Nebraska is a state that is known a lot of things…
Its known for its expansive prairies, majestic sand dunes, and regal landscape. It is rich in history with its ties to Lewis and Clark and its role in their historic expedition. Omaha, the largest city in the state, boasts a vibrant small business community and dynamic cultural arts scene. Here a few places to check out on your next visit.
Doorly Zoo and Aquarium
Nationally renowned for its leadership and conservation research this zoo includes several notable exhibits and complexes. Key exhibits include the Butterfly and Insect Pavilion, the Garden of Senses, the Desert Dome, Hubbard Gorilla Valley, the Small Animal Collection, and the Cat Complex. The Zoo is heralded as second only to the San Diego Zoo and is Nebraska’s top paid attraction, with more than 25 million guests in the past 40 years.
No trip to Omaha would be complete without a visit to the Old Market neighborhood in downtown. The spot is full of restaurants, art galleries, upscale shopping destinations and unique boutique. Visitors will often find street performers, artists, and vendors scattered throughout the area. The area is designated on the National Register of Historic Places and walking tours are available to learn more about the historic buildings within the district.
Joslyn Art Museum
Located in the heart of Omaha,the Joslyn Art Museum is the principle fine arts museum in the state. First open in 1931 by local philanthropist, Sarah H. Joslyn, it is the only museum in the state to have an extensive permanent collection. Works in the collection include 19th and 20th century American and European pieces from artists Pierre-Auguste Renoir and William-Adolphe Bouguereau. In May of 2013, it was decided that they would no longer charge admission in order to provide free access to the general public.
Heartland of America Park
This beautiful park in downtown is known both locally and by guests as a pleasurable spot to relax, take a walk, enjoy a picnic, or feed the birds. The 31- acre park features paved walking trails, three fountains (one of which features a computerized fountain display and nighttime light show) and is home to a couple of swans that have earned the nicknames of Romeo and Juliet by locals. The park is located near Omaha’s Old Market and close to downtown shopping, the Omaha Children’s Museum and Harrah’s Council Bluffs Hotel and Casino.