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Discovering the Charm of Austin's Cathedral of Junk

By Emma Burne, Posted on 12 Apr, 2023 at 04:42 pm

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Austin, Texas, is known for its quirky vibe, and one of the most unique attractions in the city is the Cathedral of Junk. It's a fascinating structure made entirely of recycled materials and has become a popular tourist destination. The Cathedral of Junk is a testament to the creativity and resourcefulness of its creator, Vince Hannemann, who started building it in his backyard in the 1980s. In this blog post, we'll explore what makes this remarkable work of art so special.

History of the Cathedral of Junk

Vince Hannemann started building the Cathedral of Junk in his backyard in South Austin in 1989. He began collecting discarded items, such as car parts, bicycles, and appliances, and used them to create a three-story structure. Over the years, the Cathedral has grown in size and complexity, with Hannemann adding new features and levels. He estimates that the Cathedral contains around 60 tons of materials, and it has become a beloved landmark in the city.

What to Expect at the Cathedral of Junk

The Cathedral of Junk is a fascinating place to explore, with something new to discover at every turn. Visitors can climb up to the top of the structure and enjoy a unique view of Austin. The Cathedral is full of hidden nooks and crannies, and visitors can spend hours exploring its many rooms and stairways.

One of the most impressive features of the Cathedral is its intricate network of pathways and tunnels. Visitors can wander through narrow passageways made of old tires, or climb up staircases made of discarded metal. There are also several seating areas where visitors can take a break and enjoy the surroundings.

Why the Cathedral of Junk is Important

The Cathedral of Junk is a testament to the power of creativity and resourcefulness. It shows that even discarded materials can be transformed into something beautiful and meaningful. It's also a reminder of the importance of recycling and reducing waste. By using recycled materials, Hannemann has created a unique work of art that inspires visitors to think about their own impact on the environment.

The Cathedral of Junk is also an important part of Austin's cultural heritage. It's a symbol of the city's quirky and unconventional spirit, and it's become a must-visit destination for tourists and locals alike. It's a place where people can come together to appreciate art and creativity, and it's a reminder of the power of community.

Visiting the Cathedral of Junk

The Cathedral of Junk is located at 4422 Lareina Dr, Austin, TX 78745. It's open to the public by appointment only, and visitors are asked to make a donation of $10.00 per person. The Cathedral is not wheelchair accessible, and visitors are advised to wear sturdy shoes and watch their step.

If you're planning a visit to the Cathedral of Junk, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Bring your camera – there are plenty of photo opportunities at the Cathedral.

  • Respect the art – the Cathedral is a work of art, so please don't remove or damage anything.

  • Be prepared to climb stairs – the Cathedral has several levels, and visitors will need to climb stairs to explore it fully.

  • Plan ahead – the Cathedral is open by appointment only, so be sure to schedule your visit in advance



The Cathedral of Junk is a unique and fascinating attraction that showcases the creativity and resourcefulness of its creator, Vince Hannemann. It's a place that inspires visitors to think differently about waste and recycling, and it's become an important part of Austin's cultural heritage. If you're looking for a quirky and unconventional destination in Austin, be sure to add the Cathedral of Junk to your itinerary.




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About Author

Emma Burne

Emma Burne is a 25 years old, famous adventure travel blogger who has visited luxurious hotels and destinations worldwide, including U.S, Canada and Italy. She is full of inspirational stories, tips from all over the world, photography and aims to inspire fellow travel enthusiasts to pursue their travel's dream career!