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A Perfect Day
in Wichita

Make Unexpected Discoveries

In Wichita, you'll find a culture of vibrant arts, passionate pursuits and community pride. Use this guide to get a glimpse at the #RelentlesslyOriginal life here.

First Things First

Start your perfect day at Doo-Dah Diner, a Wichita staple, with fresh monkey bread and a plate of homemade eggs benedict or jalapeño bacon. Its banana bread French toast was recently recognized as Kansas’ breakfast of choice by People magazine. 

Enjoy garden-to-table fare at Beautiful Day Café, a laid-back, taste-forward celebration of freshness near downtown. Enjoy gluten-free, vegetarian or vegan options and top your meal with a visit to the very garden where your meal was grown and nurtured.

Try HomeGrown, a breakfast and lunch hot spot with a mission of cultivating kindness and a commitment to locally-sourced ingredients. Its caramel-drizzled coffee cake and seasonally-flavored pop-tarts are a must for first-time guests. 

Morning Views

The Sedgwick County Zoo is one of the top ten largest zoos in the nation, home to nearly 400 species and 3,000 individual animals. The elephant area is the second-best zoo exhibit and third-largest elephant habitat in the country. With a newly renovated entrance, it's a must-stop for families and groups of all ages.

The Wichita Art Museum features an impressive 8,000-piece art collection with an emphasis in distinguished American artwork. Take off your shoes and walk above one of Chihuly’s colorful blown glass installations or walk through the Museum’s award-winning art garden with 13 outdoor sculptures. 

Take in a breath of fresh air at Botanica, an 18-acre community garden with more than 30 themed exhibits. Explore the woodland area, children’s garden, butterfly house or hop on the newly-restored carousel. Can you find the sleeping giant?

Lunchtime Favorites

If you're looking for a juicy burger, go to Dempsey's Burger Pub in Clifton Square. The Irish pub uses fresh, local Angus and Wagyu beef for their unique burgers with toppings like pineapple-jalapeno chutney and bourbon-candied apples. Dempsey’s has vegan and vegetarian options like another local favorite, Tanya’s Soup Kitchen. Tanya’s revolutionizes common comfort food into unexpected and delectable creations.

Experience authentic ramen dishes and boba tea at Yokohama, located in the Delano district and on Central Avenue. It’s so delicious that both Food Network and USA Today mention Yokohama as one of the country’s best ramen restaurants.

District Taqueria, a luchador-themed restaurant, is just down the street on Douglas Avenue. It features original dishes such as barbacoa taquitos and chicken achiote tacos. Be sure to order the queso – you won't regret it.

Stop for a Snack

You can experience Wichita past and present within a few blocks of Douglas Avenue. Nearly ninety years of history is preserved at Old Mill Tasty Shop, where you can enjoy a handcrafted milkshake or soda that tastes just as good (if not better) than it did back then. Drink your brew of choice and kick back with a modern vibe at Reverie Roasters. Along with its roasted-in-house coffee, Reverie also has a cocktail bar and bakery.

Milkfloat's menu of desserts seems endless: cobbler, cake, tiramisu, cinnamon rolls, scones, ice cream and more with unconventional flavors. Vegan-friendly and gluten-free options make common appearances in the display case. Frost also has original sweets - between made-from-scratch pies, cakes, oatmeal cream pies and bars, you'll end up with one of everything. The homemade ice cream is like nothing you've had before. Try unique flavors like sweet corn, ube, lavender honey or fresh takes on classic favorites. 

Afternoon Adventures

Get a taste of Wichita’s public art by going on a self-guided art crawl. A great place to start is the Douglas Design District, which features more than 60 original murals on restaurants, shops, stairs, doors and more - all by local artists. Murals are just one aspect of Wichita's creative identity. The Old Town district is home to the Sculpture Walkabout, a rotating art display by local and regional makers. In the north end, The Original Dream, featured on a grain elevator by Colombian artist Gleo, is the Guinness World Record holder for the largest mural by a single artist. Wrap up your art crawl at Lucinda's to snag local art, flag swag, one-of-a-kind gifts and more. 

Near the urban center, take a load off with a slice of pie at Naftzger Park and wander over to Gallery Alley, an area that was transformed into a vibrant space for art and shops. Science and discovery center Exploration Place offers rotating educational exhibits for the whole family. It's housed in a geometric riverside building, designed by international architect Moshe Safdie. 

Time to Feast

In downtown, Nortons Brewing Company serves funnel cakes, PB&Js and burgers that’ll make your mouth water before even picking up the menu. Inventive brews (like the aptly named Don't Poke the Bear) are one attraction, but so is the outdoor music venue and seating area, complete with swinging benches, a "chill hill" and comfy corners to converse or listen to a live band.

People in Wichita like to eat out and often, making the city known for its disproportionately large number of restaurants and wide array of cuisine. For dinner, feast at Prost for an authentic German dining experience of steins, schnitzel and frikadellen. Or try Kiko's, a taco and burrito company with a specialty for carne asada. Between the delicious churros, horchata and Hot Cheeto dishes, you'll be back for more. Both Prost and Kiko's are near Revolutsia, an outdoor mall made from stacked shipping containers with plenty of seating and a bonfire area.

Evening Exploration

A family-friendly adventure awaits along the Arkansas River bike path. Local sculptor Connie Ernatt created a bronze troll that hides under a grate near the Keeper of the Plains, glowing bright green after dark. Whether you find the troll or not, you've definitely earned dessert. Head to the Cocoa Dolce Chocolate Factory, located in a historic downtown building, for a sneak peek at how their sweets are made. For those 21 and over, Wichita has a robust brew scene. You’re sure to find a relentlessly original ale or lager that fits your unique taste from one of the 12 breweries in the region. If wine is your go-to, visit Jenny Dawn Cellars, the first urban winery in the state. 

Every night, the Keeper of the Plains statue is illuminated by a ring of fire. Boulders positioned in the Arkansas River are the base for controlled fire pits, lit every spring and summer night at 9 (and 7 p.m. in the fall and winter). The ring of fire, combined with one of the best views of Wichita’s skyline, makes for an incredible experience that no other city in the world offers.

Mort’s, The BelmontDockum and Cana each offer a toast-worthy cocktail experience for the specialty drink connoisseur. For evening entertainment, Wichita has Broadway-caliber performances without the hefty price tag. Check the performance schedules for Music Theatre Wichita, Ballet Wichita, the Wichita Symphony Orchestra or the Wichita Grand Opera. Intimate venues such as Roxy’s Downtown and Mosley Street Melodrama offer stellar performances, too, and with dinner to match. If live music is more your scene, check out INTRUST Bank Arena, The Cotillion, Barleycorn’s, Brickyard or WAVE with its full bar, nachoria and indoor and outdoor stages.

Getting Around

As you enjoy your perfect day in Wichita, take advantage of multiple transportation options to get you to your next adventure. 

  • The free Q-LINE travels along Douglas Avenue through the downtown districts, including Old Town and Delano. Download the myStop app for routes and hours.
  • Wichita Public Transit's public buses offer free WiFi and make stops at popular shopping districts and the Zoo. Go to WichitaTransit.org for routes, real-time bus information, cost and more.
  • Download the Zagster app to rent a BikeShareICT bicycle and view a map of available bicycles.
  • To rent an electric scooter, follow the instructions on the device. Apps and features may differ per scooter brand. 
  • With so many transportation options, you don’t have to worry about taking your car to every stop. Visit www.ParkDowntown.org to find the best places to park in downtown Wichita. 

While you’re out exploring, use #RelentlesslyOriginal and #ILoveWichita to share about your perfect day. Learn more about working and living in Wichita at www.choosewichita.com. 

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