This expansive green space in the heart of the city offers places for exercising and relaxing, as well as a zoo and the Museum of Natural Science.
More than 6 million visitors – a mix of locals and out-of-towners – use Hermann Park’s facilities each year. The 445-acre (180-hectare) green space is just south of Houston’s Central Business District. It has trails for walking, jogging and biking, numerous gardens, a small lake, playgrounds, a golf course and an outdoor theater. It’s easy to make a full day’s outing here, including a visit to the Houston Zoo and the Museum of Natural Science, which are both on the grounds.
Upon entering the main gates at the intersection of Main Street and Montrose Boulevard, you’ll see the tranquil Japanese Garden. There’s a peaceful teahouse, a pond, and winding paths amongst cherry trees and Japanese myrtles. Even when the rest of the park is busy, this is the place to come for quiet reflection.
A wide variety of plants and flowers, including a year-round rose garden, can be found in the Houston Garden Center, at the north end of the park.
Rent a pedal boat or go fishing off Bob’s Fishing Pier on McGovern Lake. Take in a round of golf on the 18-hole course, which is open seven days a week and caters to all skill levels.
Those with children will find plenty to do at Hermann Park. Take a ride on a local favorite: the miniature train, which has been around for more than 50 years. It recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation to include more tracks and a bigger train. There’s an expansive playground, which is wheelchair accessible and has a water feature to keep kids cool in summer.
Join other families on the lawns with a picnic blanket, and secure a grill to cook up lunch or an early dinner; there are more than a dozen throughout the park. Thanks to Houston’s temperate climate, locals come here year-round. In the evening, catch a show at the Miller Outdoor Theatre, a natural amphitheater with a host of free live music performances, movies and plays. Check the Hermann Park website for a calendar of events.
Hermann Park is located about 10 minutes by car from downtown Houston, and parking is available.