Austin’s ten-day SXSW festival (South by Southwest; sxsw.com), held in mid-March, has become the pre-eminent music and film conference in the nation – and quite a bit more besides. In recent years it’s also morphed into one of the nation’s foremost stages for tech companies to display their latest creations, reflecting Austin’s surging stock in the industry.

Even if you can’t afford to attend, the city is an exciting place to be during SXSW and there are literally hundreds of unofficial gigs and events open to all. To most locals, in fact, what’s going on inside the conference is of secondary importance to the opportunity to catch some of the best acts on the planet in their favourite haunts.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

USA features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

7 places to get off the tourist trail in New York City

7 places to get off the tourist trail in New York City

Ticked off New York City’s big sights and wondering where to go next? From sinking a pint in Brooklyn's Red Hook to sampling Italian delicacies in The Bronx, …

11 Apr 2017 • Stephen Keeling insert_drive_file Article
In search of the real Wild West on America's Great Plains

In search of the real Wild West on America's Great Plains

Wild West – we all feel something when we see or hear those words. But why? How much is true and how much is fantasy? Our editor Neil McQuillian took to the (…

06 Apr 2017 • Neil McQuillian local_activity Special feature
15 of the most beautiful places in Alaska

15 of the most beautiful places in Alaska

With mountains to climb, rivers to raft, glaciers to coo over and a bevy of bears to photograph, Alaska is the ultimate wilderness – and this year is the per…

30 Mar 2017 • Sarah Reid camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month