Wichita’s Best Place to Visit:
The top rated Place to Visit in Wichita, KS are:
- Sedgwick County Zoo – is home to 3,000 individual animals of nearly 400 species
- Wichita Art Museum – is the largest art museum in the state of Kansas
- Botanica – is a community botanical garden nestled in the heart of Wichita
- Kansas Aviation Museum – is the aviation showcase in the Air Capital of the World
- Ulrich Museum of Art – is the region’s source for modern and contemporary art
Sedgwick County Zoo
Sedgwick County Zoo is home to 3,000 animals representing approximately 400 different species. Experiential learning is one of the essential elements guiding the exhibit design. The exhibits are designed to immerse visitors in the world of the animals for a sympathetic learning experience. Exhibits allow the animals to engage in their natural activities to the fullest extent possible.
The majority of the sites have spaces where visitors can freely roam among the vegetation and animals. National and international accolades have been given to the Sedgwick County Zoo for its support of field conservation projects and the successful breeding of rare and endangered animals.
“The best zoo in the world in my opinion! Especially if you like tropical birds. They have a walk-in aviary with lots of beautiful, healthy pigeon/dove species and other birds from around the world. Some of them are very used to people and you can get great close-up photos of them. The other animals were cool to see too. You had your typical lions, tigers, and bears there plus some fun others like penguins and river hogs. Go there in the winter on a Wednesday and admission is dirt cheap.” – Bethany J.
Wichita Art Museum
Wichita Art Museum is the state’s largest art museum and has one of the country’s most important collections, with over 10,000 works in its permanent collection. The Wichita Art Museum has a long and illustrious history in South Central Kansas and the Midwest, having been founded in 1935. It was an Art Deco masterpiece constructed by New York architect Clarence Stein when the first museum building opened its doors in 1935. As the museum rose in popularity, so did public interest and support. The Wichita Art Museum Members, Inc. was founded in 1960.
Interested persons could contribute finances and services to the development of new initiatives through this non-profit membership group. The city granted funding for storage, expanded exhibition programs, instructional programs, and membership activities in addition to the original facility. Thus, in 1963, Wichita architect Robert Schaefer built two wings, a lobby, and a new façade to the existing structure.
“Fabulous smaller museum with a wonderful permanent collection including Frederic Remington, Mary Cassatt, Winslow Homer, and two permanent Dale Chihuly installations among others. There is always at least one wonderful exhibit going on. The Museum is in a nice modern style and is available for receptions and other functions. Lots of fun pieces from classical to modern for the whole family to enjoy.” – Amy J.
Botanica is a community botanical garden in Wichita’s heartland. Botanica was founded in May 1987 with the goal of igniting interest in horticulture and enlightening visitors through educational, artistic, and cultural experiences. Botanica’s gardens and initiatives help to promote community development by increasing public knowledge of horticulture, educating Kansans about how nature may improve their daily lives, and expanding public awareness of horticulture.
Since its inception, the Botanica has grown from four gardens and a horticultural library to 30 themed gardens and displays. This botanical paradise on the plains boasts over 4,000 varieties of plants, both native and new to the region, spread over 18 acres of exquisite garden landscaping. All of the gardens are set up to highlight collections in exhibit settings that feature plants that are especially well-suited to the climate of south-central Kansas. In addition to the showcase gardens, an assessment garden has been established with the goal of introducing and evaluating species that might be suitable for the area.
“Excellent layout, thoughtful staff, extensive collection. This may not be the largest botanical garden you’ve seen, but every square inch seems to have been carefully planned so that the Botanica still boasts an impressive number of unique gardens. The kids garden and butterfly garden were must-see attractions here.” – Jonathan B.
Kansas Aviation Museum
Kansas Aviation Museum is the world’s largest aviation museum. The Kansas Aviation Museum’s mission is to inspire, preserve, educate, and commemorate Kansas aviation for future generations. The museum, which opened in 1991, houses rare, unusual, and historic aircraft, as well as displays from Kansas’ rich aviation history and the Kansas Aviation Hall of Fame. KAM’s educational initiatives introduce local youngsters to flight, paving the way for many of them to pursue careers in the aerospace industry.
Dozens of talented, motivated, and highly competent volunteers donate many hours of their time to restoring airplanes in the restoration shops. The archives are a research goldmine, with numerous one-of-a-kind original items that can’t be found anywhere else.
“Cool museum showcasing the history of aviation in Kansas. They have a great collection of aircraft that have not only been flown to and stationed in KS but also manufactured there. The museum sits on the northwest side of McConnell AFB and you can go up in the old control tower to get a view of the field which is on top of the building which served as the Wichita Airport prior to the new airport being built.” – Steve F.
Ulrich Museum of Art
Ulrich Museum of Art is the place to go for modern and contemporary art in the region. The Ulrich Museum of Art was founded in 1974 to serve and enhance the educational and service missions of Wichita State University. The museum was named after Edwin A. Ulrich, a New York businessman who gave his collection of over 300 paintings by Frederick Judd Waugh, an early twentieth-century painter, and established an endowment to fund the new organization.
The opening of the Ulrich coincided with the opening of the McKnight Art Center, a new facility for the museum, and the WSU School of Art, Design, and Creative Industries. A new extension gallery and office space, as well as a terraced sculpture court at the entry, were added during a 1995 refurbishment.
“Ulrich Museum is a great place for all art lovers and those seeking inspiration. The museum offers great shows, but also diverse and rich programs. It’s free and open to the public. Once you are there, make sure you have time to discover their sculpture outdoor collection which will lead you through the whole campus.” – Eva G.