Named The Most Beautiful Small Town In Nebraska, Valentine Deserves A Closer Look
Nebraska is a beautiful place from one border to the other. Most people would agree after seeing our tranquil rivers, our gently rolling Sandhills, our varied wildlife, and our breathtaking bluffs and ridges. In 2018, Valentine, Nebraska was named the
most beautiful small town in Nebraska by Architectural Digest, and we have to say that we enthusiastically agree. Here are just a few of the reasons that Valentine deserves a closer look as a travel destination.
Valentine is home to some of the most beloved outdoor attractions and activities in the whole state. Settle in at one of the surrounding inns or B&Bs and get ready for a fantastic time exploring this treasure in the Sandhills.
What will you see first on your visit to the most beautiful small town in Nebraska? Many people like to make Smith Falls State Park their first stop. The park features a scenic bridge, a short hike, and a boardwalk that will all lead you to Smith Falls, the highest waterfall in Nebraska. Clusters of micro-ecosystems with wildly varied collections of flora and fauna - some of which can't be found anywhere else in the state - make nature walks here especially memorable.
For a slightly wilder experience, Snake River Falls is also close by. This waterfall - the largest by volume in Nebraska - is on private land which is not always open to visitors. If you visit when it's open to the public, a short hike will bring you up close and personal to this hidden gem.
Runners, bikers, and equestrians love the Valentine area for the Cowboy Trail. It covers 195 miles between Valentine and Norfolk along the old Chicago & Northwestern rail route. As of the time of publication, there are still a few segments to be added on, after which the Cowboy Trail will be the longest rails-to-trails conversion in
Valentine has plenty of natural spots to be proud of, but the National Scenic Niobrara River is among the most stunning. This beautiful river is perfect for every type of water activity you can think of, including a local favorite: floating all afternoon in a repurposed stock tank.
Just outside of Valentine lie two of the country's most splendid National Wildlife Reserves. Fort Niobrara NWR and Valentine NWR may be close together, but they are different enough that you'll want to visit both. You may just spot some roaming bison...
...Or perhaps the adorable prairie dog, which was first spotted and documented by European explorers right here in Nebraska.
You're bound to get a little hungry after all of your adventures, and Valentine certainly doesn't disappoint when it comes to tasty, small-town food. The Peppermill Restaurant and Lounge is a local favorite steakhouse; you can also find drool-worthy meals at the historic Frosty Drive-In, the Bunkhouse Restaurant and Lounge, the Coachlight Inn, and several more.
This small town with the sweet name is the northern Nebraska Sandhills destination you don't want to miss. Whether you're here to do a little shopping and dining or plan to spend the entire time enjoying the outdoors, Valentine definitely belongs on your must-visit list.
Find out more about Valentine on the city’s
website. While you’re in town, be sure to visit the Broken Spoke Boutique, a charming locally-owned shop located in a former bank building.
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