Greetings, fellow travelers! Journeying Jack here, back with another exciting edition of Suitcase Stories. Today, we’re venturing into the heart of the Midwest to explore the bustling city of Indianapolis. Known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and thrilling sports scene, there’s no shortage of cool things to do Indianapolis. So, buckle up and join me as we dive into the top cool things to do Indianapolis, guaranteed to make your visit to this incredible city an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re a thrill-seeker, a history buff, or a foodie, Indianapolis has something for everyone. Let’s get started on our journey to discover the coolest things to do Indianapolis!
Urban Adventures: Exploring Downtown Indy
If you’re looking for cool things to do in Indianapolis, exploring downtown is a must. Here are some urban adventures to add to your itinerary:
1. Visit the Indianapolis City Market
The Indianapolis City Market is a historic landmark that has been around since 1886. It’s a great place to grab a bite to eat, shop for local goods, and experience the city’s culture. The market is open year-round and hosts a variety of events, including live music and cooking classes.
2. Take a Walk on the Indianapolis Cultural Trail
The Indianapolis Cultural Trail is an 8-mile urban trail that connects six cultural districts in downtown Indy. It’s a great way to explore the city’s art, history, and architecture. You can rent a bike or take a leisurely stroll and stop at various landmarks along the way.
3. Explore the Indianapolis Museum of Art
The Indianapolis Museum of Art is one of the largest art museums in the country. It features over 54,000 works of art from around the world, including paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts. The museum also has a beautiful outdoor garden and hosts various events throughout the year.
4. Visit the Indiana State Capitol Building
The Indiana State Capitol Building is a beautiful neoclassical building that houses the state’s government. It’s open to the public and offers guided tours that showcase the building’s history and architecture. You can also visit the Indiana State Museum, which is located on the lower level of the building.
5. Catch a Game at Lucas Oil Stadium
If you’re a sports fan, catching a game at Lucas Oil Stadium is a must. The stadium is home to the Indianapolis Colts and hosts various events throughout the year, including concerts and conventions. Even if you’re not a sports fan, the stadium’s architecture is worth checking out.
These are just a few of the cool things to do in Indianapolis when exploring downtown. Make sure to add them to your itinerary for an unforgettable trip to the city.
Thrills and Chills: Indianapolis’ Must-Visit Theme Parks
If you’re looking for some cool things to do in Indianapolis, visiting the city’s theme parks should definitely be on your list. Indianapolis is home to some of the most exciting and thrilling theme parks in the country. Here are some of the must-visit theme parks in Indianapolis that will give you the thrills and chills you’re looking for:
1. Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari
Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari is a popular theme park located in Santa Claus, Indiana, just a short drive from Indianapolis. This park is known for its thrilling roller coasters, water rides, and family-friendly attractions. The park is divided into four themed sections, each with its own unique attractions. The park also has a water park, Splashin’ Safari, which is included with admission.
2. Kings Island
Kings Island is a massive amusement park located in Mason, Ohio, just a short drive from Indianapolis. This park is home to some of the most thrilling roller coasters in the world, including the Beast and Diamondback. The park also has a water park, Soak City, which is included with admission.
3. Indiana Beach
Indiana Beach is a classic amusement park located on the shores of Lake Shafer in Monticello, Indiana, about an hour and a half drive from Indianapolis. This park has been entertaining families for over 90 years and is known for its classic rides, including the Hoosier Hurricane wooden roller coaster. The park also has a water park, Splash Bash, which is included with admission.
4. Conner Prairie
Conner Prairie is a living history museum located in Fishers, Indiana, just a short drive from Indianapolis. This park is not your typical theme park, but it offers a unique and educational experience for visitors of all ages. The park features interactive exhibits, historic buildings, and costumed interpreters who bring history to life. Visitors can also take a hot air balloon ride or ride in a covered wagon.
Whether you’re a thrill-seeker or just looking for a fun day out with the family, these theme parks in Indianapolis have something for everyone. Don’t miss out on these cool things to do in Indianapolis!
Cultural Gems: Museums and Galleries to Discover
Indianapolis is a city that is rich in culture and history. There are many museums and galleries that showcase the city’s heritage and art scene. Here are some of the cool things to do in Indianapolis for art and culture enthusiasts:
Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
The Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields is a must-visit for art lovers. It is one of the largest encyclopedic art museums in the country, with over 54,000 works of art spanning 5,000 years of history. The museum’s collection includes paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, and textiles from around the world. The museum also has a beautiful outdoor garden that is worth exploring.
The Eiteljorg Museum is a unique museum that showcases the art, history, and cultures of the American West and the Indigenous peoples of North America. The museum’s collection includes paintings, sculptures, and artifacts that tell the story of the American West and its people. The museum also hosts special exhibitions throughout the year.
Indiana State Museum
The Indiana State Museum is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Indiana. The museum’s collection includes artifacts and exhibits that showcase the state’s natural history, archaeology, and cultural heritage. The museum also has a planetarium and an IMAX theater.
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is a fun and educational museum for kids and adults alike. The museum’s collection includes interactive exhibits that teach kids about science, history, and culture. The museum also has a dinosaur exhibit, a planetarium, and a carousel.
Gallery 924 is a contemporary art gallery that showcases the work of local and regional artists. The gallery hosts exhibitions throughout the year, featuring a variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, and photography. The gallery is located in the Arts Council of Indianapolis building in downtown Indianapolis.
These are just a few of the cultural gems that Indianapolis has to offer. Whether you’re a history buff, an art lover, or just looking for cool things to do in Indianapolis, these museums and galleries are definitely worth a visit.
Foodie Paradise: Top Culinary Experiences in Indianapolis
Indianapolis is a foodie paradise, with a diverse range of culinary experiences to satisfy any palate. From classic American fare to international cuisine, the city has it all. Here are some of the top culinary experiences to add to your list of cool things to do in Indianapolis:
1. St. Elmo Steak House
If you’re a meat lover, St. Elmo Steak House is a must-visit. This iconic restaurant has been serving up delicious steaks since 1902 and is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Be sure to try their famous shrimp cocktail, which is served with a fiery horseradish sauce.
For a unique brunch experience, head to Milktooth. This trendy restaurant serves up creative dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. Try their Dutch baby pancake or their avocado toast with smoked salmon.
Named after a Kurt Vonnegut novel, Bluebeard is a farm-to-table restaurant that focuses on seasonal ingredients. Their menu changes frequently, but you can always expect delicious dishes like roasted chicken with root vegetables or seared scallops with bacon and Brussels sprouts.
4. The Tamale Place
For a taste of authentic Mexican cuisine, head to The Tamale Place. This family-owned restaurant serves up delicious tamales made with traditional recipes. Be sure to try their pork tamales with green sauce.
5. The Eagle
If you’re in the mood for some classic American comfort food, The Eagle is the place to go. This restaurant serves up delicious fried chicken, mac and cheese, and biscuits. Be sure to save room for their homemade pies.
Whether you’re a foodie or just looking for some delicious eats, Indianapolis has something for everyone. These culinary experiences are just a few of the cool things to do in Indianapolis.
Nature Escapes: Beautiful Parks and Outdoor Activities
Indianapolis is not just a concrete jungle; it has some of the most beautiful parks and outdoor activities that you can enjoy. Here are some cool things to do in Indianapolis for nature lovers:
Eagle Creek Park
Eagle Creek Park is one of the largest city parks in the United States, covering over 3,900 acres of land. It is a perfect place for hiking, biking, fishing, and bird watching. The park has several trails that offer scenic views of the lake and the surrounding woods. You can also rent a kayak or a paddleboat and explore the lake.
White River State Park
White River State Park is a 250-acre urban park located in downtown Indianapolis. It is home to several attractions, including the Indianapolis Zoo, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, and the Indiana State Museum. The park also has several trails that offer beautiful views of the White River.
Holliday Park is a 94-acre park located on the north side of Indianapolis. It is home to several hiking trails, including the popular River Trail, which offers scenic views of the White River. The park also has a nature center, a playground, and a picnic area.
The Monon Trail is a 22-mile trail that runs from downtown Indianapolis to the city of Carmel. It is a popular destination for walkers, runners, and cyclists. The trail passes through several parks and neighborhoods, offering beautiful views of the city.
Indianapolis Cultural Trail
The Indianapolis Cultural Trail is an 8-mile trail that connects several cultural districts in downtown Indianapolis. It is a perfect place for a leisurely walk or bike ride. The trail passes through several parks and public art installations, making it a unique and beautiful way to explore the city.
Whether you are a nature lover or just looking for some cool things to do in Indianapolis, these parks and outdoor activities are sure to impress. So, pack your bags and head out to explore the beauty of Indianapolis!
Nightlife Hotspots: Best Bars and Entertainment Venues
If you’re looking for cool things to do in Indianapolis after dark, you won’t be disappointed. The city has a vibrant nightlife scene with plenty of bars and entertainment venues to choose from. Here are some of the best spots to check out:
1. The Jazz Kitchen
The Jazz Kitchen is a must-visit for music lovers. This intimate venue features live jazz performances every night of the week, as well as a menu of delicious Cajun and Creole cuisine. It’s the perfect spot to unwind with a drink and some great music.
2. Tappers Arcade Bar
For a unique night out, head to Tappers Arcade Bar. This bar features a wide selection of craft beers and classic arcade games, including Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, and Mortal Kombat. It’s a great spot to relive your childhood while enjoying a cold beer.
3. The Vogue
The Vogue is one of the city’s premier music venues, hosting a variety of concerts and events throughout the year. The venue has a spacious dance floor and a full bar, making it the perfect spot to catch a show or dance the night away.
4. The Slippery Noodle Inn
The Slippery Noodle Inn is a historic blues bar that has been around since 1850. The bar features live music every night of the week, as well as a menu of classic pub fare. It’s a great spot to experience the city’s rich musical heritage.
5. The Rathskeller
The Rathskeller is a German-inspired beer hall and restaurant that features live music and events throughout the year. The venue has a large outdoor beer garden and a menu of traditional German dishes, making it the perfect spot to enjoy a night out with friends.
Whether you’re in the mood for live music, classic arcade games, or a cold beer, Indianapolis has something for everyone. These nightlife hotspots are just a few of the cool things to do in Indianapolis after dark.
In conclusion, my time exploring the cool things to do Indianapolis has been nothing short of amazing. This city has a unique blend of history, culture, and entertainment that caters to all ages and interests. From the thrilling adventures at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to the serene beauty of the White River State Park, there’s no shortage of cool things to do Indianapolis.
As Journeying Jack, I’ve had the pleasure of uncovering countless hidden gems in cities around the world, and Indianapolis has undoubtedly earned its place on my list of favorites. So, whether you’re a local or a visitor, I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and dive into the cool things to do Indianapolis. You never know what incredible experiences await you in this vibrant city.
So, pack your bags, put on your adventure hat, and join me, Journeying Jack, as I continue to share my Suitcase Stories with you. And remember, the cool things to do Indianapolis are just the beginning of the countless adventures that await you in this incredible world. Happy travels, my fellow explorers!