Iowa is a great destination for those looking to explore the beauty of nature, experience unique local culture, or just relax and unwind. It offers something for everyone, from outdoor activities to cultural experiences. Here are just a few ideas of fun and relaxing things to do while visiting Iowa:
Visit the Iowa State Fair
The Iowa State Fair is a great way to spend the day. It’s held annually in August in Des Moines and features various rides, games, concerts, and delicious food. You’ll have endless entertainment options while enjoying the festive atmosphere of one of the largest state fairs in the United States.
While here, don’t miss out on the chance to check out the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation Museum. It’s a great way to learn more about the history of the fair and its many attractions. You can also participate in the famous butter cow sculpting competition, a longstanding tradition dating back to 1911.
Explore the Amana Colonies
The Amana Colonies are a group of historic German villages in eastern Iowa. They are best known for their unique restaurants, galleries, and festivals, which allow visitors to explore the local culture. Take a guided tour, attend a wine tasting, or shop for handmade crafts and furniture. Don’t miss out on the chance to sample the delicious traditional cuisine and pick up some souvenirs to remember your time here.
For an extra special experience, try the Amana Colonies Trail Ride. It’s a guided horse-and-cart tour of the villages that offers visitors a unique way to explore the area. This is a great way to get an up-close look at the incredible architecture and experience traditional culture in its purest form.
Take a Stroll in the Pappajohn Sculpture Park
The Pappajohn Sculpture Park is located in downtown Des Moines and showcases 28 sculptures by renowned artists such as Jaume Plensa, Louise Bourgeois, and Richard Serra. It also features lush gardens and walking paths. This is a great place to take a stroll or picnic while admiring the incredible works of art.
To make the most of your visit, attend one of the park’s many outdoor events. From concerts to movie screenings, there’s always something going on here. Here, you can enjoy art and nature in equal measure.
Visit the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium
The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque is a great way to learn about the history and ecology of the Mississippi River. Here, visitors can view live animals, explore interactive exhibits, and take a ride on a riverboat. The museum also offers river ecology and wildlife conservation programs, making it an educational and fun experience for the whole family.
Since the museum is located on the banks of the Mississippi River, don’t miss out on the chance to take in some stunning views from its observation deck. Enjoy the beauty of the river and its surrounding landscape. Also, check out the museum’s gift shop, where you can take home souvenirs from your visit.
Enjoy a Day at the Casino
Iowa is one of several states in the US that has legalized gambling. This means several casinos spread throughout the state, offering visitors a chance to enjoy fun and games in a safe and regulated environment. You can play your favorite slot machines, table games, and poker at these casinos and even enjoy Iowa sports betting options.
Some of the best casinos in Iowa include the Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel in Tama, the Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque, and the Ameristar Casino in Council Bluffs. Whichever one you choose, make sure to enjoy a day full of fun and excitement.
Go for a Bike Ride on the High Trestle Trail
The High Trestle Trail is a 25-mile paved trail that passes through some of Iowa’s most beautiful countryside. Its most notable feature is the High Trestle Bridge, a half-mile-long bridge that offers stunning views of the surrounding areas.
The trail is perfect for cyclists, hikers, and joggers alike, so bring your bike or running shoes if you want to explore the trail. There are plenty of rest stops along the way, so you can take a break and enjoy some refreshments whenever needed.
So whether you want to explore the local culture, take in some stunning views, enjoy a day at the casino, or go for a bike ride, Iowa has something for everyone. Iowa is the perfect destination for your next vacation with its many attractions and activities – from outdoor adventures to cultural experiences. So plan your visit today and experience all that Iowa has to offer!