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Best Outdoor Activities in Wichita

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Learn about local plants and wildlife at the Great Plains Nature Center. Inside, exhibits like Kansas Wildlife and Prairies of the World are educational for both kids and adults. Outside, trails provide the perfect opportunity to view some of the flora and fauna you learned about inside. Remember your trip here with something from the gift shop - it offers a variety of books, toys, and other fun memorabilia.

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Featuring several lakes where you can fish, Sedgwick County State Park is a must-visit for fishing aficionados. Even if fishing isn't your thing, there's plenty to do for the whole family. Hike or bike along a trail, taking in the sights of wildlife. If you're into sports, head to the softball field or basketball court for a game. In the winter, the sledding hill is tons of fun!

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Opened in 1987, these gardens were a collaboration between the Wichita Area Garden Council and the City of Wichita. They include an aquatic collection, butterfly garden, a butterfly house, greenhouse for tropical plants, a rock garden, a rose garden, a sensory garden, a Shakespearean garden, and more. They opened a children's garden in 2011 that features several themed areas for kids.

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Naftzger Memorial Park is located in downtown Wichita. Although it's small, it makes up for its size in style. There's a waterfall located in the middle of the park where visitors can sit and enjoy the sound of the water. Bring a lunch and take a seat at one of the picnic tables, or find respite in the beautiful gazebo. This small park is a treat for those passing through downtown who want a bit of time outdoors.

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Dogs have a lot to be happy about at Chapin Dog Park. Here, they can run, play, fetch, and roll over off leash. While your dog runs around, you can take a seat on a bench or seek out some shade. Nearby, there's a model airplane flying area, so you can bring out yours or just watch other people's planes zoom around.

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At 14 miles (22 kilometers) in length, the Arkansas River Trail is one of the longest and most popular paths in Wichita. Walk or bike along the Arkansas River, taking in the great outdoors. Along the path, not only will you see plants and wildlife, but you'll come across major attractions in the city, like stadiums and museums.

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If you're looking to have a fun family day on a budget, head to Kansas Wildlife Exhibit. With no admission fee, this exhibit provides visitors with a glimpse at over 25 species of animals native to the area. Learn about local ecology and see animals up close. The exhibit opened in 1988 and has been educating kids and adults alike ever since.

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