Culture, cuisine, and outdoor adventure await in Oklahoma. From the capital city of Oklahoma City, to the bustling metropolis of Tulsa and beyond, there is no shortage of things to see and do in the Sooner State.
The rich Native American heritage and cowboy culture are on display in various historical sites throughout Oklahoma, and the state’s natural beauty is on full display in its many parks and nature reserves.
If you’re looking for things to do in Oklahoma, you won’t be disappointed. Here are just a few of the many options available to visitors and locals.
OKLAHOMA ROUTE 66
Route 66, or the Mother Road, is America’s most famous highway, and it runs through the heart of Oklahoma. This historic road was once a major thoroughfare for cross-country travelers and is now a popular tourist destination. Visitors can explore the Route 66 Museum, take a scenic drive, or stop in one of the many small towns along the way.
The Seaba Station Motorcycle Museum is a popular stop, featuring a collection of vintage motorcycles and memorabilia from the golden age of motorcycling. You’ll find plenty of restaurants and rest stops to refuel along the way, and for a truly unique Route 66 road trip experience, stop by the Round Barn in Arcadia.
Route 66 is also a great way to see some of Oklahoma’s natural beauty. The drive from Tulsa to Oklahoma City, for example, takes you through the Arbuckle Mountains and the rolling hills of the Flint Hills.
NATIONAL COWBOY & WESTERN HERITAGE MUSEUM
The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is a world-class museum that celebrates America’s cowboy and western heritage with a vast collection of art, firearms, saddles, and more. You can learn about the aforementioned ‘Mother Road’ at the Route 66 Gallery, explore the American Indian Gallery, or see how the Wild West was won at the American Cowboy Gallery.
The museum also hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including festivals, concerts, and educational programs. Rodeo is huge in Oklahoma, and the museum is the perfect place to learn more about this part of American history.
OKLAHOMA CITY NATIONAL MEMORIAL & MUSEUM
The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum is a living tribute to the victims, survivors, rescuers, and all those affected by the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. The museum tells the story of that fateful day through various interactive exhibits, including personal artifacts, photographs, and recorded eyewitness accounts.
The Outdoor Symbolic Memorial features the Gates of Time, which mark the moment of the explosion, and the Field of Empty Chairs, which represent those who were lost. The Survivor Tree, a symbol of hope and resilience, still stands strong today.
When visiting the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, take a moment of silence to reflect on the lives lost and those affected by this tragedy.
Details: 620 N Harvey Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73102 | Website
OKLAHOMA CITY ZOO
The Oklahoma City Zoo is home to more than 2,000 animals from around the world, including elephants, giraffes, and gorillas. You can also visit the zoo’s aquarium, which features a variety of fish, sharks, and coral. If you’re looking for things to do with the kids in Oklahoma City, the zoo is always a fun time.
The zoo is famously open every day, except Christmas and Thanksgiving, and there are various events and exhibits throughout the year. There are plenty of places to eat and shop at the zoo, and you can even take a ride on the zoo’s train.
OKC Zoo covers 119 acres, so make sure you wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water. Their conservation efforts are also worth learning more about!
Details: 2000 Remington Pl, Oklahoma City, OK 73111 | Website
BEAVERS BEND STATE RESORT PARK
After the zoo, you might feel like you can’t get enough of nature. In that case, consider a visit to Beavers Bend State Resort Park. This scenic park is located in the foothills of the Ouachita Mountains and features a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking, fishing, and canoeing.
The resort also has a golf course, tennis courts, and an indoor swimming pool. In the winter, you can ski and snowboard at the nearby Broken Bow Ski Resort.
The Nature Center is a great place to learn about the local flora and fauna, and you can even do a little shopping at the gift shop. You’ll find this is one of the best Oklahoma state parks.
PHILBROOK MUSEUM OF ART
The Philbrook Museum of Art is one of the most famous art museums in the United States, and it’s right here in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This beautiful museum is set in a historic mansion and features an extensive collection of art worldwide. You can explore the museum’s art gallery, take a stroll through the gardens, or visit the on-site restaurant.
The Philbrook Museum of Art also hosts various events throughout the year, including concerts, lectures, and family days. You’ll learn all about the mansion’s owners Waite Phillips and his wife, Genevieve.
MYRIAD BOTANICAL GARDENS
Few activities are as calming as a stroll through a beautiful garden, and the Myriad Botanical Gardens offer just that. This 17-acre garden is located in downtown Oklahoma City and features a variety of gardens, including the English rose garden, the Children’s Discovery Garden, and the Water Garden.
The Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory is also a popular attraction at the gardens. This 200-foot long bridge houses a variety of tropical plants and animals, including turtles, flamingos, and iguanas.
If you’re interested in replicating what you see at home, the gardens also offer a variety of classes and workshops. You can also purchase plants and gardening supplies at the gift shop.
Details: 301 W Reno Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73102 | Website
The Gilcrease Museum features the world’s most extensive collection of American West art. This Tulsa museum is dedicated to preserving the art and history of the American West and features a variety of paintings, sculptures, and artifacts.
The museum also has an extensive library with over 100,000 books and documents. You can explore the museum’s art gallery, take a tour of the grounds, or attend one of the many events held at the museum.
Details: 1400 N Gilcrease Museum Rd, Tulsa, OK 74127 | Website
GREAT SALT PLAINS STATE PARK
Next on our list is Great Salt Plains State Park, a beautiful park located in northwest Oklahoma. The park is home to the Great Salt Plains Lake, which is a popular spot for fishing, swimming, and boating.
You can also explore the park’s hiking trails, bird watching, or visit the on-site Nature Center. In the winter, the lake freezes over, becoming a popular spot for ice skating.
The barren landscape of the salt plains is a unique sight that you won’t want to miss.
Details: 23280 S. Spillway Dr., Jet, OK 73749 | Website
OKLAHOMA BOATHOUSE DISTRICT
If you’re looking for something a little more active, the Oklahoma Boathouse District is a great option. This district features a variety of boating activities, including rowing, kayaking, and dragon boating. White water rafting is also popular in the district, and you can find a variety of different trails to choose from.
Riversport Adventure Park is a great place to start and offers everything from zip lines to rock climbing. You can also find a variety of restaurants and shops in the district.
Sky Trail is another popular attraction and features a variety of ropes courses and aerial adventure activities. The Boathouse District is located on the bank of the Oklahoma River in downtown Oklahoma City, making it easy to access.
NATURAL FALLS STATE PARK
Do you want to see a 77-foot tall waterfall? Then you need to visit Natural Falls State Park. This park is located in northeastern Oklahoma and features a variety of hiking trails, a picnic area, and a campground.
The highlight of the park is, of course, the Natural Falls. You can view the falls from the top or take a short hike down to the bottom. The hike is a little steep, but it’s well worth it for the views.
There are also ATV trails in the park if you’re looking for a more active adventure. The park spans 120 acres, and there are dozens of different plants and animals to see.
Details: 19225 E 578 Rd, Colcord, OK 74338 | Website
FRED JONES JR MUSEUM OF ART
The Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art is the perfect place to go if you’re interested in art. This museum is located on the campus of the University of Oklahoma and features a variety of art, including paintings, sculptures, and photographs.
The architecture of the museum is also noteworthy. The building was designed by renowned architect Rand Elliott, and is one of the most recognizable buildings on campus.
Art museums can be a little overwhelming for the untrained, so they offer guided tours and family activities to make them more accessible.
Details: 555 Elm Ave, Norman, OK 73019 | Website
SCIENCE MUSEUM OKLAHOMA
The Science Museum Oklahoma is a great place to take the kids. This museum features a variety of interactive exhibits that teach about science, technology, and history. You can explore the museum’s exhibits on dinosaurs, outer space, energy, and more.
With a facility covering 390,000 square feet, there’s something for everyone at the Science Museum Oklahoma. The museum also offers educational programs for schools and groups. You can also find a variety of tours and events for the public.
This museum is the state’s only “hands-on” science museum, making it a unique experience. It would be best to make time for the KirkPatrick Planetarium shows as well.
The SMO gardens are also a great place to visit for some fresh air. Kids will learn about growing their food and the importance of sustainability.
Details: 2020 Remington Pl, Oklahoma City, OK 73111 | Website
MUSEUM OF THE GREAT PLAINS
History buffs will want to visit the Museum of the Great Plains. This museum is dedicated to the history of the Great Plains region, including Oklahoma and parts of Texas, Colorado, and New Mexico.
The museum features a variety of exhibits on Native American culture, outlaws, railroads, and more. You can also find artifacts from the region, including a log cabin and a one-room schoolhouse.
The Museum of the Great Plains is located in Lawton, Oklahoma.
Details: 601 NW Ferris Ave, Lawton, OK 73507 | Website
Water animals are not a common sight in a desert state like Oklahoma, so the Oklahoma Aquarium is a must-see for visitors. This aquarium is home to a variety of fish, reptiles, and amphibians from around the world.
The aquarium also offers multiple interactive exhibits, including a touch tank and a shark tunnel. You can also find a variety of educational programs and events at the aquarium.
With cutting-edge features like virtual reality experiences, animal encounter tours, hurricane simulations, and a mechanical bull shark, the Oklahoma Aquarium is a unique experience.
The octopi are a favorite among visitors, so be sure to check them out. The Oklahoma Aquarium is located in Jenks, a suburban city south of Tulsa. After your visit, you can visit nearby River Walk Jenks for shopping and dining.
Details: 300 Aquarium Dr., Jenks, OK 74037 | Website
WOOLAROC MUSEUM & WILDLIFE PRESERVE
The Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve was founded in 1925 by oilman Frank Phillips. This museum is located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and features Native American artifacts, paintings, and sculptures.
The Woolaroc Museum is also home to a herd of bison and various other animals, including elk, deer, and longhorn cattle. You can also find a variety of birds at the museum.
The location has a charming rustic vibe, making it perfect for weddings and special events. The museum also offers a variety of educational programs for schools and groups.
Camp Woolaroc, a camp located on the museum grounds, is open to the public during the summer.
Details: 1925 Woolaroc Ranch Rd, Bartlesville, OK 74003 | Website
SAM NOBLE OKLAHOMA MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY
Finally, we have the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History. This iconic building is located on the campus of the University of Oklahoma and features a variety of exhibits on dinosaurs, fossils, and other animals.
The museum is over 120 years old and is one of the largest museums in the state. With over three million visitors per year, it’s no wonder this museum is so popular. The Hall of Ancient Life is one of the most popular exhibits at the museum. This exhibit features a variety of dinosaurs, including the T-Rex, Triceratops, and Pteranodon.
The Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History is a must-see for anyone visiting Oklahoma.
Details: 2401 Chautauqua Ave, Norman, OK 73072 | Website
MORE INFORMATION FOR YOUR TRIP TO OKLAHOMA
- YOUR OKLAHOMA VACATION
- OKLAHOMA CITY: 15 Fun Things To Do In Oklahoma City Everyone Will Love
- TULSA: 18 Awesome Things To Do In Tulsa Your Family Will Love
- BROKEN BOW: 18 Things To Do In Broken Bow, OK For Outdoor Fun
We make no guarantees of any price listed on our site. We are not responsible for content on external web sites linked from ours, including linked resources, an external blog post, any partner site, hotel property sites, or affiliate sites. We only write about places we love in an attempt to help you in your adventures, but we can’t guarantee you will love them, too.
Posts may contain affiliate links at no cost to you. Several of our trips are also compensated by the respective tourism boards for the city or state we are visiting. This never impacts how we share the destination with you – opinions are always our own and we pride ourselves on that. We do not sell links or accept unsolicited guest posts under any circumstances. Don’t even ask.
United States Copyright, 365 Atlanta Family, LLC