From long stretches of Route 66 with sleepy frontier towns to bustling cities, Oklahoma is filled with places to discover. Whether you’re looking for a modern downtown or a taste of the Old West, this Great Plains state offers a little of everything. Here are five Oklahoma cities to add to your next trip.
Start big, and make Oklahoma City your first stop. In recent years, the state capital has made a name for itself as a city brimming with centuries of history and plenty of new ideas. Get some fresh air and take a stroll around Myriad Botanical Gardens or dig into the local history at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Wander through Bricktown and discover this hip district’s museums, restaurants, and music.
Indulge in the food that Oklahoma City is known for, and dig into a steak at Cattleman’s Steakhouse or some of the city’s best barbecue at Back Door BBQ. Get a taste of the Asian District, where you’ll find a bustling international community and some of the best Vietnamese and Chinese food in the Great Plains. Don’t miss Bleu Garten, a complex built for food trucks to show off their wares and tempt passersby with mouth-watering smells.
Experience the true Old West in the state’s original capital, Guthrie. Watch a reenactment of a Western gunfight or explore the brick buildings throughout the town’s historic downtown. When you work up an appetite, Missy’s Donuts & Bakery will help you refuel with one of the best cinnamon rolls in the state. For a full meal, try the Blue Bell Saloon, which originally opened in 1889, when Oklahoma was just a territory.
Packed with art, architecture, and history, Tulsa is a necessary stop along Route 66. Marvel at the beautiful Art Deco architecture, soak in centuries of art at the Philbrook Museum of Art, and grab a bite at a café in the Historic Brady Arts District. If you’re feeling brave, take a hot air balloon ride to get a beautiful and unique view of this city.
Just a hop, skip, and a jump from Tulsa, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma features a revitalized downtown with plenty of culture, history, and cuisine. Take in a show at the Broken Arrow Performing Arts Center, learn more about the area’s fascinating history at the Broken Arrow Historical Society Museum, and grab a plate of ribs or pulled pork at Smokie’s BBQ or Oklahoma Joe’s BBQ. Finish off your visit with a tour and an ice cream cone at the Blue Bell Creamery.
History buffs won’t want to miss Medicine Park, the only cobblestone village in the United States. Originally the state’s first resort town, this spot attracted numerous celebrities, including notorious ones like Al Capone and Bonnie and Clyde Parker. Visitors can still rent cobblestone cottages and walk along the town’s curative Medicine Creek.
From culture to history to cuisine, Oklahoma has plenty of attractions and activities to entice visitors. Which city will you visit first?