For anyone who has ever set boot in Texas, the distinctive drawl of the residents is familiar, as are the square miles of rambling prairie and the down-home hospitality. But the Lone Star State has a lot more to it than cowboy-movie stereotypes and a visit to Dallas proves the point. Dallas is a modern American metropolis. Sprawled among the counties of Dallas, Denton, Collin, Rockwall and Kaufman, the city is a thriving home to sophisticated culture and deep Western history, ample leisure and lively entertainment. And while cowboy hats and tight jeans still figure prominently in its upbeat urban lifestyle, the city is home to people from all walks of life and different parts of the world, making visitors of all stripes feel comfortable.
As in most prosperous metropolises, the list of things to do in Dallas is long and various. If, for example, you're set on shopping--upscale, retro, kitschy, whatever--you won't be disappointed. The city has stores catering to all preferences. In fact, it has more shopping centers than any other city in the United States. Many of them are megamalls like Highland Park Village, which dubs itself the "premiere shopping experience of Dallas," or Northpark Center, which claims the title of "premiere shopping and dining center of Dallas." Both are major crowd draws, with their high-end boutiques and all the chain stores and eateries you'd find in any other supermall.
To get a feel for the scale of Dallas, just take a walk around. On any urban expedition, you'll note the impressive cityscape of the place, which features many buildings that rise more than 70 stories. Notable architectural landmarks include the JPMorgan Chase Tower, JFK Memorial, Fountain Place, Bank of America Plaza and the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center.
If your kids are keen to pack more action into the itinerary, then Six Flags Over Texas offers more excitement than a mechanical bullride. A recreational theme park that has been around for five decades, it boasts of a lot of popular rides and a host of other fun stuff to do. Dallas is also a treasure trove of outdoor spaces for travelers who appreciate the chance to relax in the open air. Try Lee Park, which stretches lazily along picturesque Turtle Creek. Or the Music Hall at Fair Park, where live concerts and performances are regularly scheduled.
Dining and Nightlife
Dallas' downtown is a revitalized area now known for loft developments, coffeehouses, and trendy shops and restaurants. If you like meat, you should not leave the cattle state before enjoying a steak. Head out to Bob's Steak & Chop House or Al Biernat's for some of the best beef in Texas. Or if you're in the mood for Tex-Mex, try the Cadillac Bar. You can eat, then hang out and wait for the partying to start in this restaurant/club.