Small, charming Oklahoma towns represent the true heart and soul of what our beautiful state is all about. Not only are the towns beautiful and quaint, but you’ll meet some of the kindest, most welcoming people ever. Small town Oklahoma has great shopping, beautiful scenery and outdoor adventures that will have you wondering why you never visited them before. Here are 11 of the most beautiful, charming small towns in Oklahoma:
1. Medicine Park (415 pop.)
Nestled in the Wichita Mountains in southwestern Oklahoma is the vintage cobblestone resort town, Medicine Park. Step back in time as you stroll the quaint Cobblestone Row filled with shopping, history and small town America. It is surrounded by natural beauty on all sides, water running right through it and the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge right next to it. You can enjoy a day trip or weekend trip of breathtaking scenery, fishing, swimming, hiking, shopping, bike riding or just relaxing. This historic resort town in Oklahoma was a finalist for “America's Coolest Small Town” by Budget Travel Magazine.
2. Guthrie (10,908 pop.)
a rare community that offers the best
qualities of small town rural Oklahoma
living along with the culture, history and
economic growth most often found in
much larger cities. Quiet, tree-lined streets dominate the internal landscape as
beautiful neighborhoods spring up around local golf courses
and lakes across the countryside. The historic downtown district
is a National Historic Landmark and hosts thousands of visitors
each year from around the world. It is also a vibrant residential
neighborhood with numerous apartment homes and B&B rooms
located above and alongside downtown businesses. Guthrie is also home to The Dominion House (pictured above), an exquisite wedding/event center that features an outdoor garden.
3. Eufaula (2,813 pop.)
Nestled on the shores of Lake Eufaula – Oklahoma's largest, most tranquil lake – the city's 20-block downtown, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is made for walking and shopping unique antiques. Eufaula is a destination community with rich native heritage, a variety of sporting and leisure events, treasure filled shops and boutiques, along with arts and entertainment.
4. Carlton Landing (56 pop.)
Carlton Landing is a new urbanism town in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma. The town was established on October 21, 2013. Carlton Landing is a new town on Lake Eufaula designed according to the tenets of the New Urbanism. Residents of Carlton Landing enjoy a walkable community that offers major amenities within a five minute walk of their residence. They have a private school, farm, marina and boat club, community pool, parks, nature center, general store, restaurant and so much more. If you are looking for community, this is the place to be.
4. Broken Bow (4,120 pop.)
Broken Bow is located in McCurtain County in the southeast corner of Oklahoma. It is the gateway city to Broken Bow Lake, Beavers Bend Resort Park, the Mountain Fork and Glover Rivers, and the Ouachita National Forest. Broken Bow is a wonderful place to live or visit. The average summer temperature is 80 degrees and they receive over 50 inches of rainfall a year, which means the forests are green and the streams, rivers and lakes are full and clear. This scenic area provides a fun-filled environment for many popular outdoor activities such as canoeing, boating, hiking, bird watching, golfing, scuba diving, hunting, mountain biking, camping, horseback riding, four-wheeling, and all types of fishing.
5. Pauls Valley (6,187 pop.)
This small, charming town has many attractions to explore. Some people tour Pauls Valley via the Heartland Flyer train, which stops every morning in the city on its route from Oklahoma City to Fort Worth, TX. You can see a 1902 steam engine at the Santa Fe Depot Museum and Plaza, located near the train station, play like a kid in the Toy and Action Figure Museum, or enjoy local history along the streets.
6. Ada (16,810 pop.)
Ada is home to East Central University, and is the headquarters of the Chickasaw Nation. ECU serves roughly 4,500 students and is perhaps best known internationally for its cartography program, as only a few such programs exist. Ada is located in Pontotoc County and is the birthplace of country music star Blake Shelton. Browse Ada’s thriving Main Street for artist studios, galleries and the McSwain Theatre, built in the 1920s and restored in 2009. Enjoy live music from regional stars before visiting Wintersmith Park, a local gem that includes serene lakeside views, nature trails and a public amphitheater.
7. Sulphur (4,929 pop.)
Nestled in the rolling prairie of cross-timber country, Sulphur, Oklahoma is known as the gateway to the Chickasaw National Recreation Area, a popular destination for many tourists located just east of the town of Sulphur. The main attractions in Sulphur, besides the park, are sulfurous springs in town that were once thought to cure ailments and other medical conditions. Other attractions include the Arbuckle Mountain range, just to the southwest, complete with many hiking and recreational opportunities. Sulphur is also the home to Chickasaw Cultural Center, a museum which tells the story of the Chickasaw Nation. It is also home to Artesian Hotel, Casino & Spa.
8. Claremore (18,581 pop.)
This Route 66 town gave Oklahoma its favorite son, Will Rogers. Visit the Will Rogers Memorial Museum, where you can explore the life and accomplishments of this celebrity. See his saddle collection and the possessions that were found with him at the site of the airplane crash that killed him and his friend Wiley Post, or take a seat in the theater to enjoy short films about his amazing life. Claremore also offers a historic downtown area full of unique shopping and dining establisments, the Will Rogers Raceway, the Cherokee Casino and the J.M. Davis Arms & Historical Museum, along with many more interesting things to do.
9. Chandler (3,100 pop.)
Chandler, a charming Route 66 community and former oil boom town, is one of the many cities along the famous U.S. Route 66 and contains a number of attractions devoted to the "The Mother Road." These include The Route 66 Interpretive Center, The Oklahoma Law Enforcement Museum and Hall of Fame, The Lincoln County Museum of Pioneer History, several Route 66-themed murals, and the newly restored old cottage-style Phillips 66 gas station. Today, Chandler's economy is driven mostly by agriculture and livestock, oil and gas services, and manufacturing. The National American Insurance Company is headquartered in Chandler. Downtown Chandler is located on historic Route 66 and is home to many shops and restaurants. Chandler has two lakes, Bell Cow Lake and Chandler Lake, where you can enjoy many outdoor activities.
10. Grove (6,623 pop.)
This quaint town is located on the beautiful Grand Lake in northeastern Oklahoma. It is a favorite spot for lake lovers, whether vacationing or living in the area. Tour the country's largest outdoor museum, Har-Ber Village, or take a ride on the Cherokee Queen on the lake. Har-Ber Village Museum is a pioneer-era village and history museum complete with The Country Store gift shop, The crafters at Har-Ber Village retail shop and visitor center. The activities at the lake are endless and the scenery is picturesque. Grove is also home to Lendonwood Gardens, a 3-acre botanical garden of grassy pathways meandering through more than 1,400 different types of plants.
11. Davis (2,683 pop.)
Davis, Oklahoma is proud to be home to one of the state's most famous tourist attractions, Turner Falls Park, the largest waterfall in Oklahoma. Turner Falls Park is accented with beautiful picnic areas, nature trails, caves, geological wonders and two natural swimming pools very unique in nature. Zipline through the beautiful Arbuckle Mountains at Air Donkey Zipline! Go through the mountains and over the river as high as 80 feet in the air and 6 stations for about 2 hrs. Visit Bedre Chocolate Factory and watch through the huge glass viewing area and see how candies are made while sampling their fine chocolates. Shop and eat in their unique shops and restaurants on Main Street or just off Main at Stillwater Milling, one of Oklahoma's largest Brighton retailers.
What’s your favorite small town in Oklahoma? Which ones would you add to the list?