It's summer, and we're all ready for a vacation. Luckily, you don't have to go far to have fun — just hop in the car and head to Plano, about three and a half hours away from Austin.
The North Dallas suburb has something for everyone, from shopping and dining to family-friendly activities designed for all ages. Here's your guide to where to stay and what to do while you're there.
Stay here: hotels
Just steps from The Boardwalk at Granite Park, with its waterside dining, entertainment, and retail, is the Hilton Dallas Plano Granite Park. Situated right by The Shops at Legacy is the Marriott at Legacy Town Center, while the Renaissance Dallas at Plano Legacy West offers modern Asian-Texas decor within the popular shopping and dining destination.
For slightly funkier digs, check into the Sandman Signature Plano-Frisco Hotel or the Nylo Dallas-Plano Hotel. The former is a sister company to the Dallas Stars, while the latter offers a free shuttle to anywhere within five miles.
Side note: The hotels featured here are just a sampling and are not "preferred" hotels. See all your Plano accommodation options here.
Do this: shopping, dining, and more
If shopping is your cardio and the way to your heart is through your stomach, you've come to the right place. Plano is packed with places to shop 'til you drop, eat to your heart's content, and dance the night away.
From sparkly jewelry at Kendra Scott to mouthwatering meals from more than 30 eateries, The Shops at Legacy is nonstop fun.
Just across the Tollway, Legacy West boasts more than 20 restaurants and big-name brands like Coach, Tecovas, Warby Parker, Gucci, Tory Burch, and more. Legacy Hall, the shopping center's curated food hall, features a wide variety of artisanal vendors, an award-winning brewery, and live music at the Box Garden nearly every night of the week.
In southern Plano, The Shops at Willow Bend is a staple of shopping, while The District at Willow Bend is home to local chef-driven restaurants, second-story terraces, and a grand entrance.
Granite Park might be known first as a collection of office buildings, but The Boardwalk at Granite Park livens everything up with retail, dining, and hotels, all set on a waterfront view.
Downtown Plano Arts District delivers rows of antique shops and unique boutiques on charming, brick-lined streets, along with restored historic homes and plenty of food (including many northern outposts of popular Dallas eateries).
Have fun: family-friendly attractions
Color your world at the Crayola Experience inside The Shops at Willow Bend, where kids can name and wrap their own crayons, star in their own coloring page, and embark on a 4-D coloring adventure.
For a bit of history, visit the free Interurban Railway Museum to learn about electricity, science, transportation, and the history of the City of Plano. Likewise, the Heritage Farmstead Museum is a 4.5-acre living history site with a home and grounds built in 1891.
Get some energy out at Pinstack, where kids of all ages can bowl, play arcade games, scale a climbing wall, and run the ropes course. Speaking of being up high, Go Ape! is a treetop adventure course that spans 40 obstacles, up to 28 feet in the air, and even includes a 423-foot-long zipline that crosses Rowlett Creek.
Leave time to relax at the famous Texas Pool, a man-made saltwater basin in the iconic shape of the Lone Star State that's been drawing dippers since 1961.
Plan your summer trip to Plano, and learn more about what to do, where to stay, and what to eat, here.