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Lincoln: Discover Nebraska’s State Capital
Often written off as just another unexciting city in the Midwest, visitors soon learn that there’s more to Lincoln, Nebraska than meets the eye. Home to a prestigious university, intriguing historical attractions, and a lively downtown, Lincoln serves as a friendly and dynamic destination – a destination that will keep you on your toes.
In recent years, The Haymarket has arisen as the trendiest destination in Lincoln, NE. Here, renovated and restored warehouses have been converted into coffee shops, restaurants, boutiques, galleries, venues, and more. As popular with university students as tourists, stroll the streets here and you’ll find plenty to see and do, not to mention eat and drink.
Amidst the hustle and bustle of the streets you’ll discover Pinnacle Bank Arena. This newly-constructed, multi-purpose arena hosts concerts, basketball, boxing, professional wrestling, and more. Check the listings and see what’s on when you visit Lincoln.
The Haymarket is also home to a regular farmer’s market, while the old CB&Q railroad station, which was rendered obsolete following the completion of a new station to coincide with the construction of the arena, has been converted into a visitor centre, meeting facility and restaurant.
If you’re looking for a hotel at the heart of the action, The Haymarket is a good place to start. The local neighbourhood houses a number of modern hotels, as well as alternative accommodation options.
The State Capitol and Governor’s Residence
Located in the very heart of Lincoln, the Nebraska State Capitol is one of the city’s true landmarks. The historic building, which opened in 1932, stands 120 metres tall, making it the largest building in the city. It’s also considered the second tallest state capitol in the country – only the Louisiana State Capitol is taller.
Visitors can tour the Capitol building and its many stately rooms. Features worth keeping an eye open for include the intricate and ornate mosaics in the Great Hall, the Lincoln Monument, and the 21 painted murals to be found throughout the building.
Situated across the street from the State Capitol stands the Nebraska Governor’s Mansion. The property is a fine example of colonial-style architecture from the Georgian period, and even through its heavy metal gates looks impressive. Once a week, generally on a Thursday afternoon, it’s possible to tour the mansion, with tours lasting approximately 40 minutes. Small groups needn’t book in advance.
Those interested in staying near the State Capitol of the Governor’s Mansion will find a selection of hotels located a few blocks away.
Museums in Lincoln, NE
History buffs are sure to get a kick out of Lincoln’s numerous museums, some of which offer an insightful look into world’s you might not expect. For instance, the International Quilt Study Center and Museum offers a comprehensive examination into the world of quilting, something you certainly don’t come across every day.
Other interesting museums in the city include: The Frank H. Woods Telephone Museum, which serves as a physical timeline of the history of the telephone; the Museum of American Speed, which houses an impressive collection of motor racing memorabilia; and Lincoln Children’s Museum, which takes a hands-on approach to learning.
You’ll also find several museums on the campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) including the University of Nebraska State Museum and the Sheldon Museum of Art.
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Speaking of UNL, the university is, unsurprisingly, a major draw for visitors to the region. Prospective students, fond parents, guest lecturers, event attendees and many more regularly make their way to the city and university campus. As such, you’ll find a selection of hotels situated within close proximity to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus.
The campus is also home to one of the most visited attractions in all of Lincoln: Memorial Stadium. Home to the Nebraska Cornhuskers football team, the stadium becomes a heaving mass of humanity on gamedays, with some 80,000-plus fans taking to the stands.
Other on-campus attractions include: Bob Devaney Sports Center, which regularly hosts basketball and other university sports; the Lied Center for the Performing Arts, which hosts theatre, orchestral music and more; and the UNL Dairy Store. Serving delicious milkshakes, the latter has been a university institution since opening in 1917.
City Parks and Other Attractions
Whether you’re in Lincoln for business, pleasure or to visit the university campus, the city’s parks are a great place to unwind. Perhaps the most popular of these are the Sunken Gardens, where you’ll discover picturesque flower gardens that are immaculately cared for.
With over 125 parks and gardens located in Lincoln, you’re sure to discover your own personal corner for peace and respite. Some of the city’s most popular parks include Pioneers Park Nature Center and Wilderness Park, both of which offer you the chance to take in the local wildlife as well as the pleasant flora.
If it’s wildlife you’re looking for, Lincoln Children’s Zoo is the ideal destination, especially if you’re travelling with little ones. You can expect a good mix of mammals, reptiles and birds during your visit. Be sure to keep an eye out for the scarlet ibis, the panther chameleon, and the red panda during your visit, some of which are easier to see than others.