Iowa Road Trip


Your Iowa road trip will be an unexpected adventure of your lifetime.  There are lots of great activities for you to enjoy such as shopping, camping at the many state parks, casinos, wineries, beaches, and much more!



National Parks are always a fantastic idea for you to visit on any Iowa road trip and if you are in the Harper's Ferry area then you may want to consider stopping at Effigy Mounds.  There are no access roads to the park but you may enter by hiking and you will see some beautifully preserved Indian Mounds.  There are over 14 hiking trails for you to explore here.

Horse Tracks & Casinos

Prairie Meadows in Altoona is a race track, casino with over 1,900 slot machines, and features live entertainment.  There are musical acts on almost a nightly basis and the dining is available at the Triple Crown Eatery, AJ's Steakhouse, or Champions Restaurant.  

Isle of Capri Casino and Hotel in Bettendorf has over 30 gaming tables, 1,000 slots, and of course live poker action.

Catfish Bend Casino in Burlington has lots of great slots and games along with a spa, hotel, and events center.

Wild Rose Casino and Resort in the Clinton area has lots of slot machines and great action.

Ameristar Casino Hotel is located in Council Bluffs and has over 1,500 slots and great gaming tables

Horseshoe Casino and Bluffs Run Grehound Park (Council Bluffs) has tons of slots and gaming tables

Rhythm City Casino in Davenport has tons of slot machines and live entertainment.

Diamond Jo Casino in Dubuque has great entertainment, poker rooms, a bowling center, great dining, and banquet facilities

Mystique Casino in Dubuque has craps, keno, roulette, poker, slots, restraunts, simulcast horse racing, and live greyhound racing!

Lady Luck Casino Marquette has a showroom and will remind you of being in Las Vegas.

Casino Omaha in Onawa has slots, Pia Gow, craps, and roulette.

Terrible's Lakeside Casino in Osceola has two floors loaded with slot machines and gaming tables.

Riverside Casino and Golf Resort features world-class golf, fantastic dining, a spa, and all the gaming you could ever imagine.

Argosy Casino Sioux City is a three-story riverboat casino with a tremendous amount of games packed in this facility.

Winna Vegas Casino is a great idea for your Iowa road trip if you are in the Sloan area.  It features slots, blackjack, craps, roulette, and a poker room.

Meskawaki Bingo Casino Hotel in Tama offers everything to keep grandma and grandpa occupied!

Isle Casino and Hotel at Waterloo has lots of slot machines, table games, and live poker action.


Outdoor Festivals are not common in Iowa but visiting the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines is a great idea for a family-oriented Iowa road trip.  Des Moines also has the Nightfall on The River  and the 80/35 festival.


If you simply want to escape for the weekend on a glorious shopping excursion on your Iowa road trip then here are the areas you should check out:

Ames: Main Street Cultural District

Davenport: Village of East Davenport has lots of cafes, art galleries, park events, and local neighborhood stores

Dubuque: Cable Car Square

Story City: Factory Stores of America Outlet Center features twelve outlet stores.

West Des Moines: Historic Valley Junction has over 120 specialty stores, art galleries, antique shops, restaurants, etc.

Williamsburg: Tanger Outlet Center has over 55 outlet stores


Wineries on Iowa road trip are a great way for you to explore the magnificent countryside.  There are five wine trails all together and here are the links to these adventures:


Theme Parks

Adventureland Park in Altoona has over 100 rides and attractions for the entire family!  Make sure you check out some of these fantastic rides when you are in the park:

The Dragon

This is the only upside down roller coaster in Iowa and it will take you for a looping good time!


You'll spin and swing uncontrollably for a great time!

Space Shot

Get launched at warp speed over 200 feet into the air!

Splash Over

This is an amazing ride that gets you absolutely soaked!  This is something you must check out while you are in the park!


Arnold's Park was built way back in 1889 and will remind you of simpler times in your life and is located on the shores of Lake Okoboji.  You'll want to check out "The Legend" which is an amazing wooden roller coaster or one of the many live music concerts in the area.  There are amazing beaches, a Maritime Museum, dining, shopping, and of course the Queen II excursion boat.  There is something for everybody in your road trip group at this great park.


Iowa State Parks

Since National Parks are not common in Iowa then you may want to explore a camping excursion at one of the many state parks in the area.  The parks system in Iowa is top of the line and there are so many outdoor activities that you can enjoy at these parks.  For complete information about the parks you may visit the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website.


Name of Area
Nearby City
Phone Number
Kossuth Algona 515/295-3669
Delaware Strawberry Pt. 563/924-2527
Madison Van Meter 515/285-4502
Warren Indianola 515/961-7101
Franklin Hampton 641/456-2047
Jackson Bellevue 563/872-4019
Polk Polk City 515/984-6473
Sac Lake View 712/657-8712
Webster Lehigh 515/543-8298
Buchanan Quasqueton 319/934-3572
Cerro Gordo Clear Lake 641/357-4212
Webster Lehigh 515/359-2539
Marion Knoxville 641/842-6008
Dickinson Spirit Lake 712/337-3211
Dickinson Milford 712/337-3211
Muscatine Muscatine 563/263-4337
Winneshiek Fort Atkinson 563/425-4161
Emmet Estherville 712/337-3211
Henry Danville 319/392-4601
Black Hawk Waterloo 319/232-5505
Union Creston 641/782-5131
Dickinson Milford 712/337-3211
Appanoose Moravia 641/724-3739
Van Buren Keosauqua 319/293-3502
Warren Indianola 515/961-7101
Cass Anita 712/762-3564
Washington Brighton 319/694-2323
Mahaska Oskaloosa 641/673-6975
Johnson Solon 319/624-2200
Pottawattamie Council Bluffs 712/366-0220
Taylor Bedford 712/523-2700
Davis Drakesville 641/722-3371
Boone Boone 515/432-1852
Monona Onawa 712/423-2829
Dickinson Arnolds Park 712/337-3211
Jackson Maquoketa 563/652-5833
Dickinson Orleans 712/337-3211
Cerro Gordo Ventura 641/829-3847
Dubuque Dubuque 563/556-0620
Dickinson Spirit Lake 712/337-3211
Decatur Davis City 641/442-2855
Emmet Dolliver 712/337-3211
Linn Mt. Vernon 319/895-6039
Clayton McGregor 563/873-2341
Dickinson Spirit Lake 712/337-3211
Hancock Forest City 641/581-4835
Hardin Eldora 641/858-5832
Linn Palo 319/436-7716
Shelby Harlan 712/773-2701
Monona Moorhead 712/423-2829
Lucas Chariton 641/774-5632
Winnebago Lake Mills 641/581-4835
Jasper Kellogg 641/236-3722
Shimek Forest-campground
Van Buren/Lee County Farmington 319/878-3811
Guthrie Guthrie Center 641/747-3591
Stephens Forest-campground
Lucas County Chariton 641/774-5632
Plymouth Sioux City 712/255-4698
Dickinson Spirit Lake 712/337-3211
Dickinson Spirit Lake 712/337-3211
Calhoun Rockwell City 712/297-7131
Tama Gladbrook 641/473-2556
Montgomery Stanton 712/829-2235
Fayette Fayette 563/425-4161
Polk Des Moines 515/285-4502
Jones Anamosa 319/462-2761
Fremont Sidney 712/382-2786
Muscatine Muscatine 563/263-4337
Pottawattamie Loveland 712/642-2069
Yellow River-campground
Allamakee Waukon Junction 563/873-2341


Iowa Beaches

During the summer months (between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends) you can enjoy yourself at the many beaches that Iowa has to offer.  The water quality is measured at all of the State Parks to ensure your safety.

  • Ainsworth Beach, Dickinson County

  • Anglers Bay Beach, Dickinson County

  • Arrowhead Beach, Dickinson County

  • Bay View Beach, Dickinson County

  • Brooks Beach, Dickinson County

  • Brownells Beach, Dickinson County

  • Casino Beach, Buena Vista County

  • Cedar Rapids Beach, Dickinson County

  • Chalstroms Beach, Dickinson County

  • Crandalls Beach, Dickinson County

  • Crescent Beach, Dickinson County

  • Des Moines Beach, Des Moines County

  • Des Moines Beach, Dickinson County

  • Dixon Beach, Dickinson County

  • Dodges Beach, Cerro Gordo County

  • East Okoboji Beach, Dickinson County

  • Egralharve Beach, Dickinson County

  • Estherville Beach, Dickinson County

  • Fairoak Beach, Dickinson County

  • Fairoaks Beach, Dickinson County

  • Farmers Beach, Cerro Gordo County

  • Fillenworth Beach, Dickinson County

  • Gilleys Beach, Dickinson County

  • Harlan Beach, Dickinson County

  • Inwood Park Beach, Dickinson County

  • Jones Beach, Dickinson County

  • Kellys Beach, Dickinson County

  • Kruses Beach, Dickinson County

  • Lakeside Beach, Buena Vista County

  • Manhattan Beach, Dickinson County

  • Maple Oak Beach, Dickinson County

  • Marble Beach, Dickinson County

  • Martha Yarns Memorial Beach, Dickinson County

  • Maywood Beach, Dickinson County

  • McClelland Beach, Dickinson County

  • Milford Beach, Dickinson County

  • Miniwaukon Beach, Dickinson County

  • Moores Beach, Dickinson County

  • Omaha Beach, Dickinson County

  • Orleans Beach, Dickinson County

  • Papoose Beach, Dickinson County

  • Pioneer Beach, Dickinson County

  • Raebels Beach, Dickinson County

  • Sandbar Beach, Dickinson County

  • Spencer Beach, Dickinson County

  • Sunset Beach, Dickinson County

  • Twin Hills Beach, Dickinson County

  • Wheelers Beach, Dickinson County




Geat great ideas for your Iowa Road Trip