Immerse yourself in the history of Nebraska, which is home to numerous noteworthy museums, monuments, and rivers. Situated nearby many beautiful Omaha vacation rentals are exciting cities and small towns boasting fun attractions and rich history. Take in the scenic views of the city of Kearney, or get up close and personal with wildlife at Cody Park when you stay in North Platte. Add these vibrant cities in Nebraska to your itinerary.

1. Royal

Royal
Source: Flickr/Panegyrics of Granovetter

A three-hour drive to Royal from Omaha gives you a glimpse at the state’s pre-history as you tour the fossilized bodies of birds, wild dogs, rhinos, and camels at Ashfall Fossil Beds State Historical Park. Continue your outdoor adventures as you snap a picture at the Grove Lake Dam or fish at the Grove Trout Rearing Station. Plan your weekend getaway in January to take part in the annual Ice Fishing Tournament at Grove Lake, or book a vacation rental in July to dance the day away at the annual BBQ, Dance and Tractor Ride at Royal Park. After an event-filled day touring Royal, stop in at Green Gables of Pleasant Valley for some comfort food.

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2. York

York
Source: Flickr/Tim Evanson

Learn how the early settlers and farmers survived in the state of Nebraska when you book a vacation rental in York, located an hour and a half from Omaha. The Wessels Living History Farm features 160 acres of farmland and an estate boasting 11 historic buildings. Tour the farmhouse, the church, and the country school, and then learn more about the city’s past at the Clayton Museum of Ancient History. Enjoy the weekend when swimming, kayaking, or canoeing on nearby Recharge Lake.

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3. Kearney

Kearney
Source: Flickr/Georgia M – *photographing the seasons*

Explore the Great Platte River Road Archway Monument as you make the two and a half hour drive from Omaha to Kearney. This popular Nebraska city offers fun in the sun or snow on weekend getaways throughout the year. Jump into the fun paddling the canals at Yanney Heritage Park, or hike and bike over the Trail Bridge for more scenic views. Treat the kids to an interactive day at the Kearney Area Children’s Museum, or catch a show at the World Theatre. History buffs enjoy touring the Nebraska Firefighters Museum and Trails & Rails Museum. When you need some retail therapy, find specialty shops and handmade gifts at the Hilltop Mall before stopping in at the Kearney Area Farmers Market for fresh produce to take back to your vacation rental.

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4. North Platte

North Platte
Source: Flickr/Michel Curi

Explore the 100 acres of Cody Park in North Platte to see elk, sheep, deer, and burros up close. A vacation rental in North Platte, located four hours from Omaha, takes you to the famous “Buffalo Bill” statue and an antique carousel in the midst of Cody Park. Tour the grounds of the Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park, or treat the train enthusiasts in your group to a visit to the Union Pacific Railroad Bailey Yard. Spend spring and summer afternoons relaxing at the Feather River Winery, or shop the weekend away at Grain Bin Antique Town and the Fort Cody Trading Post.

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5. Lincoln

Lincoln
Source: Flickr/wht_wolf9653

Spend your weekend getaway in the state’s capital, just an hour from Omaha. One of the city’s most popular attractions is the Sunken Gardens, a fragrance garden maintained by volunteers who take care of the 30,000 plants year round. Take a leisurely walk around the garden to see the reflecting pools and cascading waterfall before visiting the Governor’s Mansion and Memorial Stadium. Delight the kids with a stop at the Lincoln Children’s Museum, or show your need for speed when browsing the sights at the Museum of American Speed. Lace up your skates for a few hours at Skate Zone, or fuel your inner artist when painting at The Corky Canvas.

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6. Nebraska City

Nebraska City
Source: Flickr/David Williss

Travel just one hour to settle in your cozy vacation rental in Nebraska City, home to the Arbor Lodge State Historical Park and Arboretum. Wander through the 52 rooms of this neo-colonial mansion built in 1855, and admire the Victorian furnishings. The Arboretum houses more than 200 varieties of lilacs that bloom just in time for a spring weekend getaway. Opt for an action-packed weekend with a day at Arbor Day Farm, a popular theme park in Nebraska City, or tour the Kregel Windmill Museum and the Nebraska City Museum of Firefighting. When you have some down time, sit back and relax with a glass of wine at the Kimmel Orchard and Vineyard.

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7. Grand Island

Grand Island
Source: Flickr/Ken Lund

Immerse yourself in the culture of the pioneers when making Grand Island your vacation destination for the weekend. After a two and half hour drive from Omaha, settle into your vacation rental, and begin exploring the city’s history with a tour of the Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer. Grand Island is also a mecca for water adventures during the summer months at the nearby Platte River and Island Oasis Water Park. Take a scenic walk with your pup on the trails of the L.E Ray Dog Park, or hike the trails of the Townsley-Murdock Immigrant Trail Site.

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