Topeka is the capital city of the US State of Kansas.
Known for its family-friendly attractions, history, and festivals. It is located in the Majestic Flint Hills region of Kansas.
Topeka is a great travel destination that offers you a variety of things to do and see. A visit to Topeka is a great opportunity to enjoy history, great culture, delicious food, cool shopping, and lots more.
In Topeka, you will do yourself a lot of good by visiting the wonderful sight attractions like Lake Shawnee, Gage park, Kansas Museum, Evel Knievel museum, and many more.
You also wouldn’t want to miss out on a load of great information and beautiful sights Topeka has to offer, or would you? No right, I thought so too.
Nothing beats having a good time while learning something new.
Here is a list of places you should visit when you’re in Topeka, Kansas.
Things To Do In Topeka
1. Gage Park
Gage park opened in 1899 in the city of Topeka. It is a beautiful park that offers a peaceful and quiet atmosphere. Gage Park also offers an amazing scenic view to tourists.
It has many captivating sights like the Selbach sensory garden which allows you to admire the wondrous beauty of nature.
There are several attractions featured in the park, some of which include a zoo, a children’s discovery center, the Doran rock garden, and the Reinisch rose garden, which is the most breathtaking of them all.
The Reinisch rose garden has more than six thousand, five hundred (6500) plants including four hundred (400) species of roses.
Mr. Reinisch, the first horticulturist and landscape architect in Topeka brought up the idea of the rose garden in 1926.
Now the garden is one, so beautiful to behold that tourists from all over the world come to see it. The Doran rock garden is equally important.
You’ll very much love the sight here as well.
Address: 635 SW Gage Boulevard, Topeka, Kansas
2. Mulvane Art Museum
The Mulvane Art Museum is located at Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas.
It is an educational structure that shows us the amazing works of art made in Kansas.
The Museum holds much history as it was founded in 1924.
Moreover, It is one of the oldest art Museums on the Western part of the Mississippi River and also educates the public on how Art in Kansas has developed over the years.
Generally, on Tuesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Wednesdays through Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., you can take a tour of this artistically beautiful home.
Address: 1700 SW Jewell Avenue, Topeka Kansas
3. Old Prairie Town at Ward-Meade Historic Site and Botanical Garden
One of the attractions that should top your list of places to visit in Topeka is the Old Prairie Town at Ward Meade.
This place is an open-air museum, a park, and a historic site that spans about 5.5 acres of land.
First, the property is operated and maintained by the Shawnee County Recreation Department and Shawnee County Parks.
The complex has a 2.5-acre botanical garden, an 1874 ward mead mansion.
Equally important is the replica of the ward’s cabin, the prairie crossing town square, and many more historical sites, all found in the lush, green park.
Significantly, one of the things Topeka is known for is Its festivals. Annual festivals like the “Tulip time”, coupled with the “Apple Festival” are hosted by the park and greatly enjoyed by everyone in attendance.
In April, around 45,000 tulips are planted in the old prairie town during Tulip Time.
Also, the apple festival, which takes place on the first Sunday in October, is a celebration of magnificent arts and crafts, as well as a variety of cuisine, music, and fun activities.
Plan a visit to this park while on your trip to Topeka. It will surely be a fun time for you, your family, and your friends, and overall you’ll totally love your experience here.
Address: 124 NW Fillmore Street, Topeka, Kansas.
4. Combat Air Museum
Have you ever imagined a combination of history and engineering? It’s going to be uniquely enjoyable right?
The combat air Museum, Topeka brings that imagination to life.
This museum creates exhibits, conservation, and preservation facilities for technology, aircraft information, relics, planes, and extraordinary arts related to US military aviation.
Also, the combat air museum has on display over 38 aircraft dating back to the first world war. It also has several military vehicles and engines of aircraft on display.
Both adults and young ones through well-guided tours, bimonthly lectures, and the collection of displayed exhibits can in effect get well educated and inspired.
To gain entry into the museum, an affordable fee is charged however parking is at no cost.
Address: Topeka regional airport, 7060 SE Forbes Avenue, Topeka, Kansas, United States.
Between Topeka and Tecumseh lies the phenomenal Truckhenge.
If you’re interested in weird and unusual things, you should prioritize visiting this amazing place.
It is generally considered a weird yet creative art exhibit.
To clarify, the Truckhenge was created by Ron Lessman in the year 2000 from antique trucks and buses collected over the years.
Six ancient trucks are elevated on the ground in an England’s stone henge-like design in this recycled art installation at sanctuary arc farm.
Yes, Truckhenge might not be a place for relaxation, but it is no doubt a breathtaking sight to behold.
In the event that you are here, how much would you like a tour by the creator himself? Sounds awesome right? Many tourists report that he’s a fun and enthusiastic person to spend time with.
You also don’t need to pay to have a view of Trunkhenge, since it’s a free attraction in Topeka.
Overall, this is definitely a sightseeing adventure you should add to your bucket list of things to do in Topeka.
Address: 4124 NE Brier Road, Topeka, Kansas
6. Great Overland station
The Great Overland station was formerly known as the Union Pacific railroad station. It was registered as a historic sight in 2002.
It has a two-way function as It displays the Topeka railroad’s rich heritage, likewise, it also educates residents and visitors of Topeka on this great heritage.
The station has special exhibits, costumed docents, historical pictures, and the big red Caboose on display.
Talking about the big red caboose, It is a child-sized miniature version that children can ride and have a wonderful experience.
Overall, The great overload station is an educative place to visit and have fun with your kids in Topeka.
The station opens by 10:00 am and closes by 4:00 pm from Tuesdays to Saturdays.
Address: 701 N Kansas Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
7. Topeka Performing Arts Center
The Topeka Performing Arts Center is situated in the magnificent 1930s Art déco Municipal Auditorium.
If you’re a lover of theatre activities, especially music performances and dance performances, you would surely love the performing Arts Center in Topeka.
Asides from the main auditorium, the art center has two additional halls, and a smaller theater called the Hussey playhouse, coupled with a banquet hall called the Hill’s festival hall.
The performing arts building is also really nice. For couples, it’s a perfect place for a date. It also has educational facilities for children.
You can expect outstanding events and a lot of fun at the Topeka Performance Art Center. So plan a visit here whenever you’re in Topeka.
Address: 214 SE 8th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
8. The Evel Knievel Museum
One thing you must not forget to add to your bucket list of things to do in Topeka is to visit The Evel Knieval Museum.
It is a non-profit museum located adjacent to Topeka’s historic Harley-Davidson in Topeka, Kansas.
It is named after the American stunt performer and entertainer, Robert Evel Knieval. Consequently, the Museum follows the time of Evel’s life from poverty to fame.
For lovers of extreme sports and impossible feats, Evel Knieval Museum would certainly be the best place to visit in Topeka. It is well-known for educating and inspiring guests.
The two-story museum is a proud host of the world’s most extensive collection of authentic Evel Knievel memorabilia, including the leather jump bikes of Knieval which he used in his original performances.
The museum also has the latest interactive technology, which enables the experiences and moments of Evel Knievel’s death-defying feats to be re-lived and immensely felt by the visitors of the museum.
In the museum, there is also a 4D reality jump which allows visitors to experience Knievals jumps without putting their lives on the line.
A visit to the Evel Knieval Museum is always an awesome experience and because of that, you should consider adding it to your list of places to visit in Topeka, Kansas.
Address: 2047 SW Topeka Boulevard, Topeka, Kansas
Looking to explore more of other Kansas Cities? Why not check out our lists of things to do in Lawrence?
9. Lake Shawnee
Looking for a place to fish, swim, row, or sail a boat in Topeka? Lake Shawnee is the place for you!
It’s in the southeast corner of Topeka.
Asides from the water activities mentioned above, you’ll also get to have a nice time doing non-water activities like camping, golfing, playing tennis, and much other fun stuff.
The Shawnee Lake is a man-made lake built between 1935 and 1939. It lies within an 1100 acre park that has foot trails where you can take walks and ride bikes.
It also features a golf course, tennis courts, a children’s playground, picnic areas, and a big campground.
This place is perfect for a family vacation. So If you’re looking for a place to have fun with your family and friends and still have that wonderful feeling of nature at your fingertips, then plan a visit to Shawnee lake.
Address: 3137 SE 24th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
10. Brown V. Board Of Education National Historic Site
A visit to Brown V. Board Of Education National Historic Site is one of the fun activities you can engage in when you visit Topeka, Kansas.
This historic site was established on October 26, 1992, by the United States to support the verdict by the United States Supreme court to end racial segregation in Public schools on May 17, 1954.
Brown V. Board Of Education National Historic Site is located in the Monroe elementary school. It is a very educative place to visit.
You can spend as much time as you want here watching videos, reading, soaking up a massive amount of knowledge and doing interactive activities.
The staff are also quite knowledgeable and are ever ready to give answers to all questions you might have.
They also take you on a well-guided tour of the galleries and exhibits in the building. The national park service currently manages and operates this historic site.
Address: 1515 SE Monroe Street, Topeka, Kansas
11. Boswell Square Park
One of the most fascinating places to visit in Topeka is Boswell Square Park.
It’s one of the most hospitable side attractions present in the capital city of Topeka.
It is a serene environment that started as a Junior high school in 1922 but became a park shortly after 1980, and it’s incredibly loved by both locals and visitors.
The wonderful park has a playground for kids, picnic tables, and a gazebo.
In addition, there are pristine drinking fountains, open fields, and some small hills. Both kids and adults will definitely have lots of fun in this park.
It doesn’t have as many facilities as some larger parks do, despite that, It is a great park to visit as there are lots of games and fun activities that you and your loved ones can be involved in.
The park is open from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm all year round.
Address: 1300 SW Jewell Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
12. Topeka Civic Theater
For a wonderful viewing experience and great shows that bring back memories and aid relaxation, Topeka Civic Theater is a great place to visit.
It is your go-to place for all-year-round entertainment in Topeka.
The Civic Theater was established in the late 1930s and holds the record of “oldest running community dinner theatre in the United States.
They offer dinner shows, non-dinner shows, and bar services. The center has three stages which feature Carols, musicals, and children’s shows like Disney’s ‘The little mermaid’.
The presentations here are consistently excellent and enjoyable. It’s always amazing to see how much local talent Topeka has and how well the special effects are.
The facility is clean and welcoming, and there are also plenty of tasty snacks available for a reasonable price.
Your time here is sure to be very enjoyable. In short, every member of your family is sure to have a very nice time at the Topeka Civic Theater.
Address: 3028 SW 8th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
13. Topeka Sports Center
Topeka sports center is a fun zone where everyone in the family can enjoy themselves and have fun. A variety of games and sports are available here in the Center.
At this place, magnificent structures like A 10 ft. high kangaroo, a 20ft tall T-rex dinosaur, a life-sized igloo, and a volcano are available for your viewing pleasure.
An 18-hole golf course is also available for beginners to practice and have a nice time, while professional golfers can train at the golf driving range.
There are other games and sports that you can engage in aside from golf. Kids can enjoy themselves too with functional, fun, safe 48 inches tall carts.
At the sports center, visitors can have fun at the army arcade and get to win prizes. Sounds fun? It is in fact a whole lot of fun!!
That’s what this place is totally all about, Fun, Fun, Fun. Therefore, expect nonstop fun when you visit this sports center in Topeka.
Address: 6545 SW 10th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
14. Kansas Children Discovery Center
Treat your kids nicely to the fascinating and educative experience of the Kansas Children Discovery Center.
The center is non-profit based and is located at Gage Park, Topeka. It is a children’s museum that gives great learning experiences as it covers various learning disciplines like arts, science, and many others.
Kids can engage in experiments, create artworks, compose great music and do some other cool stuff at the discovery Center.
Furthermore, field trips, camps, special events, and daily programs are offered by the children’s discovery center in addition to the things exhibited at the museum.
During the summer, the center opens from Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10:00 am until it closes by 5:00 pm.
However during school days, the center opens from 9:00 am till 3:00 pm on Tuesdays to Fridays. On Sundays, the center opens by 1:00 pm and closes by 5:00 pm.
Address: 4400 SW 10th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
15. Going Bonkers
Situated at the Southwest of 21st Avenue, Topeka, Going Bonkers offers the biggest indoor playground in this town.
For indoor games and fun with family and friends, going bonkers Is your go-to place in Topeka.
Going bonkers offers you the fun you deserve with its jungle gym and an arcade. You and your loved ones can also play games and win prizes.
Notably, they make provision for special events such as birthday parties, anniversaries, and the likes, and they also offer special services like limousines for hire. Amazing right? you bet.
This is one of the many fun places you can visit if your travel destination is Topeka, Kansas.
Address: 5515 SW 21st Street, Topeka, Kansas
16. Topeka State Hospital
You might be wondering why a hospital visit will be added to a list of best things to do in a city, but if you’re a lover of horror stories, you’d surely find this interesting.
The Topeka State hospital holds a form of history that you can term as a horror movie that came to life. It was formerly known as Topeka insane asylum that treated insane patients.
In 1872, the Topeka Insane Asylum welcomed the medically and criminally insane. The hospital was plagued by claims of abuse and murder for more than a century.
And at some point, the asylum became literally crowded with mad patients. Due to abuse and overcrowding, it was locked down in 1997.
Presently, this place is a great place for a night out. They have a bar that makes a pretty mean cocktail, coupled with a fantastic service. If you can avoid the needles (smiles), It’s guaranteed to be a fun time.
Despite the fact that several parts of the facility were dismantled in 2010, horror and adventure fans flock to the state hospital to learn more about its history.
You might also want to uncover the mystery too.
Address: 634 SW Mulvane Street, Topeka, Kansas
17. Museum of the Kansas National Guard
The Museum of the Kansas National Guard (as its name implies) preserves the history of the Kansas National Guard. You get to see the historical heroes of Kansas at this museum.
The museum displays exhibit that date as far back as 145 years ago.
There are also artifacts from the civil war and weapons like armored vehicles and guns used in the gulf war.
In addition to that, the Museum hosts fun and educative events such as the civil war reenactment where visitors can have a good time.
Address: 125 SE Airport Drive, Topeka, Kansas
18. Cedar crest
The Cedar crest is the official residence of the governor of Kansas state.
It is located on southwest cedar crest road on the west side of Topeka.
The mansion is in the 244-acre estate, MacLennan Park. It was built in 1928 and renovated in the 1990s.
It is also one of the buildings on the National Historic Register of the United States.
The Cedar Crest is a magnificent structure with gardens, ponds, and hiking paths surrounding it. Notably, the architecture of the building is of French origin, hence the reason for its unique and exquisite beauty.
Visitors interested in seeing the spectacular structure can take guided tours of the mansion.
In Topeka, a visit to the Cedar Crest would be quite enjoyable.
Address: 1 SW Cedar Crest Road, Topeka, Kansas
19. Kansas State Capitol Building
One of the most popular tourist attractions in Topeka is the residence of Kansas’s executive and legislative arms of government; the Kansas State Capitol Building.
Coupled with the fact that this building is a tourist attraction, it is also a historic site. There’s a lot of history here.
The building is also a really great building. It has a dome that sits on top of it which is fascinating to look at.
In addition to that, the craftsmanship in the woodworking and stonework is amazing. Likewise, the art and architecture is stunning.
They have a gift shop and a 98-year-old elevator, as well as a climb to the top of the rotunda.
The staff here offers guided tours to tourists from the bottom of the building to the top of the dome. You don’t want to miss out on this in your visit to Topeka. It’s a trip for all ages!
Address: SW 8th and SW Van Buren, Topeka, Kansas
20. West Ridge Lane and Family Fun Center
As its name implies, it’s a family fun center where you can visit to have get-togethers with your friends and family.
The West Ridge Lane and Family Fun Center offer activities you can do together with your loved ones.
These activities include go-carting, bowling, miniature golfing, and bump bowling for children.
Its bowling equipment can be considered State-of-the-arts, so you are sure of getting the very best experience of bowling at West Ridge Lane. Students can also go on field trips to the center.
Address: 1935 SW West Port Drive, Topeka, Kansas
21. The Great Mural Wall of Topeka
For lovers of art, this is a place in Topeka you don’t want to miss.
The Great mural wall is a remarkable side attraction that gives a visual history of the city of Topeka. The mural wall tells the story of the highs and lows of Topeka.
It’s found on a bare wall that was formerly a water reservoir on the Southwestern Avenue of Topeka.
The great mural wall’s principal artists, KT Walsh, Ashely Laird, and Dave Lowenstein, oversaw the design and research of Topeka’s rich history to be depicted on the wall.
And as a matter of fact, the creative art piece has attracted the attention of many organizations and volunteers.
This stunning mural art in Topeka will leave you in awe.
Address: 1969-1999 SW western avenue, Topeka, Kansas
22. Kaw River State Park, Topeka
The Kaw River state park is the only urban park in Kansas.
The park which has an area of 76 acres was donated to Kansas in 2005 but established officially as a public park in September 2010.
The feel of nature in this park is breathtaking. Also, at the Kaw River State Park, you can go on boat rides, you can also go swimming or fishing.
It is particularly known for its serenity, so you can enjoy the peaceful and serene atmosphere while experiencing deep body and soul relaxation. As a bonus, you also get to enjoy the amazing view.
And you know what? with all the goodness this park has for you, it is absolutely free!.
So go on and add a visit here to your list of things to do in Topeka.
Address: Topeka, Kansas, United States
23. Kansas Museum of History
The Kansas Museum of History represents the history of Kansas from the prehistoric era, through the Native Americans to the modern times. It features a very large amount of exhibits.
It is a notable and award-winning museum. Exhibits such as the biplane (which was built in 1914), a stocked wagon ready for a trip on the Oregon trails, various weapons, and many other unique objects are on display in the Museum.
Kansas Museum of History is a place your kids have got to visit. The education and enlightenment this place offers them is priceless.
There are also play areas where they get to do several fun things while at it.
Entry into the Kansas Museum of History is not free, but the cost is not very expensive. Minors also get to pay just 50 percent of the entry fee.
Visitors are allowed into the museum on Tuesdays to Saturdays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and on Sundays from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm.
Address: 6425 SW 6th Avenue, Topeka, Kansas
24. Ted Ensley Garden, Topeka
On the west of lake Shawnee is the Ted Ensley garden.
This beautiful garden gives you a fascinating view of the lake. Visitors also enjoy the serenity and beauty of nature as they watch the activities of beautiful birds in the garden.
Visitors to the garden enjoy their experience here so much, that long after leaving here, they still speak in awe about the breathtaking beauty of the place.
The garden is nothing short of a world-class garden, the superb marvels it has to offer is just splendid.
The garden also features over 280 varieties of annual plants, 1200 types of perennials, trees, assorted roses, shrubs, meditation garden water, rock gardens, walking paths, and many other remarkable features.
Asides from visiting to just enjoy all that the garden has to offer, you can also host special events like a wedding celebration, anniversary dinner, and similar events in the garden. That alone is enough to make the event uniquely memorable.
Address: 3650 SE West Edge Road, Topeka, Kansas
25. The Heartland Motorsports Park
If you’re a motorsports lover, the Heartland Motorsports Park is a place to visit while you’re in Topeka.
The motorsports facility is located 13km south of downtown Topeka. It is the first motorsports park in the United States.
Established in 1989, it has gone on to host major events such as the national hot rod association (NHRA) Heartland nationals.
Indeed, a visit to Heartland Motorsports park means you get to enjoy the thrills of car races, the over-takes, mind-blowing speed and all of it.
Furthermore, you can ride your vehicle on the track to have a better feel of it. I bet you would want to do that!
In conclusion, plan a visit to Heartland Motorsports park and be sure to have an amazing fun time there.
Address: 7530 SW Topeka Boulevard, Topeka, Kansas
26. Topeka Zoo
The Topeka zoo is a medium-sized zoo that was established in 1933. It is located on the outskirts of Gage Park.
The zoo notably houses over 300 animals from all over the world as exhibits. It also has an indoor tropical rain forest which is the first of its kind in the United States. Beautiful plants and flowers are present in the zoo as well.
In general, nearly two hundred thousand (200,000) people visit the Topeka zoo park annually, therefore making it one of the most popular tourist attractions in Topeka.
With all the wonderful wildlife, beautiful plants, and other captivating features of the Topeka Zoological Park, it definitely will be fun visiting the park. So make the necessary arrangements and come visiting whenever you’re in town.
Address: 635 SW Gage Boulevard, Topeka, Kansas
27. Regal West Ridge Theater
At Regal West Ridge Theater, you get to watch your favorite movies at a very affordable cost.
That’s right, the cost of watching movies here is not high as it is a discount theater. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about the expenses when you want to watch a movie in Topeka.
The Regal West Ridge theater has eight beautiful auditoriums, each of which is equipped with a powerful digital projector that creates crisp and clear images.
In the theater, there is a gaming room and a snack shop where you can grab a bite as you watch your favorite movie.
The theater also offers a mobile ticketing service that helps you get your tickets easily and in time.
Address: 1727 SW Wanamaker Road, Topeka, Kansas
28. Topeka and Shawnee county public library
Away from parks, theatres, and zoos, the Topeka and Shawnee county public library is a nice place you should visit when you’re in Topeka.
It has something that would be of interest to each member of the family, and all age groups.
There’s a section for younger kids to read, learn and play as well as computers for older kids. The library also features a learning center (a large classroom with movable tables and chairs).
Want to hang out with your family in a unique and different way? Then try this out. Surely, every member of your family will have a great time at this library.
Address: 1515 SW 10th Ave, Topeka, KS 66604, United States
Plan a trip to Topeka, Kansas!!
With the twenty-eight things listed above serving as a guide, it is explicitly evident that a visit to Topeka would be worth your time.
There’s indeed a lot of fun stuff to do and places to visit in this city.
From learning about the history of the city, relaxing and having fun at parks, and also visiting the many fascinating places in Topeka.
In summary, a visit here is one adventure you don’t want to miss out on!