Things to do in Houston, TX

Get Your Bearings in Houston

See & Do

Things to See

Space Center Houston is one of the most popular tourist attractions and is the visitor's center for the Johnson Space Center with exhibits and displays on the various aspects of the space program. Another more historic attraction is the San Jacinto Monument and Museum commemorating the battle for Texas independence. The USS Texas is located nearby where visitors can view the quarters and facilities of this historic battleship.

Hot Tips:

The Houston CityPASS allows access to the city's major attractions.

Where to Stay

As the largest city in Texas, Houston contains a number of styles of hotels. Many high-end luxury hotels are located in the Downtown and Uptown areas, as are a number of hotels geared towards business travelers. The Magnolia Hotel is an example and is housed in a remodeled historic landmark. The Crowne Plaza Suites Houston is located close to many of the city's attractions and offers guests a number of perks like a free business center, gym, restaurants and a whirlpool. More family-friendly hotels include the Doubletree and the Omni, both of which offer suites with kitchens and services catering to kids.


Room rates are generally higher during conventions and events like the rodeo.

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What to Eat

Houston offers a range of restaurants from Texas food to a number of international options. Tex-Mex and authentic Mexican food are available throughout the city, but Houston also has a large international population in specialized ethnic districts. Head to Hillcroft Street for Indian cuisine, while many other Asian influences, like Vietnamese and Chinese, are located in the city's Chinatown.


The high-end restaurants tend to get crowded on weekends so book well in advance.

Places to Party

Downtown Houston and the Montrose district are where a majority of the bars and clubs are located. A number of establishments near the theater district often have live comedy or musical acts. Performing arts are well-represented in Houston with orchestral, dance and theatrical performances brought in to one of many concert halls, like Wortham Center and Jones Hall.

Hot Tips:

A number of local papers publish an updated list of entertainment related events.

Where to Shop

Head to Montrose for a number of antique stores selling everything from folk art to furniture. Houston's Chinatown has a number of shops selling Asian curios while Kirby and the Rice Village house a number of galleries, antique stores and showrooms. The Galleria and the surrounding area have high-end shops, like Armani and Gucci, selling designer clothing.

Hot Tips:

Harwin Drive is a strip of stores selling clothing, accessories and imported goods at bargain prices.



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Things to do in Houston

Houston is known for...

Six of Houston's most unique features and characteristics.

1. Diversity:

The city of Houston is known for being one of the most diverse places to live in Texas.

2. Space and Science:

Since “Houston” was the first spoken word from the moon, the city of Houston has become known for its space and science contributions, and is the home to NASA’s Johnson Space Center. Rated as a global city, Houston has a variety of industries housed in the 4th largest city in the nation (according to 2010 Census). Energy, aeronautics, transportation, manufacturing, and with a leading health care sector, Houston’s resources for space and science provide tourists and residents an abundance of employment opportunities and educational assets.

3. Shopping:

One could spend days discovering “mom & pop” boutiques and nationally recognized retail outlets in Houston. Home to Texas’s largest mall, The Galleria, which stretches 2.5 million square feet of pure shopping gratification, the shopping in Houston offers folks an assortment of trendy prospects. Wear comfortable shoes and head west to Katy to experience why the suburb has been dubbed the leading outdoor retail outlet spot, hosting over 200 specialty stores within a 1.3 square mile hike.

4. Sports:

Grab your favorite sports team hat and head to Houston for professional football, baseball, basketball and soccer games. Home to Reliant Astrodome, Minute Maid Park, Toyota Center, and BBVA Compass Stadium, sports enthusiasts flock to see the Astros, Texans, Dynamos and Rockets play their best game. If college sports are your thing, Houston has five prominent teams to watch! There are many minor leagues playing around town, including three women’s leagues. The city hosts a variety of annual sports themed events, including a running marathon, a PGA golf tournament and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

5. Theatre and Arts:

The heart of downtown Houston beats continuously, housing a 17-block area chock-full of performing arts organizations, galleries, plazas and movie theaters. The city of Houston has a rich and culturally diverse community, offering a plethora of live performances and art museums. The Houston Ballet, The Alley Theatre, and The Houston Grand Opera are internationally recognized for their artistic contributions. The city has also become one of Broadway’s leading stops for touring companies and a hub for legendary concerts. The Museum District, located just a hop, skip and a jump from downtown, offers visual art lovers an inspiring discovery of exhibits, collections and workshops.

6. Restaurants:

Houston has become home to award winning restaurants and what The New York Post has called (2010), “one of the most satisfying food scenes in the country.” The diversity of Houston is demonstrated on every plate, offering tantalizing Tex-Mex to down home BBQ. Houston restaurants continue to serve visitors authentic recipes from a wide variety of countries and cultures. From fine dining to laid-back bar & grills, Houston’s culinary teams are taking big steps in the right direction.