Scenic overlook of the Loess Hills from Preparation Canyon State Park
One of the idyllic bridges of Madison County of literary and movie fame
Sunset stand-up paddleboard excursion on Gray’s Lake Park in Des Moines
Posing like Iowa-native John Wayne at the John Wayne Birthplace Museum in Winterset
Sharing a laugh on the Sky Tours Zipline in Dubuque
Family exploring Maquoketa Caves State Park
Shopping trip along a colorful Des Moines street
Cyclists tackle The Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI)
The striking state capitol building in Des Moines
Boating Okoboji Lake with Arnolds Park Amusement Park in the background
Quaint, quirky, quintessential Americana
Superlative Roadside Attractions
If you’re a seeker of the biggest, smallest, tallest, widest and weirdest, you’re in luck because Iowa is the land of roadside attractions. Take a selfie with the world’s largest bull, tallest corn stalk, biggest Swedish coffee pot, most massive strawberry, a gigantic popcorn ball and the second-largest gnome. Conquer your fear of heights on a train across the tallest and longest double-track railroad bridge, or take a tram ride up the tallest and steepest railway.
Pop Culture and Historical Landmarks
Robert James Waller’s covered bridges of Madison County are right here in Iowa. So is the field of dreams baseball diamond featured in the 1989 Keven Costner film. Reserve a room at the Historic Park Inn Hotel, the only remaining Frank Lloyd Wright-designed hotel in the world. Visit the birthplace and presidential library of Herbert Hoover, the 31st President of the United States. Characterized as the “Eighth Wonder of the World,” the Grotto of the Redemption is a collection of handmade structures studded with millions of precious gems that depict the life of Christ.
The Midwest is famous for its fertile farmland and hearty foods, and Iowa is no exception. Gather up colorful produce at the Des Moines Downtown Farmers’ Market. The Gathering Table at Wallace House in Orient serves up menu items featuring ingredients that were in the soil earlier that day. Iowa is the leading producer of pork, so don’t pass on the breaded pork tenderloin, a regional specialty. Sample freshly made cheese and ice cream at dairy farms and old-fashioned soda shops. Order a pint at one of the top-ranked breweries in the world at Toppling Goliath Brewery, or slow-sip “The Good Stuff” at Prohibition-era Templeton Rye Whiskey distillery.