Houston The Essential
Houston embodies much of Texas' mystique, the myth that bigger is better. The city sprawls across more than 617sqmi of bayou country; the metropolitan area takes in 9,000sqmi and is bound by one of the most intricate highway systems in the nation. As the fourth-largest US city (after New York, Los Angeles and Chicago), Houston is a giant in international shipping, petrochemicals, aerospace and finance. Its varied economy has attracted an equally diverse population; dozens of languages are heard in the metropolitan area.