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Houston Travel Tips

Houston Photo info
G. Lyon Photography, Inc./Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau

Keep in Mind...

  • Bring on the barbecue Texas is known for its barbecue and Houston won't let you down. Try Killen's BBQ or Gatlin's BBQ.
  • Embrace the arts Houston has plenty of museums, but it's one of just a few U.S. cities with professional companies in the four performing arts disciplines: ballet, opera, symphony and theater.
  • Humidity reigns Houston is an incredibly humid city year-round.

Give this Texas city a chance. Yes, Houston's history is sticky with oil, and its contemporary landscape climbs with skyscrapers belonging to Citgo, Shell and many, many more. This might have you thinking, sarcastically, "Great! Sounds like an awesome place to vacation!" But what you might not know is that Houston has grassy parks, eclectic galleries, a burgeoning art scene and Tex-Mex restaurants that all vie for attention downtown. And outside of Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston is one of the greatest places in Texas to shop: Ever heard of the Galleria? There are also plenty of nice hotels to lay your head and a variety of fun things for the kiddies to see, such as the zoo and the children's museum. Those with a keen interest in space can learn all about NASA's program at Space Center Houston and science nerds can check out the comprehensive Museum of Natural Science. So, yes, it's a huge sprawling city of more than 2 million, but with pleasant weather pretty much year-round, an abundance of entertaining festivals and plenty of things to do, you should give it a chance.

How To Save Money in Houston

  • Buy a CityPASS This booklet of admission tickets offers major discounts on Houston's most popular sites like the Children's Museum, the Houston Zoo and Space Center Houston.
  • Check for coupons Visit Houston offers deals and discounts on everything from hotel rooms to restaurants.
  • Find a food truck Houston is home to hundreds food trucks dishing out affordable eats all around town. Check Roaming Hunger's food truck finder to see what trucks will be near you.

Houston Dining

USA Today once dubbed Houston the "Dining Out Capital of the U.S." — and the nickname has stuck. The city is home to a wealth of restaurants and plenty of tasty food to try. Since Houston is so close to Mexico, it certainly embraces Mexican cuisine and culture in the form of Tex-Mex. One of Houston's highly touted Tex-Mex eateries is The Original Ninfa's on Navigation in the heart of the city, which serves up dishes like enchiladas, handmade tamales and tacos al carbon (Mama Ninfa's specialty of beef or chicken fajitas in a flour tortilla with guacamole, pico de gallo and chile con queso).

Another popular food found in Houston? Barbecue, baby. From baby back ribs smothered in sauce to slow roasted tender brisket, this city has no shortage of BBQ joints. Locals and experts say some of the best spots to visit are Killen's Texas Barbecue, helmed by renowned chef Ronnie Killen, Gatlin's BBQ and Ray's Real Pit BBQ Shack.

But don't think Houston's only about the casual cuisine, the city has its fair share of upscale restaurants as well. Those interested in a more sit-down, fine dining experience will find refined atmospheres and tasty meals at award-winning restaurants Oxheart, Reef and Hugo's. And travelers who can't quite decide whether they'd like a multicourse meal or a casual bite should check out The Pass & Provisions. This unique restaurant is really two in one: The Pass offers five- and eight-course meals with the option of wine, beer and spirit pairings, while the menu at Provisions features pizza, pasta and fish and meat entrees.

Next Steps: Houston

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