Are you planning a trip to Midwest USA soon? Looking for some amazing Midwest attractions to explore?
If you answered yes to the above questions, then you are in the right place. In this article, I will be listing down some of the best Midwest tourist attractions that you cannot miss out on!
Known for its diverse landscapes, photo-worthy roads, and unique culture, Midwest is a popular region to explore in the United States.
And there are so many things to do in the Midwest!
But where exactly is the Midwest?
The USA Midwest states include Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, Nebraska, Montana, and Oklahoma.
You can go on backpacking excursions, road trips, weekend getaways, and more. There are some beautiful places in the Midwest to interest all kinds of travelers.
So, if you are planning an epic road trip or vacation here but are confused about where to go, then we have got you covered.
In this guide, we will be covering the 15 Best Midwest Attractions that you have to visit on your vacation here.
15 Best Midwest Attractions You Have To Visit
Cedar Point Amusement Park
One of the fun things to do in Ohio is to visit Cedar Point Amusement Park.
It tops our list of the best Midwest Attractions that you must visit.
This amusement park in Sandusky Ohio is home to over 100 attractions and has something for everyone of all ages.
Located on the shores of Lake Erie, Cedar Point features some of the most thrilling rides that might entice adventure seekers.
From experiencing an 80-degree drop on the Maverick to enjoying a ride on the Top Thrill Dragster, there is no shortage of exciting things to do here.
Don’t worry, if adventure is not your thing, they have many other attractions for you to enjoy as well.
You can enjoy a view of Lake Erie from Gatekeeper, indulge in games, and win some exciting prizes, or munch on the snacks and street food found here.
That’s not all, this amusement park also features one of the most popular waterparks – Soak City Park.
Here, you can go on the water slides, have fun in the water pools, dump buckets, and more.
Overall, if you are looking for the best family vacations in the Midwest, then one of the best things to do in Sandusky is spend a day at Cedar Point Amusement Park.
Mackinac Island Is A Midwest Attraction Located In Michigan
Another great midwestern United States attraction to explore on a weekend trip is Mackinac Island in Michigan.
Located in Lake Huron, Mackinac Island is one of the top Midwest tourist attractions where you can enjoy a serene environment along with gorgeous Victorian buildings.
This is one of the more unique things to do in Michigan, and you can visit this Michigan attraction by boat or plane but do remember that there are no cars on the island.
So, most of the time, you will be riding a horse-driven carriage or walking to explore the island. You can even rent bicycles if you love cycling.
Although the island is only 5 miles long and 1 mile wide, there are a lot of fun things to do on Mackinac Island.
You can go kayaking, hike in the Mackinac Island State Park, or go shopping in the historic downtown.
If you are visiting in the summer, you can even book a sunset cruise here and enjoy the view of Lake Huron.
Trust me, Mackinac Island is one of the top Midwest attractions that you must not miss.
The Gateway Arch Is A Popular Attraction In The Midwest In Missouri
If you are looking for the most unique attractions in the Midwest USA, then the Gateway Arch in Missouri is a good choice.
At 623 feet, this popular place to visit in Missouri is the tallest arch in the world.
It was constructed between 1963 and 1965 and is the perfect place to enjoy the city views.
You can take a tram ride to the top and enjoy the views of the Mississippi River from here as well. There are 1000+ stairs available as well to reach the top.
If you are scared of heights, there is a free museum under the monument where you can learn more about the Arch.
As this is one of the popular tourist attractions in the midwest United States, the tickets sell out soon.
So, it is recommended that you buy it in advance.
If you are looking for a bucket list experience, then the Gateway Arch is the perfect Midwest attraction to visit.
Willis Tower Skydeck and Ledge
If you want to add the best Midwest tourist attractions to your itinerary, then don’t forget to check out the Willis Tower Skydeck and Ledge in Illinois.
One of the top things to do in Chicago, the Skydeck is located on the 103rd floor of Willis Tower.
It offers the best view across the four states and Lake Michigan.
For the daring, the Ledge glass box at 1,353 feet height is the best way to enjoy the city and nearby views.
This is one of the best tourist attractions in the Midwest for photography enthusiasts as well.
Since it’s a popular spot to visit when vacationing in the Midwest, make sure to book your tickets in advance.
Look Here For Advanced Tickets: Willis Tower and Skydeck Ledge
You can also visit the Chicago exhibit at the Skydeck to learn more about the history of this city.
The Chicago Skydeck is one of the top Midwest attractions to visit and should be certainly a part of your Chicago itinerary.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial
One of the top things to do in South Dakota is visit Mount Rushmore.
Here, you can find the 60-foot faces of former US Presidents such as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Thomas Jefferson.
Another one of the best attractions in the Midwest, Mount Rushmore National Memorial is one of the unforgettable things to do in the Black Hills SD.
This memorial was built from 1927 to 1941 and is now one of the most popular landmarks in the Midwest.
Visitors can join a guided ranger program, visit the Borglum Visitor Center, or hike on the scenic Presidential Trail.
There is no shortage of fun things to do in Mount Rushmore, making it the best vacation spot in the Midwest USA.
Overall, this is one of the bucket list Midwest attractions that you must visit.
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Overlooking the shores of Lake Michigan, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is one of the most popular places to visit in Indiana.
This midwestern United States attraction offers 15 miles of sandy beaches where you can sunbathe or explore around.
This is one of the best vacation spots in the Midwest throughout the year.
There are a wide range of activities to enjoy here, depending on when you visit.
In the summer, visitors can enjoy boating, fishing, hiking, and camping at this national park in the Midwest USA.
For those visiting in winter, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are a great way to enjoy this place.
Also, don’t miss out on sunsets on Lake Michigan. They are truly spectacular.
So, if you are looking for the best Midwest attractions for a vacation, then Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is perfect.
The Cave Of The Mounds
If you are searching for the best places to visit in the Midwest, then you should check out the Cave of the Mounds.
Taking a tour of this National Landmark is one of the top things to do in Wisconsin.
Under the ground, there is a limestone cave system that was discovered in 1939.
Earlier, it was going to be used as a limestone quarry but after this discovery, it was turned into a tourist attraction.
The caves were opened to visitors in 1940 and it has become one of the top Midwest attractions since then.
As the limestone cave system is a rarity in the geological world, it is also protected by the National Park Service.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the cave transports you to prehistoric times and is one of the best vacation spots in the Midwest.
The Mall of America
When vacationing in the Midwest, one of the best things to do in Minnesota is shop at the Mall of America.
This is the largest shopping mall in the country and is located in Bloomington.
Opened in 1992, the mall features over 500 retail shops and receives millions of visitors every year.
From clothing to food, to electronics, you can find it all here. You can say it’s a real-life Amazon where you can shop for anything and everything.
Expect to walk a lot inside this mall due to its size.
Apart from that, they also have an indoor theme park to keep the visitors entertained.
Plus, several events such as celebrity visits, concerts, etc. are held at this shopping mall throughout the year.
Trust me, this is one of the top Midwest attractions that you must visit in Minnesota.
A Midwest Attraction In Iowa Not To Miss Is The Grotto Of The Redemption
One of the top things to do in Iowa is visit the Shrine of Grotto of Redemption in West Bend, Iowa.
This shrine was built by Father Paul Dobberstein, a German immigrant.
He built it in honor of the Virgin Mary who he prayed to when suffering from pneumonia.
It is one of the largest grottos in the world and is made from a large collection of minerals, fossils, shells, etc.
Although the construction was started in 1912, the grotto was completed in 1954.
The grotto depicts several scenes from Jesus’ life, making it a religious site as well.
CarhengIe One Of The Unique Attractions In The Midwest
One of the weirdest landmarks in the midwest USA, Carhenge is one of the top things to do in Nebraska.
This hidden gem in the Midwest uses vintage cars to imitate Stonehenge in England.
The attraction was created by an artist named Jim Reindeers.
He made it as a tribute to his father on his farmland.
At the site, you will find 39 cars stacked on top of each other to resemble the Stonehenge structure.
Whether you love visiting unique Midwest attractions or wish to take quirky photos, Carhenge is one of the best places to visit in the Midwest United States.
Fargo Air Museum
For airplane aficionados, one of the top things to do in North Dakota is visit the Fargo Air Museum.
Located at the Hector International Airport, Fargo Air Museum features several historical aircraft which will interest both adults and kids alike.
One of the best things to do in the Midwest USA is learn about the aviation industry at Fargo Air Museum.
Plus, you can even enroll your kids in the Aviation Camp here to develop their interest in the aviation field.
You can see several functional aircraft here that were previously used in WWII.
Douglas DC-3, P-51D Mustang, etc. are a few worth mentioning.
That’s not all, there is also a full-scale replica of the 1900s Wright Brothers’ aircraft here.
This is why Fargo Air Museum is one of the top Midwest attractions that you can make a part of your Midwestern vacations.
And one of the best things to do in Fargo ND.
Badlands National Park Is A Midwest Attraction In South Dakota
Are you looking for the best weekend getaways in the Midwest USA?
Visiting Badlands National Park is one of the memorable things to do in South Dakota.
Badlands National Park is one of the perfect Midwest attractions to consider.
This national park features 200,000 acres of deep canyons, rugged mountains, and prairies for you to explore.
For mountain lovers, there are lots of spectacular Midwest hiking opportunities available here.
Plus, you can also camp and enjoy the starlit sky at night in this national park in South Dakota.
A few of the best hiking trails to explore here are Fossil Exhibit Trail, Castle Trail, and so on.
Also, you can observe many animals here such as bighorn sheep, elk, black-footed ferrets, and more.
Chalk Pyramids In Kansas Is An Attraction In The Midwest Not To Miss
Kansas is a unique state in Midwest USA which is home to 8 Wonders including the famous Monument Rocks, a.k.a the Chalk Pyramids.
Monument Rocks in Oakley stand over 70 feet high and is one of the top things to do in Kansas.
It also happens to be the first national landmark in the USA and many consider them to be nature’s Stonehenge.
Definitely one of the most amazing midwest landmarks, these Chalk Pyramids are believed to have formed 80 million years ago, when the area was underwater.
Trust me, this is one of the best Midwest vacations that you can take on a short weekend.
Lewis and Clark Caverns Park
Montana offers some of the best weekend getaways in the Midwest and Lewis and Clark Caverns Park is one of the top places to visit in Montana.
This cave in Whitehall Montana is one of the largest limestone caves in the world.
As a result, the only way to experience its magnificence is through a guided tour.
There are three tour options available in summer while visitors can enjoy the special Winter Holiday Candlelight Tour in the colder season.
Outside the cave, the park features several hiking trails and an interpretive visitor center.
You can also camp here in tipis, cabins, or tents and make it one of the best family vacations in the midwest USA.
Route 66 Museum
One of the top things to do in the Midwest is enjoy a road trip on Route 66 and make stops along the way.
Although Route 66 runs from Chicago to Los Angeles, the longest stretch lies in Oklahoma.
This is why one of the best things to do in Oklahoma is drive on Route 66 and explore attractions such as Route 66 Museum, National Route 66 and Transportation Museum, and more.
The Oklahoma Route 66 Museum is one of the top Midwest landmarks that you cannot miss.
This attraction in Clinton teaches you about this route’s history with the 1950s diner and changing exhibits.
If you are looking for the best Midwest vacations, then Route 66 Museum is a great addition to your road trip through Midwest United States.
For more information read the best Route 66 Attractions for your bucket list!
Packing List When Visiting Attractions In The Midwest
Whether you will be traveling by plane or by car to the Midwest, here are some tips on how to pack lightly.
A concealed travel pouch may be one of the most important items you bring along when visiting Midwest attractions.
It is always important to protect your personal information. Identity thieves are everywhere.
This unisex RFID-blocking concealed travel pouch is lightweight and comes in several colors. It has lots of organization to give you peace of mind.
You can place it under your clothes next to your body to carry your ID safely.
If you have a pouch already that does not come with RFID protection, as I do, these RFID sleeves are the perfect solution.
This configuration comes with enough credit card sleeves that the entire family would be protected. They are slim too, so they will easily fit into your pouch or wallet.
If you are planning on taking a lot of pictures with your phone you will definitely want to consider an external charging battery.
This Anker high-speed phone charging battery is the exact one I carry with me on all of my trips.
It can be used on a variety of phones, not just an iPhone as I have. And wow is it fast!
My daughter gifted me with this FugeTek selfie stick and tripod setup for my birthday. I absolutely love it! It is made of lightweight aluminum and so easy to use.
It has Bluetooth connectivity and is a breeze to use for taking photos.
You will want to bring your own refillable water bottle with you.
I never leave home on a trip without my Bobble filtration bottle. The 18.5-ounce size is perfect for hiking and it fits nicely in the pocket of a backpack.
And here are the carbon filter replacements.
Perhaps you are traveling a long distance and packing space is a premium in your suitcase, or in your car.
Then this collapsible silicone foldable water bottle would work well for you. Would not take up much space at all.