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Nebraska Outdoor Fun

Recreation in Cornhusker Parks & Forests

Where will you start on your getaway in the Cornhusker State? Nebraska visitors have a full menu of outdoor activities; no matter what season they happen to be visiting. Outdoor enthusiasts have plenty to do throughout the state, so start packing.

Western Nebraska

You'll first need to stock up on some outdoor gear – hiking shoes, backpacks, kayaks, whatever you want. The southwestern city of Sidney is home to the Cabela's Corporate Office.

Set in northwestern Nebraska, the city of Chadron is an outdoor lovers paradise. Chadron plays host to a number of recreational activities, many of which found at Chadron State Park – less than 10 miles south of town.

This Nebraska state park is nearly 10,000 acres of stunning outdoor scenery. Part of the Nebraska National Forest, Chadron State Park offers incredible hiking, fishing, and boating.

Check out the many multipurpose trails – right after a visit to the onsite mountain bike rentals – and bike, hike or horseback your way through the Nebraska wilderness.

Central Nebraska

Found in south-central Nebraska, the city of Grand Island has a full itinerary ready for those willing to step outside. Golfers may choose from several courses in town, including Indianhead Golf Course and Jackrabbit Run Golf Course.

Take the kids to the Island Oasis water park during the summer, or take a stroll through the Nebraska Nature & Visitor Center in nearby Alda. Eagle Scout Park offers hiking and biking trails, not to mention fishing spots and playground equipment for the little ones.

Less than an hour west of Grand Island is the fun-loving city of Kearney. Hometown of the University of Nebraska at Kearney, this city offers an abundance of outdoor activity.

Zip down the Kearney Hike & Bike Trail on two wheels or two feet, and be sure to make it to the top of the John & Carmen Gottschalk Observatory Tower in Yanney Heritage Park. Don’t leave without some fishing or bird watching at Yanney Heritage Park’s 12-acre lake, or get in some more more birding Rowe Sanctuary & Iain Nicolson Audubon Center.

Nearby Wood River is home to the year-round Crane Trust Nature & Visitor Center – ideal for bird watchers and those who love nature trails.

Eastern Nebraska

Outdoor fun continues in eastern Nebraska, home to York, Nebraska City, Bellevue, and of course, Omaha.

Give your indoor voice a break and head outside to one of 100 parks in Lincoln – all of which are connected by a network of multipurpose trails. Walk, jog, or bike to Oak Lake Park, Pioneers Park, and even Antelope Park – the largest park in Lincoln. During your time in Antelope Park, check out the Lincoln Children's Zoo and the Sunken Gardens.

Less than an hour from Lincoln is Nebraska City – known as the home of Arbor Day. Explore the many orchards and vineyards in town, or shoot 18 at ArborLinks Golf Course, Table Creek Golf Course, and the Wildwood Golf Course.

Head up to Bellevue for more fun in outdoor Nebraska. Bellevue is home to the Fontenelle Forest – a 1,400-acre playground full of hiking trails, picnic spots and a nature center. This National Natural Landmark delights visitors with excellent bird watching, playground equipment, and a chance to explore the Katherine and Fred Buffett Forest Learning Center.

Once in Omaha, head straight for one of the many biking and hiking paths – as Omaha boasts of more than 80 miles of multiuse trails including the Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail. Settle in for a day at Dodge Park, set along the Missouri River, for incredible fishing, water skiing and even boating. Take a hike, or get in a game of tennis, basketball, soccer or horseshoes.