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​Holidays to Houston, Texas​

Houston, Texas is a big city, and it packs a correspondingly big punch. It's soul is deeply Texan, with rodeos and barbeque joints still very much a part of the scene here; but it's also highly cosmopolitan, with superb shopping and an interesting museum district. If you want to ride a mechanical bull in a honky-tonk bar on Houston holidays, you can; but you can also eat in celebrity chef restaurants, catch a Broadway hit and check out Mission Control at the Space Centre.

Many of Houston's pleasures are profoundly urban. There's a big city buzz about the place, with glittering skyscrapers downtown and dozens of malls to satisfy even the most addicted of shoppers. There's also great dining, courtesy of the city's diverse ethnic mix, and some very happening night-life. Cowboy boots stomp to the sound of slide guitars in Country & Western clubs; hipsters and clubbers party the night away on Washington Avenue; and fans of the arts get their fill of theatre, opera and dance in the Theatre District.

Museums also ride high on the list of things to do on Houston holidays, with a rich treasure trove of places to discover. The Museum of Fine Arts displays 63,000 works of art from African masks to contemporary sculpture, while the Menil Collection is among the finest private art collections in the world. Other hits include the Natural Science Museum, complete with dinosaurs and giant IMAX screen; the Health Museum, where you can walk through an outsize human body; and the fantastic Children's Museum.

There's parks to enjoy too, like Hermann Park with its zoo and paddle boats, and the Sam Houston Park complete with historic buildings. And if you fancy a break from the city, you can head out to Galveston and the coast. It's the best of both worlds.

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Shop Till You Drop

Houston holidays are pure paradise for serious shoppers. The Galleria Mall is the biggest in Texas and harbours around 400 stores under its stunning glass atrium, including Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and a host of designer names. Kirby and the Rice Village are good for galleries, antiques and one-off shops, while bargain-hunters should head for the shops along Harwin Drive.

Blast Off!

Houston is home to the Johnson Space Centre, which drives America's space programme. At Space Centre Houston you can take a tram ride to see Mission Control and the Johnson Space Centre at work; experience simulated zero gravity; feel what it's like to blast off in a rocket; go through astronaut training in the IMAX theatre; and marvel at hundreds of space-related exhibits including moon rocks and spacecraft.

Festival Time

March's Livestock Show and Rodeo dominates the festival calendar and draws thousands of people to Houston for three weeks of rodeo competitions, barbeque contests, big-name concerts and general partying. Other annual highlights are the Art Car Parade (May 10), with a huge parade of cars transformed into works of art; and the Fourth of July 'Freedom Over Texas' fireworks and celebrations.

San Jacinto Battlefield

Visit the site of the battle that secured Texan independence, where in 1836 General Sam Houston and his army defeated General Santa Ana's much larger Mexican force. Tour the museum, learn the story of the fight, and take the lift to the top of the 173-metre monument for great views over the Houston Shipping Channel.


Lying on a barrier island off the coast just an hour's drive from Houston, Galveston has white sand beaches and a historic downtown district filled with handsome Victorian buildings. It's a lovely place to spend some time.

Fly Drive Holiday: Grand Texan Trails

Dallas – Austin – Houston – San Antonio – Fort Worth - Dallas

This suggested fly drive itinerary gives you the perfect introduction to urban Texas. You’ll visit cosmopolitan Dallas, funky state capital Austin, NASA centre Houston, historic San Antonio and Western Fort Worth with plenty of time to explore in each destination. Travel between cities by car so that you can explore and discover the state at your own pace. Have a good time, y’all!

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Fly Drive Holiday: Lone Star Trail

Dallas – Austin – Houston – Corpus Christi - San Antonio – Fort Stockton - El Paso - Albuquerque - Santa Fe - Amarillo - Dallas

Experience the highlights of the Lone Star State on this fascinating fly drive tour through Texan history, culture and landscapes. Along the way you’ll visit Austin, the ‘live music capital of the world’, Houston, home of NASA’s Johnson Space Centre, Galveston, a treasure trove of things historically Texan, San Antonio, site of the famous Battle of the Alamo and El Paso, on the border with Mexico. Dip into New Mexico and see the exciting city of Albuquerque and state capital Santa Fe before crossing the Texas Panhandle and returning to Dallas.

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Time Difference:
GMT- 6hours

Closest Airport:
George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Code (approx. 9 hours and 25 minutes, direct flight)

Airport transfers:
Roundtrip starts from only £20 per person.

Getting around:
Hire a car and explore the surrounding areas. Check out the great selection of dining options, attractions and local excursions available. Care hire is available from £21 per day.

Insider Tip:
Fancy a pair of the finest cowboy boots money can buy? Head over to Tejas Custom Boots where a pair of custom boots start from $950. They also carry an assortment of other leather products including a black crocodile briefcase! 

You’re going to need an ESTA:
For anyone travelling to the USA, the US authorities have imposed a requirement for passengers travelling under the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP), to register for Electronic Travel Authority. Just fill in the online application form which you can find at You will need to apply for entry via ESTA at least a minimum of 72 hours prior to travel.

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Many of the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to:

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