City Gems: Dallas

In City Gems, Family, Travel by City Gems3 Comments





The first up in this blog series is from Valerie Rowekamp and she is taking us to Dallas, Texas.

I have been proud to call Dallas home for my entire life.  It’s a city with southern charm, rich history, diversity, sophistication, and is the No. 1 visitor and leisure destination in Texas.  Here are just a few of my personal favorite city gems!

Foodie Favorites

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photo credit Dallas Observer Blog

Velvet Taco is where fresh, gourmet, made-from-scratch tacos are created and consumed until the wee hours of the morning.  I can guarantee you that you’ve never experienced a taco (or sangria) quite like they serve up in this funky little Dallas taco shop.

Food Trucks can be found all over the metroplex serving up unique gourmet goodness on wheels.  We stalk the trucks on social media and hit them up when we’re at events/festivals.  Some of our favorites are Nammi Truck, Trailercakes, and Jack’s Chowhound.


Texas Rangers Ballpark playground

Family Time

Dallas Zoo is the largest zoological experience in Texas and a great place to play, learn, and see animals.  I love that my children get to see and feed animals in their own natural-looking habitats and they love features like the Children’s Zoo (with a playground, interactive petting zoo, bird habitat, and splashing stream.

Dallas Zoo giraffe and penguins

Texas Rangers games in the Ballpark are one of our favorite sports venues because it has an amazing baseball themed indoor playground and activities for little baseball fans.

The Blues Jeans Bar - Dallas

Style In My City

The Blues Jeans Bar is a pub-themed boutique where a “bartender” will help you find the perfect pair of jeans.  I discovered this gem of a store when a local mom’s group hosted a shopping party and I was blown away by how enjoyable shopping for jeans could be when you have an expert to ensure the perfect fit.

NorthPark Center is a luxurious retail masterpiece featuring shopping for any budget with lots of art, great food, a sculpture garden, and children’s library.  The sculpture garden is better than any indoor play area I’ve ever been to because it’s in the center of the mall yet still outdoors and you can dine on the patio of a restaurant while the kiddos frolic in poop-free grass.

Late Nights at Dallas Museum of Art

Date Night

Dallas Museum of Art hosts Late Nights once a month where the Arts District stays up late with live music, food, wine, and activities.  It’s perfect for a date even if you have kids in tow because there are activities for all ages like pajama yoga for the kids and films for adults.

Grapevine is a historic town just outside of Dallas that is famous for it’s small town charm, restaurants, and wineries.  It’s the Napa Valley of the DFW area and also home to Grapefest wine festival.


Omni Dallas Hotel is a luxurious (and kid-friendly) downtown hotel that boasts local flavor and spectacular views of the city.  Original art by Dallas artists is featured in every hallway/room and I really love Texas Spice, the farm-to-table restaurant in the hotel.  My kids adored the “Little Explorer” backpack they received with tools and goodies on our arrival.

Great Wolf Lodge

Great Wolf Lodge is an indoor waterpark resort that is fun for the whole family.  Seriously, the kids tired out before we did during our stay and I can’t remember the last time we had so much fun!

Dallas is a city with something for everyone (especially families).

Have you been to Dallas?  Do you live in Dallas?  What are some of your favorite City Gems?

Please share in the comments below!

Valerie Rowekamp - www.CharmedValerie.comValerie Rowekamp is a free-spirited former pro-cheerleader who shares style tips and inspires viewers to live beautifully through her blog CharmedValerie and YouTube channel.  Valerie lives in the Dallas area with her adventurous husband and two beautiful little boys.

You can also find her on facebook, twitter, pinterest, instagram, and google+.

Meet the Author | City Gems

This was a guest post as part of our City Gems travel feature. If you'd like to share your city with us simply fill out this form click here and we will contact you shortly!


  1. It’s fun to be a tourist in your own town! Bishop Arts District has some great restaurants and shops too. I love Grapevine, so many festivals and activities for the family. The arboretum and White Rock Lake are beautiful too. Some of my favorite Fort Worth highlights are The Fort Worth Museum of History and Science (it’s the children’s museum too), restaurants on Magnolia Street and Sundance Square. p.s. The denim bar does look fabulous!

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