Walkable Houston: Museum Park in the Museum District

Photo courtesy of Asia Society Texas Center

While Houstonians definitely love their cars, there are corners of the city that are best explored by foot. In our Walkable Houston series, we traverse those districts to find the prettiest parks, hottest restaurants and bars, coolest local art and shops, and most visit-worthy hidden gems.

Houston’s world-class Museum District is divided into four walkable zones, and each is a thing of beauty. Here, we’ll explore Museum Park (technically deemed Zone 2 by the Houston Museum District), offering a glimpse into the stretch between Midtown and the Texas Medical Center. Check out our Walkable Houston: Menil Campus guide for a look at Zone 1, which includes the Houston Center for Photography, The Menil Collection, and Rothko Chapel.

Play & Explore

  • Houston Center for Contemporary Craft – With an emphasis on objects of art made primarily from craft materials—clay, fiber, glass, metal, wood or found/recycled materials, this museum was founded to advance education about the process, product, and history of craft. Visit artist halls, explore studios and workshops, and view innovative exhibitions. Admission is free. Wednesday to Saturday 10am to 5pm; Sunday noon to 5pm.
  • Lawndale Art Center – Lawndale serves as a gathering place for the artistic and cultural communities of Houston, offering exhibition opportunities, the Artist Studio Program, institutional collaborations, and the engagement from artists, curators, and scholars. Check out the lineup of current exhibitions and current/upcoming murals. Admission is free. Wednesday noon to 6pm; Thursday noon to 8pm; Friday noon to 6pm; Saturday 11am to 5pm; Sunday noon to 3pm.
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture – Over on Caroline, the Houston Museum of African Culture explores the African American experience through stories inspired by opportunity, empowerment, creativity, innovation, and cultural interrelationships. Admission is free, however, donations are accepted and appreciated. Wednesday 11am to 6pm; Thursday 11am to 8pm; Friday 11am to 6pm; Saturday 11am to 6pm.
  • Czech Center Museum Houston – The Czech Center Museum Houston is located on San Jacinto, where you can learn about the rich culture and history of the Czech and Slovak people. Open since 1995, the museum offers art exhibits, tours, movie nights, language instruction and more, all promoting Czech/Slovak heritage by “preserving, recording and celebrating the language, scholarship, and the arts of Bohemia, Moravia, Slovakia and Silesia.”
  • Asia Society Texas Center – The Asia Society Texas Center offers innovative programs in arts and culture, business and policy, education, and community outreach, with an enriching lineup of current exhibitions and upcoming events. Admission to the building and Fayez Sarofim Grand Hall exhibition is free. Admission to the Sarofim Gallery is free for Asia Society members and children ages 12 and under, $8 for nonmembers. Tuesday to Friday 11am to 6pm; Saturday and Sunday 10am to 6pm.
  • Holocaust Museum HoustonRemembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors’ legacy, the Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for active-duty military and AARP members, and free for children, students, and college-level students with a valid ID. Admission is free on Saturdays. Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm; Saturday 10am to 5pm; Sunday noon to 5pm.
  • DiverseWorks Also in Zone 2 but a bit further north in Midtown, you’ll find this collaborative art community at the MATCH (Midtown Arts and Theater Center Houston).
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum – Also a bit off the main hub in Midtown, this museum showcases the history of the Buffalo Soldiers, a group of African American soldiers comprised of former slaves, freemen, and Black Civil War soldiers who were the first to serve during peacetime. Admission is $10 per adult, $5 for students, seniors, or military, and free for children 5 and under. Thursdays offer free admission from 1pm to 5pm. Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm; Saturday 10am to 4pm.
  • The Playhouse Theatre – Though it’s not part of the museums in Zone 2, this community theater offers plenty of fun, offering more than 500 performances since opening in 1973.

Eat & Drink

  • Bodega’s Taco Shop – Fuel up with tacos and margaritas at this Museum District gem off Binz.
  • Danton’s Gulf Coast Seafood & Steaks – Nearby on Montrose, you’ll find Gulf oysters, seafood gumbo, and lively Sunday Blues Brunch at Danton’s.
  • Grand Prize Bar – Those looking for a divey atmosphere can seek solace at Grand Prize Bar, a two-story haunt set on Banks.
  • Lucille’s – Hit this charming restaurant for a taste of Southern comfort, with offerings from Chef Chris Williams‘ Grandma-style chili biscuits and fried green tomatoes to bone-in fish fry.
  • MF Sushi – Known for its incredible omakase tasting, this classy sushi restaurant sits off Binz.

Shop & Support Local

  • Southern Importers – Over on San Jacinto, this novelty shop offers costumes, displays, florals, dancewear, decorations, party accessories, seasonal items and more.
  • Rosewood Flower Shop – Get your floral fix at this family-owned and operated flower shop on Fannin.
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Brooke Viggiano is a food and lifestyle writer residing in Houston. When she's not contributing to publications like 365 Things to Do in Houston, Thrillist Houston and the Houston Press, she's on the hunt for the coolest happenings in the city. You can follow her musings on Twitter @BrookeViggiano .