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Luggage tags inked “DFW”? You’re in for a massive heart-pounding, adrenaline pumping good time! Dallas is only the third largest city in Texas. Even so, this southern metropolis proudly embodies the “Everything’s Bigger in Texas” mantra. So it shouldn’t be any surprise that the excitement to be had here is just as outsized as the city itself.
What you’ll find are opportunities galore to kick your adrenal glands into high gear. Dallas likes to think of itself as prim and proper. Look carefully, though, and you’ll find a real wild child of a town, just ready to show you an exhilarating good time. Everything is indeed bigger here, including your maxed out heart rate when you kick it at the following attractions!
If there’s a more extreme amusement park in Texas than Zero Gravity Thrill Amusement Park, I’d like to know about it. Two – just TWO – of the amazing things you can do here include free falling from 16 stories up, and experiencing 4 g’s of force in the so-called Skyscraper. (4g’s is more than space shuttle pilots experience during take-off.) Shouldn’t it go without saying that you can bungee jump here? I want pictures if you go! And video, too.
Would-be circus performances will want to explore the thrills on hand at Skyline Trapeze. Allow for at least two heart-thumping hours. Your first several minutes is spent on the ground to learn important safety procedures and trapeze techniques. Then you’ll have at it, twirling and flying through the air with the greatest of Texas ease adrenaline at your service! Anyone in your party who’d prefer to keep their heart inside their chest could hang out at the adjacent arcade/go kart mini-golf park.
Soar among the treetops at Trinity Forest Adventure Park on your own or with a guide. No less than eight ropes courses beckon, at heights up to 50’ tall! Keep your heart pumping furiously by participating in military-style obstacles such as wobble bridges, and see how stealthily you can slink about on tight ropes, ladders, cargo nets, zip lines, and more. Allow at least three hours for this spirited excitement!
Downtown Dallas provides plenty of opportunities to get totally amped up in the city. Below are just a very few highlights! Experts recommend taking the DART train to avoid parking headaches. Here are some awesome things to do:
Work out your legs -and- your brain by signing up for the Outdoor Trivia Race in the Dallas Arts District. You have an important deadline to reach in 90 minutes: you must save the city from an invasion of deadly germs, wielding only your wits and your cell phone. Once you’ve proven your mettle on the bacteria-laden battlefield, you can boast bragging rights amongst your group and online! I love how this unique city exploration game is like an ordinary walking tour on steroids!
The Perot Museum of Nature and Science downtown is another not-to-be-missed science museum. State-of-the-art video and 3D computer animations provide thrilling, life-like simulations where visitors can exercise their brains through hands-on activities and interactive games. A particular draw is the tornado simulator – yes, north Texas is prime tornado country – and right here you get to experience the adrenaline of living through one. Other permanent exhibits explore life as a bird (or, closer to home – life as a human), the expanding universe, sports, and engineering/innovation. After your visit, try some amazing Tex-Mex. Skip just past the Tex Mex-inspired El Fenix across the street*, and make a beeline towards authentic Mexican (interior Mexican) Meso Maya right next door.
Back to the ‘burbs: How stimulating is simulating? Hmmm… did someone say flight simulator? Give piloting a whirl and visit some neat aircraft at the small but mighty Frontiers of Flight Museum near Dallas’s original city airport, Love Field. The sadly extinct Braniff Airlines is memorialized here along with the still crankin’ Southwest Airlines. Also on hand are relics from the Hindenburg, and the entire Apollo 7 space capsule! A particularly neat display shares the evolution of flight attendant fashion. I know the first place this aviation buff is heading next time I’m in Dallas!
Finally, I’d like to recommend a fun juxtaposition to the tightly buttoned, straight laced city that you’ve explored so far. The other side of the conservative coin lies deep within a quirky, anything goes, artsy fartsy east Dallas neighborhood known as Deep Ellum, the happenin’ incubator of north Texas’ best jazz and blues musicians. It’s fun to locate the district’s murals and sculpture, which promote a unique Texas aesthetic. You can admire them at length while you chill out and chow down on some of the city’s most innovative eats. The people watching in this colorful, counterculture enclave can’t be beat!
What is your favorite thrill-seeking activity? Let me know in the Comments!