Most people, when they think of travel, think of exotic destinations with clear water and pristine beaches. Some think of soaring mountains with gorgeous, only-found-in-nature vistas. Still, others think of luxury spas, high-rise hotels or cruise ships with every imaginable amenity. There are some, though, who consider traveling to and enjoying the hospitality of all 50 states to be a worthy tourism bucket list item. Consider Oklahoma. Jason Aldean sang about it being a “fly-over state” on your way between coasts, but it’s got some attractive reasons to stop for a visit.
Stay overnight in Broken Bow cabins so you can then get up early to take in Beavers Bend State Park. You’ll walk trails through soaring, fragrant pines. The wildlife you may spot includes whitetail deer, butterflies, turtles, trout, beavers, black bears and bald eagles. Broken Bow Lake, a large reservoir freshwater lake, boasts swimming from sandy beaches and fantastic bass fishing on one end. The other end stretches 22 miles into the mountains and features intimate inlets and prime bird-watching locations from the water or the shore.
Take your pick of where to stay in Western Oklahoma. You’re going to have a wonderful time communing with nature. The western end of the state has some unique natural features in its national parks. You’ll find expansive cave systems, natural spas, a park full of sand dunes for dune buggy fun and OK’s highest point of elevation: Black Mesa State Park. Because of its distance from any developed area, Black Mesa is one of the best places in the country for stargazing because of how dark the nights get. During the day, you can find dinosaur tracks preserved in sandstone among beautiful landscapes.
On your travels across the country, you’ll find hidden gems in each state. Oklahoma is no exception.