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Is Boyce Thompson Arboretum Worth Visiting? A Guide to Central Arizona’s Other Premier Garden

Perhaps you have glanced the name Boyce Thompson on the internet while researching your Arizona trip. Or you have friends who have visited and you have yet to make it out there. Either way, this unique garden will have caught your eye both for its exceptional aesthetic and rave reviews. But it is far from all the big Arizona cities. Phoenix proper is about an hour away and Tucson is even further. So, is Boyce Thompson Arboretum worth visiting when the Desert Botanical Garden is closer? Is it worth the drive is explore a spot that’s not quite so famous?

My immediate answer is yes! If you have an appreciation for plants, and the weather cooperates for you, there is no question that you should try to give this spot some of your time. Not only is Boyce home to an exceptional collection of desert plants from around the world, but it is nestled in a landscape you won’t see anywhere else. It also has extensive hiking trails for the adventurous among you. And the Arboretum is perfect for people traveling with small kids or just looking for a more relaxed experience. With its historic buildings, stone mazes, and verdant main grounds, this place will open your eyes even before you buy your ticket.

Learn more about visiting Boyce Thompson Arboretum in this short guide to Central Arizona’s secret, garden paradise.

Is Boyce Thompson Arboretum Worth Visiting?

boyce thompson arboretum

(c) ABR 2023

I know that I already said yes above, but if you are still on the fence about making the drive, I want to give you a list of reasons that you should try to take this day trip from Phoenix, AZ if you can.

  1. There is no other garden in the world like this one. The Desert Botanical Garden might have a similar collection of desert plants from around the world. And there might be other gardens with hiking trails. But nowhere else has the grounds and views that Boyce does. At the foot of the towering Picketpost Mountain, the Arboretum trails weave their way through rock formations that are alive with Sonoran Desert flora and fauna. All the while, historic buildings look down on visitors from cliffside perches, or peek out from shallow caves.
  2. No matter what kind of group you are traveling with, Boyce will make everyone but an ardent outdoor hater happy. The kids will have fun exploring historic buildings, rope bridges, and rock mazes. (Let’s be honest, so will the adults). Hikers can spend hours out on the trails. Photographers can play with both close-up images and landscape captures. Folks who can’t walk far can enjoy the immediate beauty of the garden. And solo travelers can comfortably take it all in at their own pace.
  3. Visiting Boyce Thompson Arboretum is a great way to introduce yourself to the Sonoran Desert. Yes, they have plants from all around the world. But they also showcase Arizona plants and in the most exceptional way imaginable. You can see the Sonoran Desert in its full glory here. And besides connecting with the ecology of Arizona, there is a lot of history to be uncovered in this garden as well.

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Gorgeous Central Wyoming State Parks for Hiking

With the Tetons and Yellowstone to the west and Bear’s Lodge to the east, you might want to know why you’d take the time and spend the money to hike in the middle of the state. Well, Central Wyoming State Parks offer unique and exceptional trails, with my favorites taking hikers along lakes nestled among beautiful hills. Surrounded by rolling hills and cut through by canyons, these lands offer a more secluded experience for travelers. They are also within a short drive of Casper, Wyoming, which makes for a great hiking homebase – with its own trails as well as hotels, restaurants, grocery stores and more.

central wyoming state parks

What’s great about these parks as well is that they include some of the coolest lakeside trails in central Wyoming. And in these parks, there is more than just hiking to be done. You can boat in either lake, you can camp, and one of the parks even has a very special museum located inside of a building constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s.

Come along to learn more about these spectacular places, and get a taste for these trails through my pictures.

Central Wyoming State Parks

central wyoming state parks

Guernsey Reservoir (c) ABR 2023

Hiking in central Wyoming is an experience that not many people have, but hiking enthusiasts would truly be missing out if they didn’t give this area a look. For me, my favorite things about these two parks are how similar and yet distinct they are. I did trails in both parks in one day, and had a totally different experience in each one.

I think the Central Wyoming state parks are a good option for people who may consider themselves to fit in a few different categories. (1) Hiking enthusiasts. I can enjoy all kinds of trails and I love exploring the famous and less explored corners of the places that I visit. I’ve almost never met a trail I didn’t like. And I feel like a didn’t really experience a place if I didn’t hike a bit while there. (2) For people who will be traveling through the middle of the state. If you will be driving through Casper anyway, don’t give these parks a miss. They are a great place to get some rest, stretch your legs, and see some beautiful places.

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Beautiful Hiking in Casper, WY

Wyoming is a state made exceptional by its wide-open landscapes and awe-inspiring mountains. Much like Colorado, it is home to both the plains and the spine of the Rockies. And it’s home to some of the United States most famous National Parks – Yellowstone and the Tetons. But besides the places that people think of at the drop of a hat when it comes to Wyoming, the state is full of jaw dropping trails and vistas that feel out of this world.

One great base for exploring a lesser-known side of Wyoming is the town of Casper, which is located in the middle of the state. It sits nestled in along the edge of the hilly and low Casper Mountains. It also looks down on the plains that stretch off into the dusty blue sky. It’s also a great gateway to urban hiking in Wyoming.

hiking in casper

Of course, you could spend your time in Casper exploring the cultural side of the city. There is plenty to see. But if you are like me, you are looking for opportunities to see all the sides of nature in the places that you visit. And while there are many hiking options in central Wyoming, there are two great spots for hiking in Casper, WY that I love – Muddy Mountain, and Rotary Park and Garden Creek Park.

Muddy Mountain, although it has a silly name, is a gateway to the wooded backcountry of Casper. It’s nested on a mountainous rim near the Casper Mountains. Meanwhile, Rotary Park, right outside of town, is home to a beautiful waterfall and trails that scale the rocky flanks of the mountains.

Let this guide be your gateway to these trails. Maybe they are for you, or maybe these pictures can just serve as a link to these beautiful places.

Why Casper, WY?

hiking in casper

Muddy Mountain (c) ABR 2023

Admittedly, Casper isn’t the most exciting spot in Wyoming. But that’s actually not saying much… because the MOST exciting spots in this state are out-of-this-world, and insanely cool. Meanwhile, Casper is a place to slow down, and take in nature – not as an anomalous beauty, but as it is in many of our backyards.

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Travel Cancellations: A Guide to The Trips You Don’t Go On

I recently had something pretty disappointing happen to me. While I was prepping for some serious backpacking trips, I badly hurt my foot, and had to carry out travel cancellations. Besides the disappointment of not being able to go, I found myself really struggling with what this means for my body and my health. Sure, injuries happen, but as someone with chronic illness, I realized that these backpacking trips were more than just fun getaways, they were proof to myself that I was still strong.

So, not being able to go hit me really hard – because my body decided for me. I realized that not being there didn’t make a big difference for the people that were continuing their trips without me. And in one case, a close friend seemingly wrote me off, and hasn’t spoken to me since. It was a whole cascade of difficult emotions, and I didn’t realize how normal it was to struggle with depression and sadness when you get an athletic injury.

travel cancellations

Once I did, I got to thinking, I wanted to write a travel guide for the trips you don’t go on. Sure, a good trip can come together with planning or spontaneity. But how do you navigate the trips that fall apart, the trips you can’t go on because you are injured, sick, or family circumstances change.

But this isn’t a practical guide to canceling a trip. It’s an emotional guide and a short explanation of the times I’ve had to give up on a journey. Perhaps these stories will speak to you in a moment of difficulty.

It can be really emotional if you’ve been planning and saving for a trip for a long time (or possibly already spent a lot of money on it), and things don’t work out. But you aren’t alone. Let’s explore the trips you don’t go on together.

Travel Cancellations For Injuries and Sickness

New Zealand and the Chatham Islands

My solo trip to New Zealand was actually really amazing. But it got off to a bad start, and that actually never changed throughout my journey. First, I got food poisoning on the plane. Somehow, I was just lucky enough to have scored a part of a middle row to myself, so I was able to lay down and hide under a blanket for 14 hours. Once I got to the beautiful islands, I felt better… but not perfect, for the rest of the trip. At one point, I was at the very top of a hike, when I started feeling nauseous and I had to turn around early. I spent the rest of the day resting and wondering how I would get through the rest of my itinerary.

travel cancellations

(c) ABR

Surprisingly, it wasn’t all that that caused me to cancel part of my trip. I was hiking down a long set of slick, wooden stairs in the forest, when I fell… all the way down them. I was lucky to not get really hurt (or worse), but I did land very very hard on my hand. And I ended up worrying that I had broken something.

Between the pain and the spike of anxiety caused by the fall, plus the lingering effects of the food poisoning, I ended up cancelling my leg of the trip to the Chatam islands. I spent several nights fretting over what I was going to do. But in the end, I decided that I was just too exhausted to make it to the islands. I ended up losing money on a flight I had to cancel, and my last-minute lodging wasn’t cheap either.

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Goat Camp Trail: A Long Romp Through the Grassy Mountains of the White Tanks

If you’ve ever done one of the shorter trails in the White Tank Mountains, and you wondered what it would be like to explore the depths of the mountains, Goat Camp Trail is one great (but long) option for really seeing what the White Tanks are all about. If you are a visitor to Phoenix, and you are looking for a long, challenging hike that showcases the Sonoran Desert, and includes exceptional views of the Western part of the city, this is a great option. It is  along with the other long hikes in the White Tank Mountains, such as Ford Canyon.

At about 11.5 miles, this trek does require a shuttle to avoid walking along the road. But the trail will take you up into the mountains, close to the towers that you can make out from the city. After pushing up into near-summit areas of the White Tanks, you will come back down through the boulder strewn Mesquite Canyon. It’s an all-around challenging and rewarding route.

Keep reading if you’d like the low-down on this hike, or you just want to see what this exceptional place looks like.

Why You Will (And Won’t) Love Goat Camp Trail

The Good

goat camp trail

(c) ABR 2022

Goat Camp Trail is a long, challenging and beautiful trail that will take you up into the heights of the White Tank Mountains. There are almost endless amazing views of the Sonoran Desert and the Phoenix-metro area here.

If you are looking for a route among the long hikes in the White Tank Mountains, but you want something less technical than Ford Canyon, this is the one for you. The loop described here is more than 11 miles long, with lots of elevation gain (and loss). But it doesn’t have any scrambling.

And if you are looking for a quiet route, this is also a great option. With the exception of the trailheads, there aren’t many people who choose to do this entire trail. So, along with the challenge you will get some solitude.

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Ford Canyon Trail: One of the Best Trails in Buckeye, AZ

Ford Canyon Trail is one of the two exceptional, long hikes in the White Tank Mountains, and in my opinion, one of the best trails in Buckeye, AZ. I love this trail because it provides access to some of the most beautiful parts of the White Tank Mountains, including their namesake. It is also very fun, with the trail taking hikers up the stoney-bottomed, Ford Canyon, for which it is named. Nestled in one of the most biodiverse mountain ranges in the Phoenix-Metro area, this long trek is an escape into the wonders of the Sonoran Desert.

That being said, with a round trip of 10+ miles and some scrambles, this isn’t an easy trail. It takes skill and strength to do this trail, so come with me in this guide to see if this trail is for you. And if it isn’t at the moment, enjoy the pictures of this lovely corner of the Sonoran Desert.

Is Ford Canyon Trail Right For You?

ford canyon trail

(c) ABR 2022

I’ve hiked nearly every trail in the White Tank Mountains regional park, and this loop is hands-down my favorite and one of the best trails in Buckeye, AZ. Ford Canyon Trail allows you to explore the stone tanks on foot. It stays interesting with its scrambles and climbs up massive boulders and abandoned dams. The way down is also full of sweeping views of the mountains and city alike. There is also so much variety on this trek. It makes for a day full of wonder.

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Short Hikes in the White Tank Mountains of Phoenix, Arizona

Nestled on the western border of the Phoenix-metro area, just before the city gives way to the desert (for now), are the majestic White Tank Mountains. Protected by both Maricopa County and the White Tank Mountains Conservancy, these mountains offer an unrivaled opportunity to explore nature.

short hikes in the white tank mountains

(c) ABR 2019

Many of the trails here are 5+ miles long or more, and allow hikers access to wilderness-type conditions. However, there are wonderful, short hikes in the White Tank Mountains that are perfect for people short on time, just getting into hiking, and/or looking to explore with their families. All of the trails that I am going to include here have relatively little elevation gain. They are short in length. And they offer perfect opportunities to experience the beautiful Sonoran Desert of the White Tank Mountains without dedicating half a day to an excursion.

Why You Should Visit the White Tank Mountains Preserve?

short hikes in the white tank mountains

Heading down from the Waterfall Trail (c) ABR 2019

Whether you live in the Phoenix, Arizona area, or you are planning a trip to Arizona, you might be wondering – what are the White Tank Mountains? And why would I take the time and resources to visit them?

This range of Sonoran Desert Mountains are located on the western (growing) edge of the Phoenix-Metro area in Buckeye, AZ. They stretch from the north to the south. For much of the last decade, they have marked the boundary between the city and the open desert. For as long as I lived in Phoenix, the White Tank Mountains were a wild place. And before 2022, to reach them, you had to drive to the edge of the city and then take surface roads through farmlands. Once you reached the mountains, you were and still are transported to a more vibrant, biodiverse desert. They were the home of the Sonoran Desert of the past, before Phoenix had grown so large. Today, the mountains are about to be surrounded by city, but they can still teleport you away from the urban area.

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Roadside Attraction in Southern California: General Patton Memorial Museum

There’s a little museum on the road between Phoenix, AZ and Palm Springs, CA that I’ve often been curious about. It always catches my attention because of its strange location and the big military tanks that can be seen from outside. Only once have I made the time to visit it while traveling between Arizona and Southern California. But I think the little General Patton Memorial Museum in Chiriaco Summit is a worthy roadside attraction for anyone who is interested in history and/or exploring military vehicles. Read on if you think that little-known spot might be the perfect stop over for your roadtrip, or if you’ve always been curious about what this museum is all about.

general patton memorial museum

Is the General Patton Memorial Museum Worth It?

This depends on you! It is $18 to visit (in 2023), so the ticket price isn’t cheap by any means. But I think you will enjoy stopping here if you (a) really enjoy history museums, (b) have an appreciation for more home-grown museums, and/or (c) you need a break from a long drive to or from the big cities of the southwest.

general patton memorial museum

(c) ABR 2022

While General Patton is the focus of the building, there are many different elements of World War II, the US military, and even the dynamic lands surrounding the museum. These are complicated subjects, and while I wouldn’t say that this museum has the capacity to adjust to our current understanding of the people and events in the past, I did find it to be a very interesting place that peeked into a specific corner of history. For example, there were places in the General Patton Memorial Museum that really humanized the regular soldier of WWII. I was particularly appreciative of the collections that focused on the unique art that came out of the battlefields.

For those of you who enjoy a good immersive museum, the tank section of the General Patton Memorial Museum scratched that itch for me. There were a couple of tanks that you could climb into and explore the controls. And the outdoor section of the museum had a great collection of vehicles to explore from multiple angles.

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A Handy Guide to Some of the Best Hiking in Nebraska

As with much of the Midwest, you might not think of Nebraska for great hiking opportunities, but there are some exceptional trails in this state. And you might be surprised by the variety that Nebraska has to offer. Whether you are driving through on your way somewhere else, or you are like me and are going to make a whole trip out of exploring this state, you have to check out at least some of the best hiking in Nebraska. This include some of the amazing national parks of Nebraska, along with some lesser known federal and local lands that are full of magic.

I hope this guide can open your mind to what you can discover in Nebraska, or give you a little glimpse into the beauty that this state has to offer. Either way, my goal is for  you to walk away with a little inspiration. And some reminders on how to stay safe on the trail, no matter where you are.

Agate Fossil Beds National Monument

best hiking in nebraska

(c) ABR 2021

As you might guess from the name, the Agate Fossil Beds National Monument (henceforth, Agate Fossil Beds) is known for its fossils. I absolutely enjoyed seeing the fossils, and learning about the animals that left them behind from the very well-equipped visitor center. But my favorite thing about this park is its beautiful trails. They are unique from among the national parks of Nebraska, with their petrified sand dunes and evidence of life on Earth from another era.

There are two trails in this park. One is the Daemonelix Trail (1 mile lollipop) which is near the junction of the 20 and the 2. And the second is an out-and-back trail called the Fossil Hills Trail (2.8 miles) that leaves from the visitor center and heads across the grasslands to University Hill and Carnegie Hill. With the unique qualities of these little treks, they are among the best hiking in Nebraska. It is also free to visit!

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Cultural Attractions in Nebraska: Omaha, the Great Archway, and More!

There are many exceptional cultural attractions in Nebraska, from the downtown of Omaha, to the Great Platte River Road Archway along the I-80. From the history of American settlers, to the journey from the Oregon Trail to modern roadtrips. There is so much to see and learn about in this state. If you are on the road yourself, then the whole of Nebraska is available for exploration. But you can also experience a nice sample of Nebraskan culture in Omaha and the surrounding area.

Great Platte River Road Archway Monument

cultural attractions in nebraska

View of the I-80 from the Archway (c) ABR 2023

Along the I-80, about in the middle of Nebraska is the small town of Kearny. (I’m told it is pronounced kahr-nee). And just outside of Kearney is a massive archway that towers over the highway. When we drove under it on our way to Omaha from the west, I was so intrigued by the structure. We just had to visit on the way back. I thought the archway would be just a big viewing platform with gift shops and maybe a restaurant. But it was so much more than that!

The Great Platte River Road Archway Monument is actually an amazing, immersive history museum that’s unlike any place that I’ve ever been. It’s one of my must-see spots in Nebraska. While tickets are a little expensive for what you might consider a roadside attraction. I would argue that the $15 is worth it (2023). At least, it is worth it if you want to learn about the history of this area, the history of the Oregon Trail, and US roadtrips. Also, don’t expect this to be a quick stop. If you take in everything at the museum it could easily be a two-hour experience.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

In the Museum

I won’t spoil anything much, because I want you to enjoy this exceptional place. But when you arrive, stop by the gift shop to buy your tickets. From there, you will receive a listening device, before you enter the museum. I typically am not a fan of these little recorded, self-guided tours. But take your time listen to the stories throughout the museum, it is the doorway to making the whole experience come alive.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

Then, once you enter, you will follow immersive displays through time. They will take you from the origins of the Oregon Trail, all the way to the highway as it is now. I was enchanted by the history of this roadway. I had no idea before visiting that the I-80 is the legacy of the Oregon Trail and everyone who trekked across the West.

This is a surprisingly well-done spot among the cultural attractions in Nebraska; if you enjoy history, don’t miss it. That being said, if you are looking for a giant viewing platform of the road, this isn’t it. There are a few windows at the end of the museum, but nothing expansive.

They are open from 9-5 Monday to Saturday, and noon-5pm on Sunday. And they have a great gift shop!

Durham Museum

cultural attractions in nebraska

Durham Museum (c) ABR 2023

The Durham Museum is one of several of the must-see spots in Nebraska that is located within Omaha. It’s probably also my top attraction in the whole city. While some folks might not think that’s all that much of an endorsement, Omaha has a lot to do in it. Additionally, this museum could hold its own among attractions in much larger cities.

The building itself is the repurposed Union Station that was once owned by the Union Pacific. Now, the art deco edifice is maintained by the museum. And it features many spaces and exhibits about the history of travel and railways in the United States and, of course, Omaha.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

There is so so much history in this place, from indigenous history and culture, to modern day. But for me, the star of the show in the Durham Museum is the walk-through train. This will take you through several decades of train cars. And if you are lucky, they might even be manned by a volunteer who can tell you all about them. Between the artifacts, exceptional immersion, and knowledgeable volunteers, I think that the Durham Museum is one of the best cultural attractions in Nebraska.

They also have some circulating exhibits that change over time, so if you live in the area, you can see some new things over the years. When we visited there was a very nostalgic display of lunchboxes, and an interactive Lego exhibit.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

The Durham museum is open on Sunday noon to 4pm, Monday, Weds-Saturday from 10am-4pm, and Tuesday 10am – 8pm. They are closed for major holidays, though, so be sure to check their website for details. Tickets are $15 for adults. (All info from 2023).

Homestead National Historic Park

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

Located out in the midst of the Nebraska fields, the Homestead National Historic Park is one of the out-of-the-way, but must-see spots in Nebraska. It commemorates and teaches, on the land, about the cultural and historic impacts of the Homestead Act of 1862. This act paved the way for many otherwise disenfranchised people to get land – including women and freed, formerly enslaved people. It encouraged settlement of the West and helped develop the “breadbasket” of the United States.

Not a Simple History

But it also served as a tool for the stealing of lands from indigenous people. This is because, of course, all of the land being “given” was land that Native Americans could no longer live on, as they had for thousands of years. So, while this place represents an important part of American history, it also represents the onward dissposession of Native American peoples.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

The museum at the park does the best it can to represent this dichotomy. Although I suspect it will change more in the coming years to tell both sides of this story in more depth. And outside of the museum there are a variety of trails and artistic displays representing the impact of homesteading on the various states that were impacted by the Homestead Act.

One of which, no surprise, was Nebraska. Which saw more than 40% of its land homesteaded after the act was passed. Even though this spot is not super close to other places of note in the state, I still think that it’s worth the drive from among the cultural attractions of Nebraska. If you think that you might have roots in homesteading, you can also research your genealogy in the park.

The visitor center at the park is open 7 days a week from 8:30a – 6:00p, except on weekends when it opens at 9a. In the winter they also close at 5p. It is free to visit!

Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo (henceforth, Omaha Zoo, haha), is up there with some of the nicest zoos out there. They come complete with a variety of different ecotypes, featuring animals from all over the world. I was especially intrigued by the giant sphere under which was the desert displays. It’s always fun to travel hundreds of miles away from home and then find yourself surrounded by the familiar plants of the desert. They also do an exceptional job showcasing the beauty, importance, and fascinating lives of smaller animals like reptiles and insects.

While you basically know what you are going to get when it comes to a nice zoo, the size and quality of the Omaha Zoo puts it among my list of must-see spots in Nebraska.

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

The Omaha Zoo is also a member of Association of Zoos and Aquariums as well as the global equivalent – meaning that they have an established standard of care for their animals that seeks to maintain their well-being. They are also involved in conservation activities.

Their hours and admissions change with the season, so be sure to look at their website for details before you visit. Also, there can be very long lines at the entrance, so you might consider buying your ticket online before you go.

Old Market, Omaha

cultural attractions in nebraska

Old Market (c) ABR 2023

Downtown Omaha isn’t particularly big, but it does have a very nice, walkable area for tourists and locals alike – the Old Market. This area is notable for its characteristic brick buildings, areas of brick streets, and large wooden awnings over the wide sidewalks. Being the heart of Omaha, this area is a living example of the cultural attractions of Nebraska.

There are loads of good places to eat in this area, and it’s the perfect spot to pick up a souvenir that represents your time in Nebraska as well as your style. One place to visit for a unique keepsake, candy, AND an experience is Hollywood Candy. This store is massive, and will probably take you at least 20 minutes to explore. On top of everything you can purchase here, you can also play pinball, and I hear that in October they do a big haunted house. I’ve never been to a place quite like this, and for that alone, I think Hollywood candy is among the must-see spots in Nebraska.

cultural attractions in nebraska

Slides downtown (c) ABR 2023

There are also many good bars in Omaha’s downtown. If you are into tiki bars, Laka Lono is located in the Old Market, underground. There is also a speakeasy on the edge of the area, Wicked Rabbit.

Finally, there is a big playground north of Old Market – complete with adult sized swings and slides. Definitely check it out.

Other Spots in Omaha

Haymarket, Lincoln

Along similar lines to the Old Market, Haymarket is at the heart of downtown, Lincoln. It’s a great spot for eats, local crafts, and walking. Additionally, it is home to one of my favorite coffee and tea shops in Nebraska – the Mill Coffee and Tea. With Lincoln being the capital of the state, it’s down town is a great addition to a list of must-see spots in Nebraska.

Hummel Park

cultural attractions in nebraska

Hummel (c) ABR 2023

Just north of Omaha is a little cluster of parks and open spaces which include Hummel Park and Neale Woods, among others. We visited Hummel Park on a rainy day, so we didn’t get to explore too much, but I was impressed by what I did see. They have a short set of trails through a verdant forest. There is a frisbee golf course, and a visitor center that is home to a variety of programming throughout the year. Finally, and most excitingly, they also have a couple big slides here for the adventurous ones among you!

Little Bohemia

cultural attractions in nebraska

Tiny House Bar (c) ABR 2023

Nestled among the many great attractions of Omaha is a small part of town called Little Bohemia. While this area truly is little, I really enjoyed visiting it. There is a nice, Slavic vibe here, and while I wish there was more shops and food linked to that, the shops and restaurants here were all very nice. Tiny House Bar was a great local spot for drinks.

The Lauritzen Garden

cultural attractions in nebraska

(c) ABR 2023

The Lauritzen Garden or Omaha Botanical Center is Omaha’s floral companion to the zoo. While I wouldn’t put this garden up in my top… twenty gardens that I’ve visited in the US, if you enjoy plants this is a neat spot. And in 2023, I could tell that they were hard at work building out the garden and all its offerings. That being said, I think one of the coolest things in the park was a toy train garden (never seen one before!), and indoor section of the garden. With their art displays, long walking trails, and amazing gift shop, I think this is a great addition to any list of cultural attractions in Nebraska, especially for plant-lovers.

Planning a Trip to Nebraska?

Be sure to check out Nightborn Travel’s Short Guide to Nebraska for all of my posts on this surprising state, along with some fun tidbits about its history and ecology.

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