NW Hoosier Country
Explore Indiana’s wild side on Lake Michigan
Happy to fly beneath the tourist radar, the friendly, unassuming Hoosier State is a land of hidden gems and family-friendly outdoor adventures. The forests, parks and nature preserves of this northwest tranche of Indiana offer water- and land-based activities for all seasons.
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
The magnificent sand dunes of Indiana Dunes State Park undulate for some 15 miles along the shores of Lake Michigan. A thriving ecosystem of forest, marsh, bog and beach provides sanctuary to more than a thousand flowering plant species, rare algal species and a surprisingly expansive wildlife inventory, including over 300 species of bird. It’s no wonder this is a quintessential Midwestern summer destination. Explore the Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk for excellent views of the lake.
On the Calumet Trail, a 9-mile dirt and crushed limestone biking path, riders are treated to views of Cowles Bog, an 8,000-year-old marsh, and Mt. Baldy, a 120-foot-tall, moving sand dune.
Breweries and Betting
Over recent years, craft beer culture has exploded in northwest Indiana. In Munster, the irreverent but top-notch 3 Floyds, which first opened in 1996, has become an internationally recognized brew pub. In Michigan City, Shoreline Brewery is distinguished for its terrific, barrel-aged craft beers.
Along the lakeshore, riverboat casinos offer thrilling games. Michigan City’s Blue Chip casino features 1,900 slot machines, 42 table games and a live eight-table poker room on a riverboat complex.
Fair Oaks Farm
Some 45 miles south of Gary, Fair Oaks Farms offers a bucolic, back-to-country experience. Acres of flourishing pastures and undulating hills provide the backdrop for outdoor play married with a fascinating insight into the workings of a modern farm.
Washington Park Zoo
Michigan City’s Washington Park Zoo is a classic summer’s day trip that appeals to families with young children. On the southern shore of Lake Michigan, the zoo is home to around 90 species housed in exhibits spread across 15 acres of rolling dunes and botanical gardens. Crowd-pleasing creatures include Bengal tigers, American alligators, a grizzly bear, wolves, ring-tailed lemurs, otters and eagles.
For More Information
South Shore Convention and
Indiana Office of Tourism Development