Ready to get away? Me, too. Lately, though, planning a vacation that involves an airport, a rental car, and none of the comforts of home, isn’t that appealing. I just want to throw my comfiest clothes into a bag, jump in the car, and find myself relaxing somewhere in about 2-3 hours.
This, my friends, is just one of the many reasons my family has fallen in love with Broken Bow, Oklahoma. I wish I could say that I discovered this little refuge, but just like with fashion trends, I’m always late to the party.
Over the last several years, Broken Bow, Oklahoma has basically become the Hamptons of North Texas. You either own a cabin up there or you rent one and drive up for a long weekend. Either way, there’s a reason why people love it.
Actually, there are 5 reasons that I’ll offer you, and I bet you’ll be ready to book your BB getaway before you’re finished reading them.
5 reasons why I love Broken Bow… and think you will, too!
Some people are road trip people. They don’t mind driving 20 hours to their destination and stopping at every historical marker along the way. My family? We’re not road trip people. If it’s under 5 hours, we’re in, but after that we’re total whiners. This makes Broken Bow the PERFECT distance. The small town is in the southeast corner of Oklahoma, just under 3 hours from Collin County. Stop for lunch half way and you’ll barely notice you’ve been on a road trip. Bonus: the kids will probably only ask “Are we there yet?” once or twice.
Change of scenery
As much as I love living in North Texas, you’re not going to find 100-foot tall pine trees in Frisco. Oklahoma’s towering pines and oaks will surround your cabin and give you all the woodsy feels you expect from this getaway. The absence of suburban norms is refreshing, and I promise you won’t even miss Target and Starbucks.
My family rarely leaves the cabin, quite honestly. We’re perfectly content to sit on the porch and look out at the trees with our favorite beverage in hand the entire time. We do enjoy a little hiking and exploring at Beavers Bend State Park, though. There, you’ll find miles and miles of trails and streams. Summer visitors will enjoy jet skiing, kayaking, or fishing. The lake offers 22 square miles of fun, surrounded by the prettiest forests.
My favorite part of planning our annual BB trip is perusing all of the cozy Broken Bow cabins beforehand. We choose a different one each year and we’ve never been disappointed. You’ll find every type of cabin in the area: upscale, simple, one bedroom, 6 bedroom, tons of amenities, or just a few. In most cases, they’re fully furnished and come with a kitchen, cozy linens, and WiFi.
Most properties will have a fireplace, hot tub, and outdoor fire pit for those all-important s’mores. The owners of the Broken Bow cabins understand that you came to relax, and will usually provide cozy blankets, fire wood, and other extras to ensure you have a great time. I always bring a few scented candles and even some twinkle lights to add extra ambiance. Depending on the size of your cabin, it may come with cute log beds for the kids, a pool table, or other fun add-ons.
Small town charm
I’ll be straight with you. When you first arrive in the area, it will be very apparent that you’re not in the fancy suburbs of Dallas anymore. It’s an old, small town, and there’s nothing cute about it upon arrival. That is, until you continue on your journey to the cabin itself. Everything gets more and more charming the farther you go, with great souvenir shops, unique restaurants, and lots of fun things to do.
Once you’re settled at the cabin, you might want to visit the wonderful little boutiques and old furniture stores, or try one of the local wineries. You’ll also find zip-lining, go-karting, mini-golf, and a giant wooden maze that I’ve never seen anywhere else. As far as dining goes, the restaurants in Broken Bow are really unique. You won’t find mega-chains or fast food, but rather family-run places with tons of charm.
Your Broken Bow, Oklahoma excursion can be whatever you want it to be. Book a one bedroom for a romantic getaway with your love. Book a medium-sized cabin for a girls weekend. Partner up with some friends who have kids and make it a joint vacation. Take advantage of the many activities and dining options, or literally stay at the cabin the entire time. Try this restaurant this year, try that one the next. Come in the summer, or come in the fall. My family always goes in the fall so that we can bundle up and listen to the fireplace crackle all night. I’ve heard that summer is a great time to go, also, especially if you’re a lake sports-lover.
Essential tips for enjoying Broken Bow
So now that I’ve sufficiently wooed you (I hope), let me offer you a handful of tips:
- We usually book our Broken Bow cabin through VRBO or AirBnB, but a quick Google search will direct you to the various cabin rental agencies.
- Now that this hidden gem destination isn’t so hidden anymore, you’ll want to book your cabin about 5-6 months out. That’s not to say you can’t find one last-minute, but you’ll have a much better selection to choose from if you plan ahead.
- Ask your cabin owner in advance about how stocked the cabin is in terms of essentials like coffee filters, extra blankets, matches, fire wood, etc. Most Broken Bow cabins will be fully furnished with cutlery, cookware, glassware, etc, but some are more generous than others when it comes to spices, coffee, paper towels, and basic toiletries.
- After you check into your cabin, take stock of what you’ll need for your stay, and then run to the little Wal-Mart you passed on your way into town. This is where we get our wine or beer and any essentials we may have forgotten at home, like shampoo. Next door to the Wal-Mart, there’s a grocery store called Pruett’s. They don’t sell alcohol, but they have all of your grocery needs. My family stocks up on the first day and then we’re set. Don’t forget to grab those s’mores ingredients and fire wood if the cabin didn’t provide it for you!
- Bring some shoes that can get muddy, because sometimes it takes awhile for those dense areas around the cabin to get dry following a rain. My kids always bring their rain boots for ease of throwing them on and off since they tend to be in and out all day long.
- If your cabin owner permits it, bring your lovable canine. We always bring our dog; she loves Broken Bow, Oklahoma as much as we do.