Ever been somewhere amazing, only to have it be spoiled by long lines and huge crowds? Us too.

More and more Americans are discovering that, within this vast country lie hidden an incredible number of vacation destinations. Places with perfect weather, tons of activities, and, best of all, none of those apocalyptic crowds.

Travelers who meet in these hidden gems don’t antagonize one another. Instead, they smile. They’ve found something special. A secret to share.

Today, we’re going to let you in on one of those secrets. A little slice of paradise we invite you to discover. That secret is Garden City, Kansas.

Garden City is a stunning little place. With 246 days of sunshine annually, it is truly a city that lives up to its name.

Today, we’re going to run down some of our favorite places to play and stay in Garden City. But don’t worry, there’s plenty left for you to discover when you decide to come visit yourself!


Garden City Kansas is chock full of activities and fun for the entire family. No matter what kind of fun you’re looking for, we’re sure you’ll find it here. Below is a list of some of our favorite things to do in this beautiful city.

The Big Pool

What does 2 million gallons of water look like? You’ll have to see it to believe it! Garden City’s big pool is aptly named. It is bigger than a football field and covers over 72,000 square feet.

If you ask a local, there’s no better place to find yourself on a warm summer’s day than cozied up next to the world’s largest outdoor municipal concrete swimming pool.

Oh and, since you’re wondering, yes people have waterskied on it. And no, we wouldn’t recommend it.

Lee Richardson Zoo

Forget about lions, tigers, and bears. The Lee Richardson Zoo in Garden City has jaguars, maned wolves, and red pandas. It’s got hedgehogs, black rhinos, and giraffes.

The zoo has on display over 300 exotic and native animals across 50+ acres of walking paths, driving paths, and simulated landscapes. The zoo is one of the most popular attractions in Garden City, and is FREE to enter, and open 7 days a week!

Buffalo Dunes Golf Course

Does your idea of relaxation include a sunny day on the links? Buffalo Dunes is one of the top-rated courses in Kansas. Weather permitting, it is open throughout the year and has provided a juicy challenge for some of the top golfers in America, including US open champions.

Sandsage Bison Range Wildlife Area

If your family is interested in getting close to nature, nothing beats the Sandsage Bison Range.

This area is home to the oldest publicly owned bison herd in Kansas, and was established in 1916 by Woodrow Wilson.

The land provides a wonderful opportunity for visitors to experience the natural prairie ecosystem that would have been prevalent in Southwestern Kansas for thousands of years.

World-Class Dining

Let’s face it, we might say we’re going on vacation to do this activity or see that attraction, but what we all really want to do is EAT.

Garden City has a wide range of culinary delights on offer. From steak to pad thai, Garden City has you covered. While there are wayyyyyy too many delicious restaurants to list here, we thought we’d introduce you to a couple you might enjoy.

Samy’s Spirits and Steakhouse

Samy’s serves up some of the finest steaks in Southwest Kansas. Upscale food served in a more casual environment, Samy’s caters to everyone lucky enough to find themselves in Garden City.

While the steaks are definitely Samy’s flagship, do NOT sleep on the beer-battered fries. Trust us.

Las Margaritas

Shhh, this place is a serious local secret. Located in a basement below a building downtown, Las Margaritas dishes delicious, authentic Mexican food. The service is killer and the fajitas can’t miss.

Lots of options for the kids, and the margarita is as good as you might expect.

Pho Hoa One Restaurant

If you’re looking for something slightly out of the ordinary in Garden City, Pho Hoa One can’t be missed.

Serving top of the line Vietnamese food, Pho Hoa One has a seriously big menu that will take several visits to make a dent.

The pho is incredible and the eggrolls might just be the best in Kansas.

Where to Stay

There is plenty of accommodation available in Garden City, whether you’re traveling on a budget or splashing out. The options range from beautiful suites, to cozy bed and breakfasts, and everything in between.

Best Western Emerald Inn

Fitness center? Check. Hot tub? Check. Incredible service, beautiful breakfast, gorgeous rooms with a view? Check, check, check.

If you are looking for a great place to relax after a long day of, well, relaxing, this is the place. The rooms are clean and well-appointed and the hotel staff is courteous and knowledgeable.

If you want top tier accommodation in Garden City, look no further.

Heritage Inn and Suites

Located a stone’s throw from Parrot Cove indoor/outdoor waterpark, Heritage boasts one of the best locations in Garden City.

The staff is kind and the rooms are gorgeous, clean, and spacious.

Sunnyland Bed and Breakfast

Looking for something different than a big hotel? A place that feels a bit more personable? Look no further than Sunnyland bed and breakfast.

Don’t just act like a local, stay here and BE one! Operators Fred and Kathryn are longtime Garden City residents and they will make their home, your home during your stay.

Get insider tips from actual insiders, and check out a different side of this amazing city.

Garden City

Garden City is a beautiful place, smack in America’s heartland. There is so much here to see and do, we’re sure it will keep you coming back for years to come!

Finney County Convention and Visitors Bureau

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