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.