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"Dirty 6th" is a sea of people every weekend, visiting its dozens of bars on the strip. (Marlon Giles/Flickr)

There are plenty of places to party in Austin, from the classic Dirty 6th to Rainey Street's tech hub to The Domain's eccentric collection of bars. With crime in Austin—and nationwide—on the rise, worries while drinking at night can take some fun out of your hangout.


Using data from the past five years, Austonia found how each part of the town's party areas stacks up in safety. Here's what to know before you go.

(Laura Figi/Austonia)


Red River District

The line outside Stubb's Bar-B-Q is a familiar sight to those who frequent the venue for its live music. (Blastframe/CC)

The line outside Stubb's Bar-B-Q is a familiar sight to those who frequent the venue for its live music. (Blastframe/CC)

Red River Cultural District, home to beloved live music venues like Stubb's Bar-B-Q, Mohawk Austin and Empire Control Room, has had the most overall crime reports since 2016 but Dirty 6th Street is rapidly catching up. The downtown cultural district has averaged 1,325 police reports yearly, though crime reports on Dirty 6th surpassed Red River in 2019 and so far in 2021. The two most common reports in the area: theft, with an average of 343 reports over the past three years and assault with injury, averaging 247 yearly reports.

Dirty 6th

Dirty 6th is packed with partiers every weekend—crowds are a common sight. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

Dirty 6th is packed with partiers every weekend—crowds are a common sight. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

Coined the "original" night district in the city, "Dirty 6th," or the portion of East 6th that is west of I-35, has been a Friday night standard since Austin was just a sleepy college town and is often compared to Bourbon Street in New Orleans. The street has earned the nickname "dirty," as it has seen an increasing number of violent crimes in recent years, most recently a shooting that killed a tourist and left 14 others injured. The strip averages 1,234 crime reports per year since 2016, and shares the two most common reports—assault with bodily injury and theft—with nearby Red River District.

East 6th Street

East Austin's bungalow bars aren't quite as clumped as other nightlife areas in town. (Whislers/Instagram)

East Austin's bungalow bars aren't quite as clumped as other nightlife areas in town. (Whislers/Instagram)

Taking a trip East of the highway, East 6th Street is the quieter counterpart to Dirty 6th, without compromising on the expanse of venues. At an average of 786 police reports per year, you'll see a noticeably smaller police presence in this area. The most common crimes in this area are still theft, with 196 reports in the last three years, and assault with injury, with 186 reports over the last three years. Keep a watchful eye on your car as well, as there have been 116 reports of auto theft since 2019.

South Congress

South Congress is home to one of the most celebrated venues in Austin, the Continental Club. (Trey Ratcliff/CC)

South Congress is home to one of the most celebrated venues in Austin, the Continental Club. (Trey Ratcliff/CC)

Right around the middle of the barrel, South Congress has been steadily increasing in popularity, size and variety since the late 1990s. The brightly lit street is usually bustling from afternoon until night but doesn't attract too much violent crime with just an average of 675 police reports per year since 2016. You're unlikely to be physically harmed while visiting South Congress but make sure you lock your car tightly, as 217 total vehicle burglaries have been reported, keep an eye on your pocketbook, with 143 total theft reports, and drive safely, with 89 total reports of DWIs since 2019.

The Domain

The Domain's bars are surrounded by lights, streets and nearby businesses. (Wonder Bar/Instagram)

The Domain's bars are surrounded by lights, streets and nearby businesses. (Wonder Bar/Instagram)

Tucked away further north, The Domain has been an up-and-coming night district with fun and whimsical bars like Wonder Bar, Kung Fu Saloon and The Rose Room decorating Instagram pages everywhere. While not the safest, The Domain is a fairly safe option to let loose in at night. Actually, your car will be less safe than you—The Domain's top crimes are burglary of vehicle and auto theft with 193 and 89 reports, respectively, since 2019. Theft should also be on the radar, with 132 reports.

West 6th Street

West 6th is usually a quieter option than some of the other districts, like Rainey Street or Dirty 6th. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

West 6th is usually a quieter option than some of the other districts, like Rainey Street or Dirty 6th. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

Nestled in Austin's Warehouse District, West 6th Street is another alternative to rowdy Dirty 6th. With dozens of popular bars and more coming every day, this area experiences noticeably less crime. West 6th had the second least amount of reported crime, with an average of 308 reports yearly since 2016. Your most common threats here are theft, with 172 total reports, and intoxicated drivers with 137 DWI reports since 2019.

Rainey Street

A relatively small, secluded area, Rainey Street is the safest district to party in as long as you have a ride home. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

A relatively small, secluded area, Rainey Street is the safest district to party in as long as you have a ride home. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

One of Austin's newest night districts, which is just blocks away from Dirty 6th, East 6th and Red River Street, comes out as the safest place to party on the weekends with just 135 yearly police reports on average over the past five years. Still, most common crimes fall in line with the other districts in the 78701 ZIP code: 142 total reports of theft, 117 total burglaries of vehicle reports and 71 reports of assault with injury since 2016.

Read more on Rainey Street here:

Austonia's complete guide to Rainey Street's nightlife

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