In the Neighborhood: Your ultimate guide to the Dallas Arts District
Spanning 20 square blocks, downtown Dallas’ cultural hub is the largest arts district in the country, attracting visitors with its museums, live performances and dining hot spots.
By Alina Dizik | October 18, 2023
Home to the largest contiguous urban arts district in the U.S., Dallas is full of cultural institutions with something for everyone. Take your time gazing at large-scale street art, attending one-of-a-kind concerts and perusing museums — all while enjoying some of the city’s best dining spots. Add that to the city’s bold-and-glam character, and you’ll be excitedly exploring for days.
You can get a little taste of everything in this popular enclave. Discover casual-yet-polished dining options, with impressive restaurants whipping up innovative dishes. Consider:
- The Playwright Irish Pub: This laidback spot serves classic dishes from the Emerald Isle — think bangers and mash, shepherd’s pie and Scotch eggs. Wash it all down with the selection of hundreds of whiskeys and scotches, plus 50 beers on tap.
- Musume: Locals don’t just love this upscale Asian and sushi spot for its chic interiors. The creative dishes also deserve the hype, drawing a loyal crowd with unique twists on Asian classics such as gyoza made with wild boar and dried cherries.
- Sloane’s Corner: This New American eatery is famous for its hearty breakfasts, including the Texas chilaquiles. Come dinner time, pop in for saffron capellini, chicken Milanese and other flavorful dishes. On Fridays check out their all-day happy hour for deals on drinks and apps.
First-rate museums, engaging community spaces and buzzy performances are all par for the course in this neighborhood. Discover:
- The Crow Museum of Asian Art. Walk through the cultural exhibitions, featuring ancient and contemporary art — from Japan, China and India to Korea, Vietnam and beyond — before heading out to the sculpture garden.
- The Green Family Art Foundation, a nonprofit that amplifies the voices of a diverse group of both emerging and established artists and hosts three exhibitions per year. Get inspired by bold modern pieces that communicate important ideas.
- The Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center. Experience memorable Dallas Symphony Orchestra performances in this stunning concert hall. From classics to pop hits, there’s a lineup for every preference.
Whether you’re browsing a sleek museum shop or scouring for funky home decor, there’s no shortage of local designers to see and buy from in the Dallas Arts District. Explore:
- Shop at the Dallas Museum of Art, where you can find souvenirs from one of the area’s most esteemed cultural institutions. Shop for colorful jewelry, chic notebooks, prints, children’s toys and more.
- The Lotus Shop, which features an impressive lineup of unique Asian jewelry, home goods, textiles and gifts. This popular museum shop is the perfect spot for sourcing the ideal souvenir.
- Lone Chimney Mercantile, where you'll find Texas-inspired Americana greeting cards, photography, candles and even kids’ electric guitars lining the shelves of this bright and cheery gift shop inside the historic Dallas Farmers Market.
With decades of growth and investment, exploring the walkable Dallas Arts District is a treat. Plan to catch a few performances, take part in local outdoor events and visit some world-class cultural institutions in the heart of Dallas.
Alina Dizik is a lifestyle journalist, covering travel, real estate, work trends and food. She lives in Chicago.