Named after former General Sam Houston, Houston is the largest city in Texas, United States. People say "everything's bigger in Texas", the H-Town is no exception. Being at the forefront in the aerospace industry since the 1960s, the city is often nicknamed "Space City".
Hermann Park is one of Houston's most-visited public parks. This historic 445-acre park space is home to numerous cultural institutions including the Houston Zoo, Houston Garden Center, Miller Outdoor Theatre, Houston Museum of Natural Science, Pioneer Memorial Log House Museum and so on. It also includes attractions such as the Japanese Garden, the Chinese Pagoda, a Lake Overlook and many more. Hermann Park was presented to the City of Houston by George Hermann in 1914, and is now Houston's most historically significant public green space. It is served by Light Rail 700 at Hermann Park/Rice U Station.
The Houston Museum District is an association of 19 museums, galleries, cultural centers and community organizations dedicated to promoting art, science, history and culture. The 19 museums record a collective attendance of over 8.7 million visitors a year. All of the museums offer free times or days and 11 of the museums are free all the time. The beginnings of the Museum District started in 1977.
Established in 1909, the Houston Museum of Natural Science attracts over two million visitors each year. The museum complex consists of a central facility with four floors of natural science halls and exhibits, the Burke Baker Planetarium, the Cockrell Butterfly Center, and the Wortham Giant Screen Theatre. The museum is one of the most popular in the United States and much of the popularity is attributed to its large number of special or guest exhibits.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) is one of the largest museums in the United States. Its permanent collection spans more than 6,000 years of history with approximately 64,000 works from six continents. The majority of the collection lie in the areas of Italian Renaissance painting, French Impressionism, photography, American and European decorative arts, African and pre-Columbian gold, American art, and post-1945 European and American painting and sculpture.The MFAH is the oldest art museum in Texas.
Montrose is a demographically diverse neighborhood established in 1911. Montrose has been called the "Heart of Houston", and was named one of the "ten great neighborhoods in America" in 2009. During the 60's and 70's, Montrose became a center for the burgeoning counterculture movement, with street musicians, alternative community centers and hippie communes, head shops and artisans’ studios proliferating. Today, Montrose hosts a number of communities including artists, musicians, and LGBTs, and has thrift, vintage, and second-hand shopping stores, gay bars, and restaurants.
Houston, La Porte
Space Center Houston is the official visitor center of the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center—the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) center for human spaceflight activities. The center is home to space artifacts and hardware including: Lunar Module replica, Mercury 9 capsule (Faith 7), Gemini 5 capsule, Apollo 17 Command Module, among others. The Space Center is also the home of the Space Shuttle Independence mockup.
The San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site includes the location of the Battle of San Jacinto (the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution), and the USS Texas (the only remaining World War I-era dreadnought battleship). The site is a National Historic Landmark. A prominent feature of the park is the San Jacinto Monument. Visitors can take an elevator to the monument's observation deck for a view of Houston, the Houston Ship Channel and the USS Texas. In addition to the Battle of San Jacinto, the museum's exhibits focus on the history of Texan culture, including Mayan, Spanish and Mexican influences, the history of the Texas Revolution and the Republic of Texas, and important figures in Texas history.
Established in 1912 and considered the top university and the most selective institute of higher education in Texas, Rice University has a beautiful campus lined with great architecture and well-maintained landscaping. The university's first president intended for the campus to have a uniform architecture style to improve its aesthetic appeal. To that end, nearly every building on campus is noticeably Byzantine in style, with sand and pink-colored bricks, large archways and columns being a common theme among many campus buildings.
Opened in 1987, the Menil Collection is a museum that houses a collection of approximately 17,000 paintings, sculptures, prints, drawings, photographs and rare books. The museum's holdings are diverse, including early to mid-twentieth century works of Max Ernst, Marcel Duchamp, Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, among others. The museum also maintains an extensive collection of pop art and contemporary art from Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, Mark Rothko, among others. Also included in the museum's permanent collection are Antiquities and works of Byzantine, Medieval and Tribal art.
Built in 1971, the Rothko Chapel is a non-denominational chapel that serves not only as a chapel, but also as a major work of modern art. On its walls are fourteen black but color hued paintings by Mark Rothko (American abstract expressionist painter). The shape of the building, an octagon inscribed in a Greek cross, and the design of the chapel was largely influenced by the artist. It is registered on the list of the National Register of Historic Places.