How many destinations can you cross off your Cornhusker bucket list?
Located near the city of Alliance, Nebraska are thirty-nine automobiles placed to assume the same proportions as Stonehenge with the circle measuring approximately 96 feet in diameter. Some autos are held upright in pits five feet deep, trunk end down, while other cars are placed to form the arches and welded in place. All are covered with gray spray paint. The honor of depicting the heel stone goes to a 1962 Caddy.
For more information: http://carhenge.com/
You’ll have plenty of opportunities to spot local wildlife as you pass through the peaceful US Fish & Wildlife Ft. Niobrara Wildlife Refuge, a designated wilderness area. There are many rental shops where you can rent kayaks, tubes, canoes to float the river during the summer months.
Smith Falls; At nearly 70 feet tall, Smith Falls is Nebraska's largest natural waterfall. It's located in Smith Falls State Park near Sparks, NE along the Niobrara river.
Fort Falls; This gorgeous sight can be found in the breathtaking Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge in Valentine.
Stair Step Falls; Stair Step Falls is probably Nebraska's most picturesque waterfall. Located on private property in the Niobrara Valley Preserve, you can catch a glimpse of it shortly after Sharp's Landing while tubing or kayaking down the Niobrara.
For more information: https://nrranch.com/
This beautiful estate in Nebraska City was the original home of J. Sterling Morton, who founded Arbor Day — the tree planter’s holiday — in 1872. The park was officially designated as an arboretum on Arbor Day, April 22, 1976, by the then-newly chartered Nebraska State Arboretum. Arbor Lodge has 10 trees that the Statewide Arboretum recognizes as state champions because of their size and age. The collection of trees and shrubs consists of more than 260 species, including many native plants and some that are uncommon in the region. Some of the oldest and finest specimens in the arboretum were planted by Morton and the Morton family in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Many specimens are labeled with both their common and scientific names. Interpretive signs along the Tree Trail enhance visitors’ experiences.?
For more information: http://www.arbordayfarm.org/attractions/arbor-lodge.cfm
Eugene T. Mahoney State Park
Mahoney State Park offers year-round accommodations and recreational use. This ultra-modern park offers a spectacular array of lodging, group meeting facilities and activities. Located near Ashland, just off of I-80 at exit 426, Mahoney nestles on 700 acres along the picturesque Platte River.
For more information: http://outdoornebraska.gov/mahoney/
Toadstool Geological Park
As you drive down the gravel road to Western Nebraska's Toadstool Geological Park you'll wonder if you're in the right place... or even on the right planet. As with most hidden gems, the park is pretty far off the beaten path (literally and figuratively speaking) but it's well worth the journey. From the unique rock formations to the mysterious and ancient animal tracks to the strange dirt home in the park, there's plenty to see and do! ?
(For more information: https://visitnebraska.com/see_and_dos/toadstool-geologic-park)
Indian Cave State Park
Indian Cave State Park takes its name from a three-sided sandstone shelter where Native Americans left “petroglyph” carvings about 1,500 years ago. At the time of the park’s 1962 founding, visible petroglyphs included human and animal figures, including a man astride a horse. Twenty-two miles of hiking-biking trails and 16 miles of equestrian trails wind throughout the park, offering controlled access to Indian Cave’s remaining petroglyphs and ample vistas of birds, animals and hardwood forests.
For more information: http://outdoornebraska.gov/indiancave/
Sunken Gardens is one of the most beautiful spots in all of Nebraska. There are over 30,000 plants there and are rearranged every year to represent a different theme. The garden has three different areas and features such as the healing garden, perennial garden, and the annual garden. There are paths throughout the entire garden where you can watch the thousands of flowers bloom all summer. The Sunken Gardens was the only Nebraska garden named to the “300 Best Gardens to Visit in the U.S. and Canada”.
For more information: http://www.lincolnparks.org/what_we_do/tributes-memorials/sunken-gardens.html
Snake River Falls
Looking like a fun place to spend a hot summer afternoon, Snake River Falls is a popular fishing and recreation spot about 20 miles south of Valentine. It's the largest waterfall by volume in the entire state of Nebraska.
For more information: https://visitnebraska.com/see_and_dos/snake-river-falls
Ponca State Park
Ponca State Park is just full of natural beauty, and its campground is no exception. Stay in one of the luxurious mini-lodges or a tradition cabin. If you'd like, you can bring your RV, or camp in a tent in one of the primitive sites.
For more information: http://outdoornebraska.gov/ponca/
Sage Hill Vineyard & Winery
This little vineyard and winery in Parks, Nebraska is a wonderful place to spend the day. The 1,250 vines here produce both red and white varietals. Stay overnight in the winemaker's loft!
For more information: : http://www.onlyinyourstate.com/nebraska/remote-winery-ne/
There’s a never-ending list of fun stuff to do in the Cornhusker State – and there are tons of things that you can actually do for free, so you have no excuse not to get out there and enjoy Nebraska!