Nonstop adventure: Dallas
Even though we live in paradise, the occasional out-of-town excursion is a treat. From Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport we’re fortunate to have nonstop flight options that afford exploration of many popular destinations rich in abundant sights, sounds and flavors. LOCAL Life brings these nonstop cities to you through the eyes and recommendations of local foodies, shopaholics, sports fans and cultural aficionados that will ensure that your next out-of-town adventure is just that — nonstop.
Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (SAV) to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)
Duration: 2 hours, 50 minutes
Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport (SAV) to Dallas Love Field Airport (DAL)
Duration: 2 hours, 45 minutes
Everything’s bigger in Texas
By B.C. Rausch
Dallas — Big D — is the ninth-largest city in the U.S. and the leading business and financial center in the Southwest. While the uninitiated might think of giant ranches and oil rigs, both of which are here in abundance, Dallas is also a vibrant city with 20 diverse neighborhoods, including the nation’s largest contiguous art district. Whether travelers are coming into huge DFW or smaller and closer Love Field, it’s easy to get to the inner city and enjoy a rich variety of adventures.
If art is on your agenda, don’t miss the 118 acres of museums, year-round festivals and live performances at of the Dallas Arts District. Prime attractions include the Dallas Museum of Art and the Crow Museum of Asian Art, both of which offer free admission in addition to classes, exhibits and lectures.
Things really are bigger in Texas, so I consulted some locals for where to start and what to see by neighborhood.
East Dallas (Lakewood/Lake Highlands)
• Lunch al fresco at the Smoky Rose. The smoked brisket queso is the best!
• Spend an afternoon at the Dallas Arboretum. Depending on the time of year, there could be a pumpkin village, 10,000 lights or a million bulbs blooming.
• A sunset sail aboard The Spirit of Dallas on White Rock Lake (May through October)
• Drinks at Lounge Here, an eclectic spot in a nondescript location.
• Dinner at El Vecino for authentic Tex-Mex. They don’t take reservations, so be prepared to wait.
• For a late-night dive bar, check out Lakewood Landing. Rumor is that they serve corn dogs after midnight.
• “When visitors come to town, we take them to Javier’s. It is ‘fancy-ish’ and iconic, but not many out-of-towners know about it. Order at least one Cafe Pierre (flaming) after-dinner drink. Warning: it’s a great show, but exercise caution—these drinks are strong.”
• This neighborhood is great for an afternoon/evening of wandering, shopping and people watching.
• Revelers Hall features music spilling out onto the street and a packed house enjoying craft cocktails.
• Dallas Grilled Cheese Company has a grilled mac n’ cheese that’s ridiculously good. Other sandwiches include the Brie & Bacon or The Dude, which is grilled sourdough, lean ground beef, original Manwich® Sloppy Joe sauce and white cheddar.
• Eno’s Pizza offers an amazing array of pies, some only found in Texas like the Pig Smiley: honey, Benton’s country ham, sausage and pepperoni.
• Save room for a slice of another kind from Emporium Pies. Check out the seasonal specials like the Lord of the Pies, a mega-deep-dish apple pie with cinnamon streusel. (It also has a location in Deep Ellum.)
• Pecan Lodge gets a lot of attention, but Terry Black’s BBQ (an Austin import) is better and with shorter lines. Get ready for your meat with a frozen Jack & Coke or frozen black margarita.
• The Rustic (with four locations in Texas) is an outdoor space with a full schedule of live musical performances. Brunch is particularly good, as is “Let’s Jam,” a combination of brunch faves (quiche, donuts, Nashville hot chicken, yummy kale salad) served family-style.
• Katy Trail Icehouse makes a nod to the rural Texas ice houses with the best patio, and arguably, the best margarita, in town. Before or after, walk the Katy Trail for a different view of the city.
• Afternoon tea at the Hotel Crescent Court has become a must-do. Its “Bridgerton”-themed tea was sold out for weeks.
• Head to Klyde Warren Park between Uptown and the Arts District, over the freeway, for food trucks, restaurants, special events, free fitness classes, fountains and loaner games.
• La Duni Latin Café is best known for its creative dessert and coffee creations, but its cakes are the stars of the show. Can’t decide? The cake platter comes with your choice of four different slices.
• The Dallas Farmers Market on Saturdays or Sundays is where locals buy fresh produce. Check out the stands in the sheds and retail shops nearby.
• Bullzerk sells Dallas-centric shirts adorned with clever sayings.
• The JFK Memorial Plaza is located one block east of Dealey Plaza. Created by architect Philip Johnson in 1970, it has a simple design, with a 50-foot square enclosure and 30-foot-high concrete walls. Walk through the gaps in the walls to read the inscription on a block of granite in the enclosed courtyard. Other memorials and sites connected to the Kennedy assassination are nearby, including the Oswald Rooming House, Texas Theater and Sixth Floor Museum.
Since Dallasites (yes, that’s what they’re called) love to eat and drink, here are some more of their suggestions. The Margarita Mile is a curated collection of Dallas’s finest margaritas, more than 20 spots spreading from the heart of Downtown to Bishop Arts, Oak Lawn, East Dallas and more. Even a mile is bigger in Texas. Don’t underestimate the breakfast taco. Texans eat them any day of the week and for brunch on weekends. Among the most notable places to partake are:
• Taco Joint – Pair your taco with a Mimosa. Even the bartender, Chris, has a following.
• Tacos Y Mas – This little “shack” near Lower Greenville started under a tent in a grocery store parking lot and now has several locations around Dallas.
• Taco Deli is a Texas chain offering organic and vegan/vegetarian options. Keep your eyes open for it at the Dallas Farmers Market.
No story about Dallas is complete unless a Texas-size steak is mentioned. There are numerous options, but check out Pappas Bros. Steakhouse (named “one of the top five steak houses in America” by Food Network), noted for its prime beef steaks that are dry aged in-house for at least 28 days. For a really big appetite, check out Town Hearth, where the Bistecca is a 48-ounce porterhouse drizzled with olive oil.