Getting To and Around Topeka

Topeka, as you might expect of a state capital, is easy enough to get to both by car and by plane. It’s at the cross roads of the I-335 and I-70 making it easily accessible by road whichever direction you’re approaching from. If you’re coming from overseas then Kansas City International airport is only an hour’s drive away and if you’re taking a domestic flight you can touchdown at the Manhattan Regional Airport. The Railways have played an important part in the history of Topeka so it’s no surprise that is has good rail links. Trains from the Union Pacific and BNSF are frequent. As with any major city, you won’t have a problem finding a place to hire a car if you want to provide yourself with a means of private transport during your stay. However, if you’re coming from overseas you’ll need to be aware of the requirements you’ll need to satisfy the rental criteria of the company you’re thinking of using. Though you can drive from your teens, you may need to be 25 or older to take a rental. In addition, though you may prefer to avoid borrowing in your day to day financial affairs, you might need a credit card to be able to rent a car. If you are coming from Britain, Ireland, Japan or Australia you will want to take some time to ensure you are comfortable driving on the other side of the road before you head into busy areas where conditions may present a challenge. On top of this you’ll probably be more used to driving ‘stick’, whereas the likelihood is that your rental will be automatic. If you really want to see a lot of the surrounding area, you probably will want to go down the rental route. However, if your trip is going to see you based around the city centre then public transport may suffice. There are 30 fixed Topeka Metro bus routes you can ride. Children under 5 are able to ride the bus routes for free, whilst a ticket (one way) for an adult costs $2. If you’re going to be using the buses frequently during an extended stay it could possibly be worth your while getting a monthly pass. This allows unlimited journeys during the calendar month and costs $50.00. It’s non refundable so you should be sure that you’ll get your money’s worth before making the investment. It could transpire that you’ll be better off going for a strip of ten tickets. This is cheaper than paying for each ride individually and, as you’ll already have your tickets, you don’t need to worry...

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Topeka’s Natural Attractions

If you want to get out and see some of Kansas’ great outdoors than a stay in Topeka will put you in easy distance of some great sights. Anyone looking to experience some beautiful scenery and give themselves a gentle bit of exercise should definitely look into taking a stroll along the Kansas Historical Society’s Nature Trail. The trail, which is situated in western Topeka consists of four different sections. The eastern section is made up of a 2.5 mile long circuit which takes in creeks, grasslands and woodlands. As you walk along you’ll come across signs imparting interesting facts both about the natural history and the cultural significance of the sights you’ll see on the way. On the north trail you’ll pass through more woodland, whilst the south will take you down to the charming Stach School, a one room building of historical interest where you can see just how far education has come in the last couple of hundred years. The path to the west will take you over a series of bridges, including the Wea Creek Bridge, which is one of the only bridges featuring a Bowstring Arch Truss design still in use today. (The faint of heart should probably also be aware that one of the three bridges is of the rope variety, but don’t worry, it’s a lot safer than the ones you’ve seen in adventure movies!). There’s some great wildlife in the area that you might be lucky enough to catch sight of whilst out on the trail. In the prairie and alongside the banks of the creek you could spot a number of smaller animals as well as larger mammals such as the white tailed deer. If you’ve got an ornithological streak, keep an eye out for meadowlarks and red-tailed hawks. You might even see a wild turkey roving about. Another prime spot you should drop in on is Shawnee Lake. There are a range of places there in which to relax and it makes an ideal setting for a picnic. There’s a swimming beach as well as facilities for organised sports if you’d like to indulge in a game of tennis or volleyball. If you’d like to appreciate the view from the water head down to the marina and take a boat out or, if you have the requisite skills, you could go windsurfing. If you really want to get out on the water and enjoy yourself, try kayaking or canoeing down the Kansas River. At the Kaw River State Park, as well as enjoying a variety of hikes and mountain bike rides you can take through the 76 acres of...

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