Celebrate Nature, Art and Culture in Dallas

President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy

President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy  (AP/The White House)

A true highlight of the Lone Star State, Dallas is a city made famous by the past glories of its beloved football team and the ostentatious millionaire characters of the 1970s television series. Though plenty in the city has changed since then, Dallas retains much of the same flashy charm for which it was once famous. Over the flat Texas prairie rise the skyscrapers of downtown, where high-end department stores and superb restaurants line the streets, and bars filled with country music welcome the city’s sophisticated denizens. For a memorable Dallas experience, check out these great attractions.

The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza - Nov. 22, 1963 is a day that will remain infamous in the annals of the city’s history. President John F. Kennedy was shot while traveling with his motorcade in downtown Dallas. Today, the spot where Lee Harvey Oswald fired his deadly shots is now the site of the most popular museum in northern Texas. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza chronicles the tragic events of that fateful day, and celebrates the legacy of the United States’ 35th president and his impact on world history.The museum is filled with a fascinating collection of artifacts, photographs, eyewitness accounts and interactive exhibits. Visitors can also catch a glimpse of the exact spot where Oswald aimed his gun from the window of the Texas School Book Depository, which has been preserved just as it was in November 1963. Over on nearby Elm Street, a red ‘X’ marks the spot where JFK was fatally shot.

Downtown Dallas Arts District - Following its construction in 1984, the Downtown Dallas Arts district propelled Dallas into a major international cultural capital. This 19-block area was transformed into the epicenter of culture in Dallas – home to some of the most important galleries, museums and theaters in the state. The Dallas Museum of Art contains an impressive collection of modern and contemporary art, thanks to a deal with three of the city’s most prominent collectors, as well as smaller collection of European and South American paintings and sculptures. The district received a huge boost in 2003 with the opening of the Nasher Sculpture Center. This magnificent glass-and-marble building contains an astounding collection of works from influential artists like Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso and Roy Lichtenstein, to name but a few. Elsewhere, the AT&T Performing Arts Center hosts performances of opera, ballet and numerous forms of theater.

Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden - Find some quiet respite from the bustling city streets and take advantage of Dallas’ abundant sunshine at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Take a stroll down the quiet paths and walkways that wind through 66 acres of verdant landscapes, manicured trees and colorful flowers. Within these grounds sits the stunning DeGolyer Estate, where guided tours are available through the 1940s-style mansion and its sculpture garden. A Woman’s Garden overlooking White Rock Lake and the floral Jonsson Color Garden are two other highlights of this peaceful sanctuary.