On Thursdays, many of the museums in the Houston Museum District are free either all day or during selected hours. As of January 2016, this was the case for the following museums, all a short walk from the Museum District Station on the METRORail’s Red Line:
- The Houston Museum of Fine Arts (1001 Bissonnet St., 713-639-7300): free 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Thursdays
- Contemporary Arts Museum Houston (5216 Montrose Blvd., 713-284-8250): free 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Thursdays
- Houston Museum of Natural Science (5555 Hermann Park Dr., 713-639-4629): free 2 – 5 p.m. (permanent exhibits only) on Thursdays
- The Health Museum (1515 Hermann Dr., 713-521-1515): free 2 – 7 p.m. on Thursdays
- Children’s Museum of Houston (1500 Binz St., 713-522-1138): free 5 – 8 p.m. on Thursdays
- Holocaust Museum Houston (5401 Caroline St., 713-942-8000): free 2 – 5 p.m. on Thursdays
- The Jung Center (5200 Montrose Blvd., 713-524-8253): free 9 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays. Note: the Jung Center consists primarily of a small gallery and a gift shop.
The following museums are always free, though they accept donations:
- Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, 5216 Montrose Blvd., 713-284-8250
- The Jung Center, 5200 Montrose Blvd., 713-524-8253. Note: the Jung Center consists primarily of a small gallery and a gift shop.
For a full listing of museums in the area, including other museums that are either always free or free on all or part of Thursdays, visit the website of the Houston Museum District.
Remember, a one-way ticket for the METRORail costs $1.25 and may be purchased with cash or a credit card at any METRORail station. METRORail riders abide by an honor system in which occasionally an officer will check tickets and fine those riders without one.
Visitors who wish to remain downtown can stop by the upscale bowling alley Lucky Strike, 1201 San Jacinto St., 713-343-3300, just a short walk west of the Hilton Americas-Houston. For a more historical experience, visit Sam Houston Park, 1000 Bagby St. (the west end of downtown), which contains houses and other structures from Houston’s mid-nineteenth-century past. Visitors may enter the park for free. Paid tours of selected historical structures are provided by the Heritage Society at Sam Houston Park, 1100 Bagby St., 713-655-1912, about four blocks southwest of Sundance Cinemas.