2930 Waterfront Parkway,
Indianapolis, IN 46214
Phone: (317) 299-8400
Fax: (317) 299-9257
Arts & Museums
If you are a fan of auto racing, be sure to visit the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum. For a couple bucks, they will give you a bus ride around the most hallowed racetrack in the world; home of the Indy 500. The museum itself is stocked with generation after generation of retired Indy cars. Lots of other memorabilia is on display, and the gift shop is full of exciting checkered-flag-emblazoned gear for the whole family.
Take a stroll and visit with farm animals, exotic birds, and enjoy the picnic area.
The Indiana Medical History Museum is an interesting place for fans of medical science to trace its development through the ages. It is a non-profit museum that has a huge collection of historical artifacts, including human skeletons, anatomical dissections, laboratory instruments and recreated laboratory environments. There is a doctor's room too, which recreates a doctor's office during World War II. Walk through the gardens amid the medicinal plants. Tours are organized on Wednesdays after prior appointment and between Thursday and Saturday starting at 10 AM.
After a visit to the Indianapolis Museum of Art, explore the Oldfields – Lilly House & Gardens. Nestled on the grounds of the museum, this 26-acre (10.5 hectare) verdant landscape features manicured lawns, exotic flora, sculptures, fountains and garden ornaments. The mansion, former home of late business luminary and philanthropist J.K. Lilly Jr., boasts 22 rooms and illustrates American Country Place Era architecture. Take an audio tour of the house museum for a glimpse of 1930s culture.
The Indianapolis Museum of Art was established in the year 1883 and has since grown to accommodate a staggering 50,000 pieces of art. Its permanent collection is on par with those of some of the world's most renowned art institutions. The museum itself underwent renovations that increased its gallery space and improved both access and amenities. Longtime local boy Wolfgang Puck oversees the on-site café, which serves contemporary cuisine with a breathtaking view of the IMA grounds.
Herron is a great place for art lovers to get a taste of up and coming trends in the art world. A couple of galleries here are open to the public, and they showcase nothing but fresh work by students, faculty and others. Additionally, if you time your visit right, you might find some bargains at periodic art sales. See website for enrollment info and more.
Commemorating the athletic achievements of college athletes, the NCAA Hall of Champions features a variety of interactive exhibits, including displays of all 23 NCAA sports, a media room, a retro basketball gym from the 1930s, and much more. By reserving ahead of time, you can organize a guided tour for your children's class, which includes a catered lunch. Rental space for events is also available.
Want to see your child blossom into the Einstein of the future? Bring them to The Children's Museum of Indianapolis and see their talents grow. Visit rare exhibits, educational displays, and child-centric festivities and events at this unique museum. With an aim to foster better cognitive abilities and out-of-the-box thinking among young ones, this museum has laid out an elaborate array of exhibits for children to explore. Children will love the variety of exhibits held here: Barbie displays, ghost hotels, space planetariums, Egyptian lifestyle, exhibits on health, science and technology among other things. When hunger pangs strike, rush to the Food Court and grab a quick bite to eat. Visit the museum store and buy exotic memorabilia to take home with you. You can also host birthday parties and kids' events at this venue.
The Indiana State Museum is located along the canal in White River State Park. The museum has three floors of galleries that tell the story of the great state of Indiana. Visitors are inspired to learn more about the state (and its glittering capital city) by exploring its art, science and culture. Some galleries on the top floor are often devoted to much sought-after traveling exhibitions as well. The building itself is a sight to behold, especially after noting that it is constructed exclusively of Hoosier materials: limestone, steel, brick, sandstone and glass. It is truly a work of art. On site is a two-story gift shop and some casual dining options.
The globe trotting and knowledge seeking tourist will not want to miss this splendid museum. One of the few museums that strives to preserve all of the arts of the American West, it houses a large collection of both Western and Native American art. This makes it a great place to learn about indigenous people in the context of American history. The museum arranges events and programs to encourage community in the city. Private parties like weddings and business conferences can also be held within its beautiful environs. For further information on current exhibitions, log on to their website.
The Indiana Historical Center is offering a unique way to explore the history of Indiana. There are the "You Are There" exhibits, where actors play historical figures that you can interact with to learn about a specific period. There's the "Destination Indiana" area, where innovative touch screens let you explore different areas of the state over time. There's even a whole room dedicated to Cole Porter, with an actor belting out some of his classics. With all of these interactive displays, a trip to the Historical Center is like a trip back in time.
Go rock climbing, ride a turn-of-the-century carousel, or check out outerspace at the SpaceQuest Planetarium. The Children's Museum of Indianapolis is one of the largest children's museum in the world. The 356,000-square-foot facility houses 10 major galleries that explore the physical and natural sciences, history, world cultures and the arts. Whenever possible, exhibits are "hands-on" or participatory in nature. The museum presents thousands of programs and activities each year.