Best Austin Bat Tour in 2023
Welcome to Austin, Texas – the home of the world’s largest urban bat colony! There are many options for an Austin bat tour that offers locals and visitors alike the opportunity to see this amazing nature experience each evening.
With up to 2 million bats during the peak of the season, this natural phenomenon is truly a sight to behold. As the sun begins to set, a flurry of activity begins under the Congress Avenue Bridge as the colony of Mexican free-tailed bats wake up for feeding. And as the darkness sets in, the bats take to the sky, creating an unforgettable spectacle as they head toward the eastern part of downtown.
So grab a spot along the bridge or join in on of the guided bat tours is Austin, TX and prepare to be amazed as you witness this natural wonder firsthand. It is one of our favorite Austin activities to share with visitors.
If you’re looking to witness the incredible sight of Austin bat watching flying out from the Congress Avenue Bridge, we strongly encourage you to take a bat tour in Austin. These tours are a popular way for locals and tourists alike to experience the world’s largest urban bat colony and for experienced guides to take their group to just the right spot to observe them. A bat tour is one of the best things to do in Austin!
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Our #1 Top Pick
This Congress Avenue Bat Bridge Kayak Tour is our top pick for viewing the bats from waters of Lady Bird Lake at sunset!
With over a hundred great reviews, this tour is one of the most popular!
There are many tour operators in Austin that offer a variety of options for viewing the bats. One of the most popular ways to see the bats is from a bat boat tour in Austin on Lady Bird Lake, which gives you a unique perspective from the water. Other options include standing on the bridge itself or watching from the riverbanks.
Some tours also include a knowledgeable guide who will provide you with interesting facts and information about the bats and their behavior.
It’s important to note that while the bats are a unique attraction, they are still wild animals and should be respected as such. Tour operators generally prioritize the safety and well-being of the bats, and may limit the number of boats or people allowed in certain areas to minimize disturbance to the colony.
There are several options for taking a bat cruise in Austin, but to save you time, our top three picks are below. This article breaks down the best options for a bat tour in Austin so that you can check them out in detail if you’d like!
All bat watching tours listed below have practically all 5 star reviews with many happy guests. Choose the Austin bat tour that fits your group best!
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Our Top 3 Picks:
Bat Boat Tour in Austin:
1. Congress Avenue Bat Bridge Kayak Tour in Austin – TOP #1 PICK
- 4.5/5 stars
- 110+ Reviews
- 2 hour tour
Looking for a more immersive way to experience the world’s largest urban bat colony in Austin? Consider taking this Congress Avenue Bat Bridge Kayak Tour. This is my favorite bat tour – a two-hour guided sunset bat cruise in Austin that allows you to observe the bats from the comfort of your own kayak.
Not only does this tour provide an unforgettable experience, but it also eliminates the stress of finding a prime parking spot or a crowded spot along the river to sit. You’ll be able to paddle your kayak to the perfect viewing spot while enjoying the beautiful scenery of Lady Bird Lake.
Don’t worry if you’ve never kayaked before, no experience is needed. The professional guide will provide a paddle lesson and safety instructions to ensure that you feel comfortable and confident on the water. You’ll also be provided with a life jacket for added safety on this kayak bat tour in Austin.
As the sun begins to set, the bats start to stir under the Congress Avenue Bridge. You’ll witness the breathtaking sight of more than a million bats taking flight as they head out to hunt for insects. The professional guide will provide you with interesting facts and information about the bats, including their behavior and the important role they play in the ecosystem.
This bat boat tour in Austin is an excellent way to witness this natural wonder while enjoying a peaceful and scenic paddle on Lady Bird Lake. It’s truly an Austin bucket list activity!
- Experience the bat phenomenon from the water
- Easy parking
- Professional Guide
- Get to Kayak on Lady Bird Lake at sunset
Bat Tour Austin + Rides:
2. Congress Avenue Bats Bike Tour
- 5/5 stars
- 7+ Reviews
- 2.5 hour tour
For an active way to experience Austin’s famous bat colony, consider taking the Congress Avenue Bats Bike Tour. This 2.5 hour tour takes you on a 10-mile ride, allowing you to learn about the city’s history and enjoy the scenic beauty of Lady Bird Lake before arriving at the Congress Avenue Bridge just in time to witness the more than 1.5 million bats as they take flight for their evening feeding.
A professional guide and all bike equipment are included, so you don’t have to worry about bringing your own gear. The tour begins with a ride along the Lady Bird Lake Hike-and-Bike Trail, one of Austin’s most scenic routes. Along the way, you’ll see Zilker Park and Barton Springs, two of the city’s most iconic attractions.
The Congress Avenue Bats Bike Tour is an excellent way to see a different side of Austin’s legendary nightlife while also getting some exercise and enjoying the city’s beautiful scenery.
- Professional guide + gear included
- Fun way to get exercise!
- Perfect bat view at sunset
- Mini-tour of the city’s landmarks
3. Austin Famous Ghost and Bat Segway Tour
- 4.5/5 stars
- 115+ Reviews
- 2.5 hour tour
If you’re looking for a thrilling and unique way to explore Austin’s famous landmarks, consider taking the Austin Famous Ghost and Bat Segway Tour. This 2.5-hour tour offers a spooky twist on the typical sightseeing experience, featuring both the city’s famous bat colony and its haunted history.
Offered from spring through fall, this Segway tour takes you downtown to explore the city’s historic buildings, including haunted hotels and landmarks. You’ll hear ghostly tales behind Austin’s iconic buildings and learn about the city’s spooky past.
The tour then takes you to witness the world’s largest urban bat colony emerge from the Congress Bridge at sunset. You’ll watch in awe as more than 1.5 million South Congress bats take flight, heading out to hunt for insects in the night sky.
In addition to the bats, you’ll also see other famous landmarks like the Texas State Capitol Building, Moonlight Towers, Lady Bird Lake, and the 6th Street Entertainment district. And don’t worry if you’ve never ridden a Segway before – you’ll receive instruction and learn how to ride before the tour begins.
- Most reviewed tour
- Historic, haunted story-telling
- Easy to learn Segway for transportatin
- Professional Guide
Bat Tours in Austin Guide + FAQs
When do the bats fly in Austin?
The bats in Austin, Texas usually start to emerge from under the Congress Avenue Bridge at sunset from late March through November. The peak season for bat-watching is typically from mid-June to mid-August, when the largest number of bats are present.
However, the exact timing can vary depending on weather conditions and other factors, so it’s a good idea to check with local tour operators for the latest information on bat flight times.
What months can you see the bat bridge in Austin?
From late March to November, visitors to Austin, Texas can witness the fascinating emergence of bats from under the Congress Avenue Bridge at sunset. The prime time for bat-watching is during the peak season from mid-June to mid-August, when the largest population of bats can be seen in flight.
What is the best bat viewing spot in Austin?
If you’re looking for the best bat viewing spot in Austin, there are a few options available. One popular way to watch the bats is by taking a bat boat tour on Lady Bird Lake. With an experienced guide leading the way, you can sit back and relax as you take in the sight of over 1.5 million bats taking flight from the Congress Avenue Bridge.
Another great option is to watch the bats from the Lady Bird Lake hike-and-bike trail, which offers a stunning view of the bats as they fly overhead. Many tour operators offer guided bike tours along the trail, which is a perfect way to explore the area and learn more about Austin’s history and culture while taking in the bat spectacle.
What is the best time to see bats in Austin?
The best time to see bats in Austin is from late March to November. During this time, the bats are present in the area and can be seen flying out from under the Congress Avenue Bridge at sunset. The peak season for bat-watching is typically from mid-June to mid-August, when the largest number of bats are present.
The exact timing of the bat emergence can vary depending on weather conditions, so it’s important to check with local tour operators. However, in general, the bats start to emerge from the bridge at sunset, so it’s recommended to arrive at the viewing location about 30 minutes before sunset to ensure you don’t miss it!
What date do the bats come out in Austin?
The emergence of bats from under the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin is a natural phenomenon that typically occurs daily from late March through November at sunset. However, the exact date and time can vary from year to year, and is dependent on a number of factors such as weather conditions and the behavior of the bats.
The peak season for bat-watching in Austin is generally from mid-June to mid-August, as this is when the largest number of bats are present. During this time, visitors have a greater chance of observing the bats as they swarm out from under the bridge in search of food.
Austin, Texas Bat Tours + Cruises
Taking a bat tour in Austin is a must-do experience that should be on everyone’s bucket list! Whether you choose to watch the bats from a kayak, bike, or segway, you’re sure to be amazed by the sight of more than 1.5 million bats taking flight from under the Congress Avenue Bridge.
And with the added bonus of exploring the city’s iconic landmarks and learning about its history, a bat tour in Austin is truly a one-of-a-kind experience that you won’t forget.
So why wait? Book your bat cruise in Austin and get ready for an unforgettable adventure in the heart of Texas!