Pronunciation Of The 10 Most Confusing Street Names In Austin

Pronunciation Of The 10 Most Confusing Street Names In Austin


I read this article originally on (Author: REBECCA L. BENNETT) and I got such a kick out it because I have lived in Austin since 1996 and I have heard people pronounce these street names in so many different ways, that sometimes I become confused! I hope you enjoy this helpful guide.

Are you new to Austin or are you considering relocating here? We’re fairly certain you’re going to need some help adjusting to the weirdness of our ways (see: LeslieCrazy CarlEeyore’s Birthday, etc.). Luckily, the people at have made it their mission to orient Austin noobs as their journeys in Weird City begin, and they are also fairly obsessed with encouraging experienced Austinites to constantly seek out new reasons to love ATX.

This pronunciation guide is specifically intended for Austin newbies who may be having trouble figuring out the correct pronunciations of 10 of the most confusing Austin street names, such as Manchaca and Manor. Still, some Austin veterans may find this guide useful as well, if only for setting the record straight and helping get all the new folks across town as fast as possible without clogging up the highways any more than we have to.

guadalupe street the drag hardest austin road names to pronounce pronunciation

10.) Nueces Street

If you do any exploring in Central Austin or are looking for real estate downtown, you’ll likely drive down Nueces Street, which runs north-south from the soon-to-be-late Austin Music Hall to Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd near The University of Texas. To that end, “Nueces” is appropriately pronounced “New-AY-sez.”

9.) Burnet Road

There’s no escaping Burnet Road while sightseeing in North Austin, so you’d better learn the correct pronunciation! Now, you may be tempted to drawl out “Burnet” into something like “Bur-NETTE” — or even “BRU-nette” for the especially sloppy — but don’t you dare. Here in ATX, we have a saying: “It’s BURN-it, durn it. Learn it!”

8.) Guadalupe Street

Guadalupe Street is known as “The Drag,” especially in UT circles. Discussions about how to pronounce “Guadalupe” can become fairly heated, since the traditional Spanish pronunciation would sound something like, “Wad-ah-LOOP-ay.” That’s perfectly acceptable, of course, but most of us just call it “Gwad-uh-LOOP.”

7.) Pedernales Street

Let’s start with how not to say “Pedernales.” Do not say “PEE-dur-nahl-ez,” “PEH-dur-nahl-ez,” “PEE-dur-nalles,” or “PEH-dur-nalles,” and don’t even think about trying to drop that “S” or emphasize “les” as in “PEH-dur-nal-LEZ.” None of those pronunciations will make you look like a local; in fact, use ’em and you’ll probably become the butt of long-time Austinites’ good-natured joking. “Pedernales” is said “PUR-der-nal-ehz” or “PUR-den-nal-ehz.” Don’t ask us where we got the extra “R.”

6.) Dessau Road

Dessau Road lies east of I-35, so you’re likely to encounter it during your East Austin adventures. We’ve heard a lot of different pronunciations for Dessau — “deh-SOW,” “des-ay-ew,” and “DESS-ow,” to name a few — but locals favor “deh-SAW.”

5.) Manor Road

Manor Road is another easterly street that you should definitely explore in your East Austin escapades. No, “Manor” is not pronounced the way you’d refer to a gigantic mansion-esque house that’s a little on the creepy side. Instead, think mayonnaise and say it thus: “MAY-ner.”

4.) Del Valle

Though not technically an Austin road (at least not a long one), Del Valle is the name of the area that houses Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and multiple South Austin adventure destinations, so it’s a good idea to learn how to pronounce it. Hint: we use that “E” literally and say: “Dell Valley.”

3.) Mueller Boulevard

Not only is there a Mueller Blvd, but there’s also a Mueller Lake, Mueller Lake Park, and a Mueller Southwest Greenway, John Mueller Meat Co., and a host of other business who employ the title. So you see, it’s important to get this one right. Don’t go getting fancy trying to pronounce “Mueller” with mews, mwells, and muahs. We like to keep things simple in Austin, so naturally we go with “Miller.”

2.) Koenig Lane

Koenig Lane runs west-east between I-35 and Burnet Rd; at Burnet — say it with us: “BURN-it” — Koenig morphs into Allandale Rd, which changes quickly into Northland Dr and RM 2222. Pronouncing “Koenig” routinely stumps even weathered Austinites with its deceiving “oe.” It may seem weird, but trust us, it’s not “KOE-nig.” It’s “KAY-nig.”

1.) Manchaca Road

You’re going to want to take a deep breath before attempting this one because it’s bound to confound you. There’s no rationalizing the correct pronunciation of “Manchaca.” It just is what it is: “MAN-shack.” A small, dilapidated structure filled with men. Go ahead and laugh; even long-time Austinites still giggle about it.

With these 10 major roadway pronunciations in hand, you’re bound to blend in with the natives — at least when it comes to giving and receiving directions. If you’re seriously thinking about moving to Austin, but haven’t quite decided to take the plunge, you should also take these 10 lessons to heart and check out their 3-Minute Guide to Austin. Both of these resources will make your decision a heck of a lot easier!

Nate Jones

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Dated: January 7th 2017
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