Houston, or the Lone Star State, is the 4th largest city in the United States. Named after General Sam Houston, the city is home to over 150 museums, an exciting Historic district filled with upscale restaurants and features a distinct Southern style. Houston has a lot to dish out to its residents and visitors. Whether looking to thump your cowboy boots to some blues music or indulge in savory barbeque, you’ll find that this city never disappoints. Read on to learn the best attractions and things to do in Houston.
1. Schedule a Visit to the Houston Space Center
Run by the Manned Space Flight Education Foundation Inc., this is arguably one of the top attractions in the city. Opened in 1992, it averages a total of 17 million domestic and international visitors per year. Its top highlights include its collection of moon rocks and lunar samples, which are the largest worldwide. You can arrange your visit to coincide with those of real astronauts, some of whom are known to make weekly visits to the center.
2. Attend a Sporting Event
No visit to Houston is complete without a chance to cheer on a home team. It’s a city known for sporting events. While some of its events may lack a cult following, its residents are huge sports fanatics. You can set a weekend date to watch the Astros, known to play at the Minute Maid Park every summer. Other options include visiting the Toyota Center to watch the Rockets or heading over to the NRG Stadium to cheer on the Houston Texas.
3. The Houston Museum of Natural Science (HMNS)
If you’re planning a family outing, there’s no better place to spend the day than at the HMNS. It features an exciting collection of large skeleton mounts, space station models, and mineral specimens. The kids will love spending time at the planetarium and learning about the history of the various exhibitions held there every once in a while. Established in 1909, HMNS has grown to become one of the most popular museums in Northern America.
4. Buffalo Bayou Partnership
One thing you’ll like about visiting or living in the Greater Houston area is that there’s always something new to do. The Buffalo Bayou Partnership, for example, is the most significant natural resource in Houston. It comprises hundreds of acres made up of running trails and parklands. It’s the place to visit if you like spending time out in nature. The best way to enjoy this scenery is by joining the many boat tours available or leasing a kayak.
5. Visit the Houston Zoo
The Houston Zoo sits on 55 acres and is among the star attractions in the city. Located in Hermann Park, the zoo has become popular with visitors and locals and contains a children’s zoo and an accompanying education center. It holds more than 6,000 indigenous and exotic animals. The highlights of visiting the zoo include watching sea lions, seeing marine life up close, and feeding the giraffes. You may also want to go on a paddleboat trip on McGovern Lake.
6. Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo
It’s by far the largest yearly attraction in the city. Many people don’t know that the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is, in fact, a charity event. The event focuses on education and science while providing entertainment to the attendees. The first event occurred in 1932, and since then, it has helped raise more than $375 million for notable charitable causes. A large portion of the money raised goes to research and scholarships. You’ll love the rodeo as it always includes:
• Lots of activities for kids
• Live music
• Trail rides
• A parade
• A horse show
• A run
7. Catch an Outdoor Movie
It doesn’t matter what season it is; there’s always an outdoor movie showing somewhere in Houston, even during the winter season. Movie shows held in parks have become a year-round tradition. Some of the parks to visit when you want to watch a flick on the big screen include Lawn at Memorial City, Sugar Land Town Square, and Market Square Park. You can check out the Houston Rooftop Cinema Club if you’re interested in a more upscale showing.
8. Discovery Green
Houston residents have come to appreciate Discovery Green, with many viewing it as an urban oasis. The public city park sits on 11.78 acres dedicated to offering a community spirit. It offers toddler storytimes, movie nights, and free yoga classes. It’s also the place to visit on weekends for free concerts. Other amenities include open-air reading rooms, free Wi-Fi, a playground, and a place where you can borrow balls and games for the family to enjoy.
9. La Carafe
Did you know that Houston has some of the oldest dive bars still in existence today? La Carafe is an example of a dive bar that has existed for more than 125 years. The candlelit Tavern caters to the needs of both locals and visitors. On your visit to the bar, you can look forward to enjoying a string of long-forgotten jukeboxes, e.g., Hank Williams, Edith Piaf, and Django Reinhart. The bar, which appears on the National Register for Historic Places, sells local and international wines and beers.
As seen above, Houston City has a lot of places to visit and things to do. After a day spent out checking these top attractions and playing at the local park, the last thing you want to do is worry about your keeping your home clean.
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