So, don’t get me wrong, it can be a nice time to grab one of those delicious pitchers of blackout juice at Shakespeare’s, or head out to old favorites like the Rooftop, but let’s be honest: these bars are old and tired. Disco music and a ratchet dance floor? No thanks. How about mixing up your normal Dirty Sixth hit list and venturing into a couple of new bars? There’s giant Jenga, pickle shots and playgrounds involved. Here’s a list of fun bars in Austin that are worth dodging those oldies for.
Walk a block from Sixth to HandleBar for a change of pace. Known for their mustache paraphernalia, silly photo booth and rooftop playground with ring toss, cornhole and giant Jenga, there are a number of activities to keep you entertained. And once you’ve had a few drinks, check out the seesaw and rocking seahorse upstairs.
Location: 121 E. Fifth St.
Hours: Mon-Sat 2pm-2am, Sun 12pm-2am
2. Recess Arcade Bar
Recess Arcade Bar is exactly what it sounds like: an arcade that serves hard liquor and beer. What more could you want?
Location: 222 E. Fifth St.
Hours: Mon-Fri 5pm, Sat-Sun 2pm-2am
3. Bar 96
If you haven’t been to Rainey Street before, here’s my first recommendation. Bar 96 offers a relaxed atmosphere that advocates for the simple life: beer, cornhole, picnic tables and the Bimini ring game. What’s the Bimini ring game? You’ll have to go to find out.
Location: 96 Rainey St.
Hours: Mon-Fri 2pm-2am, Sat-Sun 11am-2am
4. Lucille Patio Lounge
Another Rainey Street original, Lucille is easily one of my favorite bars in Austin. Not only does the bar host a killer ambiance, with twinkling lights in the trees and hammocks to swing in, there are conversation cards and checkers on the tables, and a small putt-putt hole in the back. Bonus: if you get hungry, head next door to the local favorite pub, Banger’s, for some tasty treats.
Address: 77 Rainey St.
Hours: Mon-Th 5pm-2am, Fri&Sat 4pm-2am, Sun 5pm-close
5. Kung Fu Saloon
Feel like playin’ Pacman while having a beer? You’ve come to the right place. Kung Fu boasts several free activities including giant Jenga and always-free skeeball. There’s also a notorious pickle shot to try, if you dare.
Address: 510 Rio Grande St.
Hours: Mon-Fri 4pm-2am, Sat-Sun 11am-2am