1. Go to a Kernels game.
If you’re looking for a laid-back outdoor sporting event, seeing a Kernels game could be just the ticket. The Kernels are a Cedar Rapids minor league baseball team, and Iowans have enjoyed cheering them on for a long time.
2. Visit the birthplace of John Wayne.
Winterset, Iowa is the birthplace of the swaggering legend, and you can find out all about him at the John Wayne Birthplace Museum.
3. Check out the Greater Des Moines Botanical Center.
The Greater Des Moines Botanical Center is a great way to get a dose of nature right in the middle of a city. Here, you can see free-flying birds and a large variety of fascinating plants, like a bonsai collection, orchids and extensive and impressive gardens.
4. Get cultured at the Des Moines Art Center.
Wander through galleries that possess a large collection of 20th and 21st century modern and contemporary art, as well as art from various places around the world.
5. Go wine tasting on the Heart of Iowa Wine Trail.
Support local industries and visit as many or few wineries as you have time for on the Heart of Iowa Wine Trail that winds around much of central Iowa.
6. Enjoy a memorable meal at the Ladora Bank Bistro.
It’s not every day that you can enjoy unique and delicious meal in a building that’s on the National Register of Historic Places. This gem of a restaurant is inside the beautiful old Ladora Bank building, built in the 1920s.
7. Go to Adventureland.
Head to Altoona, Iowa for some good old-fashioned amusement park family fun. Whether you’re into roller coasters or elephant ears or winning giant stuffed animals, Adventureland has something for everyone.
8. See a race at the Iowa Speedway
Built in 2006, Newton, Iowa has a motor racing track where you can see NASCAR races up close and personal.
9. Get a taste of a simpler time in Kalona.
Visit Kalona’s Amish and Mennonite community for a variety of fun and interesting activities, like antiquing, touring the Kalona Historical Village or taking the Amish By-Ways tour that offers a rare inside look into Amish life.
10. Get a taste of local brews at the Big Grove Brewery.
This inviting, airy brewery offers an impressive selection of unique and delicious brews. And they offer up more than just typical bar food, with fresh, local, seasonal specials and inventive sandwiches and salads.