Discover 20 Indiana Day Trips Perfect for Your Summer Break

Get ready to make this summer unforgettable with our handpicked list of 20 amazing Indiana day trips! From thrilling outdoor adventures to relaxing scenic escapes, there’s something for everyone. Whether you’re a nature lover, a history buff, or just looking for some fun in the sun, we’ve got you covered. So grab your sunscreen, pack a picnic, and hit the road to explore the hidden gems and must-visit spots that Indiana has to offer. Your perfect summer break awaits!

Indiana Day Trips Perfect for Summer:

1. Pine Lake Waterpark & Beach

Address: 4640 W State Rd 218, Berne, IN 46711
Perfect For:  Sun-seekers and water enthusiasts craving a splash-filled day of excitement and relaxation.

If you can’t decide between the lake or the beach, Pine Lake Waterpark has you covered. This unique destination offers all the adrenaline rushes you would expect from a waterpark while getting back to nature on a trip to the lake. Pine Lake Waterpark, located about 2-hours north of Indianapolis, and is perfect for a summer day trip.

pine lake

2. Splashin’ Safari at Holiday World, Santa Claus

Address: 452 E Christmas Blvd, Santa Claus
Perfect For: Families who love rides, great first amusement park where children 36 inches and tall can ride a good amount of the rides at the park.

This southern Indiana location was recently ranked as one of the top water parks in the US by TripAdvisor, and for good reason! Tickets include access to both Splashin’ Safari and its neighboring theme park, Holiday World, offering tons of fun with slides, rides, and wave pools. As a bonus, they provide free soft drinks like lemonade, Gatorade, iced teas, water, and carbonated beverages at both parks.

Holiday World Water Park Indiana

3. Uranus Indiana Fudge Factory in Anderson

Address: 1423 W. 53rd Street, Anderson, IN
Perfect For: Families with a good sense of “potty” humor.

Are you looking for a place to get some great fudge and a good dose of potty humor? Then head out to Anderson and visit Uranus Indiana, a tourist attraction and store that offers a variety of fudge, chocolates, sweets, novelties and more.

Uranus Indiana Fudge Factory in Anderson

4. Whitewater Valley Railroad

Address: 455 Market St, Connersville, IN 47331
Perfect For:
 Train Lovers

With regular and special trains running April-December, you’re sure to find the perfect opportunity to visit the railroad with family and friends! Adults fares are for passengers over 12 years of age. Children fares are for passengers ages 2-12 and passengers under 2 ride for free when accompanied by an adult.

5. An Indiana Natural Lazy River

Location: Multiple
Perfect For: Relaxation lovers

While floating down a lazy river at a waterpark can be enjoyable, floating down a real river simply can’t be beaten. The rental businesses below offer all the equipment you and your family need to have a fun and safe day floating down one of Indiana’s prettiest rivers.

Check out our river guide to choose the right river and rental for the perfect summer day trip.

indiana tubing river

6. Hidden Paradise Campground

Address:1459 Blue Spring Caverns Rd. Bedford, Indiana 47421
Perfect For: Families looking for a day on the water or an overnight trip.

Hidden Paradise Campground is About an hour from downtown Indianapolis, a family-friendly place to experience the area’s natural beauty. Visitors will find quarry swimming on the spring-fed “Dream Lake” — a 20-foot-deep lake amid high limestone cliffs.

It offers a designated swimming area with all the inflatable fun: a floating trampoline, obstacle course, jumping platform and slide. Hidden Paradise also offers a large dock and open swimming areas.

Hidden Paradise Campground
Hidden Paradise Campground

7. Bellaboo’s Play & Discovery Center

Address: 2800 Colorado St, Lake Station, IN 46405
Perfect For: Curious kids craving imaginative play, learning, and endless fun-filled activities

Bellaboo’s Play and Discovery Center is a facility that offers fun, self-directed activities for children from infancy through age nine. Developed by the Lake County Parks and Recreation Department in Indiana, Bellaboo’s mission is to provide kids with learning opportunities while playing. Bellaboo’s outdoor areas feature fossil digging, gardening, an amazing playground, and more.

BellaBoo's Children's Play & Discovery Center

8. Squire Boone Caverns

Address:1100 Squire Boone Rd SW, Mauckport, IN 47142
Perfect For: Families looking for an underground adventure. Bonus: Temperatures are a consistent 53 degrees year-round, which will give you a great break from the summer heat.

Looking for a unique and educational family getaway in Southern Indiana? Look no further than Squire Boone Caverns! This hidden gem offers a mix of history, adventure, and fun to entertain kids of all ages. The heart of Squire Boone Caverns is the cave itself, a natural wonder that’s been millions of years in the making. A tour of the cave will surely be the highlight of your trip.

Squire Boone Caverns

9. Turkey Run State Park

Address: 8121 Park Rd, Marshall
Perfect For:  Outdoor enthusiasts craving picturesque trails and memorable adventures

Turkey Run has a little something for every nature lover. The many hiking trails, sandstone gorges, and water access for canoeing and kayaking ensure a good time and great memories.

Turkey Run State Park
Photo Credit: Turkey Run State Park

 10. Paradise Rental Boats at Fourwinds Marina

Address: 9301 S Fairfax Rd, Bloomington, IN 47401
Perfect For: Anyone who wants to spend the day on the water

If you’re looking for a relaxing activity for your family, there’s nothing like being out on a boat in the middle of the water. Whether you’re a seasoned skipper or just looking to get your feet wet like my family, here is my advice from renting a boat with Paradise Rental Boats at Fourwinds Marina.

11. Indiana Dunes National Park

Address: 1215 N State Rd 49, Porter, IN 46304
Perfect for: Beachgoers and hikers seeking diverse landscapes, sandy shores, and captivating trails

Indiana Dunes covers 15,000 acres with over 50 miles of trails through dunes, wetlands, prairies, rivers, and forests. Enjoy 15 miles of sandy beach year-round, whether you’re sunbathing and swimming in summer or admiring the icy beauty in winter.

Related Article: 6 Best National Parks in the Midwest for Families

indiana dunes
indiana dunes

12. Fair Oaks Farms 

Address: 856 N. 600 E., Fair Oaks
Perfect for: Families looking to learn more about farming and agriculture

Fair Oaks Farms is a working farm in the heart of Indiana that combines education, food, and lots of family fun. Located just off I-65, about halfway between Indianapolis and Chicago, this Indiana hidden gem is a sprawling farmstead that offers a one-of-a-kind experience for all ages. The farm showcases local agriculture, sustainable farming practices, animal encounters and delicious farm-made food. The Fair Oaks Farms campus is an all-in-one destination. It includes a hotel, interactive museums, daily tours, a farm-to-table restaurant, a cafe, an ice cream shop, a nature trail, and lots more.

Fair Oak Farm

13. Exotic Feline Rescue Center

Address: 2221 E Ashboro Rd in Center Point, IN
Perfect for: Wildlife enthusiasts eager to learn about and support majestic rescued big cats

The Exotic Feline Rescue Center (EFRC) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the rescue, care and conservation of exotic felines. Founded in the early 1990’s, the EFRC has served as a rescue center and forever home to many exotic felines that have been abused, unwanted, or neglected. The EFRC cares for over 100 cats and 6 foxes on its 200-acre property located in Center Point, IN. The Exotic Feline Rescue Center: A Must-Visit Destination for Wildlife Lovers

14. Heritage Farm

Address: 4175 North 1200 West, Flora
Perfect For: Farm animal fans

Heritage Farm is a working alpaca farm with more than 50 alpacas you can see, touch, and interact with. Visitors can book an overnight stay at the 120-acre farm in one of the several different lodging options or visit for the day. Tim and Beth Sheets have made it their goal to educate the community about the joys of farming and alpaca care.

Heritage Farm

15. Malibu Jack’s Indoor Theme

Address: 455 Market St, Connersville
Perfect For: Those looking to beat the heat

Malibu Jack’s Lafayette Indoor Theme Park is a massive, all-indoor space with fun attractions for people of all ages and interests. Visitors to the park can take part in Go karts, bowling, and arcade games. They can also enjoy other theme park attractions such as the Twist Coaster, swinging ships, and bumper cars. There’s a Kid’s Zone indoor playground for younger children to play.

Malibu Jack's Indoor Theme park

16. Daleville Town Hall Park & Splash Pad

Address: 8029 S Walnut St, Daleville
Perfect For: Kids ready to run and splash for days

Daleville Town Hall Park is an amazingly fun space for families, with a large playground, a fantastic splash pad, a snack bar that sells snow cones in the summer, a train to play on, an amphitheater, a dog park and more. The splash pad is definitely one that is worth the drive.

Playground at Playground Splash Pad at Daleville Town Hall ParkDaleville Town Hall Park & Playground

17. Mounds State Park

Address: 4306 Mounds Rd., Anderson
Perfect For: Families who love rugged hikes and camping

Here, you’ll find 6 miles of easy-to-rugged hiking trails, picnic areas, family camping, and an incredible visitor center, which houses animals, reptiles, and fish that you might encounter at the park.

18. Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo + Promenade Park 

Address: 4306 Mounds Rd., Anderson
Perfect For: Day trippers looking to explore a larger Indiana city.

There is a lot to do in this family-friendly city! One of the must-visits is the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo. Everything at this zoo — from the rides to the displays — is designed with the littlest visitors in mind. Then, explore Promenade Park, a one-of-a-kind park that joins Fort Wayne’s three rivers: The St. Marys, the St. Joseph, and the Maumee. Right in the middle of the city, you can explore the trails along the water, discover family fun attractions like the tree-top canopy trail and kids’ canal, and take to the water on a riverboat cruise or kayak rental.

Fort Wayne

19. Wilstem Wildlife Park 

Address: 4229 US-150 W, Paoli
Perfect For: Animal lovers wanting a unique view.

This wild animal park, located in the heart of Southern Indiana near French Lick, offers a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with a variety of exotic animals in a beautiful natural setting. One of the most fun activities that they offer is the drive-thru safari, which allows you to see and feed animals all in the comfort of your own vehicle. But there are opportunities to get out of your car and get a closer look at certain animals.

Wilstem Wildlife Park

20. Strawtown Koteewi

Address: 12308 Strawtown Ave, Noblesville
Perfect for: Those looking for a close to home day trip, packed with adventure

Strawtown Koteewi is a hidden gem in Hamilton County, and is the perfect place for families looking for zip lining adventure and outdoor fun. Koteewi Aerial Adventure is located within the 800-acre park, and includes 60+ aerial obstacles and ziplines built into the trees of the park that climbers move over, under and through. And good news: This zip line and ropes course is fun whether you’re a beginner or an experienced climber, because the courses are tailored to different skill levels.  

Strawtown is also home to an array of activities, including trails for hiking or riding horses, a natural history center and an archaeological exhibit. Koteewi Range, a top-notch archery range in the park, is where children can learn the art of archery under the guidance of skilled instructors. They’ll learn proper technique, focus, and concentration, all while fostering a love for this ancient sport. 

Strawtown Koteewi
photo courtesy of Strawtown Koteewi Park



Indy's Child
Indy's Child
For 40 years, Indy's Child has been the trusted source for Indianapolis families seeking fun, educational, and enriching experiences. Our award-winning magazine and website are dedicated to providing expert advice, insider tips, and up-to-date information on everything from the best local attractions and events to parenting resources and support. As local experts deeply rooted in the central Indiana community, our passionate team at Indy's Child is dedicated to uncovering the best family-friendly experiences and resources our city has to offer. Whether you're new to parenting or looking for new ideas, Indy's Child is here to help you enjoy the adventure of raising a family in central Indiana.

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