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Houston's a mix of a laid-back, Chevy pickup and two-stepping town and high-octane, high-culture metropolis. When in Houston, relax in flip-flops, tour the museums and shopping, then chill out for a happy hour on a shady deck. Nightlife offers culinary and cultural delights – the gastro scene and theater district are nationally acclaimed. It's true, wealth from oil-and-gas defines much of the city's character, but Houston doesn't show any pretension. Houston's a place where a weeks (!) long rodeo and barbecue cook-off is the favorite reason for getting out.
Houston may be just behind Chicago in population, but its area is more vast than the entire state of New Jersey. Unique residential neighborhoods and pockets of restaurants and shops spread endlessly. You'll just stick to Downtown- the Museum District is the cultural heart; Upper Kirby and River Oaks offer upscale opportunities for shopping and dining; and Montrose boasts quirky shops and eateries. Washington Ave is the go-to burg for nightlife and the Heights has historic buildings to gander at. The town's primary attractions – NASA's Space Center and Galveston Island – require a 45-minute drive on I-45.