Houston is a large metropolitan area. Ranked fourth in size among United States cities, Houston is a vibrant urban center overflowing with cultural activities, world-class museums, incredible dining and abundant opportunities for fun and entertainment. Visiting the top attractions would take weeks, but even the short-term tourist can enjoy a taste of Houston in a single calendar day. Here are top attractions to visit and things to do for your 24 hours in Houston.
NASA Space Center
1601 NASA Parkway
Houston, TX 77058
(281) 244-2100

Home to the National Space Program, NASA Space Center is one of the most visited attractions in the city. Tourists flock to the NASA Space Center by the millions to learn about space travel, America’s Apollo missions and the future of space flight. History buffs will love the opportunity to tour the grounds of the NASA Space Center, marvel at the massive rockets and visit Mission Control, the actual location where scientists and engineers guided the crew of Apollo 11 on their way to the moon. NASA Space Center is located just minutes south of downtown Houston and it represents one of the city’s most renowned contributions to science and society.

Miller Outdoor Theatre
6000 Hermann Park Drive
Houston, TX 77030
(832) 487-7102

Houston has a thriving arts and theatre scene and one place to enjoy the performing arts is Miller Outdoor Theatre. Located in beautiful Hermann Park, Miller Outdoor Theatre is a great place for those who love to watch plays, ballet, concerts and other on-stage events. There are plenty of seats to accommodate the frequent crowds and a large grassy area for those who prefer to sit on a blanket with friends or family and watch the performance from a greater distance. Do you want another incentive to visit Miller Outdoor Theatre? It’s offered free of charge! All things considered, Miller Outdoor Theatre is a must-visit attraction for a quick 24 hours in the Houston area.

Taste Of Texas
10505 Katy Fwy
Houston, TX 77024
(713) 932-6901

Learning about space travel and watching a play take time, and with time comes hunger. Relief from hunger is just down the road in west Houston at Taste of Texas, one of the city’s finest steakhouses. Taste of Texas serves amazing steaks and other entrees with a penchant for service and cleanliness. Taste of Texas has received multiple awards and is considered by area residents as the finest independent steakhouse in the city. It represents the perfect way to relieve your hunger pangs and gain a second wind during your 24 hours in Houston.

Related: A Day in Houston Heights

Houston Zoo
6200 Hermann Park Drive
Houston, TX 77030
(713) 533-6100

Science, art and food define the city of Houston, but there is still more. Just south of downtown is the Houston Zoo, one of the nation’s finest urban animal kingdoms. A visit to the Houston Zoo is less expensive than a visit to most other zoos in the United States and guests will enjoy exploring the grounds and discovering the unique and often amazing animals that inhabit the Earth. Stroll over to the Reptile House for indoor animal education before heading outside to see the elephants, giraffes and other large animals entertain visitors as they eat and play in an outdoor setting. The education is excellent, the photo opportunities numerous and the experience first rate at Houston Zoo, a great place to visit during your 24 hours in Houston.

Beer Can House
222 Malone St.
Houston, TX 77007
(713) 926-6368

An attraction of a very different sort, the Beer Can House is a Houston monument to independence and creativity. It’s a small house and ordinary in most ways, except for one thing — the outside of the house and parts of the inside are decorated with beer cans in various forms. Created entirely by one man and his wife over a period of many years, the Beer Can House uses beer cans for siding and features a mailbox and other household items made from beer can parts. It’s a site like no other in the United States and its quirky nature makes it the perfect way to wrap up your 24 hours in Houston.

Related: Houston’s Top Guided Tours

Bryan Carey is a Houston, Texas resident with an avid interest in restaurants, dining, breweries, wineries, festivals, cultural events, museums, theatre, concerts, and other forms of entertainment. He has been writing about entertainment, travel, and related topics for more than fifteen years and has thousands of articles to his credit. His work can be found at Examiner.com.