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Houston’s Inner Loop is a impressive area made up of several unique communities including Downtown, Rice Village, River Oaks, the Medical Center, West University, Bellaire, and more. The Loop has a reputation for its eclectic charm and vibrant energy.

The greatest advantage of living in The Loop is the close proximity to all of the cultural offerings and employment opportunities of Houston. The city has many excellent highways and public transportation systems that make getting around the city easy. The neighborhoods in the Inner Loop offer a great variety of life styles and property choices including both historic and new single family homes, lofts, apartments, and condominiums.

The Houston Inner Loop area is historically rich as community organizations make efforts to preserve their notable locations and buildings. Some examples of such architectures include gorgeous churches dating back to the 1800’s as well as a variety of other historic buildings and structures which grace the Inner Loop neighborhoods. Each neighborhood has a unique character  and they also offer neighborhood parks which provide recreational opportunities including jogging, swimming, team sports, tennis, and many more. Houston offers a climate which is perfect for outdoor activities because there are no freezing winters.  Many residents enjoy the Houston area simply because they can fish or golf all year!

The City of Houston offers a diverse population which is estimated at over 2 million people.


The Houston “Inner Loop” is located in Harris County in southeastern Texas. The term “Inner Loop” or “The Loop” refers to the innermost highway (Interstate 610) that encircles Houston, forming approximately a 10-mile loop around the Houston downtown area. The cities, communities, neighborhoods, and districts which fall within this area are generally classified as the Inner Loop.

The Houston area is great for many reasons. One such reason is that it is only 46 miles from Galveston and the Gulf of Mexico, both of which having immense tourist appeal and recreational opportunities. Houston is 147 miles from Austin, 225 miles from Dallas, and only 86 miles from the Louisiana border.


Houston is called “The Bayou City” because it has 4 major bayous that pass through it. These bayous include Buffalo Bayou which runs through downtown and near River Oaks, Brays Bayou near the Texas Medical Center, White Oak Bayou near The Heights, and Sims Bayou near south Houston which merges into the ship channel.

The Houston Ship Channel is sixteen miles long from downtown Houston to the Gulf of Mexico. The Port of Houston is the third largest ocean port in the United States and also one of the busiest.

The City of Houston is has a flat surface with an elevation of 50 feet above sea level.

Houston’s climate is classified as being humid subtropical.


Houston is one of the most desirable cities for professionals wishing to relocate. Houston is famous for international trade and its port. Houston’s energy, aeronautics, and medical industries are top-notch. NASA’s Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center and Mission Control Center are also located in Houston.

Houston is home to a network of more than 100 hospitals and medical facilities that provide state-of-the-art health care as well as employment opportunities for health professionals. The Texas Medical Center is one of the world’s most important research and health care institutions. These world-renowned institutions include 13 hospitals, 2 specialty institutions, 2 medical schools, 4 nursing schools, multiple schools of dentistry, schools of public health, and schools of pharmacology.

Inner Loop Recreation

Houston has many distinguished professional sports teams including major league football, baseball, and basketball.  The Houston Astros, who play at Minute Maid Park, won the 2005 National League pennant. The Houston Texans’ Reliant Stadium was the site of the 2002 Super Bowl and The Houston Center is the home of the Houston Rockets and Houston Comets. Another local favorite is the Sam Houston Race Park which draws crowds numbering in the thousands to its racing events.

Houston’s Memorial Park, which borders River Oaks to the north, is one of the largest outdoor recreational areas in the Inner Loop. The banks of Buffalo Bayou also have great hiking trails in River Oaks.

The Kemah Boardwalk is located 40 miles south of Houston and across the channel from Galveston Island. It has become extremely popular with Houston’s “hip” crowd. The Kemah Marina has a spectacular array of beautiful boats and yachts of all kinds.

Houston is a great location for outdoors men. Fishing, boating, and water sports are popular due to Houston’s close proximity to water including the Gulf of Mexico, Lake Livingston, and Lake Conroe.

Golfing is also exceptional in the Houston area.  There are almost 200 golf courses in the Houston metro area alone, and over 100 of them are public courses. On top of it’s exceptional variety of gold courses, Houston’s weather allows for its residents and visitors to play year round.  Houston also has two city-run golf courses including the Memorial Park Golf Course, which is rated one of the best municipal golf courses in Texas.  Hermann Park Golf Course, located int he museum district, is one of the city’s oldest municipal courses, built in 1922. It is home to graceful and majestic oaks which shadow the greens

Inner Loop Special Attractions

The Houston Inner Loop has many special attractions such as The Houston Zoo which exhibits both exotic and local animals in realistic habitats. The zoo grounds are over 50 acres and include over 3,000 excellent exhibits. The Houston Zoo is one of the most popular attractions in the area and its Discovery Zoo is a great hands-on animal experience for children of all ages.

The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion provides world-class entertainment including classical performances by the Houston Ballet, the Houston Grand Opera, and the Houston Symphony.

The Barbara Bush Library opened to the public in 2002. It is an incredible 32,000 square foot facility with room for over 116,000 books and over 50 public access computers.

Houston is also the city of choice for many conventioneers with its 3 large convention centers including the George R. Brown, the Astrodome Complex, and the Humble Civic Center.

The Houston Theater District, located in the northern downtown area.  It is home to many performing arts organizations and one of the largest performing arts districts in the United States.

There are more than 25 excellent colleges and universities in the Houston area including the University of Houston-Downtown, North Harris Montgomery Community College, Houston Community College, the University of Texas Health Science Center, the University of St. Thomas, Rice University, and the University of Houston-University Park.

Interesting Facts

The Texas Medical Center is famous for many accomplishments including having one of the first and largest air emergency service centers and a very successful heart transplant program. Even today, more heart surgeries are performed in the Texas Medical Center than anywhere else in the world.

We all know that Texas is famous for its oil industry. Oil was discovered in Texas in the early 1900’s and the 1920’s oil boom greatly increased the population of Texas.

Construction on the Houston Ship Channel began in 1902 and was completed in 1914.

“Houston” was the 1st word spoken on the moon because NASA’s Johnson Space Center and Mission Control Center is located near Houston.

Houston is the 4th largest city in the United States by population. Its metropolitan area is larger than the State of Rhode Island.

In River Oaks, The Hogg family home of Bayou Bend is listed on the National Register for Historic Places. It now is a museum with works of art dating from the 1660s to the 1860s. The home is “Latin Colonial” style architecture and sits on 14 beautiful acres with gorgeous gardens and beautiful grounds.

West University

Medical Center

Houston Heights


Braes Heights

River Oaks

Upper Kirby

Southside Place

Knollwood Village


Rice Village

Highland Village

Afton Oaks






Rice Military


Lynn Park

Museum District

Garden Oaks

Oak Forest