. The Zilker Club House, for example, is a popular reservation site for weddings and parties. Visitors can also explore the Austin Nature and Science Center, which offers hands-on exhibits and educational programs about the natural world. If you enjoy scenic views, the Zilker Botanical Gardens are perfect! You will discover many types of plants from different countries.

Access to Lady Bird Lake is available at select designated areas within the park. Visitors can jog, walk, or bike along the trails around the lake or rent a kayak or paddleboard to explore the water.

With so many options for activities and facilities, it’s no wonder that Zilker Metropolitan Park is one of Austin’s most beloved attractions.


Zilker Metropolitan Park

If you’re planning a trip to Austin’s most popular outdoor destination, getting to this expansive green space is easy, with several transportation options available.

The #30 bus route goes through the park and stops at different locations along Barton Springs Road. Additionally, visitors can utilize the free Zilker Shuttle service, available every Saturday and Sunday, during Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day holidays from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.

The Zilker Shuttle service is a convenient and environmentally-friendly way to get to the park. This assistance is provided by the City of Austin and is free of charge. Visitors can hop on the shuttle at any designated stop and ride to their desired location within the park. Pets are not allowed on the shuttle, so visitors should plan accordingly.

For those who prefer to drive, ample parking is available at Zilker Metropolitan Park. Visitors should be wary of a seasonal paid parking fee of $7 per vehicle on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays from 8 am to 10 pm. Pay stations are available park-wide, including lots near the Stratford area and off Azie Morton.

A $7 parking fee is payable at park-wide pay stations on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays from March to September. All parking is first come, first-served.


Austin’s oldest and most beloved green space has a rich history. A significant development occurred in the 1930s through New Deal programs, earning it a spot on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997. Zilker Metropolitan Park is named after Andrew Jackson Zilker, who generously donated pieces of land to the city in 1917.

The park is situated at the juncture of Barton Creek and Lady Bird Lake, making it a popular destination for locals and tourists. During the Great Depression, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and Works Progress Administration (WPA) contributed to the park’s development by constructing the Barton Springs Pool, Zilker Clubhouse, and other amenities.

In the 1970s, the park became a venue for large-scale events such as the Aqua Fest and the Kite Festival. Today, it hosts signature park events such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival, Zilker Summer Musical, and the Zilker Holiday Tree lighting ceremony.

Zilker Metropolitan Park remains a cherished landmark in Austin’s history. With over 350 acres of green space, the park offers a variety of recreational opportunities, facilities, and special events. Zilker Metropolitan Park is a testament to the city’s adherence to preserving its natural beauty and providing residents with a space to gather and enjoy the outdoors.

Permits and Regulations

Before planning any activities or events in the area, familiarize yourself with the necessary permits and regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable event.

Concessions and sales are only allowed by permitted and contracted vendors. Amplified sound and alcohol consumption is only permitted at rental sites with a paid reservation. Fitness groups and trainers require permits, fees, and requirements for regularly scheduled activities at select sites. Public events, alcohol, and amplified sound require permits. Filming and photo permits are required for any film or photography production. Commercial activity, sampling, product demonstrations, and giveaways require review and approval from the park system.

The park system has regulations to ensure all visitors’ safety and enjoyment. The park prohibits smoking, glass containers, and pets in certain areas. Visitors are expected to keep the park clean and dispose of trash properly. The park also has designated fishing and swimming areas, and visitors must follow all safety guidelines. Failure to comply with restrictions may result in fines or other penalties.

Visitors should also know that the park has limited parking, and all parking is first-come, first-served. Seasonal paid parking is available on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays from 8 am to 10 pm. Pay stations are available park-wide. Visitors can also take the #30 bus or the free Zilker Shuttle service, which runs every Saturday and Sunday during Memorial Day, the 4th of July, and Labor Day holidays from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.

Planning and understanding the regulations can ensure a pleasant experience at Zilker Metropolitan Park.


Ready for some fun? Check out the upcoming events at this beloved Austin park!

Zilker Metropolitan Park is known for hosting various events yearly, including large-scale festivals and signature park events. The Austin City Limits Music Festival, the Trail of Lights, and the Zilker Park Kite Festival are popular events in this beautiful park.

One of the signature events that draws thousands of visitors each year is the ABC Kite Festival. This free event features kite-flying contests, food vendors, and live music.

Another popular event is the Zilker Summer Musical, held at the Zilker Hillside Theatre. This outdoor theatre, nestled in the park’s rolling hills, provides a unique and scenic setting for this annual tradition.

Blues on the Green is another favorite event in Zilker Metropolitan Park. This free concert series features local musicians and draws crowds of all ages.

Whether you’re a music lover, a kite lover, or simply looking for a delightful day out with family and friends, Zilker Metropolitan Park has something for everyone. So mark your calendars and prepare to experience this beloved park’s excitement and community spirit.

Other Information

Take advantage of all the practical information and helpful resources available to enhance your experience at this beloved Austin gem. Zilker Metropolitan Park offers a variety of resources and amenities to ensure visitors have a safe and enjoyable time. Here are items to keep in mind while exploring the park:

– Visitors can access a park map to easily navigate and locate specific facilities and activities.

– To report any non-emergency park issues, visitors can call 3-1-1 or submit a maintenance concern online through the 3-1-1 website.

– In park emergencies, visitors should call 9-1-1 for prompt assistance.

– Cap Metro’s Trip Planner feature is available to help visitors prepare for their trip to the park and find the best transportation options.

Additionally, visitors can provide feedback on the Zilker Shuttle service by emailing It is important to note that pets are not allowed on the shuttle.

With its rich history and diverse facilities, Zilker Metropolitan Park has become a destination for locals and tourists. Make the most of your stop by enjoying the park’s resources and all it offers.

Whether looking for a peaceful picnic spot or an exciting festival experience, Zilker Metropolitan Park has something for everyone. With regular events such as the ABC Kite Festival, Zilker Summer Musical, and Blues on the Green, the park is always buzzing with activity.

With its convenient location and ample facilities, Zilker Metropolitan Park is the perfect place to spend a day outdoors.


In conclusion, Zilker Metropolitan Park is a well-loved and highly utilized green space in Austin, Texas. Visitors can enjoy everything from picnics to disc golf to volleyball, thanks to its wide range of facilities and activities. The park’s access to Lady Bird Lake only adds to its appeal.

Visitors can utilize public transportation or the free Zilker Shuttle service to get to the park but should be aware of seasonal parking fees on weekends and holidays. Zilker Metropolitan Park has a rich history, named after Andrew Jackson Zilker, who donated parcels of land to the city in 1917.

Currently, the park is undergoing a planning process to further improve its amenities and offerings. Permits and regulations exist for specific activities and events, including popular events such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival and the Trail of Lights.

Overall, Zilker Metropolitan Park is a must-visit goal for anyone looking to enjoy the great outdoors in Austin.

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