Bordered by six states and three rivers, Iowa is a Midwestern state that is the leading producer of corn in the US. Apart from pastures reaching farther than the eye can see, there are many other things to see and do in Iowa, from the world-famous Mississippi River to natural wonders and some slightly spooky spectacles. There are many unique places to visit, museums to explore and landmarks to cross of the list. But there are also some more adventurous and some slightly thrilling activities to get up to! Here are a few fun things to get you started.
- Adventureland Park
Thrilling rides and family entertainment, Adventureland Park has over 100 attractions for you to get stuck into. There are belly turning rollercoasters as well as wet and wild flumes and sky-high swings, so there is something fun for all ages. Admission to Adventure Bay, which is the newest waterpark in Iowa, is included in the ticket price to Adventureland. With plans for the addition of several new rides and attractions, the fun just keeps on going!
- Villisca Axe Murder House
In 1912, eight people were murdered in a traditional white paneled house in Villisca. Josiah and Sarah Moor were found in the house dead, along with their children and guests. It is thought that the spirits of the victims remain here and are stuck between the living and the dead. If the paranormal fascinates you, this is somewhere to visit that will raise the hairs on the back of your neck. To distract yourself, or while you wait in the car, there is a large collection of different ways to gamble online in Iowa by Bonusfinder. But if you’re feeling brave enough, they run guided tours around the house. If you want to take it that step further, overnight stays are possible. But you might have to sleep with one eye open.
- Iowa State Fair
Farming is the backbone of Iowa state, and what better way to experience and celebrate it than at the Iowa State Fair? Hosted by the city of Des Moines, farmers gather with their animals for eleven days of fun. It is packed full of live music, fairground rides, crazy contests, prizes for the animals on show, and a journey your tastebuds will never forget. One of the oldest agricultural expositions in the entire world, Iowa State Fair is internationally acclaimed, and the largest event hosted in the state of Iowa. It’s a fun and exciting event that everyone in the state looks forward to each year.
- National Balloon Classic
This annual event fills the skies with vibrant colors and interesting shapes. For one week every year, hot air balloons and their pilots gather in Iowa state for the National Balloon Classic. They take part in exciting competitions to show off their skills to win prizes and amaze the crowd below. Entertainment flows throughout the whole seven days. Live music brings the venue to live every night, and there is some delicious food to taste and firework displays to admire. Nite Glows are a spectacular sight to see against the dark night skies. And of course, you cannot go to a hot air balloon festival without taking a ride into the clouds and experiencing the world from above.
- National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium
Combining aquarium, museum and science center, the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium is where you discover the importance and magnificence of everything the Mississippi River provides. The history and culture are brought to life through interactive exhibitions, live encounters with native animals, an aquarium experience and a 3D/4D theatre. Indoor exhibits let you investigate the river systems, but the outdoor exhibits allow you to become fully emersed with river otters, marshlands, large boats, a blacksmith shop and aviaries with huge birds of prey, including a bald eagle. The Mississippi has been a lifeline for people and wildlife for centuries, and this is a fun and interactive way to learn all about it.
- Maquoketa Caves
Unique to Iowa, Maquoketa Caves State Park has six miles of trails that meander amongst fascinating geological formations and areas teeming with wildlife and natural beauty. Put on your hiking shoes and look out for the Natural Bridge that stands 50 feet over Racoon Creek and the Balanced Rock which weighs over 17 tones. While many of the park’s thirteen caves can be discovered on easy trails and by walking, there are some for the more serious cave explorers that involve squeezing through tight spaces. Camp amongst the pine trees or venture further out to a site that’s more off the beaten track, but make sure you visit Sagar’s Center to learn all about the history and formation of the landscapes.
Despite corn and farming being the first things you think about when Iowa State is mentioned, there are so many other unique things to see and experience. You’ll find fun in the most unusual places when visiting Iowa.