While 48 hours isn’t enough to experience everything Dallas has to offer, you can see quite a bit over two days in this city. It’s easy to reach downtown as well as many neighborhoods and suburbs throughout the region. Rent a car, schedule Uber rides or use DART, with a rail station located right at the airport and plan to check out at least a few of the options on this list.
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Explore the Dallas Arts District (Nearby Hotels)
The Dallas Arts District is located right downtown. Easy to reach, it’s home to lots of fantastic public art and several outstanding museums, including the Dallas Museum of Art which is free to explore. It showcases over 22,000 works that span the third millennium BC through the present, including pieces by greats like Renoir, Van Gogh, O’Keeffe, Monet and many others. In the Paintings Conservation Studio visitors can watch the conservators preserve and restore the vast collection utilizing cutting-edge techniques. It’s also worth the time to take a walk through the Nasher Sculpture Center with its modern sculptures spread throughout a picturesque garden, then check out the unique Trammell and Margaret Crow Collection which hosts an impressive collection of Asian art.
Visit the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza (Nearby Hotels)
Arguably on the top of your list should be a visit to the John F. Kennedy assassination site. Though obviously a rather somber experience, you’ll be able to stand on the Grassy Knoll where one of the most heinous acts in America’s history took place, with the spot the president was shot marked with an ”X” in the middle of Elm Street. Afterwards, learn more about the life and death of JFK at the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza where shots from Lee Harvey Oswald’s gun echoed through back on November 22, 1963.
Admire views from GeO-Deck at Reunion Tower (Nearby Hotels)
Capture the best views of Dallas by heading to the GeO-Deck at the Reunion Tower. Here, you’ll be able to take in a spectacular bird’s-eye view from 470 feet above, as well as get a perspective of the city’s layout. While that’s best achieved during daylight hours, the view is also impressive at night. The tower also hosts a revolving restaurant along with an interactive display that details the most notable landmarks you’ll see in the skyline.
Stroll through Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden (Nearby Hotels)
When it’s time for a break from the concrete, head over to the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. This oasis in the city is a fabulous place for a stroll, a little stress relief and a whole lot more. One of the top attractions in Dallas, it showcases 19 beautifully manicured gardens as well as seasonal festivals, activities and events like Dallas Blooms and the Cool Thursdays Concert Series for fun entertainment and exploration throughout the year. If you’re here in the spring, you’ll marvel at the more than 2,000 colorful varieties that burst into bloom.
Get a selfie with the famous Cattle Drive in Pioneer Plaza (Nearby Hotels)
Pioneer Plaza is a focal point of downtown, a four-acre park that’s rich in history, highlighting the trails that brought early settlers to the city. It features native plants, and soaring trees, though what may be most memorable are the 50 1,200 pound bronze re-creation sculptures of a cattle drive. The sculptures include longhorn steers that are driven by three cowboys straddling horses, and make an ideal spot for a selfie, and a souvenir of your short time in Dallas. It’s the largest public open space in the central business district and also includes cliffs and waterfalls for another impressive photo backdrop.
Go shopping at Galleria Dallas (Nearby Hotels)
Dallas is renowned for its shopping, which means if you’re a shopping enthusiast, you’ll definitely want to make time to indulge. Galleria Dallas is one of the most popular, with something for everyone among its three levels, though there are options for every type of shopper in this city. If you like boutiques, venture over to the Bishop Arts are with unique retailers that sell trendy housewares, men’s and women’s fashions, and more. If you’re looking for a high-end indoor experience, NorthPark Center is known for its brands like Lacoste and Versace. West Village provides the chance to shop outdoors on a pleasant day with stores like Kendra Scott and Brooks Brothers.
Visit the Dallas World Aquarium (Nearby Hotels)
The Dallas World Aquarium is a must for experiencing close encounters with a wide variety of wildlife, just a short walk from historic downtown. The massive 87,000-gallon saltwater aquarium features marine life like sea turtles, octopus, stingrays and jellyfish, along with animals like penguins and flamingos. The living rainforest is inhabited with monkeys, manatees and crocodiles, while the Mayan exhibit is home to an ocelot and jaguar.
Catch a Pro Sports Game (Nearby Hotels)
If you’re a sports fan, you may want to make time to catch a game – Dallas teams bring fans from across the nation, and sometimes beyond. With so many pro teams here, there’s an opportunity just about any time of year. the city is home to the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, the MLB’s Texas Rangers, NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, NHL’s Dallas Stars, WNBA’s Dallas Wings and MLS’ FC Dallas. Cowboys’ fans who visit outside of football season can schedule a tour of AT&T Stadium, the largest domed structure in the world.
Enjoy dining and nightlife in Deep Ellum (Nearby Hotels)
When you want to sample of the city’s top dining and nightlife, head to Deep Ellum. One of the trendiest neighborhoods in Dallas, it’s the hip place to go with such a wide range of dining options and entertainment. It’s also famous for its impressive street art, making it enjoyable just to take a walk through. Perhaps head here just before dusk to check it out and then enjoy dinner, with everything from casual eats to fine dining, including some of the best Neopolitan-style pizza around. Afterward, delve into the live music scene at places like Adair’s Saloon, Curtain Club, Dada Dallas, Trees or The Bomb Factory, which hosts live bands of nearly every genre throughout the week.