Deep in the heart of Downtown, a curious soul may find the entrance to a seven-mile underground tunnel system, covering 95 city blocks. These tunnels aren’t a complete secret. Hundreds of Houstonians pass through them every day during the work week, but for many who don’t work downtown, the tunnels are a total mystery.
What is hidden 20 feet below us in the downtown Houston tunnels? If you find yourself googling ‘Houston tunnels map’ or ‘restaurants in Houston tunnels’ or ‘Houston underground mall’, we have you covered!
Check out our comprehensive guide to underground tunnels in Houston including shopping options, where to eat, how and where to access the underground tunnels, Houston tunnel tours and more!
Top Recommendation – Air-conditioned Underground Tunnel Tour of Downtown Houston
Did you know that Houston has the most extensive downtown tunnel system in the US? Join us on our Underground Tunnel tour (air-conditioned) without outdoor views for an in-depth look at the incredible metropolis below ground-floor in Texas’ largest business district including the most award-winning downtown skyscrapers which host many of Texas’ most noteworthy Fortune 500 corporate headquarters & historical venues.
As part of this day tour, we will visit multiple historical and artistic sections of Downtown Houston’s tunnels as well as the corporate buildings that lie on top of them. Make sure to bring your smile and camera as we will provide you with unique photo-op opportunities and inside secrets that most native Houstonians don’t even know about!
Book your Underground Tunnel Tour of Downtown Houston TODAY!
Editor’s Note: Our staff works hard to bring you the latest information. However, all information mentioned in this article is subject to change. As always, please confirm before heading out.
Downton Houston Tunnel System – What are the underground tunnels in Houston?
The Houston Tunnel System is a system of cooled pedestrian tunnels that connects dozens of office buildings to a number of handy spots throughout the city.
The tunnels were initially constructed in the 1930s and then expanded in the 1950s and 1960s. They give Downtown Houston employees a speedy way to get to work without having to walk outside in the sweltering Texas weather. They can also use the Houston tunnels during their lunch break to go to the bank, or the doctor, get a haircut, send a package, go shopping, and most essentially, grab a bite to eat.
If you want to see downtown Houston without becoming drenched in sweat, the Downtown Houston tunnels are also accessible to the general public and make for a terrific mini-adventure. There is also a ton to do there, beneath the city streets.
Downtown Houston Tunnel System – Restaurants in the Houston tunnels
There are numerous dining options in the Houston underground tunnels. From well-known fast food restaurants like Chick-fil-A and McDonald’s to beloved neighborhood eateries like Rustika Cafe and Bakery, Treebeards, Post Oak Grill, and 5411 Empanadas (Latin American cuisines). On Yelp, a comprehensive list of the top-rated eateries in the Houston tunnels is available. Take a guided culinary tour around some of the eateries in the tunnels and the surrounding area if you really want to experience the best of the Downtown Tunnels.
Downtown Houston Tunnel System – Underground Mall and Shopping
No surprise that there are also plenty of great shopping options in the underground tunnels in Houston. Formerly known as The Shops at Houston Center, The Highlight is the next generation of convenience and connection in downtown Houston. According to the website, The Highlight has dining, entertainment, shopping, and wellness all just steps from one another, and is the ideal space to relax, collaborate, and even check a couple “to-do’s” off your list.
In addition to the mall, there are a number of small specialized stores, gift shops, newsstands, flower shops, medicine stores, copy shops, and dry cleaners located in the downtown tunnels.
There are small group tours available where a local guide will lead you through the tunnels and tell you all you could ever want to know about them if you’re really interested in finding out everything there is to know about the tunnels’ fascinating history and secrets.
Downtown Houston Tunnel System Entrances
Additionally, many downtown buildings have street-level stairs, escalators, and elevators that connect to the tunnels. Many of these buildings are open to the general public during normal operating hours with few restrictions.
The tunnels are open Monday through Friday from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm.
You can find access points and pathways on this Houston tunnel map.
Remember, you can always take a guided tour of the tunnels where you’ll learn all about one of the city’s best-kept secrets!
What intrigues you about the tunnels? Will you be making a visit soon? Let us know in the comments below!
Downtown Houston Tunnel System – Houston Tunnel Map, Hours, and Parking Tips
Hours: Monday through Friday from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm
Parking: Metered street parking, lots, and garages available. Click here for a parking map
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