STREET OF AUSTIN DURING SXSW 2016

The central region is evenly split between east and west with Congress Avenue as the dividing line. A number of tech companies, start-ups, hotels and banks can be found in this area, as well as local bars, coffee shops and restaurants. Many SXSW Interactive events take place in the southeast quadrant of this region, close to many of Austin’s hotels — like Hyatt Place Austin Downtown and the W Austin — as well as the Austin Convention Center. The Palmer Events Center is just about a mile south of Congress Avenue past the bridge.

While the gentrifying region east of Highway 35 doesn’t host a ton of official SXSW events, the bars in East Austin offer a more laid-back, hipster vibe, and many of the affordable Airbnb options close to downtown are on the East side. Crossing I-35 on foot is relatively straightforward at the street intersections — just be careful of fast-moving cars. Most pedicabs are willing to carry passengers into the area, but car-based options are best for distances beyond half a mile. Parking can be complicated, but it’s usually not as congested as downtown.

Photos and text Credit Boristhemoris