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.

Total eclipse of the heart (of America): where to see the 2017 solar eclipse

Total eclipse of the heart (of America): where to see the 2017 solar eclipse

Most visitors who trek through the vast interior of the USA are in search of natural wonders on the ground. But on August 21, 2017, they’ll be in search of a…

24 Nov 2016 • AnneLise Sorensen insert_drive_file Article
A Las Vegas survival guide: the dos and don’ts of Sin City

A Las Vegas survival guide: the dos and don’ts of Sin City

Few destinations can match the unbridled hedonism of Las Vegas. Nevada’s pulsating desert city, a tangle of neon-lit casinos and roaring freeways, is one of t…

16 Nov 2016 • Eleanor Aldridge insert_drive_file Article
The dos and don'ts of Thanksgiving travel

The dos and don'ts of Thanksgiving travel

The only thing more challenging than an interminable turkey meal with a squabbling family? Getting there in the first place. Thanksgiving may kick off the mo…

11 Nov 2016 • AnneLise Sorensen insert_drive_file Article
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