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What to do in Dallas for a weekend?
July 14, 2014 8:09 AM   Subscribe

Please share some cool things to do there by myself during the day!

My SO will be on tour around the US for about a month this fall and we are making plans for me to visit him. Timing-wise, it makes the most sense to go to his show in Dallas but I hardly know anything about the city. I'm looking for ideas of what to see/do by myself to get me pumped on visiting Dallas instead of cities toward the end of the tour that I'd be more interested in going to (Portland and/or Seattle). I like art museums and galleries, parks, quirky boutiques and neighborhoods, hiking, trying new food and exploring new cultures. Bonus for anything close to the Dallas Museum of Art since I think I'll going there one day. I've lived in the Northeast for my whole life (CT, NYC, RI) so anything as far from that experience as possible would be especially cool.

Please enlighten me!
posted by Shadow Boxer to Travel & Transportation around Dallas, TX (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
Well, since you're already at the DMA, you're in the right spot!

I would check out Klyde Warren Park. They have a ton of food trucks, and activities almost every single day. You can also check out the Perot Museum of Nature and Science. If you're lucky, there might be something at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in Dallas. All of these places are 5 minutes walk from the DMA.

If you're not renting a car, don't worry, UberX is very popular here. My favorite museum is the JFK Museum, which has an incredible audible tour. This would be about a 10 minute drive ($5 on UberX) from the DMA. From here, you could also easily visit the Dallas Holocaust Museum.

If you want to explore interesting neighborhoods, you can check out Deep Ellum. It's not really an ethnic enclave, but has a cool new restaurant, Monkey King Noodle Company.

If you want to venture a little further in a different direction, you could check out the area of Oak Cliff, which contains the Bishop Arts District. Some of my favorite restaurants like Smoke, Bolsa, and Oddfellows are also here.

From here you can also visit Trinity Groves, which is a "Dining Theme Park." The food is great, but the main draw here is the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge designed by world-renown architect, Santiago Calatrava.
posted by unexpected at 8:42 AM on July 14 [3 favorites]


There's a free bus, D-Link, that stops at many of the points of interest around downtown and Bishop Arts.

If you're interested in traditional Texas BBQ, your best bets are Pecan Lodge in Deep Ellum (often has a long line) and Lockhart Smokehouse in Bishop Arts. Smoke, near Trinity Groves, has a more refined take. The hotel next door, The Belmont, has a bar with a great skyline view.
posted by erikgrande at 11:36 AM on July 14 [2 favorites]


A few more things I thought of:

For event/restaurant/bar listings I'd check the Dallas Observer and Central Track.

Adair's is a fun Deep Ellum honkytonk with free live music every night. Lee Harvey's (south of downtown) and The Foundry (Trinity Groves) are two "Austin" style bars with a bunch of outdoor benches and occasional live music.

Depending on when you're here, the Texas State Fair might be going on. It's quite a spectacle and accessible by light rail.
posted by erikgrande at 12:26 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]


The Perot Museum is indeed cool, but they are censored a display about climate change, (so depending on your politics) just be aware of that :).

I have also heard great things about the Klyde Warren park and the food trucks. And the JFK museum is a must-see.
posted by getawaysticks at 12:47 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]


We live in Austin and regularly visit Dallas (family). Here are my recommendations:

Close to the DMA (on a side street that runs into the DMA) are two of my favorite little museums: The Crow Collection of Asian Art and the Nasher Sculpture Center. And I'll nth the recommendation of Klyde Warren Park and the food trucks.

I've been to the Perot Museum recently (yesterday). it's really good if you like science-y things, but it has a huge bias toward the oil industry, so be aware of the politics (I signed a petition about the climate change censorship). The gem and mineral hall is very good, and the current dinosaur exhibit was a lot of fun and worth the extra $6.

Across Woodall-Rogers but within walking distance from the Perot museum is the Dallas World Aquarium, which we visited today. It's got a lot of birds and tropical animals in addition to the fish. We watched three separate feedings (otters, penguins, and sharks), and spent something like 2 1/2 hours walking through. If you're into animals at all, the aquarium is a lot of fun.

If you get a chance to go to Fort Worth (about an hour away--a day trip), you will enjoy the Kimbell Art Museum, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth (eat at their restaurant), and the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, which are all in walking distance of each other. The last time we were over there for dinner, we ate at the Woodshed Smokehouse, which we really liked.

Venues that usually host music that interests us (apart from opera at the Winspear) are the Granada Theater and the Kessler Theater. They get a lot of alternative acts there, and some 80s acts on tour (we came up to see Yaz/Yazoo there when they came through).

I've had decent luck finding food through Eater Dallas. I haven't been to Trinity Groves (yet) but I've heard good things.
posted by immlass at 4:53 PM on July 14 [2 favorites]


Thanks so much everyone...very helpful info - getting excited about the trip!
posted by Shadow Boxer at 7:12 AM on July 16


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