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uptown park houston shoppingShopping is a full-time occupation for some Houstonians, and you can get in on the action easily. Start with the city's many malls; the Galleria, Houston's best known shopping center, is so large and so popular that the surrounding neighborhood is often called "the Galleria" (though its official name is Uptown). Beyond the malls, you can also find blocks of stores downtown and near the Rice University campus. Need some souvenir ideas? One favorite -- which can be found in nearly any gift shop throughout Houston -- is a dark-blue coffee mug inscribed with the famous quote from Davy Crockett as he was leaving Tennessee to move to his new (and fateful) home: "You may all go to hell, and I will go to Texas."

Not to be missed is the world-famous original Galleria in Uptown Houston, visited by more than 26 million people each year. Stores include Saks Fifth Avenue, Tiffany & Co., Gap, Gucci, Lucky Brand Jeans and much more. In addition to shopping and dining, there's also an indoor ice skating rink (open year round).

Near the Galleria at the European-style Uptown Park, find the Ann Taylor LOFT, Bill Walker Clothier, Mint Baby and the Cigar Vault, among other exclusive retailers. There are also several day spas here.

Just a couple of blocks from the Rice University campus, Rice Village has more than 300 stores for browsing. The mix of national chains (like Chico's and Urban Outfitters) and local boutiques makes this a fun and eclectic place to hunt for clothing, housewares, jewelry and gifts.

Bargain hunters should head out of town to the outlets of Katy Mills, about 25 miles west of Houston. Retailers here include Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Kenneth Cole and many more.

Looking for edible souvenirs? Head to any of the legendary Goode Company barbecue restaurants and pick up a gift box of seasonings, spices and barbecue sauce to use when you're grilling back at home.

Discover Houston Shopping Tours from Viator

Editor's Note: IndependentTraveler.com is published by The Independent Traveler, Inc., a subsidiary of TripAdvisor, Inc., which also owns Viator.

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