Indianapolis has so much to offer when it comes to activities. Whether you’ve lived here for years or are just visiting, here are 11 things that you absolutely must do while you’re in this beautiful city.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life. While we continue to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, please take proper precautions or add them to your bucket list to see at a later date. If you know of a local business that could use some extra support during these times, please nominate them here:
1. Visit Dallara IndyCar Factory
Whether you’re a race car enthusiast or someone looking to take an interest in the sport, head over to the city’s IndyCar factory in the heart of downtown for all things racing. Here you’ll find over 23,000 square feet of exhibits and interactive displays focusing on the tech and engineering of this fascinating sport.
2. Take a Trip to the Children’s Museum
If you have kids, or are simply a kid at heart, you’ll find a lot of joy in the world’s largest children’s museum, located right here in Indy. Take in the dinosphere exhibit, which features full-size dinosaur skeletons and even touch an authentic T-Rex bone. You can also check out the historic Carousel, a staple of the Children’s Museum.
3. Hungry? Try the Shrimp Cocktail at St. Elmo Steakhouse
Anyone who’s lived in Indy for a long time will tell you that one of the city’s most iconic food dishes is the shrimp cocktail from St. Elmo Steakhouse. For decades, this shrimp cocktail, featuring an eye-watering cocktail sauce, has been an extremely popular appetizer at St. Elmo. If you haven’t tried it yet, you need to change that as soon as possible.
4. Basketball Fans, Head to the NCAA Hall of Champions
With exhibits representing all 23 different NCAA sports, the Hall of Champions has a goal of providing a greater understanding of the organization, both past and present. Here, you’ll find hands on activities, a media room featuring live sporting events, and even a replica of a 1930s-era gymnasium.
5. Try Your Hand at Escape Room Indy
Over the past few years, escape rooms have become a popular outing throughout the country. Indianapolis has recently come on board the trend and downtown's Escape Room Indy is one of the nicest, most popular escape establishments in the city. With room themes including an art gallery, bank heist, and a jailbreak, you and your friends will have 60 minutes to crack the codes, solve the puzzles, and escape the room.
6. Hike or Picnic in Eagle Creek Park
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you need to head to Eagle Creek Park. Known for being the city’s largest park, Eagle Creek has over 3,900 acres of hikeable woods and meadows as well as multiple trails and plenty of places to set up a picnic and revel in the beauty of the water. Here, you’ll also find a full 18-hole golf course and a marina for your boating needs.
7. Stroll Along the Canal
The Canal Walk is a beautiful, waterside path perfect for walking, biking, and sightseeing. Along this route that stretches north through White River State Park, you’ll be able to catch the sights and the downtown Indianapolis skyline.
8. Take in a Colts Game at Lucas Oil Stadium
There’s nothing like the experience of a live NFL football game and Indianapolis gives you access to one of the premiere stadiums in the country. Head on over to Lucas Oil to check out Andrew Luck and the Colts, and enjoy the delicious food, beer, and atmosphere.
9. Tour the Market Street Catacombs
You may not know this but underneath downtown’s City Market rests a series of catacombs — subterranean tunnels and passageways that date back to the 1880s. There are over 20,000 square feet of tunnels that you can tour courtesy of the Indiana Landmarks and Historical Preservation organization.
10. Live Music at the Rathskeller
For decades, this German-themed bar and beer garden has been home to some of the city’s best live music. In the summer, you can enjoy weekly performances in the Rathskeller’s outdoor beer garden. All year round you’ll find music, delicious beer, and phenomenal German food inside as well.
11. Head to the Indianapolis Zoo
There’s nothing like a fantastic zoo to give people of all ages a thrill. Indianapolis offers one of the country’s best wildlife experiences. Here, you’ll find tigers, red pandas, penguins and so much more.
What’s your favorite thing to do in Indianapolis? Is there something you love that we didn’t have on this list? Let us know in the comments below!