Indianapolis is a surprise for many people, as it’s a low-key tourist destination that sits at the crossroads of many major Midwestern highways. If you’re looking for a sweet spot for your next family vacation, you should know that Indianapolis is also home to a number of kid-friendly attractions and activities.
Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
Image via Flickr by navets
If you’re bringing kids to Indy, you should definitely include the Children’s Museum on your itinerary. You could spend a full day exploring all five stories of fun or make it a shorter visit and just see the exhibits that are most interesting to your kids. Your options include Playscape, an area for the preschool and toddler set; Treasures of the Earth, an area that turns school-aged kids into explorers; Dinosphere; China; and the All Aboard train area. The entire museum is hands-on and kid-friendly. Tickets start at $19.
100 Acres at Indianapolis Museum of Art
Hesitate to take your little ones to an art museum? This outdoor area adjacent to the Indianapolis Museum of Art is extremely welcoming to children. This 100-acre site blends natural beauty with art that kids can climb on, explore, and experience in their own way. Most families will want to spend about an hour or two exploring the trails and sculptures. The park is open from dawn to dusk, and admission is free.
Rhythm! Discovery Center
Are your kids into drumming? Most kids love to bang out a rhythm, and some have a natural talent for drums. The Rhythm! Discovery Center has more than 150 interactive displays that let kids enjoy all sorts of percussion experiences. Along the way, they’ll learn how different cultures approach percussion instruments, play an 8-foot drum, and learn about film sound effects. Admission is $6 for kids and $12 for adults.
Indiana State Museum
Like most state museums, this one is a popular destination for local school field trips. But it’s also a fun place to visit as a family. The museum covers traditional topics in innovative ways, helping kids deepen their understanding of classroom topics with interactive exhibits that make each topic engaging. The Foucault Pendulum and the solar system exhibits are extremely popular and very kid-friendly. Admission is $9.95 for kids and $14.95 for adults.
If your kids love animals, be sure to schedule time to visit the Indy zoo. Allow time to visit the dolphin show, which is free, but you’ll need to pick up a ticket at the entrance to get a seat. Don’t miss the International Orangutan Center, which delights kids and adults alike. You can also take a gondola ride, touch a shark, or watch animal feedings. Tickets are priced between $15 and $31.
With all this kid-friendly fun, affordable lodging, and great food all over the city, your family is sure to enjoy a trip to Indianapolis. Indianapolis is a sweet Midwestern city with a host of exciting museums and attractions, but it isn’t overrun with tourists, making it a perfect family destination.