For the second year in a row, I’ll be doing dry January, which, for anyone who knows me, is a huge challenge for me! I’m very social and, let’s face it, being in your 20s and being social means you go to a lot of bars, wine nights, dinner with a bottle split, breweries for birthdays, and the list continues.
For January, I have a lot of goals for myself that include movie marathons, cleaning out my closet, and working out — a lot. BUT, I’ll still be that same social butterfly and will need some ideas for getting in some quality friend time!
Sure, there’s bowling and laser tag, movie marathons and working out (actually, really great thing to do in January — hello new year’s resolution!!). PS. Click here for 20 Houston workouts to try in 2020!
Last year, I got to do some really fun things with friends, and now I’ve crafted the best list of what to do if you’re trying to do dry January in Houston!
Do an escape room
Escape Rooms aren’t just for work bonding field trips! They can also be for your non-drinking friends who are totally not used to doing things that don’t include drinking! We did the Escape the Room in Midtown — it was pretty easy to book and affordable. We got outta there in RECORD TIME (we had very clear, tipsy-free minds…)
Coffee shop tour of Houston
During dry January, caffeine is my drug of choice! If I’m skipping wine and cocktails at bars, you best believe I’m treating myself with a hot latte or a yummy tea.
I really enjoy places that have board games for extra entertainment value! Tea and Victory (pictured) charges $5 pp for game access, but you really get a lot of options! Coral Sword is another one.
Throw some axes
I’ve blogged about the whole axe throwing trend, and, like the escape rooms, it’s more than just a work social idea. Sure, there is a bar at most of these places, and it’s a bit overpriced to throw axes at a wall of wood, but it’s super fun and a cool skill to learn. Plus, there’s an opportunity to be competitive here. Go in pairs to team up or face off with strangers!
Go hiking (biking, paddleboarding, etc.)
I mentioned using dry January to get a great start on your workout new year’s resolution, but one way to do that is by heading out into the great outdoors! Because it’s Houston, January can actually be a really great time to go outside! Days are still shorter but our weather ain’t too cold at all!
We’ve blogged about several great places to hike, bike, and paddle, so I’m just dropping some ideas and links here:
- Hike at Sam Houston National Forest
- Hike and Bike in the Heights
- Paddle the bayou
- Go on a trail run
- Explore Houston’s secret garden
- Do an architecture walking tour
- Run for a sculpture tour
- Plus: Explore the bike trails of Houston (map and deets here!)
Learn to cook (or something!)
Last year, during dry January, I decided to push myself to cut back on food too. It made me hangry and even more anti social! Not making that mistake again. In fact, I think during dry January is a perfect opportunity to focus on food — not just EATING food — even more!
Here are a couple Houston-area cooking classes to check out:
- Central Market cooking school — there’s even a Couples Cook series. $180 per couple. Location is at Westheimer near 610.
- Well Done Cooking Classes — this spot in the Heights has loads of options for around $60 pp.
- Culinary Institute LeNôtre’s New Year’s Resolution Courses — These are legit courses and focus on specific dietary restrictions!
- Sur la Table — four locations across Houston.
- UrbanChef — Even has a date night option that is $180 per couple.
Catch a show
I know going to the movies is an obvious dry January idea, but elevate that movie date with a trip to somewhere fancy — like iPic — or historic and ~cool~ like the River Oaks Theatre.
OR, if you want to be REALLY fancy, catch a live show around town!
- At the Alley Theatre, Quixote Nuevo begins January 17, and the theatre has a whole festival of shows coming through all month long!
- The Houston Symphony has a few shows scattered throughout January.
- Catch “The Color Purple” at the Society of Performing Arts on January 3 & 4!
- Laugh it out at Comedy Sportz with Improve! The Musical on January 3!
Treat yo’self with a spa day
Gotta love a good spa day! Especially during dry January — I mean, you’re already cleansing your inside, why not treat your outside too!
Here are some ideas of where to go here in Houston:
- Milk and Honey (Upper Kirby) — this one’s a real treat! It’ll be a bit pricey, but worth it!
- Hiatus Spa (Tanglewood) — become a member for the BEST deals!
- Fiori Spa (Galleria area) — recently renovated! (Pictured)
Cheer on the Houston Rockets
Think of how much cheaper it is to go see sportsball games when you’re not paying for beers! Unfortunately, we’re limited to just basketball during January, but fortunately, we’ve got a great team in our Houston Rockets!
Plan a day at the park
You gotta wait for a REALLY great weather day for a picnic, but then it should be pretty freaking cute. I created a whole guide for designing your own picnic, click here to read! (Just ignore the parts about wine and beer…)
Hit up the museums
An amazing daytime, non-drinking activity is visiting one of Houston’s MANY museums. Here are some ideas and what to catch in January!
- Museum of Fine Arts Houston: “Beatriz González: A Retrospective” goes through the 20th and “An Impressionist Autumn” through the 12th, so don’t miss those! “Norman Rockwell: American Freedom” is here until March. As always, Thursdays are free!
- Houston Museum of Natural Science: I cannot wait to catch “Stonehenge: Ancient Mysteries and Modern Discoveries” and “The Art of the Brick” — both here through March.
- Menil Collection: This always free museum is perfect for a date and is always open until 7!