The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria

#20 in Best Things To Do in Austin
The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria picture
Alexandra Velten/Wikimedia Commons

Key Info

3809 W 35th St


Museums, Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
  • 3.5Value
  • 3.5Facilities
  • 4.0Atmosphere

The first thing to realize when planning a visit to The Contemporary Austin is that two separate sites, Laguna Gloria and the Jones Center, divide the museum. The Laguna Gloria site doubles as an art school and is the more popular of the locations. In addition to students, Laguna Gloria houses the picturesque Driscoll Villa, the Betty and Edward Marcus Sculpture Park and the Gatehouse Gallery. While many of the exhibits at The Contemporary Austin rotate, fans of modern art will appreciate whatever Laguna Gloria happens to be showcasing during their visit.

The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria’s combined role as an art school and museum enchanted past visitors. Travelers enjoyed perusing the interesting sculptures that make up the sculpture park, as well as simply taking in Laguna Gloria’s beautiful grounds. They recommend spending a couple of hours at this serene escape from bustling Austin.

The museum’s location about 5 miles northwest of downtown Austin, near the Mayfield Park and Preserve, means that it is not easily accessible via public transit. Parking is available at the museum, though, as well as on the street nearby. The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday, while its surrounding grounds are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Access to the museum costs $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and students and is free for visitors younger than 18 years old. (Laguna Gloria is also free for all visitors on Tuesday.) Visit The Contemporary Austin’s website to learn more about its Laguna Gloria location, as well as details regarding the museum’s additional site near Austin’s Sixth Street.

See all Hotels in Austin »

More Best Things To Do in Austin

State Capitol
Mount Bonnell
Time to Spend
1 of 20
#1 State Capitol

Standing stoically in the heart of central Austin is Texas's legislative center, the State Capitol. Opened in 1888, this pink-granite landmark stands 14 feet taller than the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Much of the capitol, including the 218-foot rotunda, the chamber of the Hall of Representatives and the governor's receiving room, still look the same as they did when the capitol opened.

The structure underwent a large-scale restoration starting in the 1980s, including replacing the zinc statue of the Goddess of Liberty that sits atop the dome with an aluminum one. The restoration also included a 667,000-square-foot underground extension that was completed in 1993 to accommodate how much the state government had grown. Many visitors say it's the most impressive state legislative building they've ever seen, but they also warn it can be crowded at times. If you want to learn a bit of Texas history without having to pay an entrance fee, you can't beat a visit to the capitol building, according to past travelers.

Read more
Dave Wilson, WebArtz Photography /Getty Images
See full list of Best Things To Do in Austin »

Explore More of Austin


10 Amazing Montana Vacations

Breathtaking landscapes and year-round outdoor adventures will inspire you to visit Big Sky Country.

Gwen PratesiMay 20, 2019

The 13 Best Savannah Tours

Experience real southern hospitality when visiting Savannah with these top tours.

John RodwanMay 16, 2019

The 15 Best Boston Tours

Get to know one of America's most historic cities with these tours.

Kim Foley MacKinnonMay 14, 2019

The 18 Best New Orleans Tours

With so much to see and do in New Orleans, these tours will help you maximize your time in the Big Easy.

Claire LawtonMay 10, 2019

The 7 Best Chicago Boat Tours

These low-key tours offer unique views of a city famed for its skyline.

Holly JohnsonMay 9, 2019

30 Cheap Weekend Getaways in the USA

From beach destinations to amusement parks, these vacations are perfect for an affordable and quick trip.

Holly JohnsonMay 9, 2019

The 15 Best Chicago Tours

Foodies, boat enthusiasts and historians alike will appreciate any one of these tours of the Windy City.

John RodwanMay 8, 2019

16 Incredible Midwest Vacations

See which outstanding escapes showcase some of Middle America's top destinations.

Lyn MettlerApril 29, 2019

The 21 Most Beautiful Waterfalls to See Around the World

Discover which stunning falls offer once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences.

Kyle McCarthyApril 25, 2019

The 20 Best Michigan State Parks

Two peninsulas, four Great Lakes and innumerable natural highlights elevate Michigan's state parks.

Zach WatsonApril 18, 2019