Have you ever considered taking the family to Oklahoma? Check out these memorable family holiday ideas.

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Oklahoma Family Holiday

Have you ever considered taking the family to Oklahoma? From spotting the quirky roadside attractions on a family road trip along Route 66, telling children the stories of the 39 Native Tribes headquartered in Oklahoma and tasting any flavour of soda you can imagine at POPS, a visit to Oklahoma should be on the radar for:

  • Nature and Outdoors
  • Family activities
  • Route 66
  • Arts and Culture
  • Food

Australians are known to be the ‘great adventurers’ and Oklahoma offers many adventures for a unique and memorable family holiday.

Nature & The Great Outdoors

Oklahoma is full of National State parks which offer plenty of camping opportunities in pristine wilderness areas ranging from pine-forested mountains to sand dunes and lakes that dot the prairies. Choose your campsite in one of the 35 Oklahoma state parks and let the relaxation begin as you unwind and reconnect in the great outdoors. The parks offer hiking, biking, fishing, canoeing or rafting, swimming or horse riding. Some have camping facilities or cabins available so there is something for every camping enthusiast. Highlights that can be enjoyed by the whole family include:

  • See the magnificent buffalo roam free on nearly 60,000 acres of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge, Lawton
  • Spot the USA’s largest bison herd at the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve near Pawhuska
  • Ride an ATV across the wide open dunes of Little Sahara State Park
  • Dig for crystals at Salt Plains State Park

Family Activities

Oklahoma is packed with fun for families with so many activity choices. From museums designed especially for children to outstanding zoos and attractions. If you like thrills, there are amusement parks, water parks, rock climbing, and lessons. Young and old can also experience the adrenaline rush and magnificent views of parasailing at Sail Grand on Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees. The choices are endless. Here are some of our suggestions:

  • The Toy and Action Figure Museum
  • Tulsa Zoo
  • Mowdy Ranch Mustangs
  • Impulse Creations – an unparalleled collection of comics

Route 66

The famous drive Route 66 makes its way through Oklahoma with iconic roadside diners and quirky attractions to visit. Oklahoma has the longest stretch of the legendary drive within its boundaries, making this route a must-do experience when visiting. For families, the neon lights and drive-in cinemas along the way make great holiday memories, and the famous sites are perfect for the gram! Oklahoma Tourism has a free digital guide to plan a Route 66 trip here: www.travelok.com/brochures

Arts and Culture

Oklahoma is home to lots of lively works of art and performance pieces and is a drawcard for lovers of art. Enjoy spending days and nights in art-filled streets with chic restaurants, live entertainment, artist demonstrations, cutting-edge galleries and works ranging from blown glass, paintings on canvas, pottery and beautiful hand-crafted jewellery. There is a thriving art scene not to be missed. Oklahoma City’s Paseo Arts District and the Tulsa Arts District is where you’ll be granted a backstage pass and ushered into the colourful world of the hip and visionary artisans who call Oklahoma home. The state’s art district is very unique and spectacular – it’s a must-see!

Oklahoma is also known for its unique Native American history, and Oklahoma has more Native American Indian Tribes than any other state in America. You can learn about the heritage and culture at the various museums and heritage centres and even take the family to an authentic powwow where you can share in the sacred native traditions, and see the beautifully detailed regalia as the locals dance to the rhythm of the powwow drums. If your holiday aligns with the annual ‘Red Earth Festival’, held each summer in Shawnee, you can witness over 100 Indian tribes from across North America compete in a breathtaking, elite dance competition and exhibit works from today’s most celebrated Native American artists. In Oklahoma, there are countless opportunities to immerse yourself in tribal history, songs, art and culture. See here for more information: Arts and Culture.

Highlights include:

  • Bob Dylan Center and Woody Guthrie Center, Tulsa (opened May 2022)
  • First Americans Museum, Oklahoma City (opened September 2021)
  • National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City

Taste Oklahoma

This is a place you certainly won’t go hungry. With plenty of options on the menu, choose from fine dining to roadside diners. You’ll find restaurants with character, heart and soul dotted throughout the state. Quirky bars and nightlife are plenty too. Oklahoma’s eateries and restaurants are ready to serve up scrumptious entrees, signature side dishes and exquisite desserts. Call into an Oklahoma café, upscale bistro or locally-owned restaurant and take dining in Oklahoma to a whole new level. Take a look here at some of the dining options on offer here: Dining, very ‘Oklahoma’ highlights include:

  • POPS 66 Soda, Arcadia
  • Arbuckle Mountain Fried Pies, various locations
  • Clark Crew BBQ, Oklahoma City
  • Oakhart Barbecue, Tulsa (opened in 2021)
  • The Pioneer Woman Mercantile (Ree Drummond owned restaurant and bakery), Pawhuska