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Top 5 Places to take Out of Town Guests in Texas


Zilker Metropolitan Park is a recreational area in south Austin, Texas at the juncture of Barton Creek and the Colorado River that comprises over 350 acres of publicly owned land. It is named after its benefactor, Andrew Jackson Zilker, who donated the land to the city in 1917.

Features and Amenities

  • Barton Springs Pool measures three acres in size, and is fed from underground springs with an average temperature of 68 – 70 degrees, ideal for year-round swimming. The Springs also serve as home to the endangered Barton Springs Salamander, and is listed as a federally protected habitat.
  • The Zilker Botanical Garden is located in the heart of Austin. The gardens are on parkland that is covered with impressive trees, grottoes and aquatic features mingled into a unique and tranquil design.
  • Austin Nature and Science Center provides hands-on nature exhibits, educational programs and recreational activities for visitors, teachers, and children to increase awareness and appreciation of the natural environment.
  • Zilker Metropolitan Park is a 351-acre metropolitan park home to a variety of recreation opportunities, facilities, and special events for individuals and families. One of the park’s most notable attractions is the Zilker Zephyr. It’s a miniature train that offers a 20 – 25 minute ride around the park, allowing a perfect opportunity to see Barton Creek and Lady Bird Lake at a leisurely pace.


The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza was founded by the Dallas County Historical Foundation. It opened its doors on Presidents’ Day, February 20, 1989.

Features and Amenities

  • Forever etched in history, this tall brick building is now home to the Sixth Floor Museum, a fascinating attraction devoted to Kennedy’s life, work, and tragic death.
  • Exhibits feature accounts Kennedy’s 1960 presidential campaign, as wells as his legacy and influence through historical footage, photos, and artifacts. Also present is the John Fitzgerald Kennedy Memorial, a massive monument dedicated to the memory of the president that was built in 1970.
  • Opened in 2013 on the campus of Southern Methodist University, is the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum. The museum offers visitors interactive galleries to learn about the Bush family as well as his time as president.
  • Another feature is a replica of the Oval Office as well as an adjoining 15-acre park with its native flora and fauna.

El Paso

Wyler Aerial Tramway was initially constructed in 1959 to assist in the erecting of a radio transmitter antenna and service platform. At the time small tram hauled a variety of construction materials and equipment to the mountain summit. Wyler directed the project and became instantly enamored with Ranger Peak and its stunning view.

Features and Amenities

  • Wyler Aerial Tramway operates on a 2,400 foot long single-span cable system. From bottom to top, visitors are lifted 940 vertical feet high above the rugged terrain below. Swiss-made gondolas shuttle passengers, and haul rope pulls each gondola on a track rope along its route.
  • Several events take place at the location throughout the year. Many hikes are scheduled as well as family events like pumpkin carving and festival at Halloween.
  • There are ranger-guided tram tours. This is a round trip ride to the top of Ranger Peak, 5,632 feet above sea level, with a park ranger on board to answer your questions. The ranger will also describe the plants, wildlife and rock formations along the way.


Open to the public in 2008, Discovery Green is an alluring, dynamic 12-acre park in the heart of Downtown Houston.

Features and Amenities

  • The Kinder Large Dog Run and the Harriet and Joe Foster Small Dog Run offer space at the park for four-legged members of the family. The areas feature crushed gravel, fountains and seating.
  • Discovery Green offers its visitors two dining options: The Lake House and The Grove. Operated by the nationally-renowned Schiller Del Grande Restaurant Group of Cafe Annie fame, each restaurant offers a unique dining experience, whether for the casual eater or gourmet foodie.
  • Gateway fountain is one of the most popular features in Discovery Green. During Houston’s grueling summer months, hundreds of children play daily in this seasonal favorite “cool spot.” Lively jets create a water park atop a gently sloping granite surface, with 14-foot high arcing jets.
  • John P. McGovern Playground is situated on a tree-shaded hill. The theme of the playground is the major migratory flyway for birds that pass over Houston. Some species of these birds are represented in the equipment, and include signs to educate visitors.
  • The Anheuser-Busch Stage outdoor concert venue, designed to enhance the unique diversity of Houston’s performing and visual arts, as well as all musical genres. The backdrop of the stage is a view of Houston’s skyline. The stage faces the Fondren Performance Space, and provides easy access to and from Avenida de las Americas and the George R. Brown Convention Center. The stage can accommodate an oversized movie screen, with projection capabilities for outdoor movie nights, slideshows and presentations, and live feeds.

San Antonio

The San Antonio River Walk, also known as Paseo del Río or simply as the River Walk, set roughly one story beneath the streets of San Antonio, brimming bars, shops, restaurants, nature, and public art. The River Walk is an important part of the city’s urban fabric and a tourist attraction in its own right.

Features and Amenities

  • Boat tours are one relaxing way to experience the River Walk. Barges cruise the river on a basic sightseeing cruise can hold up to 40 passengers. Barges are set with a large table in the center and can accommodate up to 20 guests for dinner cruises.
  • The South Bank is the largest event area directly on the River Walk hosting events for up to 2700 guests. This premier destination is a favorite San Antonio party spot with the best entertainment and most delicious food found on the River Walk.
  • The Downtown Reach encompasses the heart of San Antonio, where visitors can enjoy dining at the Tower of Americas, local art exhibits at Blue Star Contemporary Art Center, or a live show at the Majestic Theatre.
  • The River Walk Mission Reach is an eight-mile stretch providing visitors with a historic view of San Antonio. This winding path is home of the historic San Antonio Missions Trail.
  • In 2009, a new River Walk extension was completed. The Museum Reach is a 1.33-mile stretch featuring San Antonio’s world-famous zoo, the Japanese Tea Gardens, Brackenridge Park, the historic Pearl District. It also gives access to three very distinguished museums; The Witte, The Doseum and The San Antonio Museum of Art.


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