Bloomington, Indiana, is more than just a popular little college town. Surrounded by lush hills, forests, and lakes, the charming city has much to offer, from incredible urban sights to unforgettable outdoor adventures. Here are some of the best things to do in Bloomington.
Explore the city’s hottest spots along the outdoor B-Line Trail. This bustling, attractive outdoor urban trail that cuts through the heart of downtown Bloomington provides easy access to popular shops, eateries, and attractions in the city. Explore this trail on foot or by bike any time of day, with helpful LED lights brightening your path from sunset to sunrise. It’s also a great way to add some exercise to your urban adventure.
Located in the center of downtown Bloomington, this shopping mall is lined with cute, trendy, independent shops, health and fitness services, as well as family-owned restaurants and bistros. With its eclectic range of stores, the mall has something for locals and tourists alike.
It’s nearly impossible to visit Bloomington without discovering some part of this city’s claim to fame: Indiana University. Known as IU Bloomington, this university is one of the most popular attractions in all of Indiana. The campus sits on nearly 2,000 acres of land and boasts incredible walking tours full of outdoor art, remarkable architecture, and outdoor gardens. Check out the local IU theater, various museums, sports arenas, art galleries, and outdoor grounds for unforgettable activities perfect for all types of visitors.
For a romantic or peaceful getaway, look no further than the gorgeous Oliver Winery & Vineyards. This picture-perfect winery is an ideal place to unwind, relax, and enjoy some of Bloomington’s most tranquil slices of nature. Taste incredible wine inside the tasting room, and take a tour to learn more about the winemaking process. Also, enjoy some food with your wine while taking in the stunning view overlooking the vineyard.
This incredible museum is a perfect place for kids and kids at heart. WonderLab combines science, health, and technology to create a one-of-a-kind experience. Located along the B-Line Trail in downtown Bloomington, this fascinating museum houses exhibits like the Bubble-Airium, Discover Garden, Fitzgerald Hall of Natural Science, Coral Reef Aquarium, How Things Work, and WonderGarden.
Monroe Lake is a popular outdoor attraction that will allow you to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Here, you can relax and enjoy a peaceful day of fishing, swimming, or sunbathing on the beach. You can also rent a variety of boats so that you can spend the afternoon out on the water. Bring food for a picnic, pack a tent for an overnight stay, or wear comfortable shoes for a scenic hiking adventure at this rural retreat.
Formally called the Indiana University of Art, the newly named Eskenazi Museum of Art is Indiana’s largest free art museum. It’s also the best place in Bloomington to view local and upcoming artists’ works. This gallery is massive, with over three floors of art and sculptures, and a variety of rotating exhibits. This museum frequently hosts local events, so be sure to explore their online website and calendar of events before planning your visit. Currently closed for renovations, the museum plans to reopen in fall 2019.
From local and regional acts to up-and-coming national performances, unique and exciting shows abound at this historic Spanish-revival-style theater. Always check the website for events and upcoming attractions, or swing by to scope out what’s happening in town.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.