Will you soon be traveling to Oklahoma? Here are some places to visit and things to do that most Oklahoma travel websites recommend.
Jump ahead to these sections:
- Oklahoma Bucket List Destinations
- Outdoor Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
- Family-Friendly Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
- Couples Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
- Popular Bucket List Foods and Restaurants in Oklahoma
- Oklahoma City Bucket List Ideas
Even if Oklahoma doesn’t sit at the top of your travel bucket list, there’s a lot to do in the Sooner State. Here are some ideas.
Oklahoma Bucket List Destinations
Many Americans have a goal of traveling to all 50 states. If you are in the process of making a list of travel destinations you want to complete before you kick the bucket, learn more about the process so you can achieve your goals.
Are you planning on checking Oklahoma off your list soon? Here are some places to visit.
1. Oklahoma City National Memorial
The Oklahoma City Bombing was a domestic terrorist event that occurred in April of 1995. On that day, 168 people lost their lives when a truck bomb exploded outside the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.
The Oklahoma City National Memorial is a museum and a memorial to remember the lives lost on that tragic day. This is a must-do if you are traveling in the vicinity of Oklahoma City.
2. Oklahoma Route 66 Museum
Route 66 extends from Illinois to California, and this long stretch of highway is celebrated at the Oklahoma Route 66 Museum. The museum showcases vehicles and memorabilia from the era when Route 66 was a well-traveled road.
The museum is located in Clinton, Oklahoma.
3. Myriad Botanical Gardens
When you are in Oklahoma City, make sure you set aside time to go to the Myriad Botanical Gardens. This horticulture showcase features beautiful flowers and plants that would entertain nature lovers, gardeners, and plant parents.
4. Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve
This 3,700-acre wildlife preserve gives visitors a chance to see native bison, longhorn cattle, llamas, and ostriches. Also, take time to view the western art collection in the Woolaroc Museum House. There, you’ll also see a unique private collection that includes a monoplane and the world’s largest collection of Colt rifles.
The Woolaroc Museum and Wildlife Preserve are located in Bartlesville.
5. Gilcrease Museum
Art lovers shouldn’t miss the Gilcrease Museum located in Tulsa. This facility is known for the preservation and study of American art. Displays include the Rendezvous Artists’ Retrospective Exhibition, Allan Houser’s Sculpture and Drawings, and Masterworks.
Outdoor Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
Oklahoma is known for red rock and red soil, but the top item on our outdoor list is a state park with a beautiful waterfall.
6. Turner Falls Park
Does your family enjoy camping? If so, book a spot at Turner Falls Park. Turner Falls is a 77-foot tall waterfall. But besides enjoying this beautiful feature, the park also has hiking trails, swimming areas, and unique geological formations.
The park is located on US 77 near Davis, Oklahoma.
7. Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge
Even though the city of Wichita is located in Kansas, the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge is located near Indiahoma, Oklahoma. (Say that 10 times fast!)
This wildlife refuge includes bison, elk, and prairie dogs.
8. Chickasaw National Recreation Area
There aren’t any national parks in Oklahoma, but there is this national recreation area in the foothills of the Arbuckle Mountains near Sulphur. The Chickasaw National Recreation Area has a lot of streams, rivers, and lakes and provides people with a great place to fish.
9. Winding Stair Mountain National Recreation Area
Looking for a place to camp, ride horses, hike, fish, hunt, or picnic? Check out the Winding Stair Mountain National Recreation Area located near Muse, Oklahoma.
Family-Friendly Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
To be fair, every place on our list thus far is extremely family-friendly. But, of course, visiting the Oklahoma City National Monument may require you to have a discussion about death with your younger kids.
Here are some other family-friendly places to go if you are visiting Oklahoma.
10. Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History
The Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History is located on the University of Oklahoma campus in Norman, Oklahoma. The museum has five galleries, all designed to teach visitors about Oklahoma’s natural and cultural history.
11. Oklahoma City Zoo
The OKC Zoo is home to an extensive collection of animals, including bears, elephants, birds, exotic fish, lions, and a lot more. The facility also has a botanical garden, a butterfly garden, and a children’s zoo.
12. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
Do your kids love learning about the life of a cowboy? Then consider visiting the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. The museum celebrates and explores the native heritage of the region along with the legacy of the American West. In addition, your kids will love the life-sized replica of an old western cattle town.
Couples Bucket List Ideas in Oklahoma
Are you traveling to Oklahoma with your partner for a romantic getaway? Here are some places to visit while in the Sooner State.
Bricktown is an entertainment district in Oklahoma City. Its vibe is described as “industrial-chic” and is home to restaurants, piano lounges, and boutique shopping. Also, make sure you take the time to ride on the Bricktown Water Taxi, which takes riders along the Bricktown Canal.
14. Wheeler Ferris Wheel
The historic Santa Monica Pier Ferris Wheel is now located in Wheeler, Oklahoma. Wheeler is a neighborhood in Oklahoma City and (besides the Ferris wheel) includes bocce ball courts, hammocks, bike paths, food trucks, and occasional live music.
15. Will Rogers Park
Will Rogers Park is located in Oklahoma City and features beautiful gardens, winding pathways, and quaint bridges. You and your partner can also enjoy disc golf and the tennis courts. There’s also a family aquatic center if you decide to bring the kids on your romantic weekend away.
Popular Bucket List Foods and Restaurants in Oklahoma
Nothing causes more controversy than trying to come up with a list of the best restaurants in an area. Here are some of the most popular restaurants in Oklahoma. However, don’t overlook the new restaurants or mom-and-pop places that didn’t make our list.
The following places are found on several food bucket lists for Oklahoma.
16. Cattlemen’s Steakhouse in Oklahoma City
Cattlemen’s Steakhouse has been serving the Oklahoma City community for over 100 years. It is located in the middle of Oklahoma City’s Stockyards City and features (you guessed it) steak.
17. Burn Co. BBQ in Tulsa or Jenks
Be prepared for long lines at Burn Co. BBQ. Their two locations also cater so that you can have “the best barbecue in Oklahoma” at your next event.
18. Eischen's Bar in Okarche
Eischen’s Bar in Okarche has the designation as being the oldest bar in Oklahoma. It was established in 1896 as “Eischen’s Saloon” but had to close during prohibition. Service was again interrupted when the building burned in January 1993. However, Eischen’s Bar is ready to serve you when you visit Okarche, near Oklahoma City.
19. Clanton’s Cafe in Vinita
Clanton’s Cafe is located along historic Route 66 and has been featured on Diners Drive-Ins & Dives. The restaurant’s history goes back to 1927, when Grant Clanton, also known as “Sweet Tater,” opened Busy Bee Café. “Sweet Tater” would bang a pot with a spoon to announce that lunch was ready in his cafe to the town locals. According to the restaurant website, “The local merchants would then close their books and head to the Busy Bee to dine.”
20. Kilkenny’s Irish Pub in Tulsa
Kilkenny’s Irish Pub has received a lot of rewards for its service, brunch, and Bloody Marys. Featuring Irish food and drink, this is a must-visit place for those with even a single drop of Irish blood.
Oklahoma City Bucket List Ideas
Many of the items already featured on our list are located in Oklahoma City or surrounding neighborhoods. However, here are some other places and activities to consider adding to your bucket list.
21. Skydance Pedestrian Bridge
The Skydance Pedestrian Bridge is a landmark in Oklahoma City. Its unique design was inspired by the “sky dance” of the scissor-tailed flycatcher, the state bird of Oklahoma.
The 380-foot long pedestrian bridge goes over Interstate 40 and is illuminated nightly by colorful LED lights.
22. POPS Soda Ranch
Technically, POPS Soda Ranch is located on Route 66 in Arcadia (near Oklahoma City). However, you’ll know you have arrived there when you see the giant neon 66-foot tall soda bottle standing outside.
With over 700 different types of pop on the shelves, you are sure to find a new favorite. Don’t be afraid to try some of the more bizarre-sounding flavors. After all—you only live once, so you might as well try that bacon-flavored pop!
23. Museum of Osteology
Yep. You read that right. The Museum of Osteology is located in Oklahoma City, which means that you can learn all there is to know about skeletons during your visit.
There are over 800 different specimens represented in this unique museum. In addition, the staff often organizes special events, so make sure you check their website before your visit.
24. Go to a horse show
Oklahoma City is known as the “Horse Show Capital of the World” because of the number of national and international equine championships events. Some of the events are free and feature the best cowboys and cowgirls in the world.
Your Doin’ Fine, Oklahoma!
We made it through an entire article without even mentioning the famous Rodgers & Hammerstein’s musical featuring the name of this great midwestern state. So, if you haven’t seen the musical Oklahoma!, add that to your bucket list before your visit.