For a lot of in Michigan, the Midwest is an unattractive trip vacation spot.

Michiganders typically acknowledge the superb magnificence the Mitten possess, from unimaginable forests and lakeshores to the good cities — from Detroit to Marquette — filled with superior cultural sights. However after we look past the state’s borders, we’re typically blind to the property of our Midwestern neighbors.

Relying the way you outline the Midwest, or the Nice Lakes States, or nevertheless you wish to divide america, there are dozens of nice sights inside a state or two of the Michigan borders.

For the 2022 GR Journal Midwest Journey Information, we’ll deal with three unimaginable cities inside a half-day’s drive of Grand Rapids. Ignore Chicago, which doesn’t fall into the blind spot we’ve. All of us acknowledge Chicago is a high-quality spot to go to (Go Cubs!). Positive, Minneapolis, Minnesota, is a incredible northern jaunt, Des Moines, Iowa, is an underrated Plains State gem, Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky, are pleasant meals and beverage hotspots and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is a rust belt renaissance story. However for the inaugural checklist, we’ll look a tad nearer than all these superb communities.

The 2022 Journey Information consists of: Cleveland, Ohio; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

These are recommendations of actions to pique curiosity, not definitive guides. All three of those cities provide a lot greater than these temporary highlights. Discover the Midwest, it’s an unimaginable place!

Ohio typically takes a beating from Michiganders. The state is just not enjoyable to drive by means of and its capital, Columbus, is house to Ohio State College, which is sufficient to make Spartans and Wolverines alike wince.

However Cleveland is a metropolis filled with gorgeous structure. Merely strolling round Cleveland is a pleasant look into historical past, again when the Midwest was fairly actually the heartbeat of America.

Whereas the northern Ohio metropolis did fall on laborious instances — the Cuyahoga River actually caught on hearth! — it bounced again fairly shortly.

A stopover in Cleveland should embrace the Rock and Roll Corridor of Fame. It’s touristy, positive, however the big pyramid on Lake Erie is a enjoyable look again on the world of music, the affect of which has unfold throughout the globe.


As talked about, an structure stroll is definitely worth the steps. Take a stroll round city to see what you see, however cease by The Arcade, an 1890 constructing with 4 ranges of balconies topped with a glass skylight. There’s additionally the Cleveland Belief rotunda, which is now house to a high-end grocer, however has an enormous glass dome in-built 1908 that’s surrounded by murals from artist Francis Millet — who died on the Titanic.

The Cleveland Museum of Artwork, together with being its personal architectural marvel, is value a cease for its reveals. However on the best way to the museum, be certain that to pause for the Cultural Gardens on MLK. Close to the Museum of Artwork is the Cleveland Botanical Backyard and the Cleveland Museum of Pure Historical past, near Case Western College, all of which make up a pleasant cultural district.

Cleveland Metroparks circles your entire metropolis with almost 23,000 acres of greenspace in 18 separate spots. Additionally, in case you’re as much as it, take a look at the close by Cuyahoga Valley Nationwide Park, which is a tremendous Midwestern pure marvel and may be skilled by means of the 51-mile Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, which provides wine sampling (Grape Escapes) and beer tasting (Ales on the Rails) excursions.

One might spend days strolling round, admiring the structure and inexperienced areas in Cleveland, or taking within the skilled sports activities groups.

The town additionally has a scorching meals and beverage scene. You should definitely take a look at Fats Head’s Brewery, Market Backyard Brewing and Nice Lakes Brewing Co., amongst many extra.

There is also a tremendous theater district within the metropolis, filled with bright-light marquees. Throw a present on the itinerary if that strikes your fancy.

One other should cease: Brewnuts. The donut store will make mouths water each day on Instagram and make sure you’ll take a drive all the way down to Ohio.


For those who’re pondering of a go to to Indy, don’t be afraid to plan it across the Indianapolis 500.

Whether or not or not a motorsports fan, the spectacle must be on everybody’s bucket checklist. The race itself is an awe-inspiring feat of artifical equipment. The people-watching is first fee, too.

If a late weekend in Might doesn’t line up in your schedule, Indy nonetheless is a enjoyable place to spend a while.

Huge Ten sports activities followers most likely already are properly accustomed to town — which options nice venues for faculty basketball and soccer video games. Take {that a} step additional by stopping on the NCAA Corridor of Champions.

A go to to Indianapolis wouldn’t be full with no meal at St. Elmo’s Steakhouse. The meat is scrumptious the shrimp cocktail is a should. The cocktail sauce will clear any sinus of probably the most severe clog and an Elmo Cola could be required to get well.

No matter whenever you go to, make a while for a cease on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum to pay tribute to the race that helped put town on the map. Afterward, head to the Indianapolis Museum of Artwork at Newfields.

The Storage at Bottleworks is a really cool meals and market corridor with greater than 25 distributors. It’s in-built a redeveloped Artwork Deco Coca Cola bottling plant. For breweries, take a look at the dog-friendly Metazoa Brewing, Solar King Brewing, Daredevil Brewing or Guggman Haus Brewing.

White River State Park is a pleasant spot for a day stroll, whereas the Indianapolis Zoo and Kids’s Museum of Indianapolis each are nice for households trying to spend a day participating in actions. The zoo has greater than 230 species of animals and the property features a park, botanical backyard and aquarium on its 64 acres alongside within the White River State Park.

For literary followers, a cease on the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library is definitely worth the time.

All three of the cities highlighted listed below are lower than a five-hour drive from Grand Rapids. However Milwaukee probably has probably the most thrilling, distinctive and, on this case, quickest route. Drive as much as Muskegon and take the Lake Specific ferry throughout Lake Michigan. The journey is bound to be memorable and a tad extra enjoyable than the typical highway journey. The whole journey is lower than 4 hours, however remember it’s costlier than the drive could be with a ticket coming in at $181 spherical journey for the basic cabin and $227 for the premier cabin. Company additionally will pay $218 spherical journey to deliver a automobile.

As soon as in Milwaukee, an amazing begin is the Milwaukee Artwork Museum, located on the lakeshore in a memorable sailboat-inspired constructing. The reveals typically provide mixture of sights for all ages.

For one thing extra adult-oriented, take a look at the Harley Davidson Museum.

The Milwaukee River Stroll is a superb 2-mile path that winds by means of downtown and has quick access to a plethora of shops and eating places. It’s a showcase of what an activated riverfront might imply for Grand Rapids within the coming years.

There’s a good array of meals choices in Milwaukee, from the progressive Nice Lakes-inspired high quality eating spot Ardent and longtime staple Lake Park Bistro to artisan restaurant and butcher store Bavette La Boucherie. The reigning James Beard Greatest Chef within the Midwest, Dane Baldwin, serves up artistic menus at The Diplomat.

Protecting according to your Midwestern roots, seize a butter burger at Solly’s Grille, which earned the 2022 James Beard Basis’s America’s Traditional Award. There are also any variety of institutions serving up cheese curds, sausages and frozen custard — you seemingly can’t go unsuitable.

Beer lovers have loads to see in Milwaukee, from the MillerCoors Brewery — an amazing instance of a significant industrial brewery — and the historic Pabst Brewery and Mansion. Then there are the brand new breweries, like Lakefront Brewing Co., which present the trade has not left town behind or cease by one of many nice beer gardens within the metropolis, just like the Estabrook Beer Backyard. Within the fall there’s an amazing Oktoberfest celebration.

And earlier than you permit, don’t miss the Bronze Fonz — a statue of Arthur Fonzarelli from “Completely satisfied Days.” You possibly can’t get far more Midwest than that.

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