Dallas, Texas is a city rich in history and culture just dying to be explored by visitors from interstate and abroad. While not the most populous city in the state, it boasts one of the most impressive collections of arts and historical centers the country has to offer.
Whether you’re visiting with family for a fun getaway, or want to steep yourself in culture, Dallas offers something for everyone. Here are our top ten recommendations for things to do in Dallas.
(featured image via Facebook)
15. Wine Tasting in Grapevine
(image via Visit Grapevine)
In Grapevine, you can learn more about the Lone Star State wine industry, tour one of the city’s numerous vineyards, attend a Texas wine festival, or drink local award-winning wine.
Grapevine is home to Texas’ top Urban Wine Trail, as well as the Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association and GrapeFest®, the Southwest’s biggest wine festival, held each September.
14. Dallas Farmers Market
(image via Dallas Farmers Market)
In the heart of the city’s skyscrapers and bustle, there is a site where farmers become friends. Since 1941, the Dallas Farmers Market has been brimming with nutritious veggies and the communal fruits in the heart of everything, but far away from it all.
The market, which began as a basic horse-and-wagon wholesale enterprise, has expanded with the city to become a destination for farm-fresh vegetables, dairy, and more.
13. Katy Trail
(image via Friends of the Katy Trail)
The Katy Trail is a jogging, walking, inline skating, and bicycling trail that runs through Dallas’ Uptown and Oak Lawn neighborhoods.
It follows the path of the old Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad, sometimes known as the MKT or the Katy. This historic Trail, privately funded and supported by the community, has quickly become an iconic attraction.
12. World-Class Shopping
(image via NorthPark Center)
NorthPark is home to over 200 stores, including luxury shops, cutting-edge brands, restaurants, and more!
Highland Park Village, the first self-contained retail area in America, is located at the southwest corner of Mockingbird Lane and Preston Road in Highland Park, Texas. Last, but not least Galleria Dallas is a retail mall and mixed-use complex in Dallas, Texas. Hit up these hot spots to fill your shopping desires.
11. Pro Sports Games
(image via Nicole Cordeiro)
AT&T Stadium, originally Cowboys Stadium, is a retractable roof stadium. It was completed on May 27, 2009, and serves as the home of the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League.
The Cotton Bowl Classic and the Big 12 Championship Game are also held there.
10. Dallas Cattle Drive Sculptures & Pioneer Plaza
(image via Maurice Chédel)
The Texas Trees Foundation used to possess Pioneer Plaza, but it was transferred to the city many years ago. This space is a huge public park in downtown Dallas, Texas, located in the Convention Center District.
It contains a large sculpture and is a heavily visited tourist site. It’s a beautiful spot to take in a breath of fresh air. The Pioneer Park Cemetery, which includes the Confederate War Memorial, is located adjacent to the plaza.
9. Deep Ellum Nightlife
(image via Harper's Dallas)
When the sun goes down, the lights go up in Dallas’ many bars and clubs. For an intimate mood, Apothecary in Lower Greenville offers a cocktail lounge setting to kick back and relax. If you’re into something a bit more quirky, ArtPark in Trinity Groves offers an outdoor setting covered in beautifully graffitied walls.
For a more traditional bar experience, Harper’s in Deep Ellum offers a sprawling bar and restaurant setting that’s perfect to end your evening — or start it.
8. The Best Eats in Dallas
(image via Bob's Steak & Chop House)
Texas is known for its food — classic barbecues, authentic Mexican, and some of the best steaks you’ll ever eat. Try E Bar Tex-Mex for some homely Mexican-Southwestern mix, or The Rustic for a classic American grill. If you’re only after a quick bite to eat, Cafe 43 will serve you a delicious coffee with a side meal.
7. Dallas Arts District
(image via Dallas Museum of Art)
The Dallas Arts District spans 19 contiguous blocks over 68 acres. It’s the second-largest urban arts complex in the nation and the largest in the state. There are performance venues, museums, and prize-winning buildings that are experiences in and of themselves.
Half-acre sculpture walks take you up close and personal to some beautiful physical pieces, or visit the 19th-century Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe for a spiritual experience.
6. Dallas Arboretum & Botanical Garden
(image via The Dallas Arboretum)
The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden is a 66-acre wonderland brimming with endless seasonal flowers in stunningly beautiful arrangements. Kids can enjoy an 8-acre interactive garden complete with cascading waterfalls and a treetop canopy walk.
If you visit in spring, you can catch the Dallas Blooms festival and watch half a million blooming flowers in full, vibrant color.
5. Dive Back Into History
(image via The Bush Center)
Round out your educational trip to Dallas with one of its famous museums. If you don’t feel like a 3 hour JFK tour, you can head straight to the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza to get an immersive lesson on the JFK assassination. The George W. Bush Presidential Center is the second-largest presidential complex behind Ronald Reagan’s Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, and houses a 14,000-square-foot museum.
For a profound experience, you simply cannot pass up the chance to visit the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum. This unmissable place covers not just the traumatic history of world war 2, but a variety of human rights issues including the American Civil Rights Movement.
4. Natural Science Museum
(image via Perot Museum of Nature and Science)
Combine a love of nature with a love of history at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. This museum boasts five floors of interactive science exhibits spread out across 180,000 square feet of floor space.
Children and adults alike will lose themselves in the displays. To add a dedicated children’s museum features fun interactive experiences such as a dinosaur dig and an earthquake simulator. Take the glass elevator to the top floor and work your way down to get a bonus panoramic view of the city as you go.
3. View Exotic Animals
(image via Dallas Zoo)
For anyone interested in getting up close and personal with a wide range of animals, Dallas does not disappoint. The Dallas Zoo is the oldest zoological park in the state, home to over 2000 animals spread across some 400 species. The 11-acre Giants of the Savanna enclosure was the first exhibit in the United States to house elephants along with other species!
If you’re interested in the wildlife of a very different nature, Dallas World Aquarium lets you get face to face with undersea oddities from across the world. From crocodiles to manatees to penguins and even sloths, there’s something for everyone.
2. Reunion Tower
Every large city has a particular landmark building that stands out amongst its busy skyline. For Dallas, that honor belongs to Reunion Tower. Its GeO-Deck viewing platform is situated almost 500 feet above the ground, giving you unparalleled panoramic views of the city below and beyond.
Interactive touch screens provide useful information and plenty of entertainment to keep little ones engaged. The tower schedules events regularly, such as painting, sunset yoga, and wine tasting.
1. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza
(image via The Sixth Floor Museum)
The assassination of President John F Kennedy remains one of the most shocking chapters in American political history. This tour offers to take you to the Grassy Knoll in Dealey Plaza where the former president was slain, the JFK Memorial Museum, and Lee Harvey Oswald’s rooming house. This fully-guided tour lasts for three hours, with multiple sessions a day to allow you to fit it into your schedule. It costs about $80 per adult.
As you can see, Dallas has a lot to offer everyone. If you want to do more in the area, check out other weekend trips nearby Dallas.
These locations are great for a quick day trip or a long weekend getaway. Explore some of our favorite activities or read through some pre-planned itineraries.