Fun Things to Do in Lafayette, Indiana | Museums and Monuments
Lafayette is a delightful place filled with small-city charm. It has a lovely balance of country and city life that caters to almost anyone.
Whether you want to luxuriate at relaxing picnic spots, have a night on the town, or hit the trails and keep your fitness level up with some travel cardio exercises, Lafayette is the place to do it. Take a look at our favourite things to do in Lafayette, Indiana.
Lafayette, Indiana | Tourist Attractions and Respites
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Looking for tourist attractions in Lafayette? Look no further than our list of top places in Lafayette, Indiana to spend your next holiday.
Tippecanoe Battlefield and Museum
One of the most popular of Lafayette’s tourist attractions, the Tippecanoe Battlefield and Museum is a must-see for anyone visiting the area.
Erected to commemorate a battle in 1811 between the locals and the new settlers, the towering marble obelisk is nestled amidst a large stand of trees in the park. Once you’ve taken in the majestic sight, there are picnic spots and trails to wander, as well as an onsite museum with artefacts and displays centred around the conflict.
Whether you just want to soak up the scenery or learn something new, this is one place that comes highly recommended.
Columbian Park Zoo
First opened in 1908, the seasonal Columbian Park Zoo is a hotspot of public interest and home to approximately 200 animals and 90 different species. From spider monkeys to American bald eagles and Australian wallabies, you’ll be greeted by various animal exhibits to peruse.
There’s even a delightful “Meet n’ Greet” program where you can feed a handful of selected animals yourself and spend time with them. Once you’ve had your fill of the animals, take some time to enjoy the interactive fountain plaza and admire the many sculptures that grace the zoo.
Hop on the delightfully decorated miniature Columbian Park Express train afterwards for a charming trip that’ll delight visitors of any age. Don’t forget to take a turn through the butterfly garden in hope of seeing some native species on your way out.
Whether you’re a tourist on a culture trip or a local looking for things to do in Lafayette, Indiana, this weekend, there’s no doubt you’ll have a great time in Downtown Lafayette.
Also known as West Lafayette, it’s the local hotspot when it comes to entertainment. Grab your walking shoes and get ready to hit the streets strolling around this cultural paradise. Spray-painted artworks adorn the sides of buildings in colourful bursts, the vivid hues from nearby shops and restaurants adding to the exciting ambience.
There’s an old corner store with vintage decor selling handmade candies, not to mention two popular French and Italian bistros, each promising delectable European delights. Many events take place in the area throughout the year, from the Lafayette Farmers Market in Summer to a monthly Blue Monday Blues Jam Session.
With such an extravaganza of art, music, and food, you’ll find it the perfect location for tourists to get a feel for the city. If you’re a local, it’s also a great place for fun dates in Lafayette, Indiana.
Jerry E. Clegg Botanical Gardens
One of the most beautiful free things to do in Lafayette, the Clegg Botanical Gardens offer splendid scenery and lush views to all who visit. Overlooking Wildcat Creek, the gardens have eight hiking trails to explore. There are viewing platforms to pause and enjoy the natural landscapes and information placards scattered throughout.
There are different outdoor environments to experience, from riparian corridors to green woodlands and prairies. Wildlife enthusiasts will be in their element catching glimpses of the profuse wildlife in the preserve, especially the multifarious birds.
Not only an excellent opportunity to spend time with friends and family, it’s also a fantastic date idea in Lafayette, Indiana. Take your special someone on a romantic stroll during spring when the flowers are in bloom to get the most out of the scenery.
Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art
The impressive Haan Mansion Museum of Indiana Art was originally constructed for the St. Louis World Fair in 1904. It was moved to its current location soon after and became a private residence for a time.
This sprawling mansion is now home to an extensive collection of Indiana art sourced from artists across the state. The mansion itself is part of the experience, with its many pieces of 19th-century American furniture. There are tours available, both self-guided and guided, which delve into the history of the mansion.
You’ll also have the opportunity to explore the gardens and nature trail on the property, but take some time to take in the sculptures there first. It’s one of the quieter attractions in the city, and offers an opportunity to broaden your artistic horizons and do some inner reflection. As such, it’s one of the perfect things to do in Lafayette, Indiana, for adults who are culturally inclined.
If stories from the past are what you love, you won’t be disappointed in Lafayette, Indiana. Points of interest for the avid history buff include the Fort Ouiatenon historical park located near the Wabash River.
A replica blockhouse based on the original early-1700s structure that served as a French trading post presides over the area. The site is open to the public as a living history museum and offers guided tours. It also caters to those in search of scenic picnic spots perfect for lazing away an afternoon.
One of the larger historically-based events in Lafayette, Indiana, the Feast of the Hunter’s Moon, is held annually at the Fort. Thousands of people gather clothed in period outfits to reenact autumn gatherings for onlookers. There are also live performances, vendors, and delicious food to make the event that much more splendid an experience.
Final Thoughts on What to Do in Lafayette
Lafayette has a lot of charm to offer to both locals and tourists alike. From breathtaking mansions and monuments to picturesque preserves and animal encounters, there’s something for everyone. If you’re there for a weekend or a week, there’re plenty of things to do in Lafayette, IN to keep you entertained.
If you love the hikes on offer in the stunning state of Indiana, why not check out some of the gorgeous hiking trails in Austin?