Top 7 Ways to Explore the Outdoors in Amarillo 

Amarillo’s outdoor adventures are calling you. Whether you’re experiencing the old west horseback riding out at Los Cedros ranch with Cowgirls and Cowboys in the West or biking the trails at Palo Duro Canyon, there’s plenty of outdoor fun for everyone in Amarillo. Add these to your things-to-do list when you visit!

1. Discover the Best of Palo Duro Canyon

View from an overlook in Palo Duro Canyon

In the heart of the Texas Panhandle, Palo Duro Canyon is often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of Texas.” This geological wonder stretches over 120 miles, showing off beautiful layers of sedimentary rock that paint the landscape with hues of red, orange, and gold. 

From exhilarating biking and hiking trails to the serenity of horseback riding, the canyon caters to diverse interests. Campers can immerse themselves in the tranquility of the surroundings, while stargazers are treated to starry night skies. For a unique adventure, humvee tours provide an off-road exploration of the canyon's rugged beauty. Additionally, the seasonal musical "TEXAS Outdoor Musical" at the Pioneer Amphitheater adds a touch of cultural flair against the backdrop of Palo Duro Canyon. Whether seeking thrills or solace, the canyon offers an unforgettable experience for nature lovers.




2. Experience the Old West

group of people horseback riding smiling

Step into the heart of Amarillo's outdoors with a distinctive and female-led adventure at Los Cedros Ranch. Join the trailblazing cowgirls of Cowgirls and Cowboys in the West for an unforgettable horseback ride through the scenic landscapes of the Old West. Let these skilled women guide you through the scenic landscapes, sharing their love for horsemanship and the rich history of the canyon.

Top off your experience and indulge in a chuckwagon breakfast or chuckwagon dinner, where the flavors of the Old West come to life. Whether you're a seasoned rider or a first-timer, join these trailblazing cowgirls for an unforgettable blend of history, nature, and the empowering spirit of the West, all under the vast Texas sky.



3. Outdoor Thrills

Group of friends riding in a humvee through Palo Duro Canyon

Take on another exhilarating adventure at Palo Duro Creek Ranch with a Humvee tour, an experience that promises both excitement and awe-inspiring scenery. This off-road experience offers a unique perspective of the rugged beauty of Palo Duro Canyon. 

Palo Duro Creek Ranch Provides access to areas of the canyon that might be challenging to reach on foot or by car through the state park since it is on private land. Ride through rugged terrain, as your guide navigates you through hidden gems and scenic viewpoints. 



4. A Serene Escape

Amarillo botanical gardens

Escape into the Amarillo Botanical Gardens where lush landscapes and vibrant blooms create a serene oasis in the heart of the city. Explore the meticulously curated gardens, from the peaceful Japanese Garden to the exotic Tropical Conservatory teeming with rare and fascinating plants. 

Beyond the flora and fauna, the Amarillo Botanical Gardens hosts educational programs, workshops, and fun events, making it a great place for both seasoned gardeners and visitors. 




5. Go wild at the Amarillo Zoo

kids looking at snake at the amarillo zoo

Embark on a wild adventure at the Amarillo Zoo, where the wonders of the animal kingdom come to life in the heart of Amarillo. This family-friendly destination offers a captivating journey through diverse ecosystems, allowing visitors to connect with a fascinating array of wildlife from around the globe. From the towering giraffes in the African Savanna to the playful antics of the primates in the Rainforest, the Amarillo Zoo provides an up-close and personal experience with a variety of species.

Engage in interactive programs, attend captivating animal presentations, and learn about the importance of preserving biodiversity. The zoo's passionate staff works tirelessly to create a memorable and enriching experience for visitors of all ages.



6. Wildcat Bluff Nature Center

Photo of Wildcat Bluff Nature Center Trail

Discover the untamed beauty of the Texas Panhandle at the Wildcat Bluff Nature Center, a hidden gem where nature thrives.  Nestled on the outskirts of Amarillo, this nature sanctuary offers a tranquil escape, inviting visitors to explore its diverse landscapes and engage in immersive outdoor experiences.

Wander through the network of hiking trails that go through rolling prairies, rugged canyons, and along the picturesque rim overlooking the Canadian River.

The Wildcat Bluff Nature Center is not just a haven for outdoor enthusiasts; it's a hub for environmental education and sustainable practices. Enjoy their guided nature walks, bird-watching excursions, and hands-on workshops, and many events throughout the year.



7. Enjoy camping, fishing, hiking, biking, hunting, and off-roading at Lake Meredith.


Lake Meredith - Fishing Pier

Lake Meredith stands as a serene oasis offering a refreshing contrast to the plains of Amarillo. Formed by the Sanford Dam on the Canadian River, offers a haven for outdoor enthusiasts seeking water-based recreation, scenic beauty, camping, fishing, and more. 

Boating enthusiasts can set sail on the lake’s waters, enjoying the panoramic views. Fishing enthusiasts can fish for a diverse range of fish species including catfish, bass, and walleye. 

On land, the surrounding shoreline offers hiking trails and birdwatching opportunities.  Additionally, the lake's recreational areas include spots for picnicking, making it an ideal setting for a relaxed day outdoors.