Fort Worth Texas Travel Guide
The “city of cowboys and culture”, Fort Worth, keeps its promises: an exciting western atmosphere, for example in Billy Bob’s Texas, the world’s largest honky tonk, and first-class cultural offers in opera and concert performances, theater and dance events.
Fort Worth was established as an army outpost on the banks of the Trinity River in 1849 and was one of eight forts designed to protect settlers from Indian attacks.
With a population of more than 790,000, Fort Worth is home to some of the country’s largest corporations and manufacturers, such as American Airlines, RadioShack Corp., Pier 1 Imports, Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, and Lockheed Martin Tactical Aircraft Systems. The neighboring city of Dallas captivates with its western atmosphere and a diverse mix of music, cuisine and architecture. The fifth largest city of Texas not only impresses with a varied art and music scene, Wild West romantics and families will also get their money’s worth here.
Fort Worth is easy to explore on foot .
- The heart of the center is ” Sundance Square”, where you can shop and eat in comfort.
- The Stockyard District- the historic cattle market – is now one of the biggest tourist attractions and captivates with countless memories of the old American West: rodeo, authentic western saloons, Billy Bob’s Texas, the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame and the world’s only twice daily cattle drive the streets where visitors can be there live.
- In a park-like ambience, the artists’ Cultural District offers five internationally recognized museums with unique architecture exhibitions .
- Anyone interested in music should see a performance in the Bass Performance Hall.
- For families, a stop at the Fort Worth Zoo isa memorable experience.
Fort Worth is consistently named as one of the top cities in the nation for work and life and business. The city was named one of “America’s Most Livable Communities” for the 10-year period from 2004 to 2014; one of only 10 designated cities.
West 7th District
This trendy neighborhood connects downtown to the Will Rogers Memorial Center and the bohemian district . Discover a sophisticated mix of pedestrian-friendly urban elements. Pamper yourself in high-quality restaurants, lap in boutiques and enjoy the vibrant nightlife.
Near Southside / Magnolia
Known for its hip atmosphere and selection of dining options, the glamorous Near Southside district proudly advertises with its self-proclaimed title as a “restaurant mile”. Charming restaurants, historic architecture, music venues, and art galleries line the streets of this remote neighborhood south of downtown.
Enjoy the gastronomy with food directly from the producer, take a tour of a brewery or whiskey distillery, look for distinctive art objects or attend a show by the best young artists in the region.
- Fort Worth Bike Share:As Fort Worth grew to become one of the most bike -friendly cities in the US, Fort Worth Bike Share was launched in April 2013, the first bike sharing system in North Texas. The system offers 300 custom-made Trek bikes that can be rented at 30 different stations spread across downtown and Sundance Square, Near Southside District, TCU / University District and the Artist District.
- The Fort Worth Zoo, one of the top five zoos in the nation that are similar to known worldwide for its collection and exhibits the natural habitat of animals in the wild. The popular Texas Wild! Exhibition, an important part of the zoo, presents the diversity of the Texan animal world and landscape with over 200 native animals and a replica of a Texan city from the 1890s on 32,000 square meters. In 2010, the Fort Worth Zoo opened the prestigious Herpetarium , also known as the Museum of Living Art (MOLA), where “art” slides, hisses, and chirps.
- Fort Worth offers fascinating car races by the major motorsport clubs at the Texas Motor Speedway(TMS), the second largest sports and events stadium in the country. Year round, the super racetrack hosts NASCAR and IRL IndyCar races, as well as other major American car races. The 2.5 km long oval track is located inside a stadium that can accommodate over 200,000 fans. The large HD video board nicknamed “Big Hoss” gives fans a close-up view from every seat.
- The Texas Civil War Museum in northwest Fort Worth is filled with over 3,000 artifacts and 70 flags from the Civil War era. It is the largest civil war museum west of the Mississippi.
- If you want to see how Texas prints money, visit the Bundesdruckerei, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, one of only two US locations where paper money is printed.
- For business meetings: With optimal connections through the international airport Dallas-Fort Worth, the city scores with the Convention Center. In addition to thousands of hotel rooms within walking distance, this impresses with numerous restaurants, shops and entertainment venues in the immediate vicinity.
- At Casino Beach in Lake Worth, founded in 1917, there are pedestrian zones with restaurants, shops, a promenade with recreational facilities close to the beach, accommodations and a ferris wheel.
Fort Worth also offers a wide range of outdoor activities, from biking and hiking trails along the Trinity River with a total length of 40 miles to the Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge with hiking trails totaling over 30 kilometers to world-class golf courses and exciting Water sports activities such as canoe and kayak tours or stand-up paddling.
From Downtown Fort Worth, Taylor Street goes north to the Trinity River. Theme days like Sunday Funday or Rockin ‘the River promise lots of fun and relaxation. Inflatable boats or tubes are rented out every Sunday in summer and you can float on the river. Food & drinks as well as yoga lessons are also offered. On the stage on the riverbank, bands and solo artists inspire their audience every time anew.
If you feel like it, you can put your skills to the test with stand-up paddling or rent a canoe or kayak and explore the river.
- Trinity River Vision is an ongoing downtown project that will completely transform approximately 140 km of the Trinity River that flows through Fort Worth. The plan includes a lively waterfront with a lake and a variety of recreational activities, as well as commercial, retail and residential buildings.
- The Panther Island Pavilion is a scenic venue on the Trinity River, with the Fort Worth skyline as a backdrop. Here you will find the only stage in Texas that is directly on the river, another main stage for year-round events and two smaller stages for festivals. A sandy beach provides public access to the river and for boating, tubing, fishing, and swimming. Kayak, canoe and paddle board rental companies can be found on site.
- Trinity Park is right next to the Fort Worth Zoo . Lots of fountains, a duck pond, a tourist train and several playgrounds make the park a perfect destination for families. There are also some of the best hiking and biking trails in town, fishing and picnic opportunities, and annual events such as the Mayfest music festival.
- In the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, the oldest botanical garden in Texas, you can admire over 2,500 magnificent plant species in more than 20 landscaped gardens, and the world-famous Japanese Garden in Fort Worth invites you with its koi ponds, Zen gardens and artistically designed waterfalls and mountain slopes to linger and relax.
The cultural capital of the southwest
Although Fort Worth has a strong western culture, the city also has some of the most prestigious cultural institutions in the country. From world-class museums and art galleries, to world-class ballet and talented theater groups, to a thriving film scene; Fort Worth’s cultural attractions offer something for everyone.
- Fort Worth’s theater scene is rich and diverse. Casa Mañana, located in the bohemian district, is Tarrant County’s largest performing arts organization; Everything is staged, from the hottest musicals straight from Broadway to local children’s productions. Casa Mañana’s iconic domed structure has hosted Fort Worth’s greatest and most popular theater productions since the 1950s.
- Another institution in Forth Worth is the Stage West Theater. In its more than 30-year history, this professional company has developed from humble beginnings into an important player in American regional theaters and presents an interesting mix of classical works and original world premieres by emerging authors.
- The Jubilee Theater, one of the Southwest’s most prestigious African-American theaters, is located on Sundance Square in downtown. Jubilee is known for its original musicals, which try to explain Afro-American topics in a playful way with a variety of performances.
- Also in downtown is the Circle Theater, a cozy facility where performances, including many world premieres of original works, are staged throughout the year.
- Quirky, unique, and lively are Amphibian Stage Productions, an brainchild of three Texas Christian University Theater graduates whose goal was to bring more plays to North Texas. The group performs in a variety of locations including the Fort Worth Modern Art Museum.
- The Hip Pocket Theater is one of Fort Worth’s most innovative and exciting theater groups. Every summer, original productions, including pantomime, puppet shows, dance and original scores, are performed in an open-air theater.
- Every Friday and Saturday evening, the Four Day Weekend improvisational comedy troupe in Sundance Square will make visitors laugh with their clever and interactive shows.
- Also in Sundance Square is the Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall, which opened in May 1998. This “last great performance hall to be built in the 20th century” is the headquarters of the city’s symphony orchestra, opera and ballet groups as well as the renowned Van Cliburn International piano competition and productions of the Casa Mañana Theater.
Fort Worth has several artist groups devoted to the film genre, and moviegoers have unique options to choose from.
- The historic Rose Marine Theater on Fort Worth’s Northside is home to Artes de la Rosa , which hosts theater performances, festivals and gallery exhibitions related to Hispanic culture and shows Spanish-language films all year round.
- The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth hosts a variety of film events, including Magnolia at the Modern, an ongoing film series of award-winning works; Harlan Jacobson Talk Cinema, which offers previews of foreign films before they hit theaters, and the Texas Independent Film Series, a collaboration between the Lone Star Film Society and the Texas Independent Film Network celebrating Texas filmmakers.
- The Fort Worth Central Library in downtown is home to the First Sunday Film Club , which shows a variety of top films to sophisticated documentaries on the first Sunday of each month.
Fort Worth is known for its excellent museums, including three outstanding ones in the bohemian district:
- the Amon Carter Museum, which houses an impressive collection of American art from the 19th and 20th centuries; the Kimbell Art Museum , home of Michelangelo’s first and only painting in the United States, and the Renzo Piano Pavilion, which houses the museum’s African / Oceanic, pre-Columbian, and Asian collections; the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth , Texas’ oldest museum (founded in 1892) is located in a building that was designed by the Japanese architect Tadao Ando and celebrated masterpieces by Jackson Pollock, Robert Motherwell, Andy Warhol and Mark Rothko.
- Nearby is the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, where visitors can find a dinosaur exhibit, an interactive play and learning zone for children, a studio / gallery for inventions, the Noble Planetarium, and a ranchers museum.
- The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame is dedicated to the rodeo queens, writers, entrepreneurs, and other special women who made a significant impact on shaping the West.
- In the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame in the Fort Worth National Historic Stockyards district you will not only find artefacts such as covered wagons and saddles, but also awards for those men and women who particularly promote cowboy culture.
- The Sid Richardson Museum in Sundance Square has a large collection of works by Western artists Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell.
Fort Worth not only has a variety of art galleries, but supports both local and national artists. Every spring and fall, the Fort Worth Art Dealers Association hosts a gallery night . Art lovers wander from one gallery to another, meet and chat with artists and enjoy small snacks and drinks.
Fort Worth South Inc. also organizes the ArtsGoggle in Near Southside twice a year . Better known and established galleries, mostly located in the bohemian or downtown district, include William Campbell Contemporary Art, Artspace 111, Atrium Gallery at UNT Health Science Center, Carol Henderson Gallery, Edmund Craig Gallery, Fort Worth Community Arts Center, Galerie Kornye West, The Art Galleries at TCU, Gallery 414, Rebecca Low Sculptural Metal Gallery and Studio, Art on the Boulevard, Brand 10 Art Space, Gallery 76102, and SiNaCa Studios School of Glass and Gallery.
The Fort Worth Public Art Program buys, picks, and maintains public works of art across the city. Some of the most notable are bronze sculptures like Riding Into the Sunset, which shows a cowboy and his horse; large murals, such as the unnamed “zipper” painting by Stuart and Suzanne Gentling from 1974, which is easy to spot when driving past downtown on Interstate Highway 20; a high-tech masterpiece such as Avenue of Light, a 10 meter high, six-part stainless steel sculpture with colorful LED lights.
- The Fort Worth-based Texas Ballet Theater is Texas’ second largest ballet company bringing world-class performance and education to the city. Whether it’s a cutting-edge production like Ben Stevenson’s Dracula or a family favorite like The Nutcracker, a few hours at the Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Performance Hall with the Texas Ballet Theater will entertain and inspire any theatergoer.
- With a focus on education for all age groups and socio-economic backgrounds, the non-profit Ballet Concerto stages several productions every year in its own house in the artists’ quarter.
- Ballet Folklorico Azteca de Fort Worth was founded in 1975 to promote Mexican heritage and multicultural understanding through dance and music. The group’s productions are always colorful and exciting: Avant-garde modern dance performances in such unusual places as on the lawn of the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth or in the chicken coop of the Will Rogers Memorial Center staged Contemporary Dance Fort Worth.
- The Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of charismatic music director Miguel Harth-Bedoya, offers high-profile performances year round, both in Fort Worth and around the world. The FWSO’s popular garden concerts are held every summer in the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens. In the beautiful and acoustically excellent bass concert hall, symphonies and pop performances as well as special collaborative concerts with popular singers take place.
- The award-winning Fort Worth Youth Orchestra was founded in 1965 and has since trained and mentored thousands of young musicians in an intense, unparalleled environment. The group’s philharmonic, string and chamber orchestras, with more than 250 students per year, perform regularly in various locations across the city.
- With ensembles of two to five talented musicians, the Chamber Music Society of Fort Worth at the Modern Art Museum offers everything from baroque to contemporary music.
- The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition was first held in 1962 to discover the world’s best young pianists. The competition, held every four years (the year after the US presidential election), honors Fort Worth-based Van Cliburn, winner of the first four-year international Tchaikovsky piano competition in Moscow at the height of the Cold War.
- Cowtown Opry, a tribute to Fort Worth’s western culture, has free concerts in the Stockyards National Historic District. With western swing to old cowboy ballads, they celebrate the cowboys’ love for music.
- Since 1946, the Fort Worth Opera has entertained audiences with performances ranging from classics from around the world to inspiring original works. Every spring, three to four major productions are performed as part of the annual opera festival.
- Angelo’s has beenthe institution for the finest brisket in Fort Worth since 1958 . Brisket, spare ribs, pork loin and sausages are cooked over hickory wood. On the menu you will also find unique specialties such as barbecue salami or Braunschweig bratwurst. If that’s not enough, you should definitely not go home hungry after a pulled pork taco or a baked potato with brisket.
- Cousin’s BBQhas been around since 1983 and is one of the few restaurants that offers sausages made in-house – and based on a German recipe. If you are not full after other specialties such as ribs, ham, beef brisket, chicken or turkey, you should definitely order “Peach Cobbler” or “Banana Pudding” for dessert – simply heavenly!
- Another insider tip among the locals is Heim Barbecue & Catering, where you can eat excellent “bacon burnt ends” and brisket. The diverse selection of whiskey varieties should inspire every connoisseur. And: it’s best to reserve in advance, because this shop is always well attended.
Texas Motor Speedway
On the Texas Motor Speedway (with almost 155,000 seats one of the largest racing facilities in the country) it gets loud, fast and usually quite spectacular, because here the big names of the NASCAR and IndyCar racing series compete for victory.
One of the most important motorsport events in the region, the Texas 500 Nascar Race Weekend takes place annually in early November. Three exciting races in one weekend – every motorsport fan will go into raptures! In contrast to a Formula 1 race, the spectator at the speedway actually always has a full view of the entire race and is there live in every minute of the race – pure excitement!
In addition to the car races, which are on the program all year round, the largest HD video board in the world (called “Big Hoss”) inspires viewers, who can also follow racing events up close.
A place to linger: The Fort Worth Ale Trail
As little Texas is associated with hops and malt, the amazement on a trip to Fort Worth is as great: On the Fort Worth Ale Trail there are breweries such as Rahr & Sons Brewing, Panther Island Brewing, Martin House Brewing, Chimera Brewing Company, The Collective Brewing Project, HopFusion Ale Works, Wild Acre Brewing, Shannon Brewing, Rabbit Hole Brewing and Revolver Brewing in Texas’ cowboy town Fort Worth and can be viewed on exclusive tours. The free Ale Trail Pass including an overview map is available in each of the breweries.
Texas has its own outlet for cowboy boots only! The Justin Boots Outlet is located in the south of the city of Fort Worth.