Three of the Best Weekend Trips in Fort Wayne, Indiana
With a population of 267,633, Fort Wayne is a diverse city known for its gorgeous parks and family-friendly atmosphere. As the second-largest city in Indiana, Fort Wayne has plenty of “must-do” experiences, including restaurants, golf courses, museums, and more! With such a wide variety of attractions, it’s easy to plan a short “staycation” that will take you out of the house. If you’re looking for the best weekend getaways in Fort Wayne, here are our top three destinations.
The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo
Located on Sherman Boulevard, The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo is educational fun for the whole family! Split into five sections, The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo holds over 1,000 animals from all over the world. With over 40 acres to explore, there’s plenty of exciting exhibits to entertain and delight your children. Explore the grassy savannahs of the African continent or come face-to-face with the endangered orangutans. Experience the colorful Indonesian rainforest or discover the outback and learn about the life cycle of crocodiles! The zoo’s bright and friendly atmosphere earned it a spot on Trip Advisor’s Top Seven Zoos in the U.S. back in 2015 and a Traveler’s Choice Award in 2020.
Foellinger-Friemann Botanical Conservatory
Founded in 1983, The Foellinger-Friemann Botanical Conservatory is a world-renowned greenhouse with over 25,000 square feet of indoor gardens. While the conservatory provides a safe haven for endangered plant species, it also hosts four changing showcases each year. The conservatory hosts a wide array of plant life – their greenhouse holds over 1,200 plants (or 500 species) and 72 different types of cacti. Their most popular gardens include:
- The main Showcase Garden, with four seasonal exhibits.
- A Tropical Garden which features waterfalls, goldfish, and 13 types of palm trees.
- The Desert Garden, which contains the Saguaro cacti, fishhook barrel cactus, and prickly pear cactus.
- The Streetside Garden, where ornamental grasses and shrubs surround beautiful bronze statues.
Eagle Marsh Nature Preserve
For aspiring hikers, boaters, and environmentalists, Eagle Marsh Nature Preserve offers a wide variety of activities in the great outdoors. Founded in 2005 with help from the federal Wetlands Reserve Program, Eagle Marsh was the site of the largest wetlands restoration project in Indiana. Today, the preserve is over 831 acres, with fourteen miles of extensive hiking trails. If you’re looking for a less intensive way to spend the weekend, Eagle Marsh is also a great place for bird watching and photography. The preserve boasts over 245 types of birds and 45,000 native trees and shrubs.
Communing with nature is a proven method of stress relief. However, if hiking isn’t enough to relieve your everyday stressors, try massage therapy at Allen County Family & Sports Chiropractic! We offer outstanding chiropractic, nutritional, and rehabilitative programs that will reduce stress symptoms. Allen County Family & Sports Chiropractic also offers massage therapy services which, according to the Mayo Clinic, can reduce stress, minimize muscle tension, and alleviate the symptoms of chronic pain. Our office is fast, efficient, and provides same-day services.
Ten Reasons to Visit Fort Wayne
Fort Wayne, Indiana, is a small city set in the state’s northeastern corner. A simple two-hour drive from Indianapolis, and three hours from Chicago, the quaint metropolis is near three state lines and nearly equidistant from both Lake Michigan and Lake Erie. Fort Wayne makes for an excellent side trip or as a featured destination.
If you’re from Indiana, you’ve undoubtedly heard of Fort Wayne. But if you’re not a local Hoosier, then perhaps the city isn’t exactly on your radar. But as the state’s second-most populous city, it’s certainly worth a visit. Here are ten reasons to visit Fort Wayne.
Fort Wayne has a varied history with numerous cultural influences. It was first inhabited by Native Americans, specifically the Miami tribe. By the late 17th century, the French settled the area and created a relevant trading post. Eventually, it swapped hands with the British and became a permanent settlement of the United States after the Revolutionary War. You’ll enjoy numerous restaurants and architecture, illustrating this diverse cultural heritage.
Fort Wayne has an advantage when it comes to its location. Aside from being scenically set at the confluence of three rivers, it’s also a doable day trip to big cities like Chicago, Indianapolis, and Toledo. It’s also close to both Lake Michigan and Lake Erie.
Because the city is home to a series of rivers, it’s a haven of picturesque parks. Amongst the favorites are Lawton Park and Headwaters Park.
The Old Fort
Fort Wayne was an essential trading post throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, enabling commerce between Quebec and St. Louis. It also served as a military base during the 1800s. You can visit the Historic Old Fort, which is a reconstruction of the settlement’s famous 19th-century military fort, to watch reenactments of significant battles.
The Famous Bridge
Traversing the St Mary’s River is the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Bridge. Aside from leading residents and tourists to the city’s downtown, it also serves a memorial to the legendary civil rights leader. It resembles the famous Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, the scene of Dr. King’s famous march. During the day, you can admire the quotes that cover the bridge, and by night, the lights.
Did you know you can get a Coney-Island-inspired hot dog in Fort Wayne, Indiana? If you’re not a fan of hotdogs, you can always opt for the burgers, chili, or pie at Fort Wayne’s Famous Coney Island. Established in 1914, it has all the American diner charm you could want.
No matter what time of year you visit Fort Wayne, there’s bound to be a festival going on. Some honor one of the many communities that call the city home (Greekfest, Arab Fest, Germanfest, Latino Festival), and others feature local grub (St. Joe Pickle Fest, BBQ Ribfest, Brewed in the Fort). Regardless of the topic, there’s always an event to enjoy in Fort Wayne.
Fort Wayne sits at the confluence of three rivers: St. Marys River, Maumee River, and St. Joseph River. Because of this unique geographical setting, river sports are an essential part of life in the city. While in Fort Wayne, be sure to spend some time on the river, kayaking, standup paddleboarding, or canoeing.
Fort Wayne revels in an authentic four-season climate. With hot summers by the river, snowy winters, cherry-blossom springs, and colorful autumns, any time of the year is an excellent option for a trip to the city.
Fort Wayne is an all-American town. It celebrates its heritage and history and sits in the warm-hearted Midwest of the United States. The community is secure, and the people are friendly, always looking out for one another and their guests.