From Museums To Custom Cigars, Dallas Offers A Big-City Tourist Experience

Trendy dining, museums and an arts district filled with unique shops are just a few of Big D’s highlights.

By E.A. Shumate & Marika FlattApril 5, 2018 9:30 am| ,

The Dallas area never ceases to offer twists on tradition, and creative endeavors to explore, whether you’re a regular around the north Texas scene or a visitor looking for area don’t-miss spots.

The Perot Museum of Nature and Science, a wildly popular linchpin of downtown Dallas, is a family-friendly experience that is appropriate for all ages.

A trip to Dallas wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on the Southern Methodist University campus. The center’s everyday exhibits provide insight into our 43rd president as a world leader, as well as his success as a business and family man. A special exhibit on display through October 1 is drawing an extraordinary amount of attention. “Portraits of Courage” combines 66 full-color portraits and a four-panel mural of paintings created by President Bush to honor U.S. military personnel he has come to know personally. (The George W. Bush Institute’s Military Service Initiative that is presenting the exhibit offers assistance to post-9/11 veterans and their families.)

New to the West Village in the heart of Dallas’ Uptown, Pōk the Raw Bar opened earlier this year providing an introduction to a form of cuisine gaining popularity across the U.S., but new to the city. Poke is traditionally made with cheaper parts of the fish, but not at Pōk the Raw Bar, where Executive Chef Jimmy Park prepares only the highest quality fish available.

The menu includes seven signature bowls of fish, herbs, noodles, fruit and vegetables with many vegan options. The entire menu is gluten-free.

We call this a mouthwatering must-eat. New to the Lower Greenville area, Slater’s 50/50 is the southern California burger joint’s first foray into Texas. Hamburgers are half beef and half bacon. In fact, nearly everything on their menu features bacon. Yes, we know. We had you at bacon.

The Bishop Arts district never disappoints when it comes to unusual experiences in art, dining and more. Earlier this year, an icon of the Dallas cultural scene, Cameron Smith, opened the Bishop Arts Modern, a mixed-media studio and gallery featuring both Smith’s own work and other creations in music, art and fashion by talented local guest artists.

The Wild Detectives, a combination coffee house, bookstore and bar, harkens back to the beatnik hangouts of the 50s and 60s. There’s live music, readings by writers, movie screenings, wine tastings, music sets with DJs alongside a thoughtful selection of fiction, poetry and untranslated Spanish literature, as well as a small selection of records. D Magazine and the Dallas Observer have both showered the shop with honors each year since 2014 and American Way, the in-flight magazine of American Airlines, recognized it as one of a handful of shops at the forefront of a recent revival of American indie bookstores.

Aficionados visiting Cigar Art can indulge in hand-rolled cigars in the shop’s public lounge and browse the vast selection of artisan, boutique and small batch “micro-blended” cigars. Even more engaging is the opportunity to watch Cigar Art’s master cigar makers roll them on the premises. Want to share the experience? The store’s master rollers are available for private parties or corporate events.

You can learn more about these and other Texas destinations in the travel issue of Texas Lifestyle magazine.