Oklahoma Discovery Guide

Overview

Whether you prefer to spend your vacation time in the great outdoors with a variety of sport and leisure activities as your focus, or visit larger towns and cities to see all they have to offer, Oklahoma is a great place to do it all—vacationing in Oklahoma provides the visitor with a fantastic mix of both big city and small town life, with mountains, lakes and national parks to visit too.

The north western region of Oklahoma is Red Carpet Country—so named for its unusually-colored red soil, this region of the state literally rolls out the red carpet for its visitors! From Alva to Woodward, every town in Red Carpet Country, small and large, offers a variety of interesting activities. Visit the Dinosaur Quarry and the stark beauty of the Black Mesa near Boise City, the Cherokee Strip Museum in Alva, the Plains Indians and Pioneers Museum in Woodward, or the fascinating Pioneer Women Museum in Ponca City, for a glimpse into the lives of Oklahoma’s ancestors.

Many areas in Red Carpet Country offer great hunting opportunities, with quail, pheasant, duck, deer and antelope in season in areas near Seiling and Boise City, among others. Other great places to visit include the incredible sand dunes at Little Sahara State Park, and the bat caves at Alabaster Caverns—two very unusual sights in this part of the world!

The north east Oklahoma is Green Country, and it certainly lives up to its name! The vibrant city of Tusla is here, with a whole host of attractions and places to visit. View the largest collection Western art in the world at the Gilcrease Museum, check out the music legends at the Jazz Hall of Fame, or simply enjoy wandering the city, with its incredible Art Deco architecture. Tulsa is a great place to visit in October, with this city rated as throwing one of the ten best Oktoberfest celebrations in the world. If outdoor activities are more your style, Tulsa can provide those too—with places like the Broken Arrow Safari Sanctuary, as well as golf courses, and trails along the Arkansas River, where bald eagles can sometimes be seen hunting along the river.

If river sports are your favorite way to spend a vacation, Green Country Oklahoma is a great destination, with the Illinois River flowing through several counties. The Sparrowhawk Loop section of the river is a great place for canoeing trips, and the Illinois River has many great fishing spots, with bass, catfish, buffalo and other species. If lakes are more your style, visit Lake Eufala—fishing, boating and other watersports are available here, as well as golf, hiking and biking, and other activities such as hay-rides at the recreation areas near the lake.

Muskogee is in this region too, with a wide variety of interesting activities and attractions. A visit to Muskogee is a fantastic experience in May, with the Oklahoma Renaissance Festival a popular attraction. Held at the Castle of Muskogee, this event brings history to life with jugglers and performers, jousting events, dancing and music, and delicious foods and drinks from a long-gone era. Muskogee has several other attractions both seasonal and year-round, with the April Azalea Display, the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame, and the Five Civilized Tribes Museum, which showcases art and exhibits from five Native American tribes.

The south east region of Oklahoma is known as Kiamichi Country. With 750,000 acres of wild game, this is a paradise for hunters and anglers—deer, elk and other game at places such as Duchess Creek Ranch, and excellent fishing spots at the Mountain Fork River, and others of the 23 lakes and countless rivers in the region. The Winding Stair Mountains are a great place to visit, with miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as a variety of outdoor activities. Kiamichi Country is a great place for a road trip, with many tiny towns and attractions all over the region and the Talimena Scenic Drive located in LeFlore County.

Southern central Oklahoma is Arbuckle County, known all over the state as an aquatic paradise. The five major lakes in the area offer a wide variety of sports and leisure activities. Visit the Chicasaw National Recreation Area for swimming and boating, fishing, camping and hiking, and the beautiful Fall foliage. Check out the Cripplecreek Archery Range to try your hand—whether you’re a novice to archery or a seasoned expert, there are plenty of fun activities here. Rappellers will want to visit Robbers Cave State Park—and in fact, any outdoors-loving person will, as this area also offers fishing and hunting activities as well as boating, hiking and horse-back riding. Every town in the region offers particular attractions, such as the Southwest Historical Museum and the Military Memorial Museum in Ardmore, and the Three Valley Museum and stunning Lake Texoma in Durant.

South western Oklahoma is Great Plains Country. The Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge is a big attraction here, with buffalo, deer and elk for the nature-lover, and rock-climbing and rappelling popular activities. For the golfer there are several great courses in the region, and the lakes in the area provide fishing and water-sports for the aquatic-oriented vacationer.

Last but certainly not least, Frontier Country in the central region of the state is home to the capital of Oklahoma City. Everything you’d expect to see in a large city is here, from great shopping, dining and nightlife, to a host of day time activities and events throughout the year. The Myriad Botanical Gardens is a stunningly beautiful focal point for many events, with the October Orchid Festival and vibrant light displays in the holiday season. Oklahoma City features more than fifty attractions, including the National Memorial and Museum of Art, the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, and the fascinating Historic Bricktown district. A stay in Oklahoma City is the perfect vacation for anyone who wants to relish new experiences while retaining all the comforts of home!

A vacation in the Sooner State is like no other—from the west to the east, Oklahoma is truly unique, with its own special brand of hospitality. From hunting, fishing and other sporting activities to the excitement of big cities such as Oklahoma City, there is plenty to see and do, and many great memories to create.
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