The Best Outdoor Activities in Nebraska

As one of the states located in the Midwest region of the United States, Nebraska is a place that is often overlooked when it comes to outdoor activities. However, that does not mean that there are no exciting outdoor activities to partake in. In fact, the state has some of the most amazing sites and stretches of land in the United States, including several natural wonders and incredible national and state parks. Here are some of the best outdoor activities that you can enjoy when visiting Nebraska.

Visit the Omaha Zoo

Visiting the Omaha Zoo is a perfect activity for anyone looking to enjoy the outdoors in Nebraska. The zoo, which is located on a sprawling 130-acre property, offers a unique and fun experience for all ages. With over twenty exhibits and thousands of animals representing over nine hundred species, it’s an excellent destination for animal lovers. The highlight of the zoo is experiencing the African savanna, which is home to thirty acres of African inspired habitats.

Explore the Toadstool Geological Park

Located near the Nebraska Sandhills, the Toadstool Geological Park is a site to behold. This park is a great place for hiking, biking, and exploring, and it’s perfect for anyone who loves adventure. The park has spectacular geologic formations, including weirdly shaped mushroom rocks and ridges, which can be explored on multiple trails at its location. It’s a great spot for photo enthusiasts and anyone who loves a good hike.

Go on a Hot Air Balloon Ride

A hot air balloon ride offers a fantastic way of enjoying the great outdoors. The colorful balloons offer a unique way to see the beautiful landscapes of Nebraska, including the Platte River, Omaha skyline, and even the Sandhills. Balboa Ballooning is one of the most reputable companies in Nebraska and offers affordable hot air balloon rides for individuals, groups, or families.

Enjoy Nebraska’s National Parks

Nebraska has many impressive national parks to explore, each having unique flora and fauna and breathtaking sceneries. The National parks to visit include:

Scotts Bluff National Monument

This park features towering bluffs, sediments, and rock formations that are millions of years old and a prehistoric legacy that was witnessed by early travelers, including Native Americans and European explorers. The park is perfect for hikers, rock climbers, and those seeking a deeper historical understanding of Nebraska.

Chimney Rock National Historic Site

Chimney Rock is one of Nebraska’s most recognizable landmarks. This national park is situated in the high-plains and offers stunning panoramic views from the top of the rock. The park has several trails to explore, and it’s a great place for anyone who loves outdoor activities.

Agate Fossil Beds National Monument

Located ten miles from Harrison in Nebraska’s northwestern Sandhills, Agate Fossil Beds National Monument is home to fascinating fossil examples from the Miocene Epoch around twenty million years ago. The park features amazing hikes, rare fossils, and incredible artifacts from ancient cultures.

Visit the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium

The Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is another fantastic destination in Nebraska that’s worth visiting. With acres of interactive exhibits and thousands of animals making their homes in the facility, it is a must-visit for anyone who loves zoos, aquariums, or wildlife in general. The Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium’s main attractions include the Lied Jungle, the Desert Dome, and the Scott Aquarium.


Despite being a state that is not as well-known as some of the more popular destinations in the United States, Nebraska offers plenty of options for outdoor activities. From hiking in its beautiful national parks to exploring unique geological formations, the state has a lot of natural beauty to offer. The next time you’re in Nebraska, make sure to check out some of the outdoor activities mentioned above and experience its hidden beauty for yourself.

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