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El Dorado State Park is situated in the southern section of Kansas, just a short drive away from Wichita. This state park is one of the largest in Kansas and spans over 4,000 acres. It rests next to the Flint Hills and El Dorado Reservoir providing guests with plenty of stunning views.
Besides its beautiful landscapes, El Dorado State Park also features abandoned railroad tracks and a large amphitheater which hosts numerous festivals throughout the year. The park is located next to El Dorado Lake and has an impressive 98-mile shoreline.
When making plans to visit El Dorado State Park, you’ll discover many outdoor activities to try out. One of the most popular options is fishing. Due to the park’s location next to El Dorado Lake, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to go fishing for crappies, bass, and walleyes. There are a few marinas located nearby and boat ramps so you can rent a boat or safely get into the water there.
Set off and hike the many trails winding through the park. The trails will take you through various areas around the land, although keep in mind that sometimes the trails might be slightly flooded, especially if they run next to the El Dorado Reservoir. The Cross County Trail runs one-mile and will take you through the Flint Hills. There’s also the Tallgrass Prairie Trail which runs half a mile long through wildflowers fields and is ADA-accessible. Check out the Boulder Bluff Horse Trail that covers 12 miles and will take you along the El Dorado Reservoir. It’s ideal for those who want to go horseback riding, biking, or looking for a good workout by hiking.
Birdwatching is also something to consider doing here thanks to the vast amount of bird species that live in the park. El Dorado State Park is believed to hold over 289 species of birds, including bald eagles, sparrows, and catbirds. Most birdwatchers recommend that you stick next to the areas near the El Dorado Reservoir and visit during the fall or winter for best results.
The campground at El Dorado State Park is very large and offers over 1,100 sites making it an ideal place to book an RV in Butler County. These sites will differ in their requirements as some will only allow certain types of RVs while others are designed to be used for those who plan to camp with horses. Because of this, it’s important to clarify what type of motorhome site you’re looking for when reserving a spot.
Some amenities offered at the campground include 30/50-amps, sewer, water, restrooms, and showers. The campground is extremely ADA-accessible. Keep in mind that there is no WiFi available here.
El Dorado State Park is just a short drive away from many interesting attractions you can visit. You could take your motorhome to Wichita to see the Old Cowtown Museum. This living history museum is situated next to the Arkansas River and was built in 1952 as a way to help guests immerse themselves into the history of Kansas, particularly during the 1800s. The museum is filled with various areas, including a farm which uses machinery from the 1800s. There’s also a small photography studio with vintage cameras. In addition to this, the museum has a residential street which is lined with historic houses visitors can explore. You’ll also find plenty of fun events throughout the year to attend, such as a steampunk festival.
If you want to stay in El Dorado, take a quick trip over to the Coutts Museum of Art with your RV. The art museum features works by local artists who fill the museum’s three stories. The museum also hosts a few art-related events that are geared toward both kids and adults.
While in El Dorado you could also head over to the Kansas Oil Museum. Considered to be one of the largest museums in the state, it tells the history behind this important industry. You’ll be able to view exhibits that showcase artifacts from old oil rigs as well as photographs. Besides learning more about the oil industry, the museum also highlights local Native American history and ranch life during the early 1900s.
Take your camper rental on about an hour’s drive to Emporia to visit the David Traylor Zoo of Emporia. While a somewhat small zoo, it’s filled with over 80 unique species guests can view and learn more about. These include bald eagles, prairie dogs, and lemurs. The zoo is also beautifully landscaped and features many native plants. Admission is free, and zookeepers are on hand to answer any questions you might have about the animals.