The Myriad Botanical Garden is a green oasis that offers space and serenity within the concrete urban sprawl of Oklahoma City's downtown. The gardens are spread across 17 acres (6.9 hectares), and the horticulturists often offer educational classes and workshops as well as just a place to relax. Upon entering, the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory contains more than 2000 species of plants and in addition to permanent species, the gardens display rotating exhibits such as orchids and more exotic plants throughout the year. The Grand Event Lawn in the outer gardens and the Water Stage on the lake are frequently used for events like concerts, theater and movie screenings year-round.
The Oklahoma River is an offshoot of the Mighty Mississippi hundreds of miles away to the east. Thankfully, it is still a viable river perfect for recreation and leisure on its banks. The asphalt trails on both sides of the river cover 13-miles, however there is no way to cross from one side to the other! To access the north trail, start at Regatta Park and to access the south, there is an entrance at SW 15th and Sheridan. One other note, the OKC Parks Department does not allow motorized vehicles, only pedestrian and cycling activity.
The Will Rogers Park & Garden Center contains the Ed Lycan Conservatory, the Charles E. Sparks Rose Garden, the Margaret Annis Boys Arboretum and the Will Rogers Exhibition Center. The entire park is truly a sight to behold with its lush green fields that cover over 130 acres and tons of botanical wonders spread throughout its trails. Visitors and residents are always here on balmy summer evenings to watch the sunset or to take a leisurely stroll. For more sporty activities, the park also contains a Frisbee-golf course and it is the location for the Oklahoma City Tennis Center.
City dwellers consider this park to be one of their favorites and it is always bursting at the seams with people. This place has it all, there are playgrounds, picnic tables, soccer and softball fields, a golf course, and a nine-mile jogging and biking trail, it is easy to see why it's so packed. Most afternoons you can see kites or model airplanes flying high overhead and colorful sailboats cruising along Lake Hefner, which is adjacent to the park.
Regatta Park is a great recreation center for the locals of Oklahoma City. Located in the heart of Downtown, the park is used by locals for hosting a number of events, parties and sporting events. The annual Oklahoma River Fest also takes place at the park and draws a lot of people from all over the city. The event includes a number of games and activities for the kids as well as the adults including bicycle races, boat races and live music.
Martin Park provides a little natural respite for Oklahoma City's denizens with its nearly three miles of foot trails amongst thick foliage and plenty of local fauna. Visitors can reserve nature guides who describe the region's natural history or they can come alone to enjoy the tranquility. Either option notwithstanding, the park has informational stands along the way that tell you about native plants and animals. A couple of other relaxing activities include feeding turtles in the freshwater pond or taking a moment to bird watch. Highlights for the kids include 'Prairie Dog-Town' and the 'Squirrel Observatory', both are informative and fun. Whether you are alone or with the family, an afternoon strolling through the park is a great way to unwind. Admission is free.
Enjoy the great outdoors at this 158 acre park. With walking trails, half basketball courts and picnic areas, this is the perfect place to spend the day. Children will love playing on the large playground with swings and a play area. The park is well-known for its soccer fields where the South Lakes Soccer Club hold games throughout the year. If you don't want to play a spot, just walk around and enjoy the scenery. Have a picnic by one of the two lakes and admire the waterfall next to the pedestrian bridge.