In our series of Must Do Things Around Greater Houston, we take a look at Houston’s vast array of neighborhoods and communities to bring you five fun, tasty, and enticing reasons you should give each a visit. Originally published in 2016, we are now refreshing, updating, and adding to this series, including new neighborhoods and destinations.
The oldest commercial airport in Houston, William P. Hobby Airport opened as a private landing field in 1927. Today, it is the second busiest airport in the city (behind George Bush Intercontinental), handling domestic and international service for carriers such as Southwest, JetBlue, and Frontier.
Whether you are staying at a hotel near the airport or simply want to explore all that Houston has to offer, here are 5 fun reasons to visit the area around Hobby Airport.
Note: For the purposes of this list, the area near Hobby is bound by Mykawa to the west, Galveston Road to the east, 610 to the north and Sam Houston Tollway to the South.
5 Must Do Things Near Hobby Airport
- Explore the 1940 Air Terminal Museum – You won’t have to go far to find this local gem, which sits in the old Houston Municipal Airport terminal building on the west side of Houston Hobby Airport. The first terminal built for passenger flight in Houston, the original Art Deco building houses collections, memorabilia, and exhibits that showcase the rich heritage of civil aviation and Houston’s fascinating aviation history. The museum is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday 10am to 5pm and Sunday 1pm to 5pm. Admission is $5 for adults; $2 for children. Click here for directions.
- Get the best kolache in town at the Original Kolache Shoppe – Open since 1956, the Original Kolache Shoppe on Telephone Road will change the way you think about kolaches. That’s because it uses locally-sourced ingredients, old-school methods, and a whole lotta love to craft its from-scratch pastries. Get them in the form of traditional kolache filled with things like poppy seed, sweet cheese, lemon, and raspberry; or klobasniky stuffed with the classic combination of jalapeño and cheese. You also won’t want to miss the savory croissants, stuffed with deliciousness like roast beef, pastrami, and chicken fajita. Click here for directions.
- Spend some time outdoors – About 10 minutes from the airport along the Sims Bayou, Charlton Park and the Sims Bayou Urban Nature Center provide a refuge from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Charlton Park offers 8.73 acres of serenity, with tennis courts, a community center, and basketball pavilion. The Sims Bayou Urban Nature Center sits on the original channel of the bayou, offering a 1.1-acre sanctuary and bird-watching hotspot with a log cabin, barn, gazebo, gardens, ponds, and wetland trails. And by 2020, you can expect to find the world-class Houston Botanic Garden, set directly across Sims Bayou.
- Sip margs and smash Tex-Mex at Habanera & the Guero – In 2015, Houston gained another Tex-Mex star in this Hobby-area joint, where the frozen margaritas are stiff and the sloppy enchiladas are some of the best in town. Chef and owner Vanessa Lomeli grew up in El Paso, and she channels her upbringing into her food. Like those aforementioned enchiladas, which get stacked and topped with a dusky red sauce starring the same New Mexican chiles her grandmother used. Just beware: when the menu describes a dish as spicy, it’s not lying. Click here for directions.
- Slurp up pho at the Pho Binh Trailer – The original location of Houston’s favorite purveyor of pho, Pho Binh Trailer lies on the Southern edge of Greater Hobby. Yes, it’s actually a converted trailer, and it has been keeping local bellies full since 1983. Stop by to see the unassuming landmark that sparked a pho revolution (today, there are 7 locations), and do so with a rich, warmly fragrant bowl stacked with herbs, rice noodles, and luscious cuts like rare eye of round, brisket, and tendon. Visit Tuesday through Saturday from 8am to 4pm, and don’t forget to bring cash. Click here for directions.