23 days in Iowa Itinerary

23 days in Iowa Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Iowa trip planner
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Make it your trip
1
Des Moines
— 3 nights
Drive
2
Sioux City
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Mason City
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Waterloo
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Decorah
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Dubuque
— 3 nights
Drive
7
Cedar Rapids
— 3 nights
Drive
8
Keosauqua
— 1 night
Drive

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Des Moines — 3 nights

Des Moines is the capital and the most populous city in the U.S. state of Iowa. Get a sense of the local culture at Salisbury House and World Food Prize Hall of Laureates. Get some historical perspective at Hogback Covered Bridge and Bob Feller Hometown Exhibit. Change things up with these side-trips from Des Moines: Klokkenspel (in Pella), Deal's Apple Orchard (in Jefferson) and The Freedom Rock (in Menlo). The adventure continues: learn about all things military at Iowa Gold Star Military Museum, examine the collection at Danish Windmill Museum, look for all kinds of wild species at Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge and Prairie Learning Center, and do a tasting at Tassel Ridge Winery.

To find reviews, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Des Moines online vacation builder.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from your home destination to Des Moines. In August, daytime highs in Des Moines are 84°F, while nighttime lows are 65°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 6th (Mon) so you can go by car to Sioux City.
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Museums · Historic Sites · Parks · Wildlife
Side Trips

Sioux City — 3 nights

Sioux City is a city in Woodbury and Plymouth counties in the northwestern part of the U.S. state of Iowa. Get some historical perspective at Trinity Heights and Sioux City Railroad Museum. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Sergeant Floyd River Museum and Welcome Center and Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center. Step out of Sioux City with an excursion to Ice Cream Capital of the World Visitor Center in Le Mars--about 36 minutes away. And it doesn't end there: admire the masterpieces at Sioux City Art Center, explore the engaging exhibits at LaunchPAD Children’s Museum, get some fabulous bargains at Palmer Candy, and get a taste of local nightlife at Hard Rock Casino Sioux City.

Plan my trip to Sioux City with suggested itineraries provided by Inspirock.

You can drive from Des Moines to Sioux City in 3 hours. In August in Sioux City, expect temperatures between 82°F during the day and 62°F at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Thu) early enough to drive to Mason City.
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Museums · Historic Sites · Childrens Museums · Casinos
Side Trip

Mason City — 3 nights

Mason City is a city in and the county seat of Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, United States. Museum-lovers will appreciate Music Man Square and Charles H. MacNider Art Museum. Your cultural itinerary includes sights like Stockman House Museum and Meredith Willson Boyhood Home. Venture out of the city with trips to Algona P.W. Camp Museum (in Algona) and Heartland Museum (in Clarion). There's more to do: look for all kinds of wild species at Lime Creek Nature Center and admire the natural beauty at Central Gardens of North Iowa.

To find photos and more tourist information, go to the Mason City holiday planner.

Getting from Sioux City to Mason City by car takes about 3.5 hours. August in Mason City sees daily highs of 80°F and lows of 58°F at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 12th (Sun) so you can drive to Waterloo.
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Museums · Parks · Historic Sites · Wildlife
Side Trips

Waterloo — 3 nights

Waterloo is a city in and the county seat of Black Hawk County, Iowa, United States. Get a sense of the local culture at John Deere Tractor & Engine Museum and LIttle Brown Church in the Vale. Explore hidden gems such as Sullivan Brothers Iowa Veterans Museum and Lost Island Water Park. Explore Waterloo's surroundings by going to Meskwaki Bingo & Casino (in Tama) and Matchstick Marvels Museum (in Gladbrook). There's much more to do: examine the collection at National Wrestling Hall of Fame - Dan Gable Museum, view the masterpieces at Phelps Youth Pavilion, and shop like a local with Waterloo Center for the Arts.

For maps, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, read Waterloo visit planner.

You can drive from Mason City to Waterloo in 1.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 81°F in August, and nighttime lows around 60°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Decorah.
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Museums · Theme Parks · Shopping · Casinos
Side Trips

Decorah — 3 nights

Decorah is a city in and the county seat of Winneshiek County, Iowa, United States. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Bily Clocks Museum and Decorah Fish Hatchery. Montauk Historical Site and Masters Hotel will appeal to history buffs. When in Decorah, make a side trip to see Eagles Landing Winery in Marquette, approximately Marquette away. The adventure continues: indulge your thirst for a good beer at Toppling Goliath Brewing Company, experience rural life at Seed Savers Exchange Heritage Farm, examine the collection at Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum, and look for gifts at Agora.

To find maps, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, read our Decorah trip itinerary website.

Getting from Waterloo to Decorah by car takes about 1.5 hours. In August, plan for daily highs up to 77°F, and evening lows to 60°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sat) so you can go by car to Dubuque.
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Parks · Museums · Historic Sites · Wildlife
Side Trips

Dubuque — 3 nights

Dubuque is the county seat of Dubuque County, Iowa, United States, located along the Mississippi River. Appreciate the collections at National Farm Toy Museum and Family Museum of Arts and Science. Deepen your sense of the past at sights like St. Francis Basilica and St. Luke's United Methodist Church. Change things up with these side-trips from Dubuque: Wide River Winery (in Clinton) and Le Claire (Green Tree Brewery, Aunt Hattie's Fanciful Emporium Unique Gift Shop, &more). And it doesn't end there: observe the fascinating underwater world at National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium, look for gifts at Betty Jane Homemade Candies, don't miss a visit to Fenelon Place Elevator Co., and appreciate the history behind Julien Dubuque Monument.

To see ratings, where to stay, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Dubuque vacation planning app.

Traveling by car from Decorah to Dubuque takes 2 hours. In August, plan for daily highs up to 79°F, and evening lows to 60°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) to allow time to drive to Cedar Rapids.
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Museums · Historic Sites · Wineries · Parks
Side Trips

Cedar Rapids — 3 nights

Cedar Rapids is the second largest city in Iowa and is the county seat of Linn County. Let the collections at Old Capitol Museum and Museum of Natural History capture your imagination. Give yourself a bit of retail therapy at Amana Furniture & Clock Shop and A J's Copper Garden. Explore Cedar Rapids' surroundings by going to Amana General Store (in Amana), Pine Creek Grist Mill (in Muscatine) and Fireside Winery (in Marengo). There's still lots to do: explore the world behind art at Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, do a tasting at Cedar Ridge Winery & Distillery, have fun and explore at The Iowa Children's Museum, and get some fabulous bargains at Tanger Outlets.

Plan my day in Cedar Rapids using traveler tips and tourist information provided by Inspirock.

Traveling by car from Dubuque to Cedar Rapids takes 1.5 hours. In August, plan for daily highs up to 81°F, and evening lows to 60°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 24th (Fri) so you can drive to Keosauqua.
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Museums · Shopping · Wineries · Historic Sites
Side Trips

Keosauqua — 1 night

Keosauqua is a city in Van Buren County, Iowa, United States. Kick off your visit on the 25th (Sat): wander the streets of Villages of Van Buren County, then take in the views from Bentonsport Bridge, then steep yourself in history at Bentonsport National Historic District, and finally stop by Dutchman's Store.

Make your Keosauqua itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

Traveling by car from Cedar Rapids to Keosauqua takes 2 hours. In August, plan for daily highs up to 81°F, and evening lows to 62°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Sat) so you can drive back home.
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Neighborhoods · Historic Sites · Shopping
Side Trips

Iowa travel guide

4.1
Casinos · Historic Sites · Specialty Museums
The Hawkeye State
Part of the American heartland, Iowa is marked by a strong agricultural heritage, with farmland encompassing around 90 percent of the state's land. However, a holiday in Iowa offers more than corn and cows: you'll also discover charming towns, beautiful lakes, and a handful of vibrant cities. Iowa City, a university town, provides a healthy dose of culture and nightlife, with a youthful and artistic vibe fueled by a sizable student population. A trip to some of Iowa's small towns provides a true American experience. Fortunately, the welcoming residents bear very little resemblance to the dour Iowans portrayed in Grant Wood's famous painting "American Gothic."
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