Cedar Rapids

23 Best & Fun Things to Do in Cedar Rapids (IA)

Looking for the best and most enjoyable things to do in Cedar Rapids, Iowa?


Cedar Rapids, established in 1919, is the second-largest city in Iowa and the county seat of Linn County in east-central Iowa. 

The town is located on the banks of the Cedar River, between Marion (northeast) and Hiawatha (north), about 25 miles northwest of Iowa City.

Cedar Rapids’ east bank, settled in the late 1830s and surveyed in 1841, was named Rapids City after the rapids, which provided plentiful waterpower.

Cedar Rapids was renamed after it was incorporated as a town in 1849, and again after the railroads arrived in 1859. The following are the 23 Cedar Rapids attractions that you will enjoy visiting.

Are you thinking about visiting Cedar Rapids? Here are the most important spots and activities to remember while touring the city.

23 Interesting and Fun Things to Do in Cedar Rapids

1. National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library

The National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library opened in July 2012 with a world-class exhibition of “Alphonse Mucha: An Inspiration of Art Nouveau,” featuring 230 pieces from London and Prague.

The National Czech and Slovak Museum is a 50,000-square-foot building that houses two galleries with exhibitions on Czech and Slovak art, culture, and history. The museum also houses a two-room 1880s Czech immigrant house that was home to five generations.

In the museum, you can find a folk dress, embellished leather goods, carved wooden implements, folk jewelry, metal works, and many other items.

The National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library are open for group tours of all ages. Exploring the museum is one of the most enjoyable things to do in Cedar Rapids; they also offer special packages and discounts for groups of ten or more.

Address: 1400 Inspiration Pl SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404-5918

2. Brucemore

Brucemore is a living landmark that chronicles Cedar Rapids’ history. Brucemore is a 26-acre park-like estate with grounds, history, and gardens, as well as a 21-room mansion.

Nature’s changing beauty captivates visitors to Brucemore each season, as it offers new and exciting experiences. If you’re looking for something to do in Cedar Rapids, the Brucemore is one of the best places to go.

You enjoy festivals, concerts, theater, taking a stroll in the garden with your loved ones, holiday celebrations, and tours. This brings life to the site and honors the community’s heritage.

There are many histories to discover and learn, as well as other one-of-a-kind artworks to be found in Brucemore.

Address: 2160 Linden Dr. SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403-1748

3. Czech Village / New Bohemia District

The district is made up of the neighborhoods of Czech Village and New Bohemia. The district is a vibrant gathering place for friends and family to enjoy quality entertainment, fun bars, award-winning restaurants, world-class museums, and a one-of-a-kind shopping experience.

Czech Village and New Bohemia District are home to a variety of business ventures. Tourists, local visitors, students, and organizations working on employee retention and recruitment are also welcome in the district.

They also host the state and national Main Street Program, where you can learn about the city’s art and history.

Czech Village and New Bohemia, located in the heart of Cedar Rapids, are some of the fun places to visit in Cedar Rapids, as they have almost everything you will enjoy and good food you’ll love to taste.

Address:10th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401

4. NewBo City Market

The NewBo City Market is a community-based economic development organization that has evolved into an adorned cultural and community gathering space with music, learning, art, and a variety of activities.

The market is a vibrant public space that promotes health, well-being, and happiness in the heart of Cedar Rapids’ New Bohemia District, close to downtown.

Other free and family-friendly events at NewBo City Market include evening concerts by local musicians and wellness activities.

NewBo City Market is a public community hub of activity that aims to educate, inspire, and entertain. There are many enjoyable things to do in Cedar Rapids, and one of them is to visit NewBo City Market.

Address: 1100 3rd St SE Located in the Heart of the Czech Village/New Bohemia District, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-2306

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5. Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, established in 1895, is a vibrant and vibrant art museum in Cedar Rapids for both visitors and society.

The museum has something for everyone, with over 2,000 years of art on display in the heart of downtown Cedar Rapids.

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art is dedicated to thrilling, educating, and engaging visitors through the arts. 

The outstanding art inspires the museum of art East gathered at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893, which led to the establishment of the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art in 1895.

Address: 410 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-1606

6. Paramount Theater

The Paramount Theatre, established in the 1920s, is one of the 300 remaining movie palaces in the United States. It organizes yearly concerts, charity events, business events, dance recitals, and a Broadway Series.

The Orchestra Iowa, the region’s premier symphony orchestra, performs at the Theatre. 

The mission of the Mount Theatre is to maximize the presentation of successful events in client facilities for the cultural, recreational, economic, and educational benefit of the communities they serve.

The main management of the Paramount Theatre is centered on events, which are the lifeblood of a successful public assembly facility, and the philosophy is central to its goal.

The Capitol Theatre opened on September 1, 1928, and featured comedians, dancers, acrobats, and singers, as well as an audience sing-along, the Wurlitzer organ, and a film.

Address: 123 3rd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-1403

7. Indian Creek Nature Center

Indian Creek Nature Center, located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is the state’s first and only private, non-profit nature center, with over 500 acres of woodland, wetlands, and prairie, as well as more than 5 miles of trails.

The Nature Center is housed in the Amazing Space building, which is one of only 31 Living Building Challenge Petal Certified buildings worldwide and in Iowa, making it one of the most sustainable structures on the planet.

Indian Creek Nature Center is one of the Cedar Rapids attractions worth visiting because it is dedicated to creating a more sustainable future through environmental education and interaction with nature.

The majority of the trails have informational plaques; you can also take self-guided Nature walks on the trails. There is also wildlife, including amphibians, mammals, reptiles, and migratory birds.

Address: 5300 Otis Rd SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

8. Grant Wood Studio

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art owns and manages the Grant Wood Studio, which houses the world’s largest collection of Wood’s work. The Grant Wood Studio is three blocks away from the museum.

Grant Wood Studio contains incredible paintings and artworks that you will enjoy viewing as well as learning about other historical and exciting aspects of the studio. Wood’s passion for architecture and design is reflected in the studios.

From 1924 to 1935, Grant Wood lived and worked in the city, where he created many famous paintings, including the painting of the American Gothic.

Other paintings in the studio include Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride, Daughters of the Revolution, Woman with Plants, Dinner for Threshers, and others.

Address: 810 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403-2402

9. Cedar River

The Cedar River is a 338-mile-long river in Iowa and Minnesota that flows to the Mississippi River as a tributary of the Iowa River.

The Meskwaki called the Cedar River the Red Cedar River at first, and it later got its name from the red cedar trees that grew there.

If you enjoy nature, the Cedar River is one of the best places to visit in Cedar Rapids.

The Cedar River flows through Austin, Minnesota, Charles City, Cedar Falls, Waterloo, and Cedar Rapids, Iowa, with the Little Cedar and Shell Rock rivers serving as its primary tributaries. 

Explore the Cedar River to learn interesting facts about the area, the river, and the sections/paths it follows.

10. African American Museum of Iowa

The African-American Museum of Iowa is a statewide museum dedicated to preserving, exhibiting, and teaching the history of African Americans in Iowa.

The African American Museum is Iowa’s most comprehensive educational resource on the subject, educating over 30,000 people each year through museum tours, traveling exhibits, research services, youth and adult education programs, and community and fundraising events.

The African American Museum is one of the Cedar Rapids attractions that you will enjoy visiting because it houses unique collections and exhibits that trace Iowa’s African American history from its beginnings to the present.

Through engagement, conversation, and reflection, the African American Museum hopes to create a community that comes together to foster a greater appreciation and understanding of Iowa’s history and culture.

Address: 55 12th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-2202

11. Bever Park

The Cedar Rapids Parks and Recreation Department manages and operates Old McDonald’s Farm in Bever Park. From May to October, a farm exhibit is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. for scheduled tours and cleaning.

The Old McDonald’s Farm is open to the public. Lambs, piglets, rabbits, chickens, ducks, calves, goats, and other animals can be found on the farm. Dogs are permitted in the park but must be kept on a leash.

Bring your kids to Beaver Pak because they will enjoy petting the animals and running around in the park. You can have fun walking around the animal enclosure and interacting with the animals.

You will also enjoy swimming in the pool at Bever Park, no doubt a visit to this park is with the try 

Address: 2700 Bever Park Trail, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

12. Clock House Brewing

The Clock House Brewing Company is located in the heart of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Clock House Brewing was founded on the passion for beer of three like-minded beer enthusiasts who want to see the craft beer industry thrive. With a diverse range of brews, the brewery strives to please every palate.

Clock House Brewing has a separate brew-pub space with seating for 60 people and serves house-made brews. The brewery offers a small but tasty menu prepared by the talented Black Sheep kitchen; you will undoubtedly enjoy the delectable food served there.

You’ll also find To-go growlers and quality Clock House Brewing merchandise as they become available.

Address: 600 1st St SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-2016

13. Cedar Rapids Public Library

Cedar Rapids Public Library links to information, experiences, and services that improve their quality of life, enabling the community to enjoy, learn and thrive.

One of the best things to do in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for resources, information, and entertainment is to visit the Cedar Rapids Public Library. They serve as a beacon of literacy for those seeking comprehension and knowledge.

The Cedar Rapids Public Library has two locations: the Downtown Library, located at 450 5th Avenue SE, and the Ladd Library, located at 3750 Williams Blvd SW.

Many people, both visitors, and residents came to see the new library, meeting rooms, and Whipple Auditorium.

Address; 450 5th Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-1904

14. Masonic Library and Museum

The Masonic Library and Museum is widely regarded as one of the best places in the world to conduct Masonic research.

The Masonic Library and Museum house over 250 000 volumes, thousands of which are rare books for dedicated researchers, as well as circulating collections for the casual reader.

The Masonic Library and Museum also collects materials on non-Masonic topics such as government, education, history, social history, religion, and so on.

Masonic decorative arts, artifacts, medallions, regalia, equipment, and jewels from around the world are housed in the library museum.

Address: 813 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-5001

15. Ushers Ferry Historic Village

From June to August, the Ushers Ferry Historic Village is open for tours Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Ushers Ferry Historic Village provides an excellent venue for family-friendly activities, events, and programs that build a society from the historical point of view of a small Iowa town at the turn of the twentieth century.

Ushers Ferry Historic Village is located on a ten-acre site in Seminole Valley Park and features 20 historic buildings that depict life in a small Iowa town between 1890 and 1910.

Throughout the year, the Village hosts special events, school tours, and educational programs; it is also available for weddings and private or corporate party rentals.

Address: 5925 Seminole Valley Trl NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52411-7738

16. Prairie Park Fishery 

Prairie Park Fishery provides guests with opportunities for fishing, ice fishing, picnicking, paddle sports, scuba diving, and geocaching.

Prairie Park Fishery is ADA accessible, and it also has a 1.7-mile complex surface trail loop around the 65-acre lake that offers excellent views for hikers, walkers, and bicyclists.

You can go to the park with your friends or family to enjoy taking a stroll around the lake in the garden and watching the birds.

Prairie Park Fishery is a great place to visit in Cedar Rapids because it offers a variety of exciting activities; the park is open year-round, every day from 6 a.m. to sundown.

Address: 2125 Otis Rd SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403-4734

17. Veterans Memorial Stadium

Cedar Rapids, Iowa’s The Stadium is a minor league baseball stadium. The Cedar Rapids Kernels of the High-A Central play their home games at Memorial Stadium.

Veterans Memorial Stadium, which was named to honor veterans from all wars, is owned by the city. The Veterans Memorial Commission operates and manages the Stadium, which is adjacent to the Linn County All Veterans Memorial.

Veterans Memorial Stadium has a total seating capacity of 5,300 people. There are also 12 luxury suites and several sections reserved for group outings, such as a pavilion, and a pre-game picnic area.

You could come to this stadium to watch a game with your friends. 

Address: 950 Rockford Rd SW Behind Kingston Stadium, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404-1859

18. Sac & Fox Trail

Hiking the Sac and Fox Trail is one of the best things to do in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The Sac and Fox Trail is Iowa’s first National Recreation Trail, offering 7.2 miles of shady, beautiful recreation along Indian Creek and the Cedar River on the outskirts of Cedar Rapids.

The Sac and Fox Trail has mostly crushed limestone, and the terrain is mostly level, making it a popular route for cyclists and equestrians, as well as cross-country skiers in the winter.

Visitors to the trail may also want to stop by the adjacent Indian Creek Nature Center, which hosts regular activities and has information about the area, a gift shop, and exhibits.

Explore the Sac and Fox Trail with your friends or family to have a good time.

Address: Mt Vernon Rd SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.

19. The History Center

The History Center is committed to being an excellent community resource that preserves and shares the stories of the community’s past while also connecting people of all ages to Linn County’s present and future.

The History Center makes the community’s history accessible to everyone, connecting the past to the present and future of Linn County. 

The Douglas Mansion on 2nd Avenue was restored and renovated in preparation for the History Center’s move there in the fall of 2018.

The Linn County Historical Museum Association was founded in 1969 by several residents who were interested in permanently preserving Linn County’s history; this led to the establishment of the History Center to preserve the celebration of its stories. 

Address: 800 2nd Ave SE Suite 103, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403

20. Cedar Rapids Farmers Market

The Cedar Rapids Downtown Farmers Market has grown to be one of the Midwest’s largest open-air markets, with a year-round, complete, and safe outdoor season. Vendors can apply to sell their products.

The Downtown Farmers’ Market is proud to feature vendors selling goods and produce grown and created in Iowa by each vendor.

From June to September, every first and third Saturday, you’ll find fresh produce, unique gifts, and delectable prepared foods and beverages, all while supporting local Iowa businesses.

Traditional market products such as meats and cheeses, as well as unique artisan gifts, flowers, baked goods, and special food items, can be found at the Downtown Market.

21. Mount Trashmore

Mount Trashmore is a former landfill with 6 million tons of garbage that has been converted into a recreational area. Mount Trashmore may appear to be a park with park features, but it is a landfill.

If you enjoy mountain biking, bring your bike along for a fantastic ride on the nice gravity-fed-flow trail.

Mount Trashmore is one of the best places in Cedar Rapids to visit because it has something for everyone.

Mount Trashmore strives to provide access to incredible views of the area while prioritizing safety.

 Mount Trashmore is also an excellent place to spend a pleasant day with your loved ones.

Address: 2250 A St SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404-3003

22. U.S. Cellular Center

The United States Cellular Center is a great place to go with your family or friends to see live events, performances, displays, and other unique activities.

You will not want to miss CREventsLive; it is the ideal destination for live entertainment, events, theater, and Ava concerts in Eastern Iowa; VenuWorks manages the center.

In the center, you will meet awesome and nice people, the restrooms are clean, the seats are comfy, and the staff is helpful and friendly.

Consider adding it to your bucket list of fun things to do in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Address: 370 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-1108

23. Grant Wood Window in Veterans Memorial Auditorium 

Veterans Memorial Auditorium is a memorial with several incredible civil war items, including Grant Wood’s stained glass memorial window.

The window in the auditorium, completed in 1929, is a 16-foot “Lady of Mourning” with life-size soldiers from the Revolutionary War to WWI. 

Grant Wood designed the window that catapulted him to national prominence before launching American Gothic.

The memorial window is 24 feet tall and 20 feet wide, and it features a central female figure lady representing the Republic, holding a palm branch of peace and a laurel wreath of victory.

Also, it has six stoic soldiers at the base representing the War of 1812 and other wars that followed.

Visit here to learn more about their history. 

Address: 50 2nd Avenue Brg, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401-1225

Conclusion

So, Are you prepared to go on your next vacation? Are you still looking for the ideal location to spend a fun and memorable holiday with your friends or family?

No doubt we’ve seen that Cedar Rapids, a beautiful city, has a spectacular place for you and your loved ones.

There is a lot to see ranging from Beautiful recreational parks, museums, historical sites, diners, galleries and exhibits, artworks, farmers’ markets, stores that sell jewelry and accessories, delicious foods, outdoor games, and so much more attractions that you can find in the city.

Now, get ready, make the preparation and pack your bags as you get ready to explore Cedar Rapids!

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