When most travelers think of Houston, great local culture is not usually the thing that comes first to mind. However, the city better known for sports and oil actually has amazing cultural finds waiting to be admired and explored.
If you haven’t visited yet, plan a trip soon, especially if you are a budget traveler. The city is not as expensive as other major American centers, and hotels in Houston are some of the cheapest in the entire country!
So get to Houston and save some money traveling while you discover the museums, art, and music of Houston and find places that most tourists will never know about with the following guide.
Visit the Asher Gallery
The Asher Gallery may sound like an upscale art gallery, but it actually houses a huge collection of work from local craftsmen and artists that gives you a glimpse into the local art scene. The display is within the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, and in addition to showcasing art, the gallery also sells handmade jewelry, ceramics, baskets, handbags, and clothing.
Catch a Show at Fitzgerald’s
Fitzgerald’s has been a Houston institution since 1977, and after a recent reinvention by new management has once again become one of the city’s top spots for live music. If you are a rock fan, head to Fitzgerald’s any night from Wednesday to Sunday to see up-and-coming local and national bands perform. Best of all, most shows are completely free for guests 21 and up!
Admire Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts
There is no larger center for fine art and film than Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts. For film buffs traveling through Houston, check out the film programming hosted by the museum, such as the “Movies Houstonians Love Series” where prominent Houstonians ranging from politicians to rappers get to present their favorite films. The featured Robert Frank Collection includes tons of beautiful photography and works from the famous Swiss independent filmmaker. Try to visit on a Thursday night when admission to most local museums is free.
Tour Saint Arnold Brewing Company
Even if beer brewing is a less-refined type of culture, this tour of Texas’ oldest craft brewery gives visitors an amazing opportunity to discover more about the local and significant beer industry. Bring friends along to Saint Arnold Brewing Company and join a tour for just $8 per person on any day between Monday and Saturday.
Explore The Menil Collection
What started as a private art collection of John and Dominique de Menil has become one of the most important collections of art in the 20th century. The Menil Collection hosts over 17,000 diverse works of art, including sculptures, prints, photos, paintings, and rare books. You will be amazed at the span of time and geography captured in this beautiful collection, as some pieces date to ancient Greece and the Byzantine empire, while others come from as far away as the tribal cultures of Africa and Oceania.
Discover a side of Houston you may not have known existed by exploring the above cultural landmarks, and you will love the beautiful and vibrant cultural scene in the biggest city in Texas.
Photo by Nina Afrique.