A Family Guide to Visiting Oklahoma City!

Travel Guide

Hey y’all!  So you are planning a trip to our fabulous city and are wondering where to start?  Well, we’ve got some great tips and places for you to visit when you come!  First, you’ll want to check out the weather before you come. Oklahoma does have all four seasons, but at some points in the year the weather you expect can feel extreme!

WELCOME

You’ll know you have arrived when you can see for days.  Oklahoma has a beautiful, if flat, landscape.  What’s also a plus is that our streets are designed in a grid pattern, so getting lost is almost impossible!  Just keep turning in the same direction and more often than not, you’ll get back to where you started.

If you come to us by plane, Oklahoma City only has one international airport, that will land you in Southwest Oklahoma City. We also have a train and bus transportation that can easily get you into town.

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Oklahoma sunsets and seeing for miles. Welcome to our land.

WHERE TO STAY

Our downtown area is the place to be and boasts lots of hotels for your lodging needs.  We have a few favorites – especially if you are looking for some with historical charm.  For a more adult getaway, check out The Ambassador Hotel, Colcord Hotel or the Skirvin Hilton. For a more family friendly feel, try Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites, the Sheraton, or Hampton Inn & Suites.

DOWNTOWN

One of the most popular area attractions in Oklahoma City is Bricktown, which was founded just days after the Land Run of 1889.  As a family, there is lots to see and do, with downtown renovations happening within the last few years!

Oklahoma City Thunder Game :: We gained our very first professional basketball team in 2008 with the relocation of the Seattle Supersonics to Oklahoma City, which was renamed soon after.  Games at the Chesapeake Arena are lively and fun, with tickets still in a very affordable price range {usually Loud City.}  No seat is considered a bad one and is worth an evening of fun.  {Visitor tip: players autographs are a possibility if you show up to the game right as the doors open – but not guaranteed.}

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Cheering on the Oklahoma City Thunder is an excellent way to spend an evening in OKC!

OKC Dodgers Game :: If baseball is more your game of choice, we have a Minor League Baseball team, recently renamed as the Dodgers!  The game is held at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark and boasts tons of the all-American food you crave. {Visitor tip: you can grab a bite to eat at Coach’s and sit out on the patio while watching the game.}

OKC Energy FC :: If you are a fan of professional soccer, Oklahoma City recently got our very own team!  Playing in their stadium just north of the downtown area, this team is one to watch.  Very family friendly sporting event!

Bricktown Water Taxi :: Bricktown has so much history.  You can learn about it while enjoying a boat ride through a narrated water taxi ride!  You’ll see and learn about our city while sitting back and relaxing.  {Visitor tip: water taxi rides are free in the month of December and is a perfect way to see all the downtown lights!}

Water taxi rides are a lot of fun and informative!

Water taxi rides are a lot of fun and informative!

Myriad Botanical Gardens ::  There is so much to do at the Myriad Gardens that you can easily spend hours upon hours.  From the Crystal Bridge, to grabbing a bite to eat at the Ice House or Park House, you can lounge while the kids play in the Children’s Garden, splash in the Thunder Sprayground or the wading pool.

Harkins Theatre :: This movie theatre has all the newest releases and you can watch in style.  Family friendly shows or a date night makes this a fun place to visit. {Visitor tip: if your trip is planned for the summer, check out their summer movie specials!}

The fountain downtown in front of Harkin's.

The fountain downtown in front of Harkin’s.

Trapped :: If you have older kids who love the challenge of figuring out clues within a set time, then try out Trapped!  Locked in a room with one hour to figure out the clues, this will be an adventure you’ll have to come together as a family on to figure out the only way you can escape.

Riversport Adventure District :: Located on the Oklahoma River just a few minutes from Bricktown, you’ll love this family friendly adventure spot.  Enjoy the sky trail and slide, the Rumble Drop, a zip-line across the river, BMX biking, rock-wall climbing and plenty of space for the kids to run around!

Riversport is OKC Moms Blog approved!

Riversport is OKC Moms Blog approved!

MIDTOWN

Midtown is growing rapidly and is becoming quite a popular area in Oklahoma City.  It is home to lots of restaurants, shopping and places to stay.  Some of our favorites are The Ambassador Hotel, Bleu Garten, Brown’s Bakery, Packard’s, and Kaiser’s Diner!

PASEO ARTS DISTRICT

The Paseo is Oklahoma City’s arts district where you can find lots of unique shopping spots, delicious places to eat, the Paseo Arts Festival, and art classes.

ADVENTURE DISTRICT

Oklahoma City Zoo :: One of the oldest zoos in the southwest, it opened in 1902 and is spread over more than 119 acres and is home to approximately 1,900 animals!  You can spend an entire day at the zoo, enjoying the walking trails, the Children’s Zoo, the Oklahoma Trails, the playgrounds, carousel, Stingray Bay, the enormous elephant exhibit and much, much more. Here is their information for hours and admission, but check out their discount/free days as well!

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Oklahoma City Zoo is a must-see when visiting our city. Grab the kids and take a picture on any of the bronze statues around the park!

Science Museum Oklahoma :: This is a place that is perfect for kids young and old.  The science museum offers a little bit of everything.  You can catch shows such as Science Live, the Dome Theater, or the Planetarium or explore many of the exhibits like the Explorazone, Gymnastics, Destination Space and Grossology.  Don’t forget to head to the back area of the museum for the trains and planes.

Cinemark Tinseltown Movie Theatre :: A great place for kids matinees!  After the movie, stop by the nearby Sonic to grab a drink for happy hour and let the kids get their wiggles out on their playground!

Remington Park :: If you have a wild side that likes to enjoy racing and a casino, then leave the kids for a night to enjoy the sites and sounds of Remington Park.

National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum :: Enjoy breathtaking statues and exhibits as you navigate through the American west. There is also a great exhibit just for the kids called the Children’s Cowboy Corral and a large gift shop with many items made in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Railway Museum :: If your kids are bonkers about trains (especially when Thomas comes to town), then a stop at the ORM is in order!  On the first and third Saturday of each month, you can enjoy a train ride with your little conductors. The museum is open Thursday through Saturdays only and you can freely explore older rail cars, play on the playground and enjoy a morning full of locomotives.  The outdoor part is free, but you will need to purchase tickets to ride on the train.

Not too far away to the north is Oklahoma’s only amusement park, Frontier City, and to the southwest is White Water Bay! Both are premier places to visit in Oklahoma City and are sure to provide hours upon hours of family entertainment!

LANDMARKS & ROUTE 66

The OKC National Memorial & Museum :: In 2015, we arrived on the 20th anniversary since the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Building.  Walk through the memorial and the museum to learn more about what happened on that fateful day in our city and how the Oklahoma Standard became the norm.

SkyDance Bridge :: This 386 feet x 20 feet pedestrian bridge is your gateway over Interstate 40 to the downtown area. The bridge is most beautiful at night, when it is illuminated by LED lights.

Stockyards City :: If true western is what you crave for your trip to OKC, do not pass up a chance to visit the Stockyards City.  Dine at the historic Cattlemen’s Steakhouse, grab a show at the Rodeo Opry, or shop until your boots fall off.

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Historic stockyards. Shop, eat, watch some cattle.

Arcadia ::  Two places to visit on the historic Route 66, if you want to venture a bit to the north of the greater metro area, is a small town called Arcadia that is home to the Round Barn and Pops. The Round Barn was built in 1898 and is full of wall-to-wall history, with a small gift shop for your perusal. After, if you need some gas, a bite to eat, or a craving for any flavor of soda known to man, you’ll want to stop in Pops. You’ll know the location by the ginormous soda bottle with a straw out on the front lawn.  Don’t forget to take a picture!

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Refuel at Pops.

LAKE HEFNER

Lake Hefner is a beautiful, scenic area to walk, eat and enjoy. The Bert Cooper Trails will take you the entire 9.1 miles around the lake.  You can stop to play on the playground, bring a picnic, eat at one of the restaurants, go sail-boarding or just look out over the lake at a beautiful Oklahoma sunset.  Some favorite date night restaurants sit on Lake Hefner and include Red Rock Canyon, Hefner Grill and Mama Roja Mexican Kitchen.

Photo taken by Brian Gould

Beautiful view at Lake Hefner. {Photo taken by Brian Gould}

WHERE TO EAT

Eating is a favorite past-time!  Oklahoma City boasts so many good restaurants, you’ll have a hard time picking just one.  You can read our reviews of favorite Breakfast, Brunch, Sweet Tooth,  Date Night and Specialty Nights here.

SHOPPING

So. Much. Shopping.  You can spend countless hours at our Outlet Mall of Oklahoma City or Quail Springs Mall, Penn Square Mall, Northpark Mall or head to Classen Curve on Western Avenue.  If you want to visit one of the largest independent bookstores around, make sure you check out Full Circle Bookstore (near Penn Square Mall)!

There is really SO MUCH to do in Oklahoma City!  You just need to come for a visit and check it all out. We can’t wait to have you!

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