Fun Things to Do in Iowa: A Guide to Unforgettable Adventures – 2024

fun things to do in Iowa

Are you searching for fun things to do in Iowa? Look no further! Iowa, often recognized for its vast cornfields and rolling plains, holds a treasure trove of activities that promise an unforgettable experience. From its vibrant cultural festivals to breathtaking natural landscapes, Iowa is a hidden gem waiting to be explored. In this blog post, we’ll uncover 10-15 exciting attractions and activities that showcase the best of what Iowa has to offer. Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, get ready to embark on an exhilarating journey through the Hawkeye State!

1. Exploring the Bridges of Madison County

Madison County is famous for its picturesque covered bridges, immortalized in the novel and film, “The Bridges of Madison County.” Tour these historic structures and immerse yourself in the romantic ambiance of rural Iowa.

2. Fun Things to Do in Iowa: Exploring the Maquoketa Caves State Park

For outdoor enthusiasts, Maquoketa Caves State Park is a must-visit destination. Discover the underground wonders of Iowa as you navigate through various caves and formations. Above ground, the park offers beautiful hiking trails, picnic areas, and a nature center, making it a perfect spot for a family day out.

3. Experiencing the Iowa State Fair

The Iowa State Fair is not just an event; it’s an institution! Renowned for its massive food portions, live entertainment, and agricultural displays, the fair is a vibrant showcase of Iowa’s heartland spirit. From thrilling rides to livestock competitions, there’s something here to captivate visitors of all ages.

4. Discovering the Amana Colonies

Step back in time and experience the rich heritage of the Amana Colonies. This cluster of seven quaint villages offers a unique glimpse into communal living, with their well-preserved buildings, artisan shops, and traditional German cuisine. Explore the local museums, indulge in homemade treats, and maybe even catch a traditional festival!

5. Enjoying the Vibrant Nightlife of Des Moines

Iowa’s capital, Des Moines, offers a vibrant nightlife with its array of bars, clubs, and live music venues. Experience the energetic atmosphere and enjoy a night out in the city and downtown Des Moines.

6. Visiting the Field of Dreams Movie Site

Baseball fans and movie buffs alike will love visiting the Field of Dreams movie site in Dyersville. Play a game on the famous baseball diamond or take a guided tour to learn about this iconic film’s history.

7. Exploring the Art Scene in Cedar Rapids

Cedar Rapids boasts an impressive art scene, with the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art and the NewBo Art District. Discover works by local artists and experience the cultural richness of the city.

8. Fun Things to Do in Iowa: Enjoying Des Moines’ Art Scene

The capital city of Des Moines is a hub for art lovers. The Des Moines Art Center, with its impressive collections and exhibitions, is a must-visit. Don’t miss the Pappajohn Sculpture Park, an outdoor gallery featuring striking works by renowned artists, set against the city’s vibrant backdrop.

9. Hiking in Pikes Peak State Park

For breathtaking views of the Mississippi River and beautiful hiking trails, Pikes Peak State Park is a top choice. The park’s overlooks provide some of the most stunning vistas in Iowa.

10. Enjoying Lake Okoboji’s Water Activities

Lake Okoboji is a haven for water sports enthusiasts. With its crystal-clear waters, it’s perfect for boating, fishing, swimming, and even parasailing. The surrounding area also offers amusement parks, golf courses, and live theatre performances.

11. Discovering the Grotto of the Redemption

Visit West Bend to see the Grotto of the Redemption, a remarkable work of art made from minerals, fossils, and rocks. This religious shrine is not only a spiritual site but also an artistic marvel.

12. Experiencing the National Balloon Classic

Witness the sky fill with colorful hot air balloons at the National Balloon Classic in Indianola. This annual event is a visual spectacle and offers rides, entertainment, and family fun.

13. Touring the Historic Villages of Van Buren County

Explore the charming and historic villages of Van Buren County. With their quaint shops, historic sites, and peaceful ambiance, these villages offer a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle.

14. Tasting Iowa’s Craft Beer Scene

Craft beer enthusiasts should not miss Iowa’s burgeoning craft beer scene. Visit local breweries across the state to taste unique and flavorful brews.

15. Attending the Hinterland Music Festival

Music lovers should make a point to attend the Hinterland Music Festival in St. Charles. This event features a lineup of popular artists and bands, set against the backdrop of Iowa’s scenic countryside.


Iowa, a state rich in culture, history, and natural beauty, offers an array of fun and exciting activities for everyone. From its historic landmarks to its vibrant festivals, there’s never a dull moment in this beautiful Midwestern state. And if you’re looking for more travel inspiration within your own state, don’t forget to check out our post on [Fun Weekend Trip In Your State: A Guide To Unforgettable Local Adventures]. Whether you’re a long-time resident or a first-time visitor, Iowa is sure to provide experiences that will create lasting memories. So pack your bags

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