Whether your idea of gettin’ down includes bumpin’ and grindin’ or Texas two-stepping, Austin nightlife has a scene to match. Every night of the week, this city plays host to some of the best night clubs, dive bars, and honky tonks in Texas. And as the live music capital of the world, Austin’s bars play so many different jams, they’re everyone’s jam.
So, when you’re ready to hit the dance floor, there’s no better city. And with this list of the best dance clubs in Austin, there’s no better guide to help you get your boogie on. We’ve got dance clubs where you can dress up or dress down. We’ve got places that play country music, hip-hop, and EDM. And we’ve got the inside scoop on all of them.
Grab your favorite dance partner, and take these spots for a spin!
The 10 Best Dance Clubs in Austin
The dance club scene in Austin has changed post-pandemic with one of our favorite night clubs — Barcelona — closing down. While this spot initially closed because of COVID restrictions, they’ve remained closed because their former 6th street location changed ownership.
But, there could be hope of this bar reopening. Their listing still says they’re only “temporarily closed,” and their Facebook page teases that they might pop up in another location one day. We’ll keep our fingers crossed, but until then, there are a few other spots vying for the title of best dance club in Downtown Austin.
We’ve included plenty of the best Downtown locales. (Hey, there’s a huge concentration of clubs down there!) But don’t worry, we’ve also sought out the best dance floors all over Austin, and there are a few locations further afield that are worth going out of your way for. Here are our top 10 picks for the best dance clubs in Austin.
1. Barbarella Austin
611 Red River St.
A top spot in the Red River Cultural District, Barbarella is and has always been one of the best clubs in Austin. They refer to themselves as a dance club for people who don’t like dance clubs, and they keep the EDM-hating crowd coming back with theme nights (you’ll catch us there on Jimmy Eat Wednesdays!), plus a mix of DJs and live music. This spot has multiple smaller dance floors so you won’t end up feeling like you’re in the middle of a giant mosh pit. To find out about their upcoming events, check out their Instagram.
705 Red River St.
Former Goth kids unite! (Okay, we realize that uniting isn’t a very Goth thing to do, but trust us, this will be worth it.) Another unconventional club in the Red River Cultural District, Elysium plays Goth and industrial dance music from DJs and live bands. It’s the ideal place to rage when you’re in a mood but you still wanna move that thang. They also have a karaoke night where you can scream-sing your favorite glam punk anthems, and they host theme nights and a variety of events, including a special lineup during SXSW.
3. Antone’s Nightclub
305 E 5th St.
This live music venue is an Austin tradition. It’s been around for over 40 years, but it can still attract everyone from old school Austinites to University of Texas youngins. Antone’s has hosted major blues artists, like Muddy Waters, B.B. King, and Stevie Ray Vaughan. With live shows every night of the week, it’s the ideal place to class up your evening. Come here when you want to impress a date or just want to swivel those hips a little slower and smoother.
4. The Rose Room
11500 Rock Rose Ave.
Located inside The Domain in North Austin, The Rose Room might be trying a little too hard to be the hottest club in town, but this is the place to go if you want to live like one of the beautiful people. This high-class establishment has a “dress to impress” dress code, so don’t expect to get in wearing your flip flops and trucker hat. The Rose Room offers bottle service, VIP treatment, and a craft cocktail menu designed to compete with the best cocktails in Austin. Their DJs blast EDM and hip hop music accompanied by a light show, and their VIP section is staffed with scantily clad women.
5. The White Horse
500 Comal St.
This casual honky-tonk has some of the best live music in Austin. Located in East Austin, The White Horse features local country music bands. So, throw on your cowboy boots and head over to work on your Texas two-step. After you work up an appetite on the dance floor, you can step outside to grab some tacos from Bomb Tacos, a quintessential Austin food truck. Then take a seat in the outdoor patio area to enjoy a little fresh air with your salsa fresca.
6. Broken Spoke
3201 S Lamar Blvd.
Another little honky tonk, the Broken Spoke is located in South Austin. Stepping through its doors is like stepping back in time. Ignore the high rises that have popped up on either side, and this spot has barely changed in the nearly 60 years it’s been open. The Broken Spoke has a full restaurant (serving up Texas classics like chicken-fried steak) and a separate dance hall — with live music in both areas. Come by between 8 and 9 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays for dance lessons, and you can learn the two-step.
7. Highland Lounge
404 Colorado St.
This gay bar in the Warehouse District knows how to get down. Highland Lounge is the largest LGBTQ club in all of Austin — their converted warehouse space is three stories tall and features six bars. They offer VIP bottle service and host regular events with drag queens, gogo boys, and all the entertainment you need to glitter and be gay (regardless of your orientation). They also offer happy hour deals until 11 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays with prices that rival some of the best happy hours in Austin.
8. The Continental Club
1315 S Congress Ave.
Open for over 60 years,The Continental Club is one of the originators of the Austin music scene. They specialize in live music from multiple genres and are a top venue for roots rock, country & blues, rockabilly, and garage rock music — not just in Austin, but in the nation. Their South Congress location is a historical landmark, so after you visit, you can tell everyone you shook your booty all over a historic site. The venue hosts multiple shows each day, so be sure to check their calendar to find the bands that make you want to shake it.
9. Volstead Lounge
1500 E 6th St.
Part classy cocktail lounge, part dive bar, this East Austin destination is the sister bar of Hotel Vegas. Volstead features a food truck run by Hotel Vegas, plus an outdoor patio, plush leather couches, and of course, a spacious dance floor. Their craft cocktail menu could rival some of the best bars in Austin. This venue hosts a variety of events throughout the week, including a Saturday night dance party with no cover charge. They have a rotating lineup of local DJs — check their Facebook page to see the week’s lineup.
10. Donn’s Depot
1600 W 5th St.
Located in a former train depot in Downtown Austin, Donn’s Depot is full of character. It’s one of the best dive bars in Austin, offering two dance floors, live piano music every night, and a few old train cars to explore between spins on the dance floor. They have a variety of house cocktails and offer happy hour specials every weekday from 2-8 p.m.
Bust a Move on Austin’s Dance Floors
When you’re ready to let loose on the dance floor, Austin’s epic music scene and ample nightlife will help you get your groove on. You can live it up like a VIP at The Rose Room or Highland Lounge. You can two-step in a classic Texas honky tonk at The White Horse or Broken Spoke. And you can explore Austin’s off-beat dance scene at Barbarella or Elysium. Wherever you go, you’re bound to have a good time at the best dance clubs in Austin.