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Hotel Deals for Dallas
Stay Alfred at The Mayflower
May 21 - May 21, 2019
per night from
$ 1004
$ 128.33

Pioneer Plaza commemorates Dallas’ beginnings by honoring the trails that brought in settlers.

As a slight nod to the old adage of “everything is bigger in Texas,” Dallas is booming nicely. Its neighborhoods offer plenty for both a laid-back afternoon or happening night out. Its museums showcase artistic wonders from all periods or provide a historic background on presidential legacies. And, of course, getting a good bite to eat is easy in this buzzing metropolitan city. Get your sights set and appetite ready with this three-day Dallas itinerary.

RELATED: 20 things to do this summer in Dallas

The Dallas Arts Museum has free general admission and much to see!

Day 1:
The Dallas Arts District (the country’s largest contiguous urban arts district) features a number of cultural attractions within easy walking distance. First, begin the morning at Yolk, a restaurant serving an assortment of breakfast and lunch dishes both filling and healthy.

Free to the public, the Dallas Arts Museum is a treasure trove of more than 24,000 works spanning centuries, continents and cultures. In all, the museum’s collection incorporates 5,000 years of creativity. A signature spot within one museum wing replicates a villa in the south of France, originally built by fashion designer Coco Chanel, and once owned by a couple who were museum benefactors.

The Nasher Sculpture Center holds more than 300 modern and contemporary masterpieces by artistic greats including de Kooning, Matisse, Rodin, Picasso and Miró. If the weather’s right, linger in the outdoor garden. Nearby, the Trammell Crow Collection of Asian Art (a.k.a. the Crow Collection) exhibits pieces from Japan, China, India, and Southeast Asia dating as far back as 3500 B.C. and extending to rare findings such as jade ornaments, Japanese scrolls and a sandstone façade of an 18th-century Indian residence.

Klyde Warren Park is buzzing with activity.

In the midst of museum hopping, take a break at Klyde Warren Park, an urban green space and central gathering spot with food trucks. Built over a six-lane freeway, this 5.2-acre park has enough room for running around, laying down a blanket or starting a friendly Frisbee game. Free daily programming is also scheduled. Located alongside the park, Savor Gastropub offers a sit-down dining option with its sleek floor-to-ceiling window setting, inventive cocktails and New American-style lunch, brunch and dinner choices.

Prefer something more scientific? The Perot Museum of Science and Nature makes learning fun for all ages. Eleven different exhibit halls contain hands-on activities and state-of-the-art educational displays; there’s also a multimedia 3D theater.

For dinner, hit up Rustic, a down-home bar/restaurant with a backyard patio and a menu sporting locally sourced beers and ingredients for their meals (think Gulf seafood) and cocktails.

The Dallas Farmers Market showcases specialty food vendors.

Day 2:
Start your day off deliciously at downtown’s Dallas Farmers Market, a 26,000-square-foot food hall and artisan vendor marketplace featuring a cornucopia of restaurants and specialty food booths. Consider taking a different approach to breakfast with an order from Taqueria La Ventana, an authentic Mexico City-inspired eatery that’s casual and a bit eclectic. While street tacos are their specialty, their menu also offers breakfast versions of tacos and quesadillas pairing egg and cheese with bacon, chorizo or potato. Friday through Sunday visit the Shed, an open-air pavilion where regional vendors and craftspeople sell what they grow or make.

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Based in the former Texas School Book Depository, the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza chronicles President John F. Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas. While educating visitors about what happened on November 22, 1963—in Dealey Plaza—the museum also focuses on Kennedy’s overall legacy. News footage, historic images and artifacts further enhance this chronological exhibit. Afterward, walk over to the Plaza. Now a U.S. National Historic Landmark, a ground plaque marks its place in time.

The district of Deep Ellum is a thriving dining and cultural destination.

Next, venture east of downtown to Deep Ellum, a commercial district dating back to mid-19th century and described as a modern-day New Orleans meets New York City’s SoHo. Nowadays, it’s a hot spot for live music, art galleries, unique stores, breweries and eateries. Deep Ellum Brewing Company, a restaurant/taproom, makes creatively named suds such as Dallas Blonde and Dream Crusher. Braindead Brewing, meanwhile, has both indoor and outdoor sections with craft brews and a pub menu with choices like their hefty-named Coma Burger.  At popular BBQ joint Pecan Lodge, it’s possible to encounter a waiting line but your patience will pay off.  Place your order, get a ticket, listen for your name, and then head up to the pickup counter to obtain your meal tray. Get a two- or three-meat plate with a choice of brisket, sausage, ribs or pulled pork paired with a side like their crowd-pleasing mac and cheese.

For dinner, venture over the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge to Trinity Groves, a dining enclave with restaurants and shops appealing to every palette—Japanese, steak, tapas, Southern specialties, Middle Eastern, you name it. Go for dessert at Cake Bar, have Chinese with a Latin American twist at Chino Chinatown or try vegan dishes at V-Eats Modern Vegan.

Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden has various signature flower beds and landscapes.

Day 3:
Begin your final day in East Dallas with breakfast at Garden Café. This tucked away neighborhood eatery and patio provides Southern-style brunch fare.  An on-site organic garden provides herbs and vegetables that go into their meals. Build your own omelet or select a choice of buttermilk, whole wheat or sweet potato.

Next, spend some time strolling through the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Built on the ground of two former mansions, this well-manicured, 66-acre oasis blossoms with 19 various named gardens graced with different landscapes and flower beddings. A children’s adventure garden connects youngsters with nature by offering more than 150 kid-friendly activities. Anticipated to open in fall 2017, a two-acre food garden called “A Taste of Place” will include an orchard, vineyard and edible plantings. A teaching kitchen will hold tastings, cooking demos and classes, and other events relating to “garden to table” cuisine.

A gown worn by Former First Lady Laura Bush is on display at the George W. Bush Library and Museum.

Located on the campus of Southern Methodist University, the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum touches on number 43’s life and time as Commander in Chief. Find a chronology of Bush family photos (including his dad, George H.W. Bush), a replica Oval Office, and a multi-media retrospective on the events of September 11, 2001. Temporary special exhibits also take place. Displays have included a collection of Bush’s oil paintings of military veterans from his “Portraits of Courage” book project. There’s also a farm-to-table café named 43.

Impressive both day and night, have an overhead look at the Dallas Skyline atop Reunion Tower. Its 470-high GeO-deck takes the observation deck a step further with visual displays and 360-degree views. A moving experience can also be discovered at Cloud Cafe Nine, a revolving casual eatery.

The Bishop Arts District is a fun place for shopping and dining out.

South of downtown, in the North Oak Cliff borough, Bishop Arts Center is a historic shopping district that now incorporates an eclectic selection of art galleries and independently owned boutique stores. Bishop Street Market is stocked with unique gift ideas, and Epiphany carries boho chic and contemporary styles for men and women’s clothing. Pie lovers and soon-to-be won over dessert fans must order a slice from Emporium Pies. Seasonal selections of these handmade treats range from fruit-filled to chocolaty. If in need of caffeine, go to the Wild Detectives, a cool coffeehouse/bookstore combo. Then, begin your evening with dinner at Tillman’s Roadhouse, a chic Texan-style eatery with regional favorites. End your outing with a nightcap at Bishop Cider Co., a tasting room featuring a half dozen flavorful cider varieties on tap.

Where to stay: Consider the Fairmont Dallas, a luxury property in the heart of the downtown Dallas Arts District. There’s also the Joule, where you can take a dip in its cantilevering rooftop pool.

Tagged: Texas

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Michele Herrmann

Michele Herrmann

Michele writes about women's travel, destinations, culinary, and cultural topics for various outlets and has ventured as far as Fiji, to date. She also muses her tales on She Is Going Places.

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