Cedar Rapids is a city located in the state of Iowa, United States. The city was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Meskwaki and the Sauk, who settled along the Cedar River, which runs through the region.
In the mid-1800s, European settlers began establishing communities in the area, and Cedar Rapids was officially incorporated as a city in 1849.
One of the defining moments in Cedar Rapids’ history occurred in 2008 when the city experienced a devastating flood. The Cedar River rose to record levels, causing widespread damage to homes, businesses, and infrastructure.
However, the community came together to rebuild, and the city emerged stronger than ever.
Cedar Rapids is famous for its vibrant arts and culture scene. It is home to the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, which houses an extensive collection of artwork, including the largest collection of works by renowned artist Grant Wood.
The city also hosts the annual Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival, celebrating patriotism and community spirit.
In addition to its cultural attractions, there are many recreational opportunities and things to do in Cedar Rapids. The city boasts several parks and trails, providing residents and visitors with opportunities for hiking, biking, and enjoying nature.
Overall, Cedar Rapids has a rich history, a resilient community, and various attractions, making it a popular tourist destination.
Cedar Rapids experiences a humid continental climate with four distinct seasons. Winters are cold, with average temperatures around freezing point, while summers are warm and humid, with average temperatures in the mid-80s Fahrenheit (around 30°C).
The best months to visit Cedar Rapids are typically from May to October, when the weather is pleasant and outdoor activities are abundant. So if you ever think about planning your days here, remember these months, but dont forget to check the places below.
1) NewBo City Market
NewBo City Market is a historic landmark established in 2012 as a bustling community gathering place. It is housed in a renovated warehouse, showcasing local farmers, artisans, and entrepreneurs.
It offers diverse fresh produce, handmade crafts, and delicious food. With its vibrant atmosphere, concerts and festivals, NewBo City Market has become a beloved destination contributing to the revitalization of the New Bohemia district.
NewBo City Market offers various shopping adventures and things to do in Cedar Rapids. Inside the market, you can browse various unique shops, enjoy delectable food and beverages from local vendors, and attend exciting events.
The market also hosts live music performances, art exhibits, and workshops, providing a vibrant cultural experience.
Outside, you can stroll along the nearby Cedar River, explore the charming New Bohemia neighbourhood, or relax in the adjacent green spaces.
With its lively atmosphere and engaging offerings, NewBo City Market is a must-visit destination for locals and tourists.
1100 3rd Street Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
2) Cedar Rapids Museum of Art
The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art has an intriguing history spanning over a century. Founded in 1905, the museum has become a significant regional cultural institution.
It showcases a diverse collection of American art, with a particular emphasis on works by Grant Wood, a renowned artist from Iowa with other artistic things to do in Cedar Rapids.
However, the museum offers engaging exhibitions, educational programs, and community outreach initiatives, fostering an appreciation for art and enriching the cultural landscape of Cedar Rapids.
Want to roam around artistic objects? The museum features spacious galleries that house a diverse collection of American art. It provides comfortable seating areas, allowing visitors to relax and appreciate the artwork if their feet feel tired from walking.
Additionally, the museum offers educational programs, workshops, and guided tours to enhance visitors’ understanding and appreciation of the art on display.
The museum shop provides a selection of unique art-related items and souvenirs. With its engaging exhibitions and community events, the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art offers a vibrant and enriching experience for all.
410 3rd Avenue Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
3) National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library
The National Czech(NCSML) was established in 1974, serving as a cultural and educational institution dedicated to preserving and promoting the history and heritage of Czech and Slovak people.
The museum showcases exhibits, artifacts, and artwork reflecting Czech and Slovak culture, history, and contributions to America. The library houses many books, documents, and archival materials.
The NCSML also significantly fosters cultural understanding and appreciation between Czech, Slovak, and American communities.
The National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library (NCSML) offers many enhancing things to do in Cedar Rapids. The museum features state-of-the-art exhibit spaces, providing interactive displays and multimedia presentations that bring Czech and Slovak history to life.
The library boasts a comprehensive collection of books, periodicals, and research materials, allowing visitors to delve deeper into the rich cultural heritage.
Visitors can participate in guided tours led by knowledgeable docents, gaining deeper insights into the exhibits. Workshops and educational programs are available to engage visitors in hands-on experiences, such as traditional craft demonstrations, language lessons, and cultural celebrations.
The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions that explore various aspects of Czech and Slovak culture, including art, music, literature, and cuisine.
Visitors can immerse themselves in the vibrant traditions through performances, concerts, and film screenings held within the museum’s dedicated event
1400 Inspiration Place Southwest, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, United States
4) The District: Czech Village & New Bohemia
Czech Village & New Bohemia have a rich history rooted in Czech and Slovak heritage. Established in the late 19th century, Czech immigrants settled in the area and created a vibrant community with cultural traditions, businesses, and institutions.
The district experienced challenges, including devastating floods, but has persevered and undergone revitalization efforts.
Today, it is a thriving neighborhood known for its unique architecture, Czech Village Museum, annual Czech and Slovak Festival, local shops, restaurants, and artistic community.
The district boasts charming shops and boutiques where you can find unique gifts, handmade crafts, local artwork, and other adventurous things to do in Cedar Rapids. You can explore the Czech Village Museum to learn about the area’s heritage and history.
Indulge in delicious Czech and Slovak cuisine at authentic restaurants or cozy cafes. The district hosts regular events, including live music performances, art exhibitions, and community gatherings. Participate in them to have a lively evening.
Moreover, you can stroll through the picturesque streets and admire the distinctive architecture that gives the area its character. Whenever you seek history’s passion, remember The District.
208 12th Avenue Southeast G, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
5) Indian Creek Nature Center
The Indian Creek Nature Center is a cherished environmental education organization founded in 1973. It aims to inspire and educate the community about the natural world.
The center features over 290 acres of woodlands, prairies, and wetlands, providing a sanctuary for diverse wildlife and plant species.
It offers educational programs, exhibits, and events that promote sustainability, conservation, and appreciation of nature, with nature exploring things to do in Cedar Rapids.
With its rich history and commitment to environmental stewardship, the Indian Creek Nature Center continues to foster a deeper connection between people and the environment.
It boasts well-maintained trails for hiking and nature walks, providing opportunities to explore beautiful landscapes and observe local wildlife.
The center features an interactive exhibit hall that educates visitors about the region’s natural history and conservation efforts.
There are picnic areas and outdoor classrooms for group activities and events. The center regularly hosts workshops, guided tours, and seasonal programs, ensuring there’s always something exciting happening.
Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a family looking for outdoor fun, or someone seeking to learn and connect with the environment, the Indian Creek Nature Center is a haven that will leave you inspired and rejuvenated.
5300 Otis Road Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403, United States
6) Bever Park
Bever Park, spanning several decades, was established in 1926 and has since served as a popular recreational destination for the local community.
The park features beautiful landscapes, walking trails, picnic areas, and recreational facilities. Throughout the years, Bever Park has undergone numerous renovations and additions, maintaining its charm and providing a place for outdoor enjoyment, family gatherings, and community events.
The park also features playgrounds, sports fields, and courts for basketball, tennis, and volleyball, providing ample outdoor activities and game opportunities.
There are also picnic areas with shelters and grills, perfect for family gatherings and outdoor meals. Nature enthusiasts can explore the park’s walking trails, enjoy the scenic beauty, and observe wildlife.
The Park houses a small zoo where visitors can view various animals and learn about wildlife conservation. The park offers a delightful combination of recreational facilities, natural surroundings, and educational experiences for a fun-filled day out.
2700 Bever Avenue Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403, United States
7) Little Bohemia
Little Bohemia, established in the late 19th century, became a vibrant community with businesses, churches, and social organizations.
Known for its lively festivals, traditional music, and delicious cuisine, Little Bohemia thrived until the mid-20th century when urban renewal projects significantly altered the neighborhood.
Despite changes, the spirit of Little Bohemia continues to live on through its historical landmarks and the enduring pride of its Czech descendants.
Little Bohemia in Cedar Rapids offers many enjoyable things to do in Cedar Rapids. The neighborhood features charming Czech-inspired architecture, including historical landmarks like the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library.
You can explore exhibits highlighting Czech culture, history, and art. It also offers a variety of dining options, serving authentic Czech cuisine and delicious pastries.
The neighborhood hosts cultural events and festivals where visitors can experience traditional music, dance, and crafts.
Additionally, there are parks and green spaces for leisurely walks, picnics, and outdoor activities. Little Bohemia provides a unique and enriching experience for all who visit
142 US-51, Manitowish Waters, WI 54545, United States
8) Veterans Memorial Stadium
Veterans Memorial Stadium, built to honor the brave men and women who served in the armed forces, has witnessed countless sporting events, concerts, and ceremonies.
Its hallowed grounds have hosted memorable moments, from championship games to patriotic tributes. Serving as a symbol of remembrance and gratitude, Veterans Memorial Stadium is a testament to the bravery and sacrifice of the nation’s veterans.
The facilities and fun things this place offers include spacious seating arrangements, modern restrooms, and convenient parking options.
Spectators can enjoy various sporting events like football, soccer, and track and field competitions. The stadium also hosts exhilarating concerts featuring renowned artists, providing unforgettable entertainment experiences.
Here visitors can also explore on-site concessions offering delicious food and beverages. The stadium often organizes community events and festivals, fostering a sense of camaraderie and celebration.
With its inviting atmosphere and diverse offerings, Veterans Memorial Stadium provides a memorable destination for sports enthusiasts, music lovers, and families.
950 Rockford Road Southwest, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, United States
9) Prairie Park Fishery
The Prairie Park Fishery, established in the 1960s, began as a small community fishing pond in the heart of Prairie Park.
Over the years, it has evolved into a thriving fishery, attracting anglers of all ages. The fishery underwent expansions and improvements, including new fishing docks, picnic areas, and walking trails.
It has become a beloved recreational spot, offering opportunities for fishing, strolls, and connecting with nature.
If you’re an angler, you can find many fun things to do in Cedar Rapids Prairie Park. Anglers can take advantage of well-maintained fishing docks, providing easy access to the stocked ponds teeming with various fish species.
Picnic areas are available for families and friends to enjoy outdoor meals amidst the serene surroundings. The fishery boasts scenic walking trails, immersing visitors in nature while enjoying strolls.
Birdwatching enthusiasts can spot a variety of avian species in the area. Additionally, the fishery occasionally hosts educational programs and events, providing opportunities for learning and community engagement.
2125 Otis Road Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403, United States
10) Speedeezz Indoor Karting
Speedeezz Indoor Karting is a premier go-kart racing facility that has become a favorite destination for racing enthusiasts. It offers thrilling indoor karting experiences and adventurous things to do in Cedar Rapids for all ages.
The facility boasts a state-of-the-art track, high-performance electric karts, and a professional staff, ensuring a safe and exhilarating racing experience.
Speedeezz has hosted numerous competitive events, attracting casual racers and seasoned professionals. With a commitment to quality and excitement, Speedeezz Indoor Karting remains a prominent name in indoor go-kart racing.
Their unique track features thrilling twists and turns, providing an adrenaline-pumping ride. The high-performance electric karts ensure a fast and exhilarating race for all participants.
The facility also provides safety gear and professional staff to ensure a safe and enjoyable time.
In addition to karting, Speedeezz may offer other entertainment options such as arcade games, billiards, and a lounge area for socializing.
Whether you’re a casual racer or a competitive enthusiast, Speedeezz Indoor Karting guarantees an action-packed day of fun and excitement.
1120 33rd Avenue Southwest D, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, United States
11) Escapology Escape Rooms Cedar Rapids
Escapology Escape Rooms in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is a popular destination for thrill-seekers and puzzle enthusiasts. Escapology offers various immersive and challenging escape room experiences and captures the hearts of locals and tourists.
With meticulously designed rooms, intriguing storylines, and mind-bending puzzles, participants are transported to exciting worlds where they can solve mysteries, find clues, and beat the clock to escape.
Escapology in Cedar Rapids remains a destination for those seeking thrilling and immersive entertainment.
Escapology Escape Rooms in Cedar Rapids offers varieties of unforgettable fun experiences and things to do in Cedar Rapids. Their well-designed escape rooms provide immersive environments with challenging puzzles and captivating storylines.
The facility has state-of-the-art technology and themed decorations that enhance the overall atmosphere. Additionally, Escapology provides friendly and knowledgeable staff ready to guide participants throughout their adventure.
After completing the escape rooms, visitors can relax in comfortable lounge areas, enjoy refreshments at the on-site café, or browse a selection of merchandise.
With its combination of entertainment, hospitality, and unique experiences, Escapology Escape Rooms in Cedar Rapids offers fun-filled adventures for all.
3998 Westdale Parkway Southwest Suite 400, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, United States
12) National Motorcycle Museum
The National Motorcycle Museum is a renowned institution dedicated to preserving the rich history of motorcycles.
Established in 1984, the museum houses over 1,000 motorcycles, ranging from vintage classics to modern marvels.
It showcases iconic models, racing legends, and significant milestones in motorcycle engineering. The museum attracts enthusiasts and visitors worldwide, providing a comprehensive overview of the fascinating evolution of motorcycles over the years.
However, it features spacious exhibition halls, interactive displays, and informative signage for an immersive learning journey.
The museum also boasts a café and restaurant, providing a variety of refreshments and meals. There is a well-stocked gift shop for shopping enthusiasts offering motorcycle-themed merchandise and souvenirs.
For entertainment, the museum hosts special events, guest speakers, and temporary exhibitions throughout the year.
Visitors can also enjoy guided tours, participate in workshops, or simply admire the impressive collection of motorcycles. The museum ensures a memorable and enjoyable visit for enthusiasts and curious visitors alike.
102 Chamber Drive, Anamosa, IA 52205, United States
13) Black Sheep Social Club
The Black Sheep Social Club emerged in the 1980s as a rebellious countercultural movement in urban centers. Embracing alternative lifestyles, they challenged societal norms and promoted individualism, creativity, and non-conformity.
Their gatherings were known for their eclectic art, music, and activism mix. Their distinctive fashion choices and provocative expressions symbolized resistance against mainstream culture.
While their influence weaved in the following decades, their legacy endures the power of subcultures in shaping social discourse and challenging the status quo.
This place is ideal for socializing things to do in Cedar Rapids. You can indulge in the vibrant atmosphere of the art gallery, featuring thought-provoking exhibitions and installations.
The music venue hosts live performances by emerging artists across various genres, ensuring an unforgettable night out.
Relax in the cozy lounge area, perfect for engaging conversations and connecting with like-minded individuals. Engage in stimulating workshops and discussions on diverse topics, fostering intellectual growth and dialogue.
Additionally, you can participate in interactive events, such as poetry slams, open mic nights, and film screenings, providing a platform for creative expression and community engagement.
600 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
14) Palisades-Kepler State Park
Palisades-Kepler State Park was established in the 1920s; the park was originally named Palisades Park, showcasing its stunning limestone cliffs along the Cedar River.
In the 1970s, it merged with the neighboring Kepler State Park, expanding its recreational offerings.
Today, visitors can enjoy various outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, fishing, and picnicking while immersing themselves in the natural beauty and historical significance of Palisades-Kepler State Park.
The park features well-maintained campgrounds with electrical hookups and modern restroom facilities. Picnic areas with tables and grills are available for outdoor dining, while a shelter is ideal for group gatherings.
Nature enthusiasts can explore the park’s extensive hiking trails, providing opportunities to witness breathtaking views of the limestone bluffs and the Cedar River.
Fishing enthusiasts can try their luck in the river, known for its abundance of catfish, bass, and panfish.
Overall, Palisades-Kepler State Park offers a serene natural environment with activities and many other fun things to do in Cedar Rapids, catering to camping, picnicking, hiking, and fishing.
700 Kepler Dr, Mt Vernon, IA 52314, United States
15) CZECH Village & New Bohemia
The Czech Village and New Bohemia, located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, have a rich history rooted in Czech heritage. The area was founded by Czech immigrants in the late 19th century and thrived as a vibrant cultural and economic hub.
It was known for its traditional Czech businesses, festivals, and strong community ties. Over the years, the district faced challenges like urban renewal, but its unique character persevered.
Czech Village and New Bohemia celebrate their Czech roots today while embracing various businesses, arts, and events.
The district has numerous restaurants, cafes, and bars where you can savor delicious Czech cuisine and drinks. You can explore unique shops and boutiques that showcase local crafts, artwork, and vintage items.
The National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library is a must-visit, providing insights into Czech and Slovak history and culture.
While having a list of fun things to do in Cedar Rapids, dont forget to enjoy live music performances, art exhibitions, and theater shows at venues like CSPS Hall and the NewBo City Market.
You can also participate in festivals, farmers’ markets, and community events that showcase the vibrant spirit of the neighborhood for an amazing day out.
1400 Inspiration Place Southwest, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, United States
16) Old Macdonald’s Farm
Old MacDonald’s Farm in Cedar Rapids has been a beloved attraction since its establishment in the early 1970s.
This family-friendly farm offers a range of activities, including petting zoos, hayrides, and seasonal events.
Generations of visitors have enjoyed interacting with farm animals, exploring the barns, and experiencing agricultural life firsthand.
With its picturesque setting and educational programs, Old MacDonald’s Farm remains a cherished destination for residents and tourists, providing a memorable and enriching experience for all ages.
Old MacDonald’s Farm in Cedar Rapids offers a variety of facilities, fun things to do in Cedar Rapids and amenities for visitors to enjoy. The farm features a petting zoo where children and adults interact with friendly animals such as goats, sheep, pigs, and rabbits.
Visitors can also participate in pony rides, hayrides, and gemstone mining.
The farm has picnic areas and playgrounds, making it ideal for family outings and gatherings.
Old MacDonald’s Farm also hosts seasonal events like pumpkin patches and Christmas tree farms, providing festive experiences for visitors throughout the year. It’s a place where fun, education, and outdoor enjoyment come together delightfully.
2700 Bever Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403, USA
17) The African American Museum
The African American Museum is a cultural institution dedicated to preserving and showcasing African Americans’ history, art, and contributions.
It stands as a symbol of resilience, struggle, and triumph. Through its exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays, the museum explores the journey of African Americans from slavery to the civil rights movement and beyond.
It is a powerful educational resource, fostering understanding, empathy, and dialogue about the African American experience and its profound impact on American society.
Inside, you’ll find comfortable seating areas, restrooms, and dining options to grab a bite. The museum also features interactive exhibits, audio tours, and multimedia presentations that engage and educate visitors of all ages with exciting things to do in Cedar Rapids.
Additionally, there are gift shops where you can purchase books, artwork, and souvenirs that celebrate African American culture.
The museum also hosts special events, including lectures, performances, and film screenings, providing opportunities for further enrichment.
Whether exploring historical exhibits, participating in educational programs, or simply immersing oneself in the rich tapestry of African American history, there’s plenty to enjoy at this captivating museum.
55 12th Avenue Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
18) Cedar River Trails
Originally used by Native American tribes for fishing and trade, the trails later played a significant role in the logging industry during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
The creation of the Cedar River Watershed led to the development of recreational trails, providing opportunities for hiking, biking, and nature appreciation.
Today, the Cedar River Trails are a vital link in the regional trail network, connecting communities and offering a scenic outdoor experience and things to do in Cedar Rapids.
You’ll find well-maintained pathways, picnic areas, and restrooms along the trails, providing convenience and comfort.
The trails pass through beautiful natural landscapes, offering opportunities for bird-watching, wildlife spotting, and photography.
Fishing enthusiasts can try their luck in the Cedar River, known for its salmon and trout populations. The trails are also popular among hikers, joggers, and cyclists, with designated paths and stunning river views.
For more excitement, the trails connect to nearby parks, including playgrounds and sports fields, making it an ideal destination for families and outdoor enthusiasts seeking recreation and relaxation.
Cedar River Trail, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402, United States
19) Cobble Hill
The Dutch settled Cobble Hill in the 17th century evolving into a thriving neighborhood. It played a significant role in the American Revolutionary War, with the Battle of Long Island fought nearby.
It experienced growth, decline, and revitalization throughout the years. Today, Cobble Hill is known for its historic brownstone buildings, charming streets, vibrant community, and diverse cultural scenes.
Cobble Hill offers residents and visitors a range of facilities, amenities, and fun things to do in Cedar Rapids. The neighborhood has numerous parks and playgrounds, providing green spaces for relaxation and recreation.
It boasts a vibrant food scene, with various cafes, restaurants, and specialty shops to explore.
Cobble Hill also features a thriving arts and culture scene, with galleries, theaters, and music venues.
The neighborhood offers excellent shopping opportunities, with boutique stores and charming local shops. This place is well-connected to neighboring areas, allowing easy access to nearby attractions, museums, and entertainment venues.
219 2nd St SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401, United States
Best Hotels To Stay In Cedar Rapids
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, offers various hotels catering to different preferences and budgets. Here are some of the top-rated hotels in Cedar Rapids:
- The Hotel at Kirkwood Center
- Residence Inn Cedar Rapids South
- DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cedar Rapids Convention Complex
- Homewood Suites by Hilton Cedar Rapids-North
- Marriott Cedar Rapids
- Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Cedar Rapids Airport, IA
These are just a few of the top hotels in Cedar Rapids. When choosing a hotel, consider location, amenities, and your preferences to find the one that best suits your needs.