Topeka and Lecompton. We added two more stops to our growing list of Kansas adventures. We often hear, usually from people who were born in our state, that there is nothing to do here. Last week, we discovered a well-known landmark with a hidden secret that can only be experienced in Kansas. Out of all the 50 state capitol buildings, this is the only one where visitors can climb to the top of the dome!

Our first stop was of course, lunch. The Wheel Barrel in Topeka is definitely going on our list of places to visit again. Especially after tasting their gluten-free bread!!! We enjoyed the gorgeous weather on the patio, which had a great kids area for Gabe to stretch his legs after two hours in the car.

Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0070.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0071.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0069.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0072.jpgDid I mention gluten-free bread!?
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0068.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0073.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0074.jpgOur capital tour guide was so friendly and informative. I still can’t believe I’ve lived in Kansas my whole life and never visited Topeka! We spent almost an hour visiting different rooms and hearing stories of how the building was restored by using old photographs! Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0075.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0076.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0077.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0078.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0080.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0079.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0081.jpgThe incredible detail in the ceilings and stencil work on the walls had been covered in many layers of paint, brought back to it’s original condition thanks to old photographs. Definitely another reason for us to print pictures and not rely on computers to save memories for us!
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0082.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0083.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0084.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0085.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0086.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0087.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0088.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0089.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0090.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0091.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0093.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0092.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0094.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0095.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0096.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0098.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0097.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0099.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0101.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0100.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0102.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0103.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0104.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0105.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0106.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0107.jpg
The dome tour began on the 5th floor where we ascended 296 steps to the top of the cupola, the outside observation deck. The photos only tell part of the story. I’ve always been afraid of heights, but the feeling of circling the outside of the capital dome, standing almost 300 feet above the city was worth facing my fear. This is one experience you don’t want to miss! Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0108.jpgThe stairway stretching between the inner and outer domes is approximately 75 feet. An incredible view! (only cell phone photos from here, my Nikon was tucked safely in my bag for the dome tour. Another reminder that the best camera is the one you always have with you!)
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0109.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0110.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0111.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0112.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0113.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0114.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0115.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0116.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0117.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0118.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0119.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0120.jpgAfter leaving the capitol, it was on to Lecompton, the Kansas Territorial Capitol.
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0121.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0123.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0124.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0125.jpg
Standing on the original floor of the oldest wooden building in Kansas, Constitution Hall, built in 1856. The flooring was constructed from cottonwood trees. Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0127.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0126.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0122.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0128.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0129.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0130.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0131.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0132.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0133.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0134.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0135.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0136.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0137.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0138.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0139.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0140.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0141.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0143.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0142.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0144.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0145.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0147.jpg
Topeka Kansas State Capitol Day Trip_0146.jpg