Editors' Picks: 20 of the Best Things to Do in Kansas!

Kansas is the heartland of America - literally. The state's Smith County is the exact center of the 48 contiguous states. It's played a role in the presidency (Abilene's Dwight Eisenhower), aviation (Amelia Earhart hails from Atchison), movies (silent star Buster Keaton and "Gone with the Wind"' Hattie McDaniel were Kansans) - and even music, with a rock band named for the state.

Dorothy may have enjoyed her time "over the rainbow," but she was glad to get back home to the Sunflower State - and here are 20 reasons why.

Amelia Earhart Birthplace Museum

The famous aviatrix was born in this humble abode in 1897. It's now been turned into a museum documenting her life and barrier-breaking career. (Atchison)


Since 1962, this fun and interesting space museum has captivated visitors. There are many unusual exhibits, including the actual command module used by Apollo 13 ("Houston, we have a problem.") (Hutchinson)

Botanica Gardens

Thirty glorious gardens feature everything from a beautiful Chinese-themed "Garden of Friendship" to the Butterfly Garden. It's a favorite destination for locals during the spring. (Wichita)

Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve

This particular ecosystem is one of the most interesting features of the Kansas landscape. Explore it via trails that encompass these prairie grasses, wildflower vistas and more. (Strong City)

Kansas Aviation Museum

Located in the terminal of Wichita's former municipal airport (where lots of flight testing took place during WWII), this historic museum features plenty of cool planes to explore. You can also use simulators and climb up into the old control tower.

Oz Museum

Fans of the iconic movie will want to make a stop here to learn more about it. There's lots of memorabilia and opportunities for photo ops. Just watch out for flying monkeys. (Wamego)

Monument Rocks

These intriguing chalk and clay formations are out in the middle of nowhere; some visitors have even described it as a Stonehenge of the prairie. As you explore, keep your eye open for wildlife, including antelope, jackrabbits and more. (Oakley)


It's a massive salt mine/museum that sits 65 stories beneath the ground. There's a tram tour to explore fascinating displays, including a 250 million year old salt crystal. And even though visitors can't access it, the mine stores critical treasures like the master prints of Hollywood films like "Gone With the Wind." (Hutchinson)

Boot Hill Museum

Dodge City was pretty wild and woolly back in the day. Explore unique collections of Wild West memorabilia dating from the 1870s onwards. There are over 60,000 displays.

Cheney State Park

There are plenty of spots for swimming, sailing, fishing and other water activities. Camping is also a big favorite on its 1,900 acres. (Cheney)

Great Plains Renaissance Festival

Knights of old come to the heartland in this popular fall event. There are costumed re-enactors, highland games, sword fights, magicians and more. (Wichita)

The "In Cold Blood" House

The brutal 1959 murder of the Clutter family inspired Truman Capote's novel. The spirit of teenage daughter Nancy also reportedly haunts the home. Although its private property, do a drive-by around Halloween. (Holcomb)

Old Cowtown Museum

In the early days of Wichita, over a million longhorns were herded through its streets. The museum, located on the Old Chisholm Trail, captures this rowdy era.

Fort Scott National Historic Site

Soldiers themselves built this fort, which was originally meant to prevent white settlers from migrating West into Native American territory. It's a relic from a fascinating chapter in our nation's history.

Hollenberg Pony Express Station

Hard to believe that the Pony Express was only around for 18 months. This way station served as a stop for riders, as well as other travellers on their way west. (Hanover)

Museum Of World Treasures

This eclectic museum packs a lot into a small space - everything from dinosaurs to mummies to artifacts from European royalty and more. (Wichita)

Kansas State Capitol

It's one of the most beautiful and interesting statehouses in the nation - it's even been used in movies. Take a tour to explore the stunning architecture and history. (Topeka)

Spencer Museum Of Art

Housed at the University of Kansas, this exceptional museum holds some of the most significant pieces of medieval and East Asian artwork anywhere in the world. (Lawrence)

Brown V. Board Of Education National Historic Site

One of the most significant events in the Civil Rights movement (which ended legal segregation in public schools) gets its due at this site, which features many interactive exhibits. (Topeka)

Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library, Museum & Boyhood Home

Get to know "the man from Abilene" at his childhood home. There are thousands of artifacts, tracing his role in WWII, his presidency and more. It's also the final resting place for he and wife Mamie. (Abilene)

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Best Things To Do Near You
Best Things To Do Near You

Cheap Trick

Stiefel Theatre, Salina, KS
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Manhattan Short Film Festival

7:00 PM
McPherson Opera House, McPherson, KS
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Cheap Trick

7:30 PM
Stiefel Theatre for the Performing Arts, Salina, KS
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Heritage Day Festival

10:00 AM
Heritage Center of Dickinson County, Abilene, KS
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Get The Led Out

7:30 PM
Stiefel Theatre, Salina, KS
Learn More

Get the Led Out

7:30 PM
Stiefel Theatre for the Performing Arts, Salina, KS
Learn More
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Best Places To Go Near You
Best Places To Go Near You
623 East Main Street, Marion, KS
The Marion Historical Museum occupies a former 1887 Baptist Church, tucked in the corner of the Marion, Kansas Central Park.  The museum opene... Read More
Flint Hills Nature Trail, Herington, KS
The Flint Hills Nature Trail stretches for 117 miles across east-central Kansas, from Osawatomie in the east to Herington in the west, and passes t... Read More
200 North Poplar, Goessel, KS
About Us: Mennonite Heritage Museum. Dedicated in 1974, the museum complex was established to preserve the artifacts from early households, farms... Read More
412 South Campbell, Abilene, KS
The Heritage Center of Dickinson County is a unique collection of two in-door museums, that continues on out-the-back-door where you will find actu... Read More
200 South East 5th Street, Abilene, KS
The Abilene & Smoky Valley Railroad Association was formed in 1993 as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, dedicated to restoring and operat... Read More
407 South Buckeye, Abilene, KS
Learn more about greyhounds at the Greyhound Hall of Fame in Abilene, the "Greyhound Capital of the World." See interesting displays of greyhounds ... Read More
201 NorthWest Second Street, Abilene, KS
Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is the marketing arm of the City, providing services to tourists, groups convening in Abilene, and mar... Read More
200 Southeast Fourth Street, Abilene, KS
Library History : The basic function of the Library building is to provide a place for scholars to come to work in the rich historical materials h... Read More
177 West Hickory Street, Hesston, KS
The Dyck Arboretum of the Plains invites you to become better acquainted with the flora of Kansas. Displays of native wildflowers, grasses, shrubs ... Read More
27th and North Main, Bethel College, North Newton, KS
Kauffman Museum is named in memory of Charles Kauffman, founder and curator of the original Kauffman Museum. His work has been incorporated into th... Read More
120 Mill Street, Lindsborg, KS
Standing tall on the banks of the Smoky Hill River, the McPherson County Old Mill Museum preserves the early heritage of McPherson County. The muse... Read More
2661 Market Place, Salina, KS
Over 50 Years of Rollin' Fun For Everyone! Family owned & operated in Salina, Kansas since 1963 Read More
219 South Main Street, McPherson, KS
The McPherson Opera House was built less than 20 years after the city of McPherson, Kansas, was founded, and its history is richly intertwined with... Read More
303 East Iron Avenue, Salina, KS
Mission and History: Salina Community Theatre is a non-profit educational organization whose mission is to enrich the lives of people in Salina an... Read More
242 South Santa Fe, Salina, KS
Mission: Our mission is to create exchanges among art, artists, and audiences that reveal life. About Us: The Salina Art Center is celebrating i... Read More
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