Best Things to do in Oklahoma City
As a former OKC resident, I love sharing the best of Oklahoma’s capital with anyone who will listen. The city’s central location and affordability make it an easy getaway destination for couples, families or groups. You’ll be surprised by all that it has to offer for foodies, adventure-seekers and lovers of the arts. Read on for my top local tips.
The Fora Difference
Book with Jessie to access exclusive perks and experiences on your trip.
Free upgrades, spa credits and more—we got you
Customized travel planning for your style
Expert advice from people who’ve actually been there
Where to stay in Oklahoma City
The Skirvin Hilton Oklahoma City
Immerse yourself in the rich history and exceptional service of this iconic hotel, offering a seamless blend of comfort and style for an unforgettable stay.
21c Museum Hotel Oklahoma City
The pick for art lovers in Oklahoma City, this distinctive stay brings high-style interiors and a museum-worthy art collection to its former Ford assembly plant setting.
The National, Autograph Collection
Restored historic hotel conveniently located near downtown Oklahoma City's top attractions.
Unlock perks by contacting Jessie to book your trip.
Things to do in Oklahoma City
DISTRICT HOPPING OKC
It is divided into multiple districts which cluster all the best things in areas around the city. The Paseo Arts District is an artsy hideaway with galleries and shops set in funky historic buildings. Be there Memorial Day weekend for the annual Arts Festival. Midtown is a buzzy area for walkable access to bars and eateries. There’s always something going on in the Plaza District, known for its Plaza Walls mural project and eclectic shops.
The Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum is a must-see. It provides a poignant look at the tragedy of Oklahoma City federal building bombing in 1995 and the resiliency of the city coming together in the aftermath. Experience the vibrant culture of 39 First American Nations at the newly opened First Americans Museum. Art lovers can head to the Oklahoma City Museum of Art or the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center. From renowned western artists to John Wayne movie memorabilia, immerse yourself in all things Wild West at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum.
The Riversport center in the Boathouse District has whitewater rafting, kayaking and tubing, a ropes course, zipline and even an indoor ski slope. Scissortail Park is the city’s new 70-acre public park in the heart of downtown. Enjoy biking or strolling through the beautifully landscaped space and catch a concert or farmer’s market happening on the lawn. Biking OKC is a perfect place for bicyclers of any skill level, not only because of the lack of hills, but because there are miles of connecting bike trails throughout the city. Sports fans are in luck, too. Cheer on the local NBA team, the Thunder, or catch minor league baseball’s OKC Dodgers at Bricktown Ballpark.
Head to Tulsa to explore the Gathering Place, visit the Bob Dylan Center and live music at Cain’s Ballroom.
Visit Norman to cheer on the University of Oklahoma Sooners if it’s game day or check out the National Weather Center there to learn all you ever wanted to know about meteorology.
It’s well worth the drive to the Chickasaw Cultural Center in Sulphur where you can discover the history of the Chickasaw people and view a recreated traditional village.
Places to eat & drink in Oklahoma City
There are three dishes that OKC is known for – steak, onion burgers and pho. Here are my top places to try each.
Onion Burger – Tucker’s is the one for this Oklahoma specialty. And if you see a Theta Burger on a menu, trust me and try this only-in-OK style burger.
Pho – Pho Lien Hoa is the local’s go-to, but you’ll find plenty of options in the Asian District just north of downtown.
Café Kacao – The wait is well worth it at this popular spot for an amazing Guatemalan brunch.
Rivière Modern Bánh Mì – This is my favorite spot in OKC and the one place I insist on going anytime I’m back in town. Creative banh mi sandwiches are the star, but my pick is the crispy salt and pepper tofu (seriously, deliveries of this dish were the only thing that kept me going during the 2020 lockdown).
The Press – This Plaza District spot has the best veggie burger in town, but everything is good – from the Oklahoma Caviar to the sweet potato fritters.
Grey Sweater – Make reservations asap for a tasting journey at this restaurant concept by 2023 James Beard award winner for Best Chef Southwest, Chef Andrew Black.
The Jones Assembly – Restaurant by day, concert venue by night, the Jones is a unique spot for drinks, food or live music on Film Row.
El Coyote – Enjoy New Mexican style eats at this aesthetically pleasing spot in the up-and-coming Britton District – the tree-shaded patio is not to be missed!
The craft beer scene in OKC is on point. There are too many great breweries to name, but here are my top recommendations (and my fave brew at each).
Madhopper Brewing – drink: Brewnecorn.
Prairie Artisan Ales – drink: Prairie Bomb!
Stonecloud Brewing Company – drink: Neon Sunshine.
Anthem Brewing Company – drink: Golden One.
Pro Tip: You can try the full gamut of craft beers from local breweries on tap at Oak & Ore in the Plaza District.
Need to Know
Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out my guide, An Off-the-Beaten Path Trip to Hydra, Greece.
Get in touch with Jessie
Did you like this guide? Reach out to customize and book your own experience. Or, just to chat about travel in general.
You can normally expect a response from Jessie within a business day or so. You'll also be subscribed to our travel newsletter (you can unsubscribe at any time).
This guide is part of our ongoing series on City Travel.