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Travel the USA (Visit Iowa)

It is the unique goal of many travel adventurers to visit all 50 states in America. To boost this objective, each week we shall explore one state. Alphabetically, the 15th to visit is none other than Iowa, abbreviated IA. Regardless of the order in which you visit them, Iowa, The Hawkeye State, is not to be missed.

 
 
 
 

Visit state # 15- IOWA

State MottoOur Liberties We Prize and Our Rights We Will Maintain
State FlowerWild Rose
State BirdEastern Goldfinch
State GemstoneQuartz (unofficial status)
State CapitalDes Moines  
Famous FoodsPrairie Breeze, Sour Cream Raisin Pie, Snickers Salad, Quad City Style Pizza, Pork Tenderloin Sandwich, Loose Meat Sandwich, Corn on the Cob, Red Delicious Apples, Maytag Blue Cheese & more.

Iowa, a midwestern U.S. State, is known for its rich agricultural past and present and its modern-day importance in the service industry. The state is bordered by the Mississippi River to the east, the Missouri River, and the Big Sioux River to the west. Iowa is the only state whose eastern and western borders are created entirely by rivers. This landlocked state is bordered by six other states, including Wisconsin to the northeast, Illinois to the east and southeast, Missouri to the south, Nebraska to the west, South Dakota to the northwest, and Minnesota to the north. Iowa was settled in 1833 by pioneers in search of new frontiers following the Louisiana Purchase. The state was admitted to the union in 1846 as the 29th state. Iowa began a campaign for settlers and investors to attract them to fertile farmlands “with fine citizens, a free and open society, and a good government,” per Nationsonline.org.

Many people consider the Iowa State Capitol one of the most notable places to visit. The building showcases a large 23-karat golden dome visible from afar. The magnificent building was constructed between 1871 and 1886 and is one of the nation’s finest examples of 19th-century architecture. A belvedere on top of the large dome prominently features a golden lantern. The main dome is surrounded by four smaller yet equally attractive domes that feature vertical lines of intermittent gold. The impressive building stands as a symbol of representative government for the state. Free self-guided and formal tours of the capitol building are available.

Another top-rated attraction is the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium. Here, the history of the river comes alive. Folks can stroll the 14-acre campus along the banks of the Mississippi River. The river museum covers culture and history and showcases fascinating exhibits. There is also a science center portion and an aquarium for an unforgettable and well-rounded educational experience. This unique place to visit is ideal for families who enjoy science, nature, and history. Those who care about animals and artifacts will be especially thrilled to visit.

Iowa is a state rich in parks and recreational areas. Maquoketa Caves State Park is not to be missed. Featuring more caves than any state park, this outdoor attraction is great for hikers and those with a spirit for exploration. A six-mile trail system winds through geologic formations and forests rich in beauty. The trail system links the caves and scenic overlooks and includes the “Natural Bridge” that is 50-feet above Raccoon Creek and the 17-ton “Balanced Rock.” Don’t pass up the opportunity to learn about the geology of cave formations and park history at the new interpretive center. Not into hiking? Bring a picnic basket and enjoy lunch in one of the designated shelters.

You can’t talk about Iowa without mentioning the Field of Dreams, a baseball field and pop-culture tourist attraction originally built for the 1989 movie of the same name. This ballpark sits in Dubuque County, Iowa, near Dyersville, and rests near a “century-old farm.” The scenery is breathtaking, leading to the tagline “Is this Heaven? No, it’s Iowa.” Fans can spend the night in the remodeled three-bedroom farmhouse and enjoy the place that the Kinsella family called home in the fantasy classic. Or come watch MLB at the field on August 11, where the Cubs and Reds will play.

Iowa is a memorable place to visit, as evident by the abundance of educational and fun things to do. For a real taste of the state, head to the Iowa State Fair held annually for an 11-day period in August in the Capitol city of Des Moines. The historic fair began in 1854 and is by far the largest event in Iowa. It also highlights the agricultural and industrial history that helped shape this fabulous state.

Up next: Kansas


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