We aren’t often surprised by a city we visit, but Oklahoma City surprised and delighted us all. Our 2-week family fun-filled vacation featured tons of kid-friendly attractions and foodie finds too. So many unexpected and all entertaining, we loved every stop along our trip. So keep reading, pin this post and get ready to have your OKC itinerary planned for you.
Science Museum Oklahoma
After we got our tickets, I asked the attendant where we should head for my kids (ages: 5, 5, 4) to get the most out of the museum. She told us to go straight to CurioCity. She was right! Wow! We could have easily spent our entire visit in this section of the museum. I appreciated that each area was somewhat enclosed, making it easier to keep my eyes on three little ones. I especially appreciated that the enormous indoor playground had only one exit with two staff members on high alert. I told my kiddos to go and enjoy, and I actually meant it.
After we finished up in CurioCity, we decided to stop by Pavlov’s for a bit of a lunch break, but we noticed the Science Live show was about to start. The kids asked to see what it was all about, so we ducked in about ten minutes after it started. My daughter almost immediately remarked that the show reminded her of Emily’s Wonder Lab, a fantastic science experience show on Netflix. We got to see a liquid nitrogen and water explosion. Well worth the stop.
We stopped by as many exhibits as we could in one day, and each one was full of interactive, educational and fun experiences for all ages. Unfortunately, we ended our afternoon in the Planetarium, and while interesting, my kids were too tired at that point to pay attention. You might want to learn from our mistake and visit the Planetarium show earlier in the day.
The Oklahoma History Center is an eighteen-acre, 215,000 square-foot learning center exploring Oklahoma’s unique history of Native culture, pioneers, aviation, commerce, and more. We stopped at each of the Hands-On-History exhibits for my kids to interact with each one.
We spent quite a while in the Realizing the Dream exhibit as my kids have started asking about differences and skin color. We always take every opportunity we can to teach them about our history – good and bad. The exhibit features extraordinary individuals and presents artifacts representative of the people, places, and events. Locations significant to African American history in Oklahoma have been recreated for visitors to gain insight into spaces occupied by community and Civil Rights Movement leaders such as Richard Lewis’s barbershop and Clara Luper’s living room. I was surprised by my little kids’ insightful questions and comments. It was a valuable learning experience for our family.
National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
We spent almost our entire visit in the museum’s backyard. Liichokoshkomo is more than 100,000 square feet dedicated to learning and family fun. Engaging activities and learning by bringing history to life for museum guests of all ages, emphasizing purposeful play. We got to sit inside a Kiowa Tipi, visit a Puebloan Cliff Dwelling and run off some energy on the playground. Then, we went inside to explore the old Western town replica. If you have little ones, the outdoor space is an excellent place for everyone to enjoy.
Worth the Price
The Oklahoma City Zoo is expensive and well worth the price of admission. Don’t miss the Explorikeet Adventure. We all had the best time feeding the beautiful birds. My daughter couldn’t believe she got to let the lorikeets land on her fingers and head. She asked me to hang the photo in her room. Pick up one of the Zoo Keys, and help your kids find the boxes throughout the zoo. The keys start an educational message at each stop. My kids are still talking about which of the animals are endangered and how we can help.
Our Favorite Family Spot
We visited family during our stay, and they recommended we go to Lake Hefner for lunch and a walk. Let me start by saying, this is not a place you’d expect to see in the heart of Oklahoma City. However, the lake is an excellent lake for sailing and weekend sailboat races. Facilities for picnicking and fishing also are available. No camping or swimming allowed, though. It’s also the perfect place for a family photo op. Louie’s Grill & Bar is a great lunch spot while you’re there.
Cool Roadside Attraction
Pops 66 Soda Ranch has 700 kinds of soda, sparkling waters and other ice-cold refreshments. Of course, it has great food too. But most road trippers stop for the 66-foot-tall color-shifting LED sculpture bottle, best viewed and photographed at night. Sad to say, we stopped during the day, but it was still a fun one. The restaurant’s glass walls are decorated with shelves of soda pop bottles arranged by beverage color. Glass bottles make the interior quite beautiful.
For the Gram
USA Today named Oklahoma City the best place for street art. If you’re like us, you always on the lookout for some fun family photo ops. They make great memories in your kids’ scrapbooks. Unfortunately, we only got to stop by a few walls, but the ones we did find were spectacular. It would be entertaining spending a day hunting down as many as your family can see.
Places to Eat (with the kids)
We didn’t eat out a lot because it is pricey with the five of us, but we did splurge on a few meals together. Hall’s Pizza Kitchen was worth the splurge. Take my word for it and start with Quinn’s Burrata. It’s one of the most delicious plates I’ve tasted in a while. Also, any of their pizza selections are outstanding. My kids couldn’t get enough. Finally, there’s a great rooftop area if it isn’t too hot.
We don’t often brave fancier restaurants with three little ones in tow, but the upscale sports bar element of Republic Gastropub gave us the courage to try it. The homemade pub pretzel with beer-cheese fondue was so good; we ordered a second one. I asked for a meal recommendation and was surprised by the Grilled Shrimp Salad I ordered based on that recommendation. So good!
Belle Kitchen is the place to stop if you and your crew are ready for some sweet treats. Voted the best donut in Oklahoma, you don’t want to miss the square-shaped yummy goodness. But, if donuts aren’t your thing, go for the macarons. Everything sweet in the shop is yummy.
Where We Stayed
We loved Twin Fountains RV Resort. While the sites are small, the amenities make up for it in a big way: the Semper Fi Bar & Grill, limo shuttle and pool, hot tub and splash pad, for starters. Of course, we had fun on the mini-golf course and playground too. There’s even a dog grooming salon on-site as well as a salon too. Bonus, the resort offers morning trash pickup too.
Visit OKC provided us with attractions tickets in exchange for this recap of our family vacation. As always, all opinions are my own, and your experiences may differ from ours.