Crystal shops at Nifty Nut House.

Wichita, Kansas – A Nutty Adventure

Being flatlanders doesn’t mean we have no resources for fun. With Kansas City as our starting point, we have a multitude of potential destinations within a 3-4 hour drive. On a beautiful Spring day, we hightailed it down the road for a Wichita adventure. The largest city in Kansas was calling our name and we were anxious to add Doo-Dah city to our One Day Stays. This trip would include sights we hadn’t seen in a few years, as well as some new locations. With about 24 hours to see it all, we wasted no time getting started.

We want to thank Visit Wichita for hosting our stay. Rest assured all opinions are our own.
We found lots of playtime during our stop at Exploration Place.

Getting Our Playtime In

Our first stop landed us at Exploration Place. This family-friendly attraction is designed to engage visitors with a wide range of exhibits. When people remind us that it is a kid’s science center, we remind them that all of us are someone’s kid, and we are still growing up. Crystal enjoyed the challenge of an oversized game of Operation, even if her surgery skills weren’t always the best. I found the Design Build Fly exhibit fascinating. With a bustling airline industry in Wichita, this section lets guests see the ins and outs of what goes in to creating an airplane.

Old Cowtown thrilled us with a Civil War encampment during our Wichita adventure.

Taking A Step Back

Old Cowtown was a site we had visited in the past, but this weekend held the promise of new fascinations. With 54 structures set out on 23 acres, it is truly like stepping into the past. The dirt roads are much like you’d find during the days of the Chisolm Trail. This particular visit coincided with their annual Civil War event. As we explored the town, we were delighted to witness an assortment of costumed characters going about their daily duties. It certainly provided plenty of photo opportunities. 

Dinner at First Mile was almost as sweet as sharing a cookie the next day.

Feeding Our Wichita Adventure

In the past, we’ve spent the majority of our time in the central section of  town. For this Wichita adventure, our lodging was in the Bradley Fair neighborhood. This open-air shopping district is filled with boutiques, dining opportunities, and plenty of retail to even keep us busy. Dinner was at First Mile Kitchen, which specializes in cooking from a live-fire hearth. Their plate presentation set the mood for a delectable meal. For dessert, we strolled over to Bakesale Treat Parlor to share a cookie.

Busy Morning

After filling our bellies, we enjoyed a leisurely stroll through the park setting outside of our hotel. Our lodging at the Hilton Garden Inn, was just steps away from the shopping experience of Bradley Fair. A restful night’s sleep recharged our batteries for a morning filled with activities. With coffee in hand, we made our way back downtown for one last Wichita adventure. The Wichita Art Museum was another attraction we had overlooked in the past. This time we would not leave before exploring its galleries. Afterwards, we stopped to take in the amazing riverfront views of The Keeper of the Plains.   

The authors gather supplies for their Wichita adventure from Nifty Nut House.

Road Ready

Our One Day Stay was drawing to an end, but we couldn’t leave town without doing something nutty. Since 1937, the Nifty Nut House has been selling a variety of snacks to locals and visitors alike. This family-owned business has more snack options than just about any place we’ve seen. Our quick stop soon turned into an extended shopping trip and we exited with an armful of tasty treats for the ride home. This One Day Stay is easily recreated, but you can exctend your stay with some of the other Wichita sites we’ve visited over the years. (You can find all of our Wichita articles HERE.)

4 thoughts on “Wichita, Kansas – A Nutty Adventure”

  1. Jack Bender, III

    It’s Jack Bender again. Just wanted you to know that the General Store at Old Cowtown belonged to my wife’s ancestors. It was moved in from Garden Plain KS. We donated some of the charcoal drawings of family members to Cowtown.
    I enjoy your trip stories. I learned a little about Wichita too.

    1. So happy to hear you enjoyed it. It’s always an educational opportunity for us when we visit. We’ll keep our eyes peeled for those drawings on our next stop at Old Cowtown.

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