Best Houston TX Tours 2024 1
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Best Houston TX Tours 2024

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Greetings, Internet Stranger! I’m Stella Jane, author of the travel memoir Get Lost, and welcome to the best Houston TX tours. Houston, Texas is a very underrated city. It’s got interesting history, fascinating architecture, and amazing food. That’s why it’s the perfect Texas city for going on a tour.

I thoroughly enjoyed the time I spent in Texas, and that’s why I have put together this list of the best Houston TX tours for you. I hope that you enjoy your time in the Bayou City as much as I did.

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best Houston TX Tours

#1 TOP PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
SPACE CENTER
✔️ Tons to do!
✔️ Houston, we don’t have a problem

#2 PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 3

FOOD TOUR
✔️ Delicious Houston treats
✔️ Expert local guide

#3 PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 4

ALL OTHER HOUSTON TOURS
✔️ Choose your favorite
✔️ Find the best deals

The Best Houston TX Tours!

best houston tx tours

1) Space Center Houston Tram Tours

The Space Center is probably the most famous attraction in Houston. However, a lot of people don’t know that there are tours of the Space Center. In fact, they’re included with the price of admission, so they couldn’t be easier to take.

I STRONGLY recommend buying your ticket in advance by going here.

There was a white tour that takes you to Mission Control, and a red tour that takes you to see the shuttles. I suggest you do both because how often are you going to be at the Space Center?

24 hours in houston

I think the white tour is more special, so if you have to choose just one, I suggest making it this one. I don’t want to give away all the fascinating facts, but I do want to let you know what to expect.

24 hours in houston

The reason that the white tour is more special is that you get to learn all about the moon landing and other Apollo missions. Because of course, it was right here at the Space Center that all those missions were lost. I’m sure we all remember the phrase “Houston, we have a problem.”

Fortunately, that phrase wasn’t said until the Apollo 13 mission, which failed because Kevin Bacon forgot to stir the tanks. However, the Apollo 11 mission was the successful one starring Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, featuring Michael Collins.

On the white tour of Space Center, you’ll actually get to experience a simulation of being in Mission Control during that fateful flight.

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They don’t allow you to take any pictures or video of this show because space secrets are still secrets. However, you will have an opportunity to take a picture of the Mission Control room after the show is over. That’s why this is one of the best Houston TX tours.

24 hours in Houston

Another cool thing that you’ll get to see at the Space Center are the Longhorns. Now, I know that Longhorns are a big deal in Texas, but I still wasn’t expecting to see any at a Space Center. I mean, they aren’t extra terrestrial Longhorns or anything.

No, this is one of NASA’s community service projects called the Longhorn Project. They breed Longhorns among all the spacecraft. They also teach kids in Houston and the surrounding area how to take care of the beasts.

I hope they’re not getting the kids’ hopes up too much because usually when you take care of Longhorns, there are no space shuttles around.

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The second tram tour isn’t quite as exciting, but it’s still an interesting, once in a lifetime experience. You’ll be able to go to the Astronaut Training Facility and see all the mockups of space shuttles. (Sadly, they aren’t real space shuttles, and you can’t steal one and fly to the moon. Not that I tried. AHEM!)

There are pretty strict rules about silence in this facility because this is where real astronauts are still training. That was a hard rule for some of the kids on the tour to follow, so prepare your child properly so they don’t frighten the astronauts with all their noise.

24 hours in houston

Aside from Mission Control, Rocket Park was my favorite part of the Space Center. You can really explore rockets that were used in actual outer space. There are no mockups here!

My favorite rocket was the Saturn V, which you can see in my photo above. It is the biggest and strongest rocket that has ever been launched into space. (My ex told me that he also had the biggest and strongest rocket that was ever launched into space, but believe me, it wasn’t true.)

The rockets didn’t actually go to the moon, they just helped launch the Apollo spacecraft. However, they were still an essential part of the moon landings, and for that, we salute them! And getting to see these rockets is why the Space Center is one of the best Houston TX tours.

Check rates and availability of Space Center tour tickets by going here.

24 hours in houston

2) Houston Food Tour

Houston is not nearly as famous for food as it should be. There are many wonderful cuisines in Houston because of the plethora of immigrant populations, so that’s why I say this food tour is one of the best tours in Houston TX. Allow me to show you around Houston with the Houston Food Tour.

This tour will give you a glimpse into Houston’s food scene, but you’ll also see a bunch of cool public art, learn about life in the city, and even get to see the famous Houston tunnels. (I didn’t even know that Houston had tunnels before this tour.)

You can check rates and availability by clicking here.

Then get ready to dive into some tasty eats!

24 hours in houston

The first time I learned about Houston was from a movie called Local Hero, which you should definitely watch. It takes place half in Houston, in the oil industry, and half in an adorable Scottish village. Houston doesn’t look nearly as appealing as the village.

However, though Houston is quite modern looking and growing fast, you can find some green spots in the city. Take Lauren’s Garden, which was dedicated to a Houston lady who was tragically killed during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. I’m glad that even though the tour was mostly about food, we got to make a stop here.

24 hours in houston

Houston has a big Mexican population, so you know that the Mexican food is going to be better than the Mexican food in many cities, like my hometown of New York. That’s why I was glad we got to stop at a great Mexican restaurant for some tacos served with a corn and cotija cheese salad.

This is not a Tex Mex restaurant, though you can get great Tex Mex in Houston. No, the decor, which features a ton of Mexican decorations like lucha libre masks, will remind you of that too. It’s supposed to be like a taqueria in Mexico City, and though I haven’t been to that many taquerias in Mexico City, it seemed quite authentic to me.

24 hours in houston

A drink is not included with the tour, but most of us ordered one at our own expense anyway. The margaritas are super and strong, and others on the tour raved about the pina coladas as well.

24 hours in houston

You might be thinking yikes! Why have you taken me down this dark and abandoned tunnel? What horrible thing is going to happen to me?

Well, don’t worry, Internet Stranger! This is just one of Houston’s famous tunnels. Do you know how Minneapolis is full of skyways because it gets too freaking cold to walk around and shop? Houston has the same thing, except it’s tunnels underground, and they are to help avoid the heat and humidity.

24 hours in houston

Our guide showed us a map of Houston and pointed out their major sports venues, like the homes of the Houston Rockets and the Houston Astros. She joked about how the Rockets always lose and everyone hates the Astros because of their cheating scandal.

My favorite team, the Atlanta Braves, beat the Astros to win the World Series in 2021, so I can be magnanimous and say I’m happy for the Astros winning the World Series in 2022.

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You were probably expecting to find great Mexican food in Houston, but it might be a bit more of a surprise to find a great Filipino restaurant. This place started life as a food truck, but like many an excellent restaurant, it has become so popular that it needed to find a more permanent location.

Here, we snacked on pupu chicken, which was a little savory and a little sweet. If you like General Tso’s chicken, you’ll like this. If you can’t finish all the rice, don’t feel shame! I couldn’t finish all of mine either. And we still have one more delicious food stop to go.

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Everyone likes Italian food. That’s just science. And I appreciate the diversity of trying one Latino, one Asian, and one European food stop on this food tour. It just shows what a diverse population the city of Houston has.

We get the most food at this stop because we got to sample three different dishes, including dessert. Up first was fresh veggie pizza. As a native New Yorker, I never say no to pizza.

24 hours in houston

Then we got to sample some classic fettucine Alfredo. I know that my serving doesn’t look particularly gorgeous, but that’s because we were all taking from a common dish.

Actually, that’s one of the best things about going on a food tour. I would never be able to eat both fettucine and pizza in the same meal on my own, especially as a solo traveler.

24 hours in houston

I was half expecting tiramisu or cannoli, but instead our dessert was a classic Italian cheesecake. Even this New Yorker had to admit, it was pretty tasty!

24 Hour Tip

Don’t you want to experience this delicious food for yourself and find out why it’s one of the best Houston TX tours?

So just head on here to check rates and availability.

one day in houston itinerary
3) Mural Tour

Before I went to Houston, I had no idea that the city is famous for its amazing street art. That’s why I was excited to take this wonderful mural tour in an adorable little cart, so you don’t have to walk everywhere. I got to see all the beautiful murals in the city and get to appreciate a side of Houston I wouldn’t have understood otherwise. That’s why I think it’s one of the best Houston TX tours.

Check rates and availability for yourself by going here

I won’t spoil all of the murals, and of course, new murals are being painted all the time, so there will be new things for you to see on the tour as well.

Our guide, whom I shall call Dusty, told us that the mural you can see in my photo above, which is called Houston is Inspired, is the most popular image on Instagram in all of Houston.

Whose job is it to monitor that information and how do I get a sweet and easy job like that?

This mural was painted by Gonzo 247, and I hope it is Gonzo from The Muppets and the number 247 refers to the number of chickens that he has. Gonzo was commissioned to do this mural because people were sick of having Houston associated with having problems in space and possessing a losing basketball team and a cheating baseball team.

one day in houston itinerary

I thought this mural of a feather was the prettiest mural that we saw on the tour. Don’t you just want to dive into that sunset? Also, I love this photo that Dusty took of me while I am pretending to blow on a feather.

The artist is a French muralist named Mr. D. (Monsieur D?) I doubt that this is the name on his birth certificate, but when you are a mural artist, I’m pretty sure you can go by any name you wish.

one day in houston itinerary

This is another masterpiece by Monsieur D! It is a replica of the painting of God in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican. However, there is one small difference. Can you tell what it is? Can you? I won’t give you even one hint. I think you can figure it out on your own.

Dusty told us that it took hundreds of cans of spray paint just to make this one mural. Wow! I hope they’re paying Mr. D enough to keep him rolling in all those cans.

one day in houston itinerary

I definitely think that this mural is one of the most fascinating in the entire city of Houston. The mural of President Obama is in black and white, but the mural of his wife, Michelle, is in full on color.

Dusty told us that some rude people would deface Obama’s mural because it used to be just him alone. However, when the artist added the mural of Michelle, people stopped defacing it. I guess the moral of this story is that mural defacers really love Michelle Obama.

one day in houston itinerary

There aren’t only murals on this tour! You’ll also be able to experience some less formal public art. Don’t miss the stop at Graffiti Park, where all the murals are done by amateurs.

But just because they are done by amateurs doesn’t mean they aren’t serious. Many of the murals and works of graffiti here were political. I’m sure you recognize this image of George Floyd, who grew up in Houston.

24 Hour Tip

I hope I’ve intrigued you with this selection of some of Houston’s best murals! But I didn’t even include all of my favorites, like the mural of Sir Elton John. And I hope you’ll agree it’s one of the best Houston TX tours.

Check rates and availability for yourself by going here

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best Houston TX Tours

#1 TOP PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
SPACE CENTER
✔️ Tons to do!
✔️ Houston, we don’t have a problem

#2 PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 3

FOOD TOUR
✔️ Delicious Houston treats
✔️ Expert local guide

#3 PICK

Best Houston TX Tours 2024 4

ALL OTHER HOUSTON TOURS
✔️ Choose your favorite
✔️ Find the best deals

24 hours in Houston

Best Houston TX Tours

Where to Stay?

Houston is a fairly spread out city, so I was looking for a convenient location for my time with the best Houston TX tours, right in the heart of downtown.

That’s why I chose the Hampton Inn Houston Downtown. It was right in the middle of the city, near all the best murals and the Minute Maid baseball park, aka the Juice Box. The staff was extremely pleasant and the breakfast was free every morning. The perfect hotel for me!

If you want a great deal on this hotel, click here.

And if you’d rather explore great deals on tons of other hotels in Houston, click here.

This search engine will help you find the most affordable and convenient hotel for your time with the best Houston TX tours. With hundreds of options to choose from, I’m sure you’ll find something for your schedule and budget.

one day in houston itinerary

That’s the Best Houston TX tours!

What do you think are the best Houston TX tours? And does the Sistine Chapel have any spray paint cans in its paintings? Please email me at stellajane@aroundtheworldin24hours.com and let me know!

Note: If you want to know how I put my travel itineraries together, just click here. Keep in mind that while each article is about how to spend 24 hours in a place, that doesn’t mean you should ONLY see the best Houston TX tours.

Try a one day in Dallas itinerary. You can experience 24 hours in Dallas. Go for a one day in Houston itinerary. Why not go for 24 hours in Houston?

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