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  • Writer's pictureKatrina Julia

One Day in Indianapolis, IN: A Little History, Art & Outdoor Fun with Our Adventure is Everywhere

Guest Post by Pam Howard with Our Adventure is Everywhere

Are you planning a day in Indianapolis, Indiana? Indianapolis is often called the Circle City, thanks to its lovely downtown circle - complete with the beautiful Soldiers & Sailors Monument. Get ready for a fantastic day full of history, art, activity, and amazing food.

Photo Credit: Pam Howard - Our Adventure is Everywhere

One Day in Indiana, IN: Itinerary to Transform and Travel

Start Your Day with a Little Indy History:

A yummy way to start the day is downtown at City Market. I like to pick up a cup of local coffee and a delicious breakfast sandwich to fuel my day of fun. Then I’ll take my breakfast over to the nearby canal and enjoy it while strolling alongside the water. In addition to unique murals and plenty of friendly ducks, it’s fun to people watch. There are always folks riding bikes, walking dogs, and sometimes even floating in a gondola or two.

I always make a point to stroll near the Indiana State Museum and check out the free 92 County Walk. There is an original sculpture representing each of Indiana’s 92 counties on the museum walls, sidewalks, and railing. It’s fun to look for the county that I live in now along with the counties my parents and other relatives live in.

The next stop is the iconic Motor Speedway. As the home of the Indianapolis 500, no visit to Indianapolis is complete without learning at least a little bit of the history of racing. At the Speedway Museum, you’ll get the opportunity to see most of the winning race cars, learn about the Indy 500, the drivers, and why it’s such an important part of Indianapolis’s history.

I find it especially fascinating to look at all the different styles of cars and see how the Indy Cars have evolved through more than 100 years of racing. Even though I’m a life-long Hoosier (and always listen to the Indianapolis 500 on the radio), I’m not a huge race fan. However, I still find this museum interesting and well worth the visit. It’s such a big part of our city that you’d be remiss not to check it out!

Photo Credit: Pam Howard - Our Adventure is Everywhere

Fun Facts about Indianapolis, IN:

As the state capital of Indiana and with a population of just under 1 million, Indianapolis is a vibrant, ever-evolving city, perfect for families or couples. Years ago, it was referred to as “Naptown”, but luckily, with all the recent additions and revitalization, today that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

With all of my family hailing from Indianapolis, I’ve gotten to see it change firsthand. Back in the day, there really wasn’t anything to do downtown, and definitely only a handful of local restaurants. Today, the city is full of wonderful museums and attractions and many delicious chef-driven places to eat. Are you ready for how I’d spend a perfect day in Indianapolis?

Getting There

Indianapolis Airport is close to downtown and all the other sights in the city. Getting around can be done by Uber or Lyft, but renting a car is your best option.

Enjoy a Lunch Break

By now it’s time for lunch. I like to head over to Broadripple to indulge in one of the many local choices. With its college-like atmosphere, Broadripple is one of seven districts designated as a cultural area for the city. In addition to plenty of restaurant options, it’s fun to poke around the local stores, thrift shops, and take a walk along the always busy Monon Trail.

A few delicious standouts include Baxbeauz pizza for a variety of unique pizzas and heavenly salads, Fire by the Monon for a variety of classic dishes with a tasty twist, or Twenty Tap for upscale pub food. Baxbeauz was the first “fancy” pizza I’d ever tried (they use a lot of fun ingredients), so it has a soft spot in my heart. I load up my pizza with tons of veggies and then add an amazing fresh salad on the side. Yum!

Photo Credit: Pam Howard - Our Adventure is Everywhere

Surround Yourself with Art

Once I’ve had my fill of food and browsing the Broadripple shops, it’s time to check out one of Indianapolis’s most beautiful places to visit, Newfields. Although I love the many wonderful indoor art exhibits, what really makes this art museum a standout is the Virginia F. Banks 100 Acre Gardens. The art museum itself charges admission, but the 100 Acre Gardens is free!

It’s delightful to walk through the gardens and visit the numerous outdoor works of arts. Not only is it beautiful, it’s a peaceful place to enjoy nature. My favorite sculpture is called Funky Bones. It is featured in the book “The Fault in Our Stars”, and it’s also a favorite for the kids (and myself) to climb and jump on. I mean how often do you get to actually run on a piece of art?

Photo Credit: Pam Howard - Our Adventure is Everywhere

End the Day with Great Food and Live Entertainment

With this perfect day winding down, it’s time to enjoy a relaxing dinner. As another one of the designated cultural districts, Mass Ave is the perfect place to end the day. I’ll head back to downtown Indy and find a place to park to enjoy walking up and down the avenue.

For dinner, I’ll enjoy a long-time Indianapolis favorite, the Rathskeller. In addition to delectable German fare, they often have live music at the connected Biergarten. There is nothing like sitting outside on a balmy night, listening to a terrific band playing while munching on a fresh brat and potato salad. Yum! After such an active and busy day, it’s fun to cap it off with dinner and a show!

Photo Credit: Pam Howard - Our Adventure is Everywhere

Reasons to Stay in Indianapolis, In More Than One Day

Plan a Return Trip for More Circle City Fun in Indiana

After this fun-filled day, you can see why we no longer consider Indianapolis Naptown. It would be easy to stay busy for a full week in this exciting town.

In addition to the Speedway and Newfields, Indianapolis also has some amazing museums like The Eiteljorg as well as the world class 4-story Indianapolis Children's Museum! So there is so much more to do!

After all, your perfect day just barely scratched the surface!

Share and tag @phoward336 & @katrinajuliafit @fitlifecreation & who you would love to travel with!

About Pam Howard:

You can find Pam at Our Adventure is Everywhere, where she inspires busy families to create lasting memories by adding fun and adventure to everyday life.

Where You May Find Pam:


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