Nebraska May 05, 2017
The 15 Very Best Day Trips You Can Possibly Take In Nebraska
When you need a little getaway and want to explore some of our fascinating state, a day trip is perfect. You don’t have to commit to a hotel stay and you can keep costs fairly low. These 15 day trips are by no means a complete list of the things you should see in Nebraska, but they represent some of the favorite trips we’ve featured here in the past.
Obviously, in such a big state, not all of these will be possible as a day trip from every starting point. But even if you have to plan a long drive and an overnight hotel stay to see them, every one of these places is worth a visit.
They’re listed here in no particular order.
1. The beautifully remote winery - in the unincorporated community of Parks
Located in the very southwestern corner of Nebraska, the little community of Parks is home to Sage Hill Vineyard & Winery. The beautiful scenery is second only to the selection of delicious wines. You can even stay in the "Winemaker's Loft" for an extended trip!
Read more about this lovely winery here
2. A big step back in time - near Royal
Ashfall Fossil Beds State Historical Park is an active archaeological dig that you can see in action. Watch as bones are painstakingly unearthed and learn about some of the fascinating prehistoric creatures that once inhabited Nebraska.
Read more about Ashfall here
On your way there or back, be sure to stop at the quaint farm restaurant in a barn,
Green Gables of Pleasant Valley
3. The roadside farm market - near Kimball
BeeHaven Farm Roadside Market sells farm-fresh products grown and produced onsite and from other local area farms. It's not just a place to shop - it's a little slice of rural Nebraska life that everyone should experience at least once.
Read more about the market here
4. The tiny town you may not have heard of - Callaway
5. The most remote, isolate area of Nebraska - the Sandhills
If it seems weird to call an area that covers 1/4 of the state "remote and isolated," you need to see the Sandhills for yourself. It's the most sparsely populated area of the state, and it's also home to some of the most beautiful natural scenery you'll ever lay eyes on. Take the
Nebraska Sandhills Journey Scenic Byway
for the most scenic route through.
Read more about the Sandhills here
6. Nebraska's only mine - near Scotia
Happy Jack Peak and Chalk Mine is a fun bit of Nebraska history turned tourist attraction. You can walk through the unique diatomite mine that's unlike anything else you'll find in the whole state, then enjoy the little "mountain" and the incredible scenery from the top.
Find out more about it here
7. The picture perfect little town - Crawford
Crawford, a small Dawes County town in northwestern Nebraska, has retained some of its Wild West charm. There are lots of things to see and do in town, but Crawford is also the perfect home base for lots of other day trips and adventures, such as Fort Robinson, the Hudson-Meng Bison Kill Site, the Museum of the Fur Trade, and more.
Check out what you can see in Crawford and the surrounding areas right here
8. One of the most beautiful, unique state parks - near Shubert
Indian Cave State Park has so much to offer visitors, and it doesn't end with the ancient petroglyph-adorned cave. There are miles and miles of hiking trails, a ghost town, outstanding camping, and absolutely breathtaking scenery.
Find out more here
9. Henderson Mennonite Heritage Park - near Henderson
It's not every day that you find a Mennonite settlement in Nebraska. But this one near Henderson was once a thriving community. Today, the buildings and history are preserved for other generations of Nebraskans to learn from and enjoy.
Read more about it here.
10. Riverside Discovery Center - Scottsbluff
This zoo/park/education center is just full of things for individuals and families to do. You'll have a terrific time while you learn about tons of animals and ecological systems.
Read more about this attraction here
11. A sweet chocolate factory tour - near Tekamah
12. The charming little town - Fairbury
You might not think to visit Fairbury as a destination on its own, but you should reconsider. This sweet little town has a beautifully preserved historic district and some places that seem like they're straight out of a fairy tale. If you've never visited, you might be surprised at just how lovely it is.
Find out more about Fairbury here
13. The state's tallest waterfall - near Valentine
Smith Falls State Park is a beautiful place to spend a day. The unique ecosystem here is home to lots of plants that you won't find in other places in Nebraska. Not to mention the absolutely stunning beauty of the waterfall itself. Pictures just don't do it justice - you've got to visit this one in person.
14. The wine trail through southeast Nebraska
The Southeast Nebraska Winery Trail Association has a group of member wineries dotting the southeastern part of the state. We've put them together into a road trip, but you can rearrange the stops to suit your own tastes. Whatever order you visit the wineries in, you'll be delighted by their products.
15. The otherworldly landscape - in the Oglala National Grassland
Toadstool Geologic Park is one of the most unusual places you'll see in all of Nebraska. The rock formations here look like something you'd expect to find on another planet, and you can take a short walk among them to admire just how incredible they are. Bonus side trip: the Hudson-Meng Bison Kill Site is just a few short miles away.
Read more about this geologic wonder here
There are thousands of awesome day trips to take in Nebraska – and as always, we’ll keep telling you about them!