Since a young child, I have been fascinated with skylines and downtowns. My dad was a truck driver, so I got lucky in getting to see many great cities during our travels as a young teenager. Living in Oklahoma my whole life, seeing Oklahoma City blossom and continue to rapidly grow and become a big league city, is something that I used to daydream about. There are many hidden gems in every state, especially Oklahoma. From the many up and coming areas of downtown OKC, to the historic and beautiful Tulsa area, down to the small oasis of Medicine Park in the middle of the Wichita Mountains. As I have gotten older, I have come across some hidden gems while traveling. I am doing this blog for others that love to travel, especially with road trips, to briefly describe a few of my favorite places that I have accidently stumbled upon.
Yes, there is not much in Arkansas, but if you are a nature freak, this is the perfect getaway for you. Up in the Ozark mountains, just east of Tulsa, is some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. A very unique and old town in the middle of this is Eureka Springs, AR. Full of history, mountains and spookiness, this is a very cool spot out in the middle of nowhere. Just southwest of Eureka Springs, is the nice little college town of Fayetteville. Being a huge college football fan, I wanted to go check it out since I was around that area. This town is literally in the mountains and it is a cool site to see.
Now, this is a place that I wouldn’t suggest taking a trip to just to see this town. This is for passing through on a way to somewhere else. I had the day off while staying in Artesia, so I decided to take a stroll through the historic downtown area. Much to my surprise, it reminded me a lot of the Plaza District near downtown OKC. It is historic with a mixture of hipster. Like many of New Mexico, it had a painted desert feeling to it. With beautiful sculptures and wall paintings everywhere, it is well worth making a stop here.
Marble Falls, TX
My wife and I drove thru this place by mistake on our way back from San Antonio. I had no idea that the Colorado River even ran through Texas, but this beautiful small city, that looked more like an oasis, is right on top of it.
Once again, this would be somewhere to go if you are already traveling around the area. What made this place so interesting to me, was that it was right on the mighty Mississippi River and that Iowa actually has hilly places. The town itself has roads and houses on massive slopes, that reminds me of San Francisco. Muscatine has many historic sites that you can visit while there. There is also easy access to the river and just across the bridge is Illinois.
St. Augustine, FL
Now, this is one of my favorite places that I’ve been. Known as Americas oldest settlement, St. Augustine is full of history and intriguing historic sites. This is a place that would take multiple days to see all of the attractions. From the beach, to ancient war forts and haunted tours. It isn’t far from Jacksonville and not too far from Daytona Beach, where we traveled from.
There are many great places not mentioned above, like San Antonio and my drive through the beautiful Smokey Mountains between Knoxville, TN into North Carolina and many more. What are some fascinating places that you have travelled through that might be considered a hidden gem?