Fort Worth, Texas, the largest city in Tarrant County, has one of the best downtowns in the state, and beautiful Sundance Square is at the heart of it all. Its brick roads, unique buildings, and tall green trees, all surrounding the Tarrant County Courthouse, are a delight. I never tire of walking around the upbeat square. It’s an urban area of Fort Worth where downtown residents and visitors alike come out to play and unwind after a busy day. You could absolutely get lost in this part of town — lost in a good way, that is! It’s a safe, clean, and gorgeous area, and best of all, it’s very walkable.
I was hosted by the AC Hotel Fort Worth Downtown, but all opinions are my own.
Things To Do In Sundance Square
Sundance Square offers 35 square blocks of shops, entertainment venues, galleries, fine-dining restaurants, and charming restored buildings. Whether you’re planning to visit for a long-awaited date night or a major shopping spree, Sundance Square has plenty to do. And, after a long day of exploring all the area has to offer, you can relax on the Sundance Square Plaza under an umbrella while marveling at the water fountains and the mural depicting the Chisholm Trail. If you’re lucky, there might even be a free concert playing in the plaza. At night, lights sparkle in the trees above.
Here are just a few of the fun things to do on a visit to Sundance Square.
Pro Tip: There is free parking on the streets in the square and in the Sundance Garages.
1. The Shops Of Sundance Square
Walk, shop, eat, and repeat! Grab your tennis shoes and go out for a walk, enjoying all the window-shopping this part of town has to offer. When you’re ready for that major shopping haul, you’ll find retail shops in Sundance Square offering Western wear, casual women’s clothing, and much more. You’ll also find chain retailers such as H&M and Francesca’s.
You’ll see many downtown residents walking their dogs or enjoying a stroll during their lunch break. All the intersections are pedestrian friendly, and I felt very safe walking around during the day and night.
2. Scat Jazz Lounge
If you’re into jazz music, you’ll enjoy visiting the jazz lounge that occupies the basement of the historic Woolworth building (a successful five and dime from 1926 to 1990). Scat Jazz Lounge is a Fort Worth hidden gem — it’s underground and off the beaten path, but jazz lovers will always find their way to live music.
Pro Tip: Scat, in true speakeasy style, is not easy to spot. Look for the vintage sign at 111 West 4th Street, Suite 11.
3. Jubilee Theatre
The Jubilee Theatre, with productions highlighting the African American experience, has drawn diverse audiences over the years. Catch a live comedy, drama, musical, or original work on a weekday evening. The talent of the performers and the intimacy of the space combine to make a Jubilee production an unforgettable theatergoing experience. The theater is located next to Fort Worth’s Main Street Visitor Center.
4. AMC Palace 9 Theatre
Relax and enjoy a movie in a leather power recliner with a footrest at the newly renovated AMC Palace 9, now showing all the latest Hollywood hits for the whole family! Healthy concession options are offered in addition to the traditional favorites. Wine and beer are also available.
5. Hyena’s Comedy Nightclub
When was the last time you laughed your tooshie off? Well, they say that’s what you’ll do at Hyena’s Comedy Nightclub, the longest-running comedy club in Fort Worth, featuring appearances by the hilarious William Lee Martin, known for his outstanding performance in The Nutcracker: A Christmas Stand-Up Comedy Spectacular. The nightclub is open nightly, and there’s free parking at Sundance Garages II and III.
6. AC Hotel Fort Worth Downtown
Start your Sundance Square experience at the AC Hotel Fort Worth Downtown, located right off the square. How’s that for convenience? It’s close enough for you to shop, drop, and return to shopping! For a lovely room, be sure to ask for a corner suite with a magnificent two-corner view of Fort Worth. The hotel has a restaurant that opens for dinner at 5 p.m. There’s a quaint coffee shop adjacent to the hotel as well. Valet parking only.
7. Fort Worth Water Gardens
A short drive from Sundance Square, you’ll find the marvelous Fort Worth Water Gardens, one of Fort Worth’s signature attractions. It’s worth the drive to take a moment or two to enjoy the waterfalls and perhaps rest your feet. The area is home to some very pretty flowers, too.
Pro Tip: For more Fort Worth attractions, see this page.
Best Restaurants In Sundance Square
Sundance Square is home to many one-of-a-kind eateries, including upscale diners, a juice bar, barbecue joints, and Mexican restaurants. Some of these are definite must-tries! The best part is that if one has a long wait, you’ll find another great spot right down the street — or even next door.
This upscale Southwestern-style restaurant offers a view like no other. The Reata Restaurant hosts lots of business dinners and parties on its rooftop, but it’s popular with visitors, too. It would be the perfect place for a date night or other special occasion when you want a great dinner with good vibes. Ask to be seated on the rooftop, or at least visit the bar up there, and you’ll get to see gorgeous views of Fort Worth. The Reata Restaurant has been a popular Fort Worth restaurant for many years.
Cold beer and hot wings here! It’s game day at Buffalo Bros, a modern sports bar setup for the biggest fans. It’s a great venue for watching your favorite team, with food and a wraparound bar plus many beers on tap.
Reserve your spot for a leisurely and casual fondue dining experience at Simply Fondue. They make all of their sauces, batters, and dressings from scratch daily. Enjoy selecting from the extensive wine list, or try a hand-crafted martini or specialty drink in the relaxed atmosphere.
Pro Tip: Because of the length of a typical dining experience, reservations are strongly encouraged no matter when you want to go.
Grab breakfast or brunch and keep shopping (or walking). Yolk is a chain that operates in only four states, and we are lucky they chose Fort Worth. It is conveniently located on Main Street next to the Sid Richardson Museum. When I was there, I ordered an egg-white omelet that was not on the menu. The staff members were very accommodating.
Pro Tip: Fair warning: Yolk is quite popular with both locals and visitors, so the wait might be long at times.
For a light lunch, head to Salata, where you can build your own salad or wrap. If you’re in a hurry, they also offer made-to-order salads. Their motto? “Go the extra mile with extra everything. Or keep it light to feel just right. This is your life. Your recipe. So don’t let anyone tell you how to salad. Listen to your instincts. Trust your gut.” How brilliant — I couldn’t have said it better myself!
Waters Restaurant is a fun, upscale restaurant that serves oysters by the dozen, wild-caught seafood, hand-selected wines, and even fresh halibut from Alaska. There’s a happy hour Tuesday through Saturday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., and their outdoor patio is a sight to see. Reservations are recommended on weekends.
Mi Cocina is one of my favorite Mexican restaurant chains, and its Sundance Square location is a great place to enjoy lunch or dinner and my favorite drink — a frozen margarita! Mi Cocina rocks their chips and salsa and never disappoints.
Corner Bakery Cafe
Corner Bakery Cafe is a great place to enjoy a sandwich, some pasta, or a pastry at any time of the day. I love their healthy options, and my go-to meal is always a sandwich on their Choose Two list. The cafe is located right across the street from the AC Hotel.
Pro Tip: Though the Bass Performance Hall is currently closed due to the pandemic, it is a key part of the Fort Worth live entertainment scene, and it’s definitely worth going to see a performance there when things return to normal. If you’re up for visiting another part of Fort Worth that’s not too far from Sundance Square, take a look at these 8 Fun Things To Do At The Fort Worth Stockyards.