Now that spring is here, and summer isn’t far away, we Iowans are looking for any excuse to get outside and enjoy the weather. What better way to do that than spending a relaxing day by the water? We may not have oceans, but we have plenty of rivers, lakes, and other bodies of water to enjoy! Here are just a few places to check out on the next warm and sunny day:
1. Bracco World Cafe & Island Bar
Located in the scenic lake town of Arnolds Park, the view at Bracco is simply unbeatable. Grab a table outside, order yourself a bite to eat, and have a drink from the beach bar while you relax and escape for a little while.
2. Arnolds Park
Arnolds Park Amusement Park, in the city of Arnolds Park, is a charming lakeside amusement park that offers an unbeatable view of the water from both inside and outside the park.
3. Clear Lake
Clear Lake, in the city of Clear Lake, is a boater's and fisher's paradise. Spend a relaxing day at the lakeside with a fishing pole and you wont regret it.
4. Spirit Lake
Spirit Lake, one of the Iowa Great Lakes in Dickinson County, offers one of the most stunning views in the state. The crystal blue water is accented by white sands and sunny skies - almost like a Caribbean vacation, but in Iowa.
5. Five Island Lake
Five Island Lake in the small town of Emmetsburg is a great place to take a lakeside stroll and enjoy the sunset reflecting off the water.
6. McBride Falls
Located at Lake Macbride State Park near Solon, Macbride Falls offer a stunning sight to see after a good rain.
Sabula, Iowa's only island city, offers some pretty amazing waterfront opportunities, as you can imagine. Spend a day at the beach, or at one of the parks overlooking the water.
8. The Port of Dubuque
The Port of Dubuque is a beautiful riverfront area in Dubuque that offers a plaza with seating for visitors to relax and watch the riverboats chug their way along the Mighty Mississippi.
9. Dunning's Spring Falls
Located in Decorah, Dunning's Spring Falls is so beautiful, it's like something out of a fairy tale. Be sure to pack a picnic to eat next to this breathtaking natural wonder.
10. Gray’s Lake
Gray's Lake in Des Moines offers an incredible park with walking trails in the middle of Des Moines. Not to mention, the view of the water is breathtaking at sunset.
11. Coralville Lake
Coralville Lake in Coralville is a great place to spend a sunny day hiking, or just relaxing lakeside and soaking up the sun.
12. Off Shore Bar and Grill, Bellevue
Off Shore offers a prime view of the Mississippi, and you're so close, you actually feel like you're on the river.
13. The Barefoot Bar, Okoboji
You don't need to go on a tropical island vacation to enjoy a tiki bar when we have The Barefoot Bar right here in northwest Iowa! Of course, Barefoot offers an unbeatable view of the lake, with palm trees and everything else to complete your tropical getaway.
What are some more waterfront spots you would add to the list? Share your thoughts with us!