It’s pretty amazing to us that there are still people who don’t know how much Nebraska has to offer. For residents and visitors alike, there are hundreds of reasons to love our state. However, The Portrait of American Travelers recently found that Nebraska ranked #50 on the list of states people want to visit. That’s right – we came in behind every other state. That’s just not ok with us, so we’re presenting to the world some of the reasons Nebraska is a completely underrated travel destination.
1. Our small towns are remarkably charming.
Whether you're in a town of 10 people or 1000, you'll find endless charm, friendly folks, and that wholesome small-town feeling that makes you think of simpler times.
2. Our cities are vibrant and thriving.
Most people think of Nebraska as a strictly agricultural state with nothing to offer the urbanite. The reality is that we have some terrific cities, and they come in all different sizes to suit your preferences.
3. We've got world-class attractions.
From our record-breaking zoo to our enormous selection of museums to some truly unique parks, pioneer villages, and historic sites...Nebraska has something for everyone to love.
4. The food here is unbelievable.
A lot of our food comes from right here in Nebraska, particularly our melt-in-your-mouth steaks. You can find classy haute cuisine and hearty down-home cooking - sometimes even in the same restaurant!
5. There's so much outdoor adventure here that you'll never run out of things to do.
We Nebraskans love getting outdoors and exploring the world around us. Contrary to popular belief, we've got way more than just flat, boring fields, and we don't amuse ourselves by cow tipping. There are thousands of ways to go enjoy the outdoors any time of the year.
6. There's so much wide open space here.
If you ever feel crowded or overwhelmed by life, just head for one of our many state parks, recreation areas, or really any area that's short on people and long on green space.
7. The wildlife here is absolutely amazing.
We've got sandhill cranes every spring, dancing prairie chickens in mating season, bighorn sheep in the west, elk and deer everywhere, and plenty of other animals to keep any wildlife-lover enthralled. And if you're a hunter or angler, Nebraska is basically paradise.
8. Our history is fascinating.
Nebraska has been the site of some of the country's most memorable historic moments. We've kept that history alive in plenty of wonderful attractions that you can visit today to feel a connection to our past.
9. Nebraska's national and historical monuments are second to none.
From the ancient Agate Fossil Beds to the natural rock formations to the Homestead National Monument, our national monuments are all worth a visit.
10. The sky is bigger here.
Montana might be called "Big Sky Country," but we think the Nebraska's sky is just so much prettier. It goes all the way to the ground here, and our unique climate creates some fascinating cloud formations. At night, you can see so many stars that you'll feel like you're floating in space.
11. You've never seen natural beauty like this.
Nebraska is one of the only places in the nation where you can still see virgin prairies. There are spectacular, untouched natural areas just about everywhere - and all of them are breathtaking.
12. You can actually touch an important part of history here.
Situated at the very spot where the Great Plains meet the West, Nebraska was an important part of the most important historic trails. The Oregon, Mormon, Pony Express, and California Trails all passed right through here. In some places, you can still see and touch the actual ruts that pioneers' wagon wheels cut into the earth so long ago.
13. We've got a delightfully quirky side.
Nebraska has some fabulous one-of-a-kind attractions that show off our quirky collective sense of humor. The world's only roller skating museum is here, as is the world's only museum dedicated to commemorating the history of the fur trade.
14. Our people are unflinchingly friendly.
We're always ready to stop and have a talk, share some of our favorite places, and help out whenever it's needed. You won't find better folks anywhere in the country.
15. You'll feel like you've discovered a hidden gem.
Because so few people realize how amazing Nebraska really is, visiting here will feel like you've discovered a well-kept secret. Our state is indeed a hidden gem just waiting to be discovered.
How do you feel about Nebraska’s ranking in the national study? Why do you think our state is so very underrated? Share your thoughts in the comments.