Tahlequah Daily Press

Checking It Out

May 8, 2008

Head south for Texas, west for California

TAHLEQUAH DAILY PRESS — Looking for a few good ideas for summer vacations? A recent survey shows you might be better staying off going home than traveling elsewhere: When it comes to fun on a budget, Oklahoma takes top honors.

But if you're like a lot of folks and you need a break from the Sooner State, I have a few suggestions. Last week, we talked about a couple of favorite points north and east. Now we'll go another direction, or two.

Heading South

A trip to Texas might be just the ticket if you're on a very limited budget. You can go as far as the Dallas-Fort Worth area and take in a Rangers baseball game after a day at Six Flags Over Texas (both in nearby Arlington), or you can continue on down to San Antonio and treat your family to a day at Six Flags Fiesta Texas, another day at Sea World, and an evening on the exciting Riverwalk.

If avoiding high fuel prices is one of your aims this summer, my suggestion is to drive your vehicle to Oklahoma City, park it at the train station, and then board the Heartland Flyer for Texas. A round-trip ticket is just $48 (or $43.20, if you're a member of the American Automobile Association), and for that, you just kick back, relax, and let the engineer take you to your destination. The seats are far more comfortable than on a plane, and you can take in some scenery. The train makes a daily run at 8:25 a.m., arriving at 12:39 p.m.

The worst part about Arlington is that, despite having several major attractions like Six Flags and Ranger baseball, there's no ample mass transit (as far as I know). To get from Fort Worth to Arlington, you'll either have to rent a car, or better yet, take a Greyhound bus from the train station (both terminals are at 1001 Jones St.) to Arlington. The bus station, Ranger ballpark and Six Flags are all within a mile of one another, so if you book one of the nearby economy hotels, like Fairfield Marriott, Hampton Inn or Baymont, you can practically walk back and forth between venues. In fact, there are also trolleys to take you around the immediate vicinity.

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