Dallas has a reputation for being big and bold, and the city certainly does not disappoint. In Dallas, travelers will find a wide range of interesting options to explore, from the city’s massive arts scene to the area’s rich history.
Because of the size of the city, it can prove difficult to decide where to spend one’s time, especially if visitors have only a few days. Answering this question depends largely on personal preferences, although some top recommendations include:
The Sixth Floor Museum
Located in what once served as the Texas School Book Depository, the Sixth Floor Museum stands as a tribute to former President John F. Kennedy. While moving through the museum, visitors learn about his life and death while also learning about the legacy that he left behind.
The museum is located on the floor of the building where his shooter waited for the motorcade. It features a number of different types of artifacts, as well as several films. People who have already seen the museum in the past should investigate the temporary exhibitions, which change frequently but are always thoughtful and engaging.
Klyde Warren Park
Dallas has become known for its many parks, the most famous of which may be Klyde Warren Park. This piece of land used to divide two neighborhoods. It is now a green expanse in the heart of the city’s downtown area. Because of its location, many people think of the park as a gateway between downtown and the bustling Arts District.
Visitors should check the schedule before they come. The park offers many free daily programs, which include everything from exercise boot camps and yoga sessions to outdoor concerts and drumming classes. Individuals will also often find multiple trendy food trucks ready to help with a picnic.
Nasher Sculpture Center
Based in the Dallas Art District, Nasher Sculpture Center has amassed one of the best collections of contemporary sculpture in the world. Artists Raymond and Patsy Nasher conceived of the museum to create an experience unlike any other. It integrates art with nature through unique architectural features and beautiful garden spaces.
The space features pieces from the family collection and special exhibitions in both indoor and outdoor galleries. The building itself is also gorgeous. Designed by Renzo Piano and Peter Walker, the structure forces people to investigate the relationship between architecture and nature while enjoying modern and contemporary spaces.
Perhaps the most distinctive feature of the Dallas skyline, Reunion Tower stretches 561 feet into the sky. It has a unique round observation deck on the top that has earned it the nickname “The Ball.” While the structure itself is freestanding, it serves as part of the Hyatt Regency Hotel complex.
Three circular floors surround an elevator shaft encased in glass that provides sweeping views of the city as individuals ride to the top. The observation deck, named GeO-Deck, provides an interactive experience with the landmarks throughout Dallas using innovative digital technologies. On the very top level of the tower is a rotating floor that houses Five Sixty, an award-winning restaurant headed by Wolfgang Puck.
Texas Discovery Gardens
Encompassing 7.5 acres, Texas Discovery Gardens is a botanical garden open all year round. The historic Fair Park attraction features a number of different native plants, as well as ones that have been adapted to the Dallas environment.
Conscious of its ecologic impact, the garden uses sustainable gardening practices that help conserve water. In addition, the garden was the first in Texas to earn a 100-percent organic certification.
While there, visitors should not miss the Rosine Smith Sammons Butterfly House and Insectarium, a structure containing a rainforest environment with freely wandering butterflies. The Faerie Blanton Kilgore Heirloom Rose Garden is also a must-see.
Dallas Museum of Art
A massive museum, the Dallas Museum of Art contains a permanent collection with pieces that date back to the 3rd century. Altogether, more than 24,000 pieces of art from various regions of the world are featured in the museum, including paintings from renowned artists like Vincent van Gogh, Paul Cezanne, and Auguste Renoir.
Some of the most exciting pieces from the collection come from ancient American civilizations. The museum itself won a Gold Medal from the American Institute of Architects for its design, which came from Edward Larrabee Barnes.
Dallas Heritage Village
A sort of living museum in the heart of the city, Dallas Heritage Village features a number of Victorian and pioneer homes from the 19th century. The attraction celebrates various types of buildings from around the region. It lets people walk backward through history and preserves the unique heritage of Dallas.
The Village reflects what everyday life would have been like for someone living in Northern Texas between 1840 and 1910. It has more than 20 restored buildings, including a hotel, general store, bank, school, and church. To get the most from the experience, visitors should take one of the tours around the Village. The site also has a full calendar of educational programs.