How to Get Back To Nature in Oklahoma City
Oklahoma City has grown up a lot over the past couple decades. With a booming housing market and surging population growth, Big Friendly is turning into a bigger city every single day. Fortunately, there is still no shortage of ways to get out of the city center’s hustle and enjoy some time in nature.
There are plenty of ways to get back to nature in the Oklahoma City area. Consider visiting the many lakes that feature outdoor water sports as well as the city’s most beautiful gardens in order to enjoy the sunshine this season. Check out these spots that make it easy to get back to nature while in OKC.
Located Northwest of Oklahoma City, Lake Hefner is a popular outdoor spot for many residents. It was built in 1947 and attracts many sailboat enthusiasts. 9 miles of hiking trails border the lake on well-maintained wide pathways that make it easy for pedestrians and bicyclists alike. Children will enjoy the many parks around the lake as well as the beautiful lighthouse that is always good for a photo op. Fishing is also very popular at the lake year-round thanks to an enclosed and heated fishing dock.
This area of Downtown Oklahoma City has gone through some major renovations in recent years. The Centennial Fountain in the Bricktown area is the pinnacle spot for both visitors and residents to visit. The canal area offers many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors whether you have time for a water taxi tour or just a quick stop on your lunch break. The area is home to many festivals throughout the year and is becoming the center of activity in downtown Oklahoma City.
Myriad Botanical Gardens
This 15-acre escape is home to a beautiful public area that is located in the heart of downtown. Myriad Botanical Gardens offer something for everyone with splash fountains for little ones as well as a children’s garden and off-leash dog park. There are plenty of walking paths for those who want to take a stroll as well as a wealth of information in the educational programs offered. Visitors can see the beautiful flowers from tropical locations in the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory for a small fee as well as the meticulous landscaping of the outdoor gardens for free.
Will Rogers Park
As one of Oklahoma City’s oldest parks, the land for Will Rogers Park was purchased in 1912 and was originally used as a dairy farm. 30 acres make up the park today with carefully designed gardens, ponds, and plant beds. The Ed Lycan Conservatory is the star of Will Rogers Park with its greenhouse design inspired by architecture from the 19th century. Located between the two ponds is a 2-acre color garden that showcased blooms of roses in recent years. However, the color garden has now been diversified to native perennials and annuals that do well in the climate. The 10 acre Margaret Annis Boys Arboretum also includes beautiful trees along with an ADA accessible trail.
Oklahoma City Outdoor Symbolic Memorial
This memorial is a very popular stop for many visitors and residents who call Oklahoma City home as it remembers the Oklahoma City bombing that occurred on April 19, 1995. The Outdoor Symbolic Memorial is stunning in its reverence to those who were killed along with those who survived the attack. The Outdoor Symbolic Memorial is a place of reflection as it sits on the same land where the Murrah Building once stood. Rangers are on the premises to educate visitors about the events that day and how it affected the area afterwards. While this outdoor spot does bring reflection, visitors can experience peace and quiet while remembering those who were affected by this horrific attack.
Oklahoma City is rich with a mixture of history and nature as it offers many outdoor opportunities for both visitors and residents to enjoy. Consider going downtown to visit the lively Bricktown area or take a walk through the Myriad Botanical Gardens. Quietly reflect and think about those who lost their lives at the Oklahoma City Outdoor Symbolic Memorial as well. For outdoor fun consider checking out Will Rogers Park and Lake Hefner for hiking and many outdoor sporting opportunities. All of these places are great ways to get back to nature in Oklahoma City.
Mike Fitzgerald is an outdoor living expert and explorer with his sidekick dog, Champion. When he’s not traveling to nature’s most well known beauty spots, he tends to the greenery surrounding his home.