TULSA — Oil city. Metropolitan. Diversity. Culture. Route 66. History. Just a few of the adjective that comes to mind when thinking about the great city of Tulsa Oklahoma. Known for its wild Tornadoes, the state of Oklahoma has a lot going for it and much of that is found in Tulsa.
While you may not know what to expect when thinking of visiting Tulsa, let’s just say that there is a lot to see and do here. Nearly everything you could want in a city is here in spades. From a drive down the history Route 66 to catching a minor league baseball game that overlooks downtown to great culinary finds,
Tulsa really is a gem.
I find it incredible how many people still view places like Oklahoma as a “flyover state” – yet there are some very worthwhile reasons to not only visit but for some – to move to Tulsa.
You’ll find very few places that offer such a rich combination of great things to see and do as you will find in Tulsa.
Where to stay: Doubletree Warren Place
There are literally hundreds of options when it comes to finding lodging within Tulsa. However, the Doubletree by Hilton at Warren Place should be highly considered. Chocked full of amenities, this hotel has everything from a Starbucks in its lobby to a restaurant and bar that are open until the wee hours of the morning.
A parking garage, indoor pool, workout facility, and gorgeous walking trails, surrounded by canopies of trees, all around the property.
It’s a very serene setting that offers a great combination of amenities, relaxation and is still only minutes away from downtown.
Where to eat:
Don’t feel like going anywhere or would like to simply dine in your room? Then consider the award-winning Warren Duck Club inside the Doubletree Warren Place Hotel. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, The Warren Duck Club has a large selection of delectable dishes to suit your culinary preferences.
A few favorites are their Pecan Crusted Trout, Asparagus & Avocado Salad, Asian Sesame & Udon Salad for dinner fares and for breakfast, check out their Warren Benedict, Crab and Avocado Omelet.
This place is undoubtedly the de facto place for foodies who have a morning hunger that needs to be satisfied with the top-shelf quality food. Forget those places that say they “make their food from scratch” – Bramble is the real McCoy.
Bramble takes classic breakfast items and kicks them up several notches.
Items like pancakes with bacon and bourbon, or a fan-favorite, the Monte Carlo Benedict with house-cured ham, deep-fried brioche, seasonal jam, smoked cheddar, orange hollandaise, and two sunny eggs.
Lunch at Bramble
In addition, there are some great lunch items available as well such as the hot pickled chicken sandwich with a pickle-brined chicken breast, garlic aioli, house-made pickles, slaw on a challah bun.
And don’t overlook the bloody mary shrimp and grits with andouille sausage, onions & peppers.
Old School Bagels:
If it’s New York City-style bagels you crave than check out Old School Bagels. Here you’ll find not only all kinds of different styles of bagels, but you can also order them made up in pretty much whatever kind of sandwich concoction you can fathom.
They’re served fresh, baked fresh, daily and give you a nice little taste of the Big Apple, right in the heart of Tulsa.
Located in the Blue Dome district, Bohemian offers some of the best pie you’ll find in the greater Tulsa area. Its insistence on using the best, most fresh ingredients possible is full translated through the food they serve. You’ll find dabblings of everything from fresh-made meatballs, Caprese salad to pasta pesto.
With so many great pizza options and the fact that they’re made in the style of Naples, Italy – we’d recommend checking out their many amazing pizzas. To top this off, the entire staff are amazing, friendly and have no problems walking you through the menu to aid in your selection.
Centered right in the heart of downtown, this Italian eatery offers fresh, expertly prepared dishes that taste great and warm your soul. Classic Italian favorites such as There are so many amazing dishes here, such as the grilled pork chop with an apple tomato garlic compote or how about the house-made Tavolo linguine (yes, they make the pasta fresh, in-house) in a spicy marinara. If you’re not feeling pasta, try the Chef’s risotto that’s paired with seasonal vegetables, cheeses, and sauces.
No matter how you slice it, Tavalo really is a version of little Italy in the heart of Tulsa.
If you want upscale bar food, then The Tavern is an easy choice. Hand-crafted dishes abound and you’ll find delicious classics.
Enjoy their Tavern Burger with cognac cream, Deviled Egg Trifecta and Tatar Tot Poutine with cheese curds and Harche chili.
It’s right near downtown and around the corner from the baseball stadium and Glaciers Confections.
Things to do:
If it’s chocolate you crave than make sure to visit the Glacier confection company near downtown.
It sources top-quality cocoa and makes all of its confectioneries in-house.
There’s a bit of everything here to tantalize the taste buds. Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, white chocolate with everything in between is in tow.
Tour guide Kelly Gibson knows the history of Tulsa perhaps better than anyone. On this walking tour, she’ll take you around to many historical places downtown and give you the unique history of each one. With a personality and swagger all her own, you can’t help but fall in love with the stories she’ll share.
The tunnel tour is particularly interesting as you’ll go down below the street level to see tunnels the wealthy oil tycoons would use to move money around town.
Tulsa’s own minor league baseball team plays in a modern stadium that is well laid-out and family friendly. Bring your camera as the stadium offers what is easily the best view of downtown. No matter where you sit, there is not a bad seat in the house.
Plenty of concessions abound and there are also private suites available as well.
Tulsa Botanical Garden:
Just outside of town lies this intricate botanical garden that displays a kaleidoscope of plant life and blends in some fun family things to do as well. There are water features throughout the garden and they play an intricate role into the overall look and theme of the garden.
It’s a feast for your senses – gorgeous sights all around you, peace and tranquility wrap you like a blanket. It’s a great place to soak in the sights and unwind.
Sherwin Miller Museum of Jewish Art:
This breathtaking display of Jewish heritage and history will leave you completely breathless, appreciative and intrigued at an amazing history of the Jewish people. Everything from Holocaust-era displays and information to how so many Jewish people have migrated to the USA and have enriched our heritage. A first-rate museum that can keep all ages intrigued and entertained for hours.
Woody Guthrie Center
For those who love music, then this is your mecca for the amazing and unique history of Woody Guthrie. The man who penned the song, This Land is your land, was one of the most influential songwriters of the past century. sights and sounds of this musical legend. Exhibits for all ages, ensures that this family-friendly place will keep everyone entertained for hours.
Philbrook Museum of Art:
The former home of Waite and Genevieve Phillips is now one of the classiest museums you’ll find.
From it’s landscaped property to the attention to detail it puts into each display, there’s a surprise around every corner. You will have a hard time finding a more exhaustive museum experience.
Each painting, sculpture or exhibit is painstakingly presented with tons of detail. Make sure to check the calendar on their website as they always have something fun going on – including burger night, several times each month.
When you go Tulsa, you’ll undoubtedly find more things to do than you can shake a stick at. It’s a modern city that is fully in touch with its roots. The city has also seen a surge in a bustling food scene, craft brew, and the arts.
While it may be difficult to visualize such a place in an area riddled such a long pedigree in oil, I can assure you that Tulsa is an oasis of a great time.