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Around the World in Houston: Discover Texas


Grand Entry Parade | Photograph courtesy of Houston Livestock Present and Rodeo

With a labyrinth of cultures represented in each nook and cranny of city, Houston is one among the most ethnically numerous cities in America. To have fun this world-class melting pot, we’ll be exploring a brand new area of the globe by means of a Houston lens every week, from annual festivals and museums to eating places and cultural experiences. Be a part of the journey with our Around the World in Houston collection.

This week, we’re staying actual near house, taking a look at all the methods to discover a true style of Texas in city, from historic museums and excursions to eating places serving actual deal bbq and queso-soaked Tex-Mex.

Annual Occasions

  • Houston BBQ Pageant – Dig into smoked ribs, brisket, and extra from a few of the greatest pitmasters round at this yearly bbq pageant.
  • Houston Livestock Present & Rodeo – Yearly round late February and early March, the Houston Livestock Present & Rodeo comes into city, bringing barrel racin’, two-steppin’, mutton bustin’, bull ridin’, and a lineup of reside performances from prime nation artists and extra. The enjoyable all kicks off with Go Texan Day.
  • Texas Crawfish Pageant – Situated in Spring, this annual crawfish pageant brings the enjoyable with loads of music and mudbugs.
  • Texian Market Days – Discover greater than 150 years of Texas historical past at this annual pageant, held at George Ranch Historic Park every fall. There, you’ll discover hands-on actions, battle re-enactments, reside leisure, first-person costumed interpreters, historic house excursions, video games, cowboys, classic automobiles, meals, craft distributors and extra
  • Taco Tuesday – Everyone knows how necessary tacos are in Texas, so when you’re inevitably consuming them, you could as properly snag a deal. Take a look at this listing for the greatest Taco Tuesday specials round, and we’ve included another day by day taco and glad hour offers for good measure.

Museums, Historic Parks & Arts

  • 1940 Air Terminal Museum – Sitting in the previous Houston Municipal Airport terminal constructing on the west aspect of Houston Interest Airport, this was the first terminal constructed for passenger flight in Houston. The unique Artwork Deco constructing homes collections, memorabilia, and reveals that showcase the wealthy heritage of civil aviation and Houston’s fascinating aviation historical past.
  • Battleship Texas – Commissioned by the U.S. Navy in 1914, Battleship Texas is the final remaining U.S. battleship lively in each World Conflict I and World Struggle II. As the ship was regularly outfitted with leading edge know-how (together with advances in gunnery, aviation, and radar), it was thought-about the strongest weapon in the world. At the moment, Battleship Texas is docked in the San Jacinto Battleground, a floating museum standing as a memorial to the bravery and sacrifice of the American troops and servicemen from each world wars. There are not any charges to enter the grounds, however those that need to enter the battleship can take self-guided excursions ($12), climbing 60 ft above the water to the Flag Bridge or 20 ft under the water into the engine room. Arduous hat guided excursions are additionally out there 5 occasions a yr (January, March, Might, October, and November). The battleship is open day by day from 10am to 5pm.
  • Buffalo Troopers Museum – This historic museum pays homage to Buffalo Troopers, comprised of former slaves, freemen and Black Civil Conflict troopers who have been the first to serve throughout peacetime. Exhibitions embrace a take a look at the Civil Struggle, the Emancipation Proclamation, and Western enlargement all through the Texas frontier and extra.
  • Fort Bend Museum – Preserving the historical past of Fort Bend County, this museum gives an exhibit gallery and home excursions of the 1883 John M. Moore Residence and 1855 Lengthy-Smith Cottage, providing particular occasions from Texian Market Days to a Brazos Cultural Heritage Pageant.
  • George Ranch Historic Park – Make your approach way-back into time at this piece of dwelling historical past, which showcases greater than 100 years of Texas historical past via instructional and interactive packages. Wander via the gardens of the 1830s Jones Inventory Farm, which was one in every of the earliest settlements in Northeast Mexico; take a journey by way of the 1830s and ’60s on the Heritage Path, and get to know the George household by exploring the historic house and barns of the 1930s George Cattle Ranch Complicated. The annual Texian Market Days, held in October, is considered one of the greatest occasions to go to, as households can get a style of what pioneer life was like with hands-on actions, battle re-enactments, stay leisure and extra.
  • The Heritage Society – Go to to tour a few of Houston’s oldest houses and authentically restored buildings whereas exploring Houston’s huge historical past, from earlier than statehood to the oil growth.
  • Lone Star Monument and Historic Flag Park – Present your Texas delight off at this public outside museum, which showcases Montgomery County as the birthplace of the Lone Star Flag. Get a glimpse of 13 towering historic battle and rally flags that depict people who flew throughout the Texas battle for independence, with a 14 ft. bronze sculpture referred to as “The Texian” at the middle. The sculpture brandishes a Texas flag, serving as a logo of a veteran volunteer in the Texas Revolutionary military. Discover the symbolism all through the park and study extra about the fascinating historical past of the nice Lone Star State.
  • Sam Houston Boat Tour – Embark on a free 90-minute round-trip and academic tour alongside the Houston Ship Channel, full with passing views of worldwide cargo vessels and operations at Port Houston’s Turning Basin Terminal. The M/V Sam Houston, named after the legendary army commander who led the battle for Texas independence from Mexico and later statehood, has been working as a public tour vessel since its inaugural voyage in 1958. Holding as much as 100 passengers and out there to people and teams, the 95-foot vessel options air-conditioned lounge seating and standing room outdoors on the boat’s deck. Reservations are required in advance and might be made on-line or by calling 713-670-2416.
  • San Jacinto Monument and Museum of Historical past – Hovering 570 ft into the air and topped with a 34-foot, 220-ton star, the San Jacinto Monument is the tallest stone column memorial construction in the world. The monument commemorates the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution, the Battle of San Jacinto. Delve deeper into greater than 400 years of early Texas historical past at the San Jacinto Museum of Historical past, situated at the base of the monument. Admission to the monument and museum is all the time free, with particular points of interest together with the Texas Perpetually! Interactive Expertise, Remark Flooring, and A Destined Battle Exhibition out there for buy. The museum is open every day from 9am to 6pm.
  • Area Middle Houston – You’ll discover a huge a part of Texas historical past (like Houston’s Mission Management) and extra out-of-this-world reveals and points of interest at this large area campus and academic complicated. Take the NASA Tram Tour for a behind the scenes take a look at the NASA Johnson Area Middle.
  • Texas Seaport Museum – Discover the historical past of immigration to Galveston, aka the “Ellis Island of the West,” and discover the decks of the 1877 Tall Ship Elissa.

Texan Meals & Drink

  • Alice’s Tall Texan – With simply Lone Star and Shiner on faucet, this cash-only watering gap is a real Texas dive.
  • Corkscrew BBQ –  Situated in Previous City Spring, this fan-favorite barbecue joint has been named one in every of the Prime 10 in Texas. After beginning out as a small catering enterprise, the tiny pink-trailer-turned-brick-and-mortar has blossomed into an absolute vacation spot for any barbecue fanatic, close to or far. Get glistening pork ribs, superbly crusted oak-smoked brisket, and a killer over-loaded baked potato.
  • D&W Lounge – See why this East Finish dive was named one in every of the “Eight Great Dive Bars of Texas” by Texas Month-to-month.
  • El Actual Tex-Mex Cafe – Get chile con queso, smothered enchiladas, Frito pie, and San Antonio-style puffy tacos at this Tex-Mex hang-out.
  • El Tiempo – Hit an outpost of this native Tex-Mex establishment to dig into gooey chile con queso and towering parrillada mixtas, overflowing with issues like carnitas, quail, shrimp, fajitas, lobster, and chile relleno served alongside fixin’s and scratch-made tortillas.
  • Goode Firm Armadillo Palace – This dance corridor, yard and kitchen is a tribute to all issues Texas, with eats from grilled okra, Gulf oysters and crispy fried pork skins to carne asada, ribeyes and Texas venison chili with Fritos.
  • Goodnight Charlie’s – Hit this Montrose honky-tonk for reside music and dancing, a superb lineup of whiskey, bourbon, beer, and eats from scorching hen tacos to five leches funnel cake.
  • Houston Dairymaids – Store for artisan cheeses from Texas farms at this native cheese boutique, situated in the Higher Heights.
  • Houston This Is It Soul Meals – This Third Ward diner rocks soul meals favorites, from smothered oxtails, chitterlings and turkey wings to fried hen, ham hocks, and fried catfish.
  • Laredo Taqueria – You’ll discover a few of the greatest breakfast tacos in the state at this fan-favorite taqueria.
  • The Lone Star Saloon – Housed in a constructing that has been a neighborhood stalwart for over 120 years (the bar burned down in 2008, however the new setup meets all the standards to maintain in on the historic society’s listing), Lone Star Saloon is certainly one of the greatest place round to pop a chilly one and get a style of the nation. On Thursdays via Saturdays, the stage attracts musicians from round the state that will get the crowd going with reside nation jams. Covers vary from free to $10.
  • Lone Pint Brewery – Certainly one of the Lone Star state’s most iconic beers is Lone Pint’s Yellow Rose, a single malt and single hop IPA that you’ll be able to sip it proper from the supply at this Magnolia brewery.
  • Mel’s Nation Cafe – Hit this old-timey spot to get an unimaginable, bigger-than-the-plate hen fried steak, or go for the greasy spoon’s loopy Mega Mel burger problem. The problem works like this: end the burger plate, that includes one and a half kilos of floor beef, a full pound of bacon, quarter pound of cheese and all the trimmings, in beneath 2 hours with out assist (and be capable of stroll and speak with out getting sick), and also you’ll earn your self everlasting glory. Oh, and a highly-coveted spot on the wall.
  • The Monument Inn – In enterprise since 1974 (reviving itself after each hurricane and hearth injury) and with views of the Houston Ship Channel in La Porte, this waterfront restaurant serves about 80,000 kilos of shrimp and 25,000 kilos of catfish, crawfish, and recent catches yearly. Begin with peel-and-eat shrimp, Gulf oysters, and crawfish bisque earlier than diving into catfish, salmon and redfish, blackened, grilled or broiled and smothered.
  • The Unique Kolache Shoppe – Consuming kolache is a Texan proper of passage. Open since 1956, this mom-and-pop on Phone Street will change the approach you consider the beloved Czech pastries. That’s as a result of it makes use of locally-sourced components, old-school strategies, and an entire lotta like to craft its from-scratch pastries. Get them in the type of conventional kolache crammed with issues like poppy seed, candy cheese, lemon, and raspberry; or klobasniky full of the basic mixture of jalapeño and cheese. You additionally gained’t need to miss the savory croissants, full of deliciousness like roast beef, pastrami, and hen fajita.
  • The Unique Ninfa’s on Navigation – Style the OG fajitas at this Tex-Mex hang-out, the place that helped sparked the fajita craze round the nation and was named certainly one of the greatest Tex-Mex joints in Texas. Mama Ninfa first started feeding locals from a small taco stand (and later a restaurant) in 1973. Immediately, Ninfa’s on Navigation is an establishment because of their addicting outdoors skirt steak, darkened and served straight from a scorching scorching comal alongside scratch-made tortillas. Accompany your plate with queso, margaritas, tamales and extra.
  • Pappas Bros. Steakhouse – This homegrown steakhouse serves cuts of beef as massive as Texas, from a 22-ounce dry-aged bone-in NY Strip to a 40-ounce porterhouse-for-two carved tableside. Pair your steaks with au gratin potatoes, creamed spinach, jumbo lump crab mac & cheese, and a world-class number of wine. And don’t overlook the gooey pecan pie for dessert.
  • Ray’s BBQ Shack – East Texas-style barbecue guidelines the roost at this bbq shack, from smoked boudin and garlicky beef sausage hyperlinks to specials like the Thursday-only ‘qued oxtails.
  • Tacos Tierra Caliente and West Alabama Ice Home – It doesn’t get extra Texas than this native one-two-punch. Seize some low cost tacos al pastor at the Tacos Tierra Caliente meals truck, then wash them down with Lone Stars at neighboring old-school dive, West Alabama Ice Home.
  • Style of Texas – Texas hospitality meets massive ol’ steaks at this laidback steakhouse, the place you possibly can decide your beef and refill on the colossal salad bar.
  • Tejas Chocolate Craftory – One other of Texas Month-to-month’s “10 Best BBQ Joints in Texas” record is that this Tomball spot. Not solely does Tejas Chocolate Craftory make some significantly wonderful artisan candies, it additionally makes some significantly wonderful barbecue. Hit the twin idea to seize truffles and goodies in distinctive flavors like jalapeño fig and key lime pie, then refill on barbecue salt-and-pepper-kissed, fat-rendered smoked brisket, and ribs by the pound, plus some chocolate bread pudding with cajeta caramel sauce for good measure.
  • Treebeards – This native mini-chain has been serving up Southern consolation meals for 40 years, with home specialties like the pink beans & rice, jambalaya, duck gumbo, and shrimp éttoufée.
  • City Harvest Farmers Market – Considered one of the greatest methods to get a style of the Lone Star state is to buy recent produce, meat, and eggs from native farmers and ranchers. You’ll discover it artisans and distributors at Houston’s choicest farmers market, held Saturdays year-round and Wednesdays in the spring and fall.
  • Villa Arcos – See why Villa Arcos’ tremendous breakfast tacos, full of issues like eggs, beans, potato, chorizo, and chicharrones, have grow to be an East Finish staple.
  • White Lightning Dancehall and Saloon – Situated in Humble, this large dance corridor gives reside nation and Spanish music alongside whiskey, bourbon, scotch, and moonshine.

Different Notables

  • Cypress Trails Ranch – Really feel like a real cowboy with a path journey at Cypress Trails Ranch. Proprietor Darolyn Butler began driving earlier than she might stroll, and she or he ultimately went on to develop into an Worldwide Endurance Champion. Now she shares her experience proper in Humble. That includes endurance and pleasure driving alternatives and a boarding secure, the ranch is open to the public 7 days every week.
  • Houston Texans – It wouldn’t be Texas with out soccer. Catch the Texans (or perhaps even the Cowboys) play at NRG Stadium.
  • Sam Houston Nationwide Forest – One in every of 4 nationwide forests in Texas, this large 160,000-acre forest is unfold over three counties (Montgomery, San Jacinto, and Walker), with over 47,000 acres in Montgomery County alone. It’s the good spot for fishing, chook, and wildlife watching, and biking and tenting, however one in every of the highlights is the award-winning 128-mile Lone Star Climbing path, which has been dubbed the hiker’s “Jewel of Texas.” It options greater than a dozen entry factors and consists of three main sections, certainly one of which is the 40-mile Lake Conroe portion, mendacity west of Lake Conroe and starting close to the intersection of FS 219 and FM 149.

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Brooke Viggiano

Brooke Viggiano is a meals and way of life author residing in Houston. When she’s not contributing to publications like 365 Issues to Do in Houston, Thrillist Houston and the Houston Press, she’s on the hunt for the coolest happenings in the metropolis. You’ll be able to comply with her musings on Twitter @BrookeViggiano .