I live for summer travel! My family alternates between road trips around Texas and traveling to the Pacific Northwest for visits with extended family. This is a ‘stay in Texas’ year so I did some research on places I’d never heard of. Just south of Houston is Pearland – one of the many Texas cities I’d never visited. One day I spent way too much time searching for the best things to do and places to eat. Make the most of your trip with these suggestions – including outdoor fun and locally owned shopping & dining – when you visit Pearland.
**FULL DISCLOSURE: THIS POST WAS PART OF A SPONSORED PROJECT IN CONJUNCTION WITH MEMBERS OF THE TEXAS TRAVEL ALLIANCE TO FEATURE THEIR MEMBERS. THE PARTNERSHIP INCLUDED LODGING, FOOD & BEVERAGE, AND COMPENSATION FOR THE TRIP. THE OPINIONS REFLECTED ARE HONEST AND BASED UPON THE INDIVIDUAL BLOGGER EXPERIENCE.
Because I’d spent several weeks caring for my nephew, I decided the trip to Pearland would be just for me. That quickly changed with my sister, niece and nephew tagging along, though. I’ve forgotten how difficult it can be to travel with an infant! We loaded up our cars and headed to explore this new-to-us city. Pearland is a little more spread out than I’d pictured, and there isn’t a designated downtown area which means it’s not super walkable, but there are plenty of things to see and do.
Where To Stay in Pearland
Hampton Inn Houston-Pearland
Since I’d be driving to my destinations, I figured it didn’t matter which hotel I picked. Hampton Inn had everything I could want in a hotel – a pool, free wi-fi and free hot breakfast.
Other hotels in Pearland
Best Western Pearland Inn
Courtyard Houston Pearland
Hilton Garden Inn
Holiday Inn Express & Suites
Home2Suites by Hilton
La Quinta Inn & Suites
Sleep Inn & Suites
SpringHill Suites by Marriott
Advanced RV Park
Outdoor Activities in Pearland
You’ll find 20 four-foot-tall painted fiberglass pears throughout Pearland. The city offers scavenger hunts for children and adults, too, which makes finding them even more fun! If you don’t want to hunt for them, you can simply use the map to go from one pear to the next.
Disc Golf at Centennial Park
I’ve never played disc golf but I understand you must bring your own equipment. This fairly flat but challenging 9-hole disc golf course benefits from tree shade & alternate tees.
Fenwick Nature Center & John Hargrove Environmental Complex
The Fenwick Nature Center aims to provide hands-on educational opportunities to the community through the exhibit room, programs, workshops, and field trips. The nature center, walking trails and floating wetlands in the complex make you feel so connected to nature when you’re actually so close to the city. Located on the Clear Lake Loop of the Texas Coastal Birding Trail – hundreds of species are spotted here.
Shadow Creek Ranch Nature Trail
Enjoy paved trails, bicycle racks, natural vistas for viewing and educational signage.
Locally Owned Restaurants
Grazia Italian Kitchen
Grazia Italian Kitchen was founded on the ideals that fresh is the only way to enjoy food. I wanted to order both the Short Rib Gnocchi and “The Patton” but ultimately went with the gnocchi which was delicious and a dish I’d highly recommend!
When it’s over 90 degrees out, snowcones are the way to go. And at only $3 for the large, AJ’s can’t be beat! Again with the indecision, I got the Root Beer and Rainbow. The Rainbow, a combination of strawberry, pineapple & bubble gum, was summer in a cup and I can’t wait to have it again!
Emma’s Mex Grill
Hand made corn tortillas – do you need more convincing?! The corn tortilla wrapped bistek street tacos were much larger than any other street taco I’ve ever had.
Busy Bee’s Cafe
Built next to the train tracks, Busy Bee’s was meant to look like an old train depot. The atmosphere is cute and oh so friendly! My recommendation is to get the Chicken Fried Steak and Eggs. The steak was larger than my hand and the dish came with my choice of sides. It was way too much food for me but it was out of this world!
Foodie Tip: Grab a bit of gravy on your fork. Then stab a piece of egg and finish it with a piece of the chicken fried steak. MMMMM! It’s the perfect bite!
Pena’s Donut Heaven and Grill
Two words: chicken & waffles! It was the best I’ve ever had. The chicken was moist and deliciously fried. The waffles were fluffy bites of perfection. If you aren’t a big eater, you could easily split this dish with your travel partner. I ordered the vanilla latte without coffee to pair with my breakfast.
Locally owned restaurants I didn’t get a chance to try but I definitely want to visit them in the future:
The exterior of Beirgarten looked like an old castle and I’d imagine having a meal on the patio while listening to live music is utter perfection.
Killen’s – Steakhouse, BBQ, Burgers, TexMex
Unique Shopping in Pearland
This shop is a trendy boutique offering a variety of women’s clothing, footwear, jewelry, accessories & gifts. There’s a man cave corner as well as a corner for children’s items. There are SO MANY cute items in this shop, you’ll want one of everything!
This shop is chock-full of vintage trinkets and knick-knacks. I found a number of awesome items spread throughout the 4+ rooms in the shop! My favorite was a “One Nation Under God” window but with no where to put it at my house, it stayed in the shop waiting for an owner who could give it proper wall space.
I was looking forward to escaping to Pearland by myself but I’m so glad my sister, niece & nephew tagged along. We had such a great time bonding over outdoor fun, shopping and eating! Looking back at our trip, though, it feels like we ate more than we did anything else. I can’t wait until the next time we can escape together the way we did this time.
Have you ever visited Pearland?
Fun Fact: In the late 1800s, there were an abundance of pear trees, so founder Witold von Zychlinski asked and the county courthouse approved the name “Pear-Land.”
Covid-19 Precaution Tips
I’d say the vast majority of people are taking precautionary measures by staying home but if you are ready to get out and do something, these are the tips I offer:
- Tent camp, if possible. I mean, it’s Texas so I totally understand if that’s out of the question! If you are looking for a hotel, ask if they have CleanStay or something similar.
- Visit locally owned restaurants but dine on their patio, take your food to a park or back to your hotel room.
- Wear your mask.
- Wash your hands often with warm, soapy water.
- Carry hand sanitizer with you.