Guide to Oklahoma City: how to get there and where to stay, what to see and where to go in the evening. The best things to do in Oklahoma City: fresh reviews and photos, places to see, branded entertainment and shopping.
According to toppharmacyschools, the capital of the state of the same name and the third largest city in America, the half-million Oklahoma City is a lively and beautiful place. In addition, it is also located on the famous Route 66. “Oklahoma City looks, oh, so nice,” is sung in a famous song about this notorious road. Perhaps that’s the way it is: it’s really nice here.
The Paseo is still occupied by an ancient and rather dilapidated artist colony that appeared here in the 1930s. The Paseo was deliberately built as an imitation of the Kansas City Country Club Plaza, but has since taken on a bohemian character and an extremely free-spirited atmosphere.
How to get to Oklahoma City
The city is easy to reach by air: the local Will Rogers Airport receives flights from more than 30 cities in the country. Plus, the city is located at the intersection of two of the nation’s longest highways, I-40 and I-35, as well as I-44.
A bit of history
The official founding date of Oklahoma City is considered to be 1889, when the local territory was designated as “no man’s land.” It was opened to free settlement in an event known as the “Land Run,” and about 10,000 settlers staked out lots where the city later emerged. Oklahoma City grew rapidly: in the 10 years since 1890, its population has doubled. At the beginning of the 20th century, the city also became a major stop on Route 66 and was mentioned in that classic jazz song by Bobby Traup in 1946. In 1928, oil was found right in the city itself, and this, of course, only accelerated its development.
Entertainment and attractions Oklahoma City
The city center and its northern part are full of attractions of various kinds. The city’s new art museum has the largest collection of Chihuly glass in the world. The impressive Myriad Gardens is home to a botanical garden that occupies a 7-level building and the stunning Crystal Bridge Modern Tropical Conservatory. The National Memorial and Museum is one of the most visible sights in the city and at the same time one of the saddest: the memorial is located on the site of the former Marr building, which was blown up by a terrorist in 1995.
3 things to do in Oklahoma City:
- Take a ride on water taxis in the city center, in Bricktown.
- Stop by Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar and Grill in Bricktown, named after the country artist’s famous hit, for Southern food and live music.
- Spend a day by the water at Hefner Lake, one of the world’s top 10 inland sailing destinations.
Different areas of the city are distinguished by their own unique character. So, in the northeast is the Capitol complex and downtown Oklahoma. Between the Capitol and the Medical Science Center lies the Lincoln Terrace Historic Quarter, which is well worth a visit if you’re interested in ancient architecture. And just north of the Capitol is the Adventure District, home to the city’s zoo, the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, and the city’s science museum with an aerospace museum, a photography museum, a planetarium, and more.
There are a number of other museums in Oklahoma City: they are less popular, but everyone can find their admirers. In particular, these are the firefighters museum, the railway museum and the World of Wings pigeon center, where you can not only learn about the role of carrier pigeons in the First and Second World Wars, but also look at live birds.
Bricktown is the city’s fastest growing area, where travelers can find entertainment for all tastes. Initially, warehouses were located here, on the river, and today a multifunctional sports stadium is equipped here, city sculptures and murals can be seen everywhere, and boats and catamarans go along the canal of the same name. Bricktown hosts an art festival every year in mid-July. Here, in addition, there is a museum of the American banjo, whose collection is estimated at about 3.5 million USD – a real national treasure. The exhibitions tell about the evolution of this instrument, starting from very modest roots in the history of American slavery, through bluegrass, folk and so on.
The Paseo is still occupied by an ancient and rather dilapidated artist colony that appeared here in the 1930s. The Paseo was deliberately built as an imitation of the Kansas City Country Club Plaza, but has since taken on a bohemian character and an extremely free-spirited atmosphere. There are dozens of art galleries, restaurants, clothing stores. In essence, Paseo is just one street lined with buildings in the Spanish Renaissance style, but gradually the block won back the adjacent territories, including even a chain of shops on the northwest 23rd street, one of the main ones on the northwest side of the city.
“Little Saigon” (officially called the Asian region) is the place where the largest Vietnamese and East Asian community lives. This block is located west of Paseo, along Classen Boulevard. After the defeat of Saigon in 1976, Oklahoma City was chosen by the US government as one of the cities to send refugees there. Since then, the area has become famous for its excellent restaurants and the largest Asian supermarket in the state.
One of the most striking architectural sights of the city can be called its Capitol, which began to be built in 1914 and formally could not be completed for almost 90 years. In 1917, the building was already completed, but without a dome. In the end, thanks to private donations, the 47-meter-high dome was finally completed and crowned with a 5-meter statue of the Guardian Indian. True, this happened already in 2002. Today, beautiful paintings can be seen in the interior of the building, including four in the rotunda illustrating the stages of the development of Oklahoma, and one painted in Paris in 1921.
The Oklahoma City Capitol is the only one in the world built over an oil well. Officially, it is called “Capitol No. 1”, although the first name of the well was “Petunia No. 1”, since it was originally drilled right in the middle of the flower bed.
Another significant building for the city is the first private mansion, which appeared here in 1903. This is the house of Henry Overholster, the “father of Oklahoma City”, whose architecture mixed the styles of Queen Anne and French chateau, which was very unconventional for urban development of that time. In 1972, the mansion was sold to the historical society of the city, and today you can see it with a guided tour, seeing with your own eyes beautiful antique pieces of furniture and everyday life.
The churches of the city are also noteworthy, in particular the red-brick Cathedral of St. Joseph with sharp dark spiers. Here you can admire the wonderful stained glass windows. Also beautiful is the first Lutheran church, built in 1911 in the Gothic style: it is distinguished by a fine altar and a contrasting red roof over cream walls. The First United Methodist Church features a large stained-glass rose window on the west façade, which looks amazing at night. And the city church, built in 1910, differs from all the others in its classical-Romanesque architecture with Corinthian columns of the portico and a semicircular dome, reminiscent of the Roman Catholic churches of European cities.
The Oklahoma City Zoo is considered one of the best in the country. Almost 2 thousand animals live here in several vast thematically divided zones. Among such zones are the habitat of Asian elephants; children’s zoo with cute animals such as flamingos and monkeys; imitation of a tropical forest with a waterfall and pools where gorillas, orangutans and chimpanzees live; feline territory with African lions, tigers and snow leopards; Oklahoma ecosystem with local animals – bears, bison, alligators; as well as an aquarium with sea lions and corals and a butterfly garden. On the territory of the zoo, you can feed giraffes from a special platform, ride catamarans on the lake, or go on a sightseeing safari by boat or train.
Oklahoma City hosts one of the largest livestock markets in the world. The venue is Stockyard City, a huge area where auctions usually take place from Monday to Wednesday. On Monday mornings, you can even take a tour of Stockyard City. Here you can also buy all sorts of attributes associated with the Wild West: boots, huge hats, belts with giant buckles. At the end of the walk, it is worth stopping by Kettleman’s Steakhouse for a taste of lamb fries, an allusive name for fried ox testicles.