Houston

No longer swampland and rice paddies, Houston with 2.3 million residents is now the most populated city in Texas, the largest city in the Southern US (after New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago) and the fourth largest populated city in the US and stretches out over almost 600 square miles. Houston has the fourth-tallest skyline in North America.

While Houston is known around the world as being a company town – the energy industry, it has, in recent years diversified into biomedical research, aeronautics, medical and IT have created a well rounded, diversified city. Houston also houses the second largest concentration of Fortune 1000 companies in the country right behind New York.

And Houston isn’t just all oil and gas, this city loves sports and is ranked the sixth best sports city in the US by Sporting News in 2005. It is home to Reliant Park, Minute Maid Park and Toyota Center that host the Houston Rockets (NBA), Houston Texans (NFL), Astros (MLB) as well as the Comets (WNBA), Aeros (NHL) and Dynamo (MLS). Houston also hosts an annual marathon drawing over 200,000 spectators. The city plays host to a variety of other professional and amateur sports events.Houston

For three weeks every year, Houston hosts the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo kicked off with the trail ride and parade and showcasing the world’s top rodeo athletes and offering $1.5 million in prize money and showcasing bull riding, steer wrestling, bareback riding, barrel racing, saddle bronc riding, team roping and tie-down roping. And of course, Rodeo Houston features some of the largest entertainers in the music industry in all genres of music.

Discovery Green, a 12-acre park in downtown Houston hosts over 400 events per year and including classes, workshops, live music, outdoor movies and all kinds of other events.

The City of Houston also offers more than 300-miles of networked bikeway paths and more than 128 miles of hike and bike trails within its parks, bayous and parks.

And you won’t have any problem getting here either! Houston has the country’s fourth largest airport system, servicing over 180 cities worldwide with two airports, Houston Hobby Airport and Bush Intercontinental Airport, which ranks third in the US for non-stop domestic and international service.