11 Fantastic Family Activities in Green Country
Green Country is chock full of fun, family-friendly destinations! Whether your kids are toddlers or teenagers, we have plenty of fun things to do to keep them busy and happy. Here’s a list of some of our most popular museums, attractions and other destinations for families with children.
Visit the Tulsa Zoo for a natural adventure that takes visitors on a world tour of fascinating animals and habitats. Get an up-close-and personal look at rare species like Malayan tigers, African penguins and white rhinoceroses – just to name a few. Step into The Rainforest for an immersive experience, with free-roaming critters including lizards, birds and two-toed sloths. Then take the little ones over to the Children’s Zoo, which is home to small mammals like red kangaroos and wallabies and also features a petting zoo with farm animals. The Lost Kingdom exhibit is inspired by the ruins of an ancient city in the tropical forests of Asia and allows visitors to view big cats, Komodo dragons, binturongs, red pandas and more in unique settings. Ranked one of the top 20 family-friendly zoos in the U.S., the zoo is a great way for any family to discover the animal kingdom in Tulsa!
Illinois River Float Trip
There’s no better way to cool off on a hot summer day than with a family float trip down the Illinois River in Tahlequah. Whether you prefer a raft, a couple of canoes, or getting everyone in their own kayak; an all-day trip or just a couple of hours on the river, there are many float trip outfitters with different options to choose from. Make a weekend out of it with a stay at one of the local campgrounds – scream down the enormous water slide at War Eagle Resort or enjoy a concert or a game of sand volleyball at Hanging Rock Camp. Ride the river through the verdant, gently rolling Ozark foothills for a one-of-a-kind view of the northeastern Oklahoma countryside. The river’s generally slow-moving pace makes it one of the top outdoor stops for families in Oklahoma. Come visit for yourself and make some summer memories to treasure for years to come.
Bartlesville Kiddie Park
First opened in 1947, Bartlesville’s Kiddie Park has been providing Oklahoma families with wholesome, old-fashioned carnival ride fun for more than 70 years. With a variety of rides including bumper cars, a carousel and a mini Ferris wheel, the park boasts plenty of activities to keep small children entertained. They’ll love the miniature roller coaster and the scale train ride which have been making kids happy for decades. Kiddie Park in Bartlesville is open May through August from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., so your family can enjoy the fun without having to endure the daytime heat. Each ride and activity requires only one ticket, and all tickets are just $0.50 so everyone can afford to enjoy the fun. But Kiddie Park only accepts cash, so be sure you have a few dollars with you or don’t forget to stop by an ATM on your way.
Jellystone Park at Eufaula Lake
Beat the heat at this popular family-friendly destination. Cool off in the calm water of Oklahoma’s largest lake, Eufaula Lake while the kids play on the floating giant inflatables anchored just offshore. For overnight stays, Jellystone Park offers full-hookup RV sites and several climate controlled cabins with amenities like flat screen TVs equipped with DirectTV, full baths and kitchens with appliances. The cabins also offer firepits and charcoal grills outside for cookouts and telling stories around the campfire. Be sure to explore the nearby town of Eufaula and some of the lake’s 600 miles of shoreline while you’re there. Make time to take in a gorgeous Oklahoma sunset over the water. Be smarter than the average bear and stay cool this summer at Jellystone Park!
Oasis Animal Adventures
Visit this unique Green Country attraction to meet and interact with several friendly exotic animals. Just a short drive from Grand Lake, Oasis Animal Adventures is home to a menagerie of exotic creatures including zebras, camels, African tortoises and many more. Many of the animals are hand-tamed, so you can even feed a kangaroo and make friends with a spider monkey or sloth! Oasis is a memorable destination for any family of animal lovers and offers great rates for larger groups. Visits to Oasis Animal Adventures are by appointment only, so give them a call and schedule your encounter with these very special animals. Oasis Animal Adventures is co-located with Picture in Scripture Amphitheater which produces highly-acclaimed Bible-based outdoor dramas during the summer months. The Oasis animals often make appearances in these huge productions and help bring them to life. So, if your visit will be during the summer months, be sure to check and see if you can combine your animal adventure with dinner and a show at the amphitheater.
Tulsa Air and Space Museum & Planetarium
Blast off with fun and interesting exhibits exploring Oklahoma’s rich aerospace history at the Tulsa Air and Space Museum. The museum is home to several vintage and rare aircrafts like the Spartan Executive Model 12 and the Aeromet AURA – one of the earliest unmanned aerial vehicles, which was designed by the Tulsa company Aeromet in the 1980s. Climb into the cockpit of a Rockwell Ranger 2000 jet, and let your child’s imagination soar on interactive exhibits including flight simulators, a wind tunnel where they can fly a scale model aircraft, and a space exhibit where they can climb into a space suit and operate a replica of the Space Shuttle’s robotic arm. While you’re there, discover the wonders of the universe with HD programs on subjects like the solar system, interstellar flight and the history of NASA at their state-of-the-art, full-dome planetarium.
Summer means one thing in Oklahoma – time to head to the lake! Grand Lake o’ the Cherokees is one of the state’s most popular summer destinations, and Sail Grand is your one-stop shop for boating, fishing, Jet Skiing, parasailing and more. They offer rentals of all kinds of watercrafts, with pontoons, fishing boats, sailboats and even yachts available to charter. For a special treat, soar through the air during a parasailing ride. Tandem parasailing is available, so you and one of the kiddos can get a bird’s eye view of the area from 500 feet up in the air. Add some fun accessories to your rental like water skis, innertubes, paddleboards or floating water mats. Those with boating experience can take their rental out for a spin on their own, while landlubbers can hire an experienced captain and crew for excursions ranging from two hours to a full day.
Natural Falls State Park
Tucked away in the Ozark Highlands near the town of West Siloam Springs at the Arkansas border, Natural Falls State Park is a unique example of Green Country’s natural beauty. The park’s most notable attraction is a 77-foot waterfall that cascades from green, mossy cliffs down into the small valley below. Observe a variety of native plant and animal life as you hike the short trail that connects the viewing platform at the top of the falls to an observation deck with seating at the bottom. Overnight campers can pitch their own tent or park their RV in a campsite or book a stay in one of the park’s four- to six-person yurts, which come equipped with amenities like air conditioning, electrical outlets, basic kitchen appliances, outdoor decks, charcoal grills and fire rings. The park offers several activities that are perfect for families with small children, including short ½ mile nature trails, playgrounds, horseshoes and catch-and-release fishing.
Bring your family to the Oklahoma Aquarium to experience the wonders of life under the sea. Discover beautiful and strange creatures like jellyfish, seahorses and electric eels in the Marvels and Mysteries exhibit. Visit the Ozark Stream exhibit to watch cute critters like raccoons, beavers and river otters splash and play. Watch the world’s largest captive bull sharks circle around you from inside a one-of-a-kind underwater glass observation room and tunnels. Kids will love the chance to interact with small sharks, stingrays and anemones at the Aquarium’s touch tanks and with fish, turtles and other animals at several feeding stations. Get a closer look at your favorite underwater creatures by scheduling your visit around their feeding time (feeding schedule can be found here). The Oklahoma Aquarium in Jenks is full of fantastic photo ops, so make sure to have your camera handy to capture some priceless moments at this fun and educational Green Country destination!
Sequoyah State Park
Located about an hour southeast of Tulsa on the eastern shore of Fort Gibson Lake, Sequoyah State Park attracts fishermen, boaters, swimmers, and anyone who loves spending time in the great outdoors. The park’s recently renovated lodge features several amenities perfect for families with small children, including a zero-entry swimming pool and a children’s splash pad park. Just a couple of minutes up the road from the lodge, Sequoyah Riding Stables offers guided trail rides and pony rides, as well as hayrides in the fall that build great family memories. Go for a walk or ride your bikes along the park’s two-mile paved trail and stop by the Three Forks Nature Center to learn about the park’s ecology and take a wildlife tour. Paradise Cove Marina in the northeast corner of the park has facilities to meet all of your boating needs, with a service and repair shop, loading docks, slip rentals, a bait and tackle store and paddleboat or pontoon rentals for a day of fun on the water. Sequoyah State Park has everything you need for the perfect family getaway.
The Gathering Place
The widely-acclaimed green space park in Tulsa features fantastical playgrounds that inspire imagination and are a favorite among families with young children. At The Gathering Place you’ll find expansive play areas where your kids can climb aboard a pirate ship, cross elevated walkways between towers and slide down tunnels. Scramble up into giant Blue Heron sculptures and slide down their wings or climb into the paddlefish for an adventure. Two playgrounds, Fairyland Forest and Volcanoville, were built specifically with toddlers in mind, while older children will love climbing to the top of fort towers that are multiple stories tall. Whether your family enjoys the playgrounds, hikes the trails, tests their skills in the skate park and BMX track or attends the many free festivals and events at The Gathering Place, you’ll love this unique green space.
Green Country is chock full of things to do and places to visit that the whole family will enjoy. Whether you are taking a toddler on an adventure or just entertaining a pre-teen kid, we've got family-friendly attractions galore to keep everyone engaged and happy. Romp on the fantastic playgrounds of The Gathering Place, meet friendly animals at petting zoos and exotic animal parks, go for a family nature hike or enjoy a swim beach at one of our state parks, or watch the kids enjoy an adrenaline rush on the pint-sized rides at Kiddie Park in Bartlesville. Whatever you choose to do, you'll build family memories of fun and adventure together. Find more ideas for Family Activities or browse our Outdoor Recreation and Children's Attractions pages for more inspiration.