Lincoln is the capital city of Nebraska and is the state's government, education, and transport center. Founded in 1859, the city has a population of around 240,000 but still manages to retain a friendly, small town atmosphere. That atmosphere is enlivened by the presence of the university, which contributes to a great nightlife and laid-back, 'artsy' feel.
The residents of Lincoln are genuinely welcoming, making visitors feel at home very quickly.
The city hosts a college football team, basketball, and volleyball teams. Games consistently sell out and create a lively vibe in the city on the day.
You're really going to love the prices in Lincoln. Accommodation, food, and drink are all more affordable than in almost any other US state capital.
Museums like the University of Nebraska State Museum, Sheldon Museum of Art, and the State Capitol Building hold impressive collections.
Visitors might be surprised to learn that Lincoln is home to its very own winery, James Arthur Vineyards, which is a great place for a visit.
The Nebraska State Capitol in downtown Lincoln was designed by architect Bertram Grosvenor Goodhue in 1920. Constructed in Indiana limestone, the building was completed in 1932. Known as Tower on the Plains due to its 400-foot tower, the capitol building was designated a National Registered Historic Landmark in 1976. The interior features marble columns, vaulted tile ceilings, mosaic floors, and murals symbolizing the Native American and Pioneer history of the state. Take a walk through this fascinating, historic building, which is open to visitors seven days a week.
The Sunken Gardens, built by Charles Bartlett Hester in 1930, are named in the National Geographic Guide to Public Gardens as one of the best gardens to visit in North America. The gardens showcase 30,000 annual plants arranged according to a yearly theme. In addition to the Annual Garden, visitors can wander through the majestic Healing Garden replete with white lilies or the experience the Perennial Garden's glorious hostas, viburnum, and hydrangeas. The green space also features two reflecting pools and a waterfall. Renovated in 2005, the gardens house David Young's statue Rebekah at the Well and Dr. Wayne Southwick's statue Reville, which shows the artist's wife and their children at home.
The Haymarket District dates back to 1867, when it was merely an open market for produce and livestock and host to a camping ground for immigrants. Now the renovated Haymarket features restaurants, shops, and nightclubs housed within renovated turn-of-the-century warehouses. The area boasts numerous antique shops, art galleries and brew pubs, which attract visitors all day and night. The district is bordered by Iron Horse Park, which displays the Iron Horse Legacy, a three-dimensional brick mural, as well as a restored steam engine and a 19th-century water tower fountain.
The Sheldon Museum of Art, built in 1963, houses an impressive collection of 19th- and 20th-century art. Located on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus, the museum was designed by architect Philip Johnson and is featured on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. The gallery showcases more than 12,000 works of art, including a collection of 19th-century landscapes and still life paintings, works of American Impressionism, modernism, geometric abstraction, Abstract Expressionism, and Pop Art. The museum also features a sculpture garden with works by Jacques Lipchitz, Lyman Kipp, Richard Serra, and many more.
Established in 1992 by Bill and Joyce Smith, the Speedway Motors Museum of American Speed displays an impressive collection that explores the history of racing and automotive design. Visitors can enjoy a detailed assortment of early racing vehicles, vintage cars, go-karts, car parts, memorabilia, and even autographed guitars. The museum also showcases legendary car engines, such as specialized Offenhausers and Millers.
Winters can be very cold in Lincoln but summers are warm and humid, while spring and fall have the added benefit of the football season to enjoy.
Lincoln Airport offers flights from Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Memphis, and Minneapolis. Visitors can also fly into Eppley Airfield at Omaha. The taxi fare from Lincoln Airport into town is around $23. Shuttle services will take you into town for $7.
Amtrak offers passenger services from Chicago and the West Coast on the California Zephyr service. The fare from Chicago is from $84.
The main routes to Lincoln are the I-80 and US Highways 6, 34, and 77.
Greyhound buses serve Lincoln. The fare from Chicago is from $62.
Baymont Inn and Suites has comfortable rooms and is just two miles from the city center. Hyatt Place Lincoln is another good option, located in the Downtown area.
Haymarket - is one of the city's oldest neighborhoods and is a center for dining, shopping, and accommodation.
Country Club - is also known on the National Register of Historic Places as the 'Boulevards Historic District'. It is home to some fine residences.
College View - was once a separate village and still has its own village feel with a good mix of local stores and bars.
Lincoln's StarTran buses serve the city and fares cost from $1.75.
Taxis are a popular way of getting around town. The meter drop is $3.00 and then you will pay around $4.20 per mile.
Lincoln's street are laid out in a grid pattern and are relatively simple to navigate. Traffic is light for a major city but can get heavy during rush hours and on football Saturdays. Car rental is from $27 per day.
The Downtown area has the usual mix of fashion, food, and technology stores, while Haymarket has more local craft stores and independent boutiques.
A quart of milk in Lincoln will cost around $0.87 and a dozen eggs is $2.53.
La Paz on N Cotner Blvd is a favorite local Mexican eatery, while Dish on 11th serves South American and Pan Asian dishes. You will pay around $10 for a meal in a budget restaurant and $25 in a more upscale establishment.