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Best things to do in Oklahoma City

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Where in the world: USA  /  Oklahoma  /  Oklahoma City

Top 15 things to do in Oklahoma City

1. Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum

Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum is a tribute to the victims, survivors, and first responders affected by the tragic bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995. Take a self-guided tour through the events of that day and learn more about terrorism and the legacy of this attack. You can listen to the only known recording of the bombing, watch news footage, and see belongings that were found among the rubble. Step outside to visit the memorials that honor the victims, some of which occupy the space where the building once stood. The Gates of Time display the time the bomb exploded, 9:02 a.m., and 136 empty chairs represent those who lost their lives. Their names are etched onto the chairs.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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2. SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology

At the 650 sq m (7,000 sq ft) SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology, you'll observe natural body motions and learn about the functions of different parts of the skeleton. Here the bones of about 300 animals are preserved, from tiny mice to a 12 m (40 ft) humpback whale. See giraffes, elephants, and marsupials, as well as different reptiles, birds, and primates. You'll discover how organisms change in order to become better suited to their habitats and also be able to compare the anatomy of vertebrate species, which suggest that we all have one common ancestor. At an exhibit of pathologies, find out about forensic ways to determine causes of death.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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3. Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden

See the exotic species, marvel at the butterfly exhibit, and enjoy the botanical garden at Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden. Along with animals from all over the world like tigers, elephants, and giraffes, the zoo hosts a wide selection of species native to Oklahoma, from bears and alligators, to birds and bats. You can walk around, hop on one of the train rides, or take a boat tour on Zoo Lake. The zoo especially focuses on opportunities for children to learn about wildlife while playing and interacting with the animals. During the hot summer months, a lot of the activities include splashing water, so consider bringing a spare set of clothes for the kids.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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4. Science Museum Oklahoma

At Science Museum Oklahoma, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, join numerous interactive science exhibits; view space, aviation, and cultural artifacts; and visit a dome theater. Use blue-screen technology to do your own weather forecast, create fog and lightning bolts, watch a tornado form in front of you--then experience one at a tornado simulator. Find out how it feels to live and work at a space station, then visit Mercury in a simulated mission. See a dinosaur skeleton, watch a miniature steam train hiss and whistle through Oklahoma towns and countryside, and play optical illusion games.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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5. Myriad Botanical Gardens

A tropical oasis, Myriad Botanical Gardens showcases multiple tiers of dense vegetation surrounding a sunken lake. Covering over 6 hectares (17 acres) just outside the city's downtown area, this urban park offers a range of educational programs designed to provide the public with a basic understanding of the principles of ecology, with a special focus on conservation. The signature feature centers around a tropical conservatory, a living plant museum filled with towering palm trees, tropical plants, waterfalls, and exotic animals. As you stroll through the park's lush outdoor gardens, look for several notable pieces of art, including an abstract sculpture by famed Dutch artist Hans Van de Bovenkamp. Check online for conservatory's hours and ticket prices.
Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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6. National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

See Western Heritage Award-winning sculptures and paintings, and visit the exhibits of tools, clothes, and weapons at National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Find yourself in a true American prairie town called the Prosperity Junction and hear stories from the Old West. Take time to admire collections dedicated to rodeo lovers. If you get lost among the 28,000 pieces of art spread over this 19,000 sq m (200,000 sq f) museum, just ask a cowboy or a cowgirl for directions. You can also buy books, pottery, jewelry, and even Native American clothes at the gift shop.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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7. Bricktown

Formerly a warehouse district, Bricktown now serves as an entertainment area with a vibrant bar scene, restaurants, boutiques, museums, and boat rides. Be sure to visit one of the city's landmarks--Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark--home of Oklahoma City Dodgers. Guided boat tours pass by important historical sites and monuments and offer an interesting glimpse into the development of the city.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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8. Oklahoma City Museum of Art

Housing the world's largest collection of glass sculptures by artist Dale Chihuly, Oklahoma City Museum of Art brings art to life in the city's renowned downtown arts district. Although it covers a period of nearly 500 years, the museum's collection is especially strong in European and American art of the 19th and 20th centuries. Spread across three floors, the permanent exhibit space displays works by Alexander Calder, Henry Moore, Georgia O'Keefe, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Charles Wilson Peale, and Gustave Courbet. The museum also houses a theater that screens international, independent, and classic films. Finish your visit with a meal at the museum's full-service restaurant, which offers a menu inspired by French cuisine.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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9. Centennial Land Run Monument

The Centennial Land Run Monument is an art installation by Paul Moore, located in the Oklahoma City Bricktown District, in the U.S. state of Oklahoma. It commemorates the Land Run of 1889 in the Unassigned Lands.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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10. State Capitol

The Oklahoma State Capitol is the house of government of the U.S. state of Oklahoma. It is the building that houses the Oklahoma Legislature and executive branch offices. It is located along Lincoln Boulevard in Oklahoma City. The present structure includes a dome completed in 2002.
Oklahoma's first capital was Guthrie, Oklahoma, but it moved to Oklahoma City in 1910. Construction began on the Oklahoma State Capitol in 1914 and was completed in 1917. Originally, it housed the judicial branch of Oklahoma, but the state's high courts moved most of their operations to the Oklahoma Judicial Center in 2011, leaving only the Supreme Court Hearing Chamber in the capitol building.
The state capitol complex is the only state capitol grounds in the United States with active oil rigs.
Early capital of Guthrie (1889–1910)Oklahoma's territorial capital and first state capital was located in the city of Guthrie. The settlement of the first state capital began at noon on April 22, 1889, when cannons sounded the start of the Oklahoma land run. The town was designated as the territorial capital in 1890.
Move to Oklahoma City and construction (1910–1917)State government officials let voters decide on whether or not to move the capital to Oklahoma City. On June 11, 1910, the state seal was taken from Guthrie and moved south to Oklahoma City, where the Oklahoma State Capitol is located today. Lee Cruce, the second Governor of Oklahoma commissioned the architectural construction of the present day structure. Prior to its construction, state government offices were housed in the Huckins Hotel in downtown Oklahoma City.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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11. Oklahoma Aquarium, Jenks

Look for biggest bull sharks in captivity at Oklahoma Aquarium, as you walk through the underwater tunnel that was once featured during Discovery Channel's Shark Week. Feed otters, beavers, and alligators, or learn about different kinds of jellyfish. You'll have the chance to see baby seahorses, usually found wrapped around the plants in the water. You can even touch sea anemones and stingrays in the interactive exhibits. Check the aquarium's feeding schedule online before you go to pinpoint when you can watch divers feed the fish in the coral reefs and the sharks in the tunnel.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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12. Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa

See work ranging from the Italian Renaissance to contemporary genres at Philbrook Museum of Art. Partially housed inside the 1920s villa of the influential Phillips' family, the museum features European, Asian, African, and Native American artwork housed in galleries that were once the family's rooms. Join a Westby sculpture walk through all the three-dimensional work on the grounds. Be sure to leave time to stroll the gardens.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
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13. Stafford Air & Space Museum, Weatherford

The Stafford Air & Space Museum is located in Weatherford, Oklahoma, United States. The museum, named for NASA astronaut and Weatherford native Thomas P. Stafford, became a Smithsonian Affiliate in June 2010. The museum features exhibits about aviation, space exploration, and rocketry, and a collection of over 20 historic aircraft. Displays include Stafford's Apollo 10 spacesuit, the Gemini 6A spacecraft, artifacts from the Space Shuttle program, the Hubble Space Telescope, and the Mir Space Station, a Moon rock, a Titan II missile, and a Mark 6 re-entry vehicle.
The museum is located at the Thomas P. Stafford Airport.

Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
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15. Room Escape Games

Suggested duration: 1h 30 min
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