Tuesday, May 14, 2013

E=MC Fun: An Educational and Cultural Tour of Houston Texas

By: Finance Foodie

For all my time spent living in Houston, I ironically never took advantage of all the cool museums and "tourist spots" the city had to offer (perhaps it was due to my lack of driving skills or the constant lure of Chinatown and its delicious cuisine). But thanks to the Houston CityPASS, I finally was able to check all these hotspots - and skip the long summertime lines in the process!
City Pass

Houston CityPASS is a booklet of admission tickets to Houston’s five must-see attractions at 46% off the combined admission price. For only $46, I journeyed North, South, East and West and learned about everything from art to science to space. Let's take a look at my wild ride...

Houston Museum of Natural Science
I spent Day One of my trip brushing up on my knowledge of evolution and minerals at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. This museum is one of the nation’s most heavily-attended museums, with diverse and extraordinary offerings and four floors of exhibit halls. My favorite exhibit? The Paleontology Hall (or as I like to call it Decrepit Dino Park). It’s the length of a football field, and is one of the most dynamic paleo halls in the world with over 450 dinosaur fossils and casts. Way to bring my favorite movie (Jurassic Park) to real life!
Dino Park
Museum of Fine Arts Houston
Day Two was a cultural feast of Monets, Manets and Matisses at the Museum of Fine Arts. The museum’s collections comprise more than 63,000 works of art from the Stone Age to today. Works from the MFAH collections fill the galleries year-round with art embracing every era of history across the globe. Although my knowledge of art is quiet limited (wish I didn't fall asleep most days in my Art History class!), I did enjoy the visual clambake of some of the more recognizable and famous pieces of art from days past.
Woman in Purple Coat by Henri Matisse
Houston Zoo
Lions, Tigers and Bears - Oh My! I always dodged trips to the zoo due to my fear of stinky animals and my preference to see sharped toothed meat eaters from a distance (as in my monthly National Geographic magazine), but man am I glad I stepped out of my comfort zone for the Houston Zoo. This attraction is home to over 6,000 animals including elephants, red pandas, chimpanzees and rhinos. And the stink was kept to a minimum (thank you well ventilated environment!).
Black Bear
*Space Center Houston*
1,2,3 Blast Off! Space Center Houston is the official visitors center of NASA’s Johnson Space Center. At this space themed amusement park, I touched a real moon rock and visited the old Mission Control during a behind-the-scenes tour of NASA. This was my favorite venue out of the entire tour - as it was truly an out of this world experience for all ages.
Mission Control
Downtown Aquarium
Last but certainly not least was a trip underwater (literally, as it was raining the day I visited). At Houston's Downtown Aquarium, I viewed over 400 species of marine life and touched real stingrays at the Discovery Reef. I also caught a brief glimpse of the white tiger of the Maharaja’s Temple - although majestic and magnificent, the poor tiger seemed slightly sad and out of place at the aquarium.
Four Eyed Fish

Houston CityPASS wants a financefoodie.com reader to experience these attractions in Houston as well! One winner will receive a Houston CityPASS booklet for themselves and a friend for complementary admission to these points of interests.

Grand Prize: Two Houston CityPASS booklets (ARV: $92)

There are THREE ways to enter
1. REQUIRED: Tell me which attraction you are most excited to visit. Also please include your email address so I can contact you if you win!
2. Follow Finance Foodie on Twitter (leave separate comment telling me this)
3. Reblog / Retweet this giveaway (leave separate comment telling me this)

Contest ends Friday, May 17, 2013 at 5pm EST. Winners will be chosen via random integer generator on random.org announced on the financefoodie.com site shortly afterwards!!

Full Disclosure: Houston CityPASS sponsored this giveaway. I was not compensated for this post. 

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