Indianapolis, the heart of mid-western America, has a rich history and cultural heritage. The city gets its name from the state of Indiana which means “Land of the Indians” and the Greek word “polis” for city. Indianapolis is the perfect city for couples to dose themselves with a variety of art, music, American history and nature activities, in the background of scenic parks and abundant festivals. The city has a mix of the old world with the new, making it an ideal destination to explore with your loved one. Home to two of the State’s major sporting teams, the Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Pacers, locals are fiercely loyal to and passionate about their teams, giving this big city its vibrant atmosphere, with the charming feels of a small town. Indianapolis; “the Crossroads of America” is the perfect destination for any road trip as it sits on the intersection of four major US highways. If you are visiting Indianapolis as a couple, here is a roundup of our favourite romantic things to see, do, and explore during your time here.
1. Explore nature and history at Fort Harrison State Park
This 1700-acre (687-hectare) park offers a variety of outdoor activities including nature trails for jogging, biking and birdwatching; horse riding trails, hayrides and a nature centre. In addition, the park is also a delight for couples with a thirst for history, as it features former Citizen’s Military Training Camp, Civilian Conservation Corps camp, and a World War II prisoner of war camp. Couples who are looking for an active date can choose to join guided hikes or talks by experienced naturalists. For those who want a reprise from Indianapolis city-life, bring a picnic to enjoy and steal a kiss under the shady trees of the park for a romantic few hours.
Address: 6000 N Post Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46216, USA
Opening Times: Daily 7AM-8PM
Website: Fort Harrison State Park
2. Find your perfect pint
Ranging from boutique taphouses and tasting rooms to larger warehouse spaces filled with beer barrels, explore Indianapolis’ famed craft beer culture on your holiday date-night. It would be wrong to visit Indianapolis without visiting an independent craft brewery and indulging in some of the city’s best F&B choices. Every beer has its own story behind it and you are guaranteed to find one that fits your palette, from the robust and complex to the clean and refreshing. Some of the city’s most highly rated breweries include Black Acre Brewing Co, Chilly Water Brewing Company and the city’s famed Sun King Brewing.
3. Visit Newfields and The Indianapolis Museum of Art
Set within 152 acres (61 hectares) of gardens, the Indianapolis Museum of Art houses over 54,000 works of art and is the perfect way to spend an afternoon. The museum is the ninth oldest art museum in the United States and displays collections across historical eras, from the Americas, Europe, the South Pacific, Asian and African regions. The Indianapolis Museum of Art boasts an ideal venue for date-night, to spark conversation and possibly enjoy a tour in one of the most reputed cultural institutions in the city. Finish off your evening by exploring the rest of the Newfields campus which includes The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park and a Beer Garden, both ideal locations to stroll hand-in-hand while dissecting highlights from the museum.
Address: 4000 Michigan Road, Indianapolis, Indiana 46208-3326
Opening Times: Varied; Closed on Monday
4. Catch a theatre production
A more original version of the classic ‘movie and dinner’ date-night, a live production can be an animated experience for a romantic evening in Indianapolis. The Indiana Repertory Theatre (IRT) located in the heart of the city, showcases classic performances like 'Holmes and Watson’ and ‘A Christmas Carol’ and almost always has a Shakespeare production on one of its two stages. The theatre even has its own in-house original productions and in the past, has paid tribute to local icon author Kurt Vonnegut- ideal for those couples who want to get to know the city a little better.
Address: 140 W. Washington Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204
Ticket office hours: Monday-Friday 11 AM - 6 PM
Website: The Indiana Repertory Theatre
5. A racing experience of a lifetime at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Feel an unforgettable adrenaline rush in ‘The Racing Capital of the World’ by driving in an ‘IndyCar Series’- a car that has competed in the famed Indianapolis 500, the world’s largest single-day sporting event, held annually at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This experience is the perfect gift to surprise a loved-one who is thrill-seeking or an avid car racing enthusiast. Driving an IndyCar Series was previously only available to only a handful of drivers but is now available as an electrifying experience, one that provides a true reflection of local Indianapolis culture that is fixated on racing. It is a date that is designed to leave an impression!
Address: 4790 W 16th St, Indianapolis, IN 46222, USA
Website: The Indy Racing Experience
Price: USD 500 upwards
Culinary tours are a great way to spend time as a couple while taking in the sights, sounds and tastes of a city! Indianapolis is no exception. The city offers a variety of food tours which allow you to walk through different neighbourhoods in Indianapolis and brings together aspects of history, culture, architecture and local cuisine.
Massachusetts Avenue Food Tour
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
7. Walk through The Central Canal
The Indy Canal Walk is a 3-mile (4.8-kilometre) loop that runs through the heart of the city and is the ideal route for a couple looking to explore Indianapolis while looking to spend some quality time together. Walking alongside the canal is one option, but Segways, kayaks, pedal boats and gondolas are available for rent for more diverse transport options. The route is a great way for couples to take in the Indianapolis skyline, the local art murals and architecture.
The Central Canal
Price: Entrance to the canal is free
8. Take in the local sporting culture
Indianapolis is home to two of the State’s major sporting teams. The Indianapolis Colts, a major American Football team playing in the NFL and the Indiana Pacers, the State’s Basketball team playing in the NBA league. If you are lucky enough to be visiting Indianapolis during a ‘home’ game, try and snag yourself and your date single-game tickets to catch some of the action up close. Watching these local teams play in one of Indianapolis’ beer gardens or local pubs is also an exciting way to spend an evening with your date.
9. Wander through Monument Circle
Monument Circle is located in downtown Indianapolis and it represents the heart of the city. It is ideal for a romantic evening stroll to enjoy the city’s bright lights and vibrant atmosphere. It is particularly magical during Fall and Winter, when Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations adorn the city centre. Climb up to the Observation deck to take in 360-degree views of all of Indianapolis.
Address: 1 Monument Circle
Website: Monument Circle
Price: Admission is Free to the Observation deck if you take the stairs
10. Wine and dine with Mama Carolla
Photo is only for illustrative purposes
What could be better than a classic romantic dinner within the confines of a Mediterranean-style villa? Mama Carolla’s Old Italian Restaurant is the quintessential location for a date night, serving local Italian cuisine, catering to all dietary restrictions along with an extensive wine selection.
Mama Carolla’s Old Italian Restaurant
Address: 1031 E 54th Street, Indianapolis, 46205
A destination for that romantic getaway
The city of Indianapolis has much to offer for traditional romantic evenings as well as to those seeking an adventurous date. Be sure to check out all the links and descriptions that I have included so you can personally curate your time in the city.
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