Above and Below Downtown

About the Greet:

The Downtown Tunnel system consists of more than 6 miles of air conditioned walkways. Of course we are not going to walk all of it! On this greet we will be walking both in the tunnels and above ground, which is why I like to call it “Above and Below Downtown”. We will set a mutually convenient place to meet and then begin the journey. (Once connected, if you wish I can send driving directions or Metro Rail directions to confirm a meeting place.)

Depending on the weather, we usually walk above ground through the Theater District past Jones Hall, the Alley Theatre, the Wortham Center, City Hall, and if there is time and you are interested, we can visit Sam Houston Park where there are many historic houses from across Texas.

There are a variety of shops and eateries lining the tunnels. We can plan to eat lunch together downtown above or below ground, which will also give us a rest from walking.

We can visit some Art Deco buildings as well. You need to tell me what sounds good to you and how much walking you want to do. Here is the URL of a map of the tunnels: https://www.downtownhouston.org/media/uploads/attachments/2016-07-28/2016-AB-MAP-Buildings.pdf

You should note that this is a non-holiday, weekday Greet since the tunnels and buildings are not open evenings, weekends, and holidays.

About Me:

I have lived in Houston about 45 years and my wife and I have raised our family here. I am a retired chemist. I have been doing Greets for Houston Greeters for several years.

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16 reviews

  1. A very interesting tour with Ken

    The meeting with Ken is easy to schedule. He gave me all the information and options depending on where I was staying in the city.
    This Greet is a precious way to explore downtown Houston.
    By walking the tunnels I got a good overview on how far they go and how to get oriented. Therefrom I entered in the history of the city by visiting architectural buildings. Ken made me more knowledgeable by explaining differences between each building by viewing interior and exterior. I got a very interesting overlook of the city with Ken pointing out artwork that adorn building walls. The walk to Sam Houston park is a must see.
    Thank you Ken for your generosity!

  2. Inspiring walkabout below and above Houston with a very good guide!

    It was an interesting, beautifully designed tour. Ken talked enthusiastically and inspiring about Houston. Nice to see what he knew about the many beautiful buildings. The tour started at the agreed place MFAH Parking garage. Coincidentally we just had to go to the toilet and we came through a small museum, which we could take along nicely during the tour. Then went by metro to downtown Houston. Where we first had the opportunity to admire the Houston tunnel system with the various shops and restaurants underground. Nice to hear the story behind, for example, the different floor tiles they used underground. Then we went to admire the beautiful buildings / sights of Houston with Ken above the ground. Overall an extensive interesting afternoon spent on foot with a very good guide!

  3. Wonderful and so interesting day in Houston

    We had a wonderful day with Ken and we will remember Houston thanks to all what we could see ! I am sure that we couldn’t have discover the half of Houston without all tips from our Greeter.
    We discover the world under the city and the beautiful inside of Art Deco buildings, it was instructive and very pleasant.
    Ken has a very easy way to speak without strong accent so even if your english is not 100% perfect, you can understand everything.
    Thank you Ken for this beautiful day, we enjoyed a lot !!

  4. Great day with Ken

    Thanks Ken for the whole day you spent with us.
    We had a great time with you exploring the city.
    The tunnels are impressive, the park with all the former houses is lovely… We loved it! Thank you for all your explainations.
    Whenever you want to come for a greet in the Aisne region, you are welcome.
    Best wishes,

  5. Including a taste of Houston's Original architecture.

    Thanks to Ken for a great tour, especially pointing out some of the original architecture of downtown Houston. Our party of five included a relative from Germany, who was impressed by Ken’s knowledge and willingness to answer multiple questions.

  6. If it’s your first time in Houston and would like to know the city, don't miss Ken’s journey to explore the downtown.

    My families and I had a great visiting with Ken both in the downtown tunnels and above buildings. He explained history and culture of this city. In addition, he also gave us lots of valuable suggestions about our trip in Houston.

    If it’s your first time in Houston and would like to know the city, don’t miss Ken’s journey to explore the downtown.

  7. Great discovery on January 2019

    thank you so much Ken for this great discovery of downtown.

    We had passed several times for business or to the toyota center but never took the time to look at buildings and get inside.

    there are amazing art deco architectural work. You gave us a great overview of the life it used to be when the life in Houston took place in downtown.
    So fun to go underground and discover this “lunch week life”

  8. Exceptional, thoroughly recommended.

    We met with Ken and had a fantastic five and a bit hours exploring mostly above and a little below ground. Ken is wonderful, extremely knowledgeable and showed us places that we would never have seen had we been on our own and he was able to explain the history behind them. I would thoroughly recommend this greet to anybody and everybody.

  9. Highly Recommended!!!

    Highly recommend this tour!! I took the tour on Friday Jan. 19th, 2018..The overall experience was great. Ken is knowledgeable, easy to talk with and provides a full tour of the tunnels and downtown surrounding area. Ken is very knowledgeable and points out features of buildings i typically would have not noticed. I enjoyed learning the history of Houston. Over lunch we had a nice conversation about the culture of Houston. Ken responds quickly to email and has a convenient meeting spot that is easy to find. I recommend this tour to anyone who wants to get to know the city, I would even take the tour again!!

  10. An Incredible Experience with Ken

    I love going on walking tours with locals in the cities I visited. This visit was no exception as I was determined to know as much of the city as I can during my time here. I took this tour with Ken yesterday and had a wonderful time. Ken was prompt to make email contact, set up a date and confirmed our arrangements. He even asked what my interests are for the walk. He took me through the tunnel system, pointed out the historical and architectural building and features especially “Art Deco” which I find fascinating. Over lunch and in the afternoon stroll in Sam Houston park, I learned so much about the history of America and how it shaped the people’s life. After the park and historical homes, we went to two very different churches. An impromptu but nevertheless interesting theology discussion ensued followed by a drive around Rice University. Before I knew it, I’ve spent almost the whole day with Ken. I came away from this tour with a totally different impression of Houston from when I set out in the morning. It was an incredible experience and I strongly recommend this to visitors and locals alike. Thank you very much, Ken!

  11. Great tour with knowledgeble Greeter Ken

    I love to travel and some of the best excursions came from greeters in different cities and countries. This was my second trip to Houston, and I was determined to learn about the city – I did not get to do much the first time, so I turned to Houston Greeters and they did not disappoint! This was a bit of the last minute (two days before the tour), luckily Ken responded within a few hours and worked with us to accommodate our schedule and needs.
    There were originally 4 of us, two of whom have lived in Houston for a few years, all for the first time on a tour of Downtown Houston. Unfortunately, only 3 of us could make it in the end.
    It was a hot day, Ken met us at the MUAH garage lobby and provided with tram passes, making it for easy parking and meeting point, as well as a wonderful experience riding a modern tram.
    Over the next 3 hours, we had walked around entire downtown, some underground and some above, stopped in amazing buildings, learned about the history of Texas and heard stories about key people, who shaped Houston, Texas and had a tremendous impact on US history as well. Ken is very knowledgeable about architecture and offered some tidbits on the subject. Ken also made sure our trip allowed us to cool off every 20min or so from the bright sun and hot weather.
    This was a great excursion and we really appreciate the time that Ken had spent with us. It was helpful for us to understand how Houston fits into TX history, especially after visiting Austin, St. Antonio and Galveston earlier same week. For those who did not, this would be helpful to understand to put things into perspective.
    p.s. Tour took place on Friday April 28th

  12. A must-take journey with Ken

    My friends and I had a wonderful journey with Ken through downtown tunnels and other buildings along downtown. He explained history and art decor style all the things he know during the journey. In addition, he is so considerate and recommended a quite, nice restaurant with round tables for us, so that we six could talk easily over lunch. Since we have no car at that time, and unfamiliar with the neighborhood. He met us at where we live and accompanied us back after the journey. If it’s your first time in Houston, don’t hesitate to contact Ken for a journey to explore the downtown. That’s the journey you couldn’t miss.

  13. Excellent tour with a very friendly and knowledgeable Greeter

    We had a day and a half stay in Houston on our way back to Europe and didn’t really know what to do in such a short time period. By chance we came across the Greeters website and decided to give it a try. We were more than surprised when we received an email shortly after in which Ken, our Greeter confirmed our walk giving details of time, meeting place and weather conditions (even in °C which was very much appreciated) He also looked up where we were staying and provided us with a detailed map on how to get to the meeting point. Ken took us through many Downtown buildings and tunnels pointing out historical events and architectural features along the way, always making sure that we could understand his explanations since our mother tongue is not English. Over lunch he gave us an understanding of the American way of life and answered all our questions. Ken is a very knowledgeable and dedicated Greeter who took great care of us (when I asked for a shop where I could buy a new suitcase as mine was damaged on the flight to Houston, he even drove us to the nearest shopping center) We realized that we eventually spent almost a whole day with him. It was an amazing experience that I can only recommend! There is now way we could have learned so much about the city by ourselves in such a short time period. Vielen Dank!!!

  14. Thank you Ken!

    My friend and I took this tour on our week off and just had a wonderful time. Ken was quick to send an email with all the information and set up a date. While on the tour we learned so much about the history of Texas, architecture and many many more. I have lived in Texas for 12 years and Ken showed us many new places for us to go back and visit. Ken was very knowledgeable with everything we asked about. Thank you so much for a wonderful experience.

  15. More than just a walk around Downtown

    Ken, our Greeter promptly made email contact to confirm our arrangements giving details of time and meeting place. When he heard where we were staying he changed these arrangements to meeting in our hotel foyer which was so convenient for us. Ken took the time to gauge our interests then took us through many Downtown buildings and tunnels pointing out history and architectural features along the way. Over lunch we really appreciated the opportunity to ask questions about everything and anything. Ken proved a very knowledgeable man who explained many details of American life and history to us. The afternoon was spent looking at Sam Houston Park. Suddenly we realized we had spent six hours with Ken and learnt so much. Thank you Ken

  16. Highly recommended and interesting

    Ken was our Greeter and my family and I had a wonderful and very educational time. He walked us through the tunnel system and taught us about the Texas history. Very Nice and patient was Ken.

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Houston 77004 TX US
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