Midwest towns are often full of unexpected gems and Bloomington, Indiana is no different. From indoor to outdoor activities, this college town packs a punch. Here are 3 unique things to do in Bloomington, Indiana.
Located roughly an hour south of Indianapolis, Bloomington is first and foremost a college town. Home of the Indiana University, this Hoosier town has a vibrant community, a popping downtown area, and plenty to do, see and eat.
As the seventh-largest city in Indiana, Bloomington’s population sits just under 100,000 residents – many of which are students. Named for a legendary flower blooming season, the city is affectionately known as the “Gateway to Scenic Southern Indiana.” To the locals, however, it’s known as BTOWN, and BTOWN is a midwestern town you are going to fall in love with.
Unique Things to do in Bloomington, Indiana
A visit to Bloomington, IN starts and ends with the University, but there is so much in between and around the picturesque campus that a good time is sure to be had in this hipster hangout. While the ever-present homeless population detracts from some of its charms, the town is bursting at the seams with good times, good eats, and great activities. Here are 3 unique things to do in Bloomington, IN.
Start with a Breakfast Tour
As a college town, the community has embraced a diverse and wide-ranging set of cultures and this is evident in the Bloomington food scene which features quality food options across a diverse palette. Nowhere is this more apparent than the Bloomington food scene. As is captured eloquently in the below article, the Bloomington breakfast scene is banging. So. Many. Great. Options.
From Cuban bowls to Cajun-themed eggs, Vegan choices, Mexican-inspired eats, traditional breakfast options, creative takes on donuts and just about everything else, a breakfast tour is a great way to experience BTOWN.
Hike Leonard Springs Trail & Nature Park
Work off your breakfast with a high through Leonard Springs Nature Park, a medium-skill level hike that features two springs and two caves. This picturesque trail can help you get the blood flowing while experiencing some of the great midwestern outdoors.
The hike is just over a mile long and not overly difficult. See more information here.
Retail Therapy at Fountain Square Mall
End your day with some retail therapy at the Fountain Square Mall in downtown Bloomington. As one of the largest renovation projects in Bloomington’s history, the Fountain Square Mall area is the project that helped inspire a downtown comeback for Bloomington.
While the entire BTOWN downtown area is pretty incredible today, the Fountain Square Mall remains the anchor and is a mix of quaint shopping experiences, restaurants and even meeting spaces for events.
The original jail has been converted to retail space and sports a soft pink hue reminiscent of New Orleans culture. Inside the mall, visitors are treated to small boutiques, antique shops, quaint salons, and more. Definitely a unique experience and worthy of your time on any visit to Bloomington.
Additional things to do in Bloomington
For even more interesting things to do in Bloomington, IN, consider this list:
- Tour the Indiana University Campus
- Grab a brew and some grub at the Bloomington Brewery
- Check out a local comedian at the Comedy Attic
- Join the BTOWN Scavenger Hunt
- Catch a show at the Buskirk-Chumley Theatre
IG post of the famous campus clock:
Final thoughts on a Bloomington, IN trip
Bloomington is a town worth visiting. Its progressive atmosphere, hipster-scene, tasty eats, and friendly people make this town worthy of your time. Do yourself a favor and plan a trip to BTOWN.
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Be sure to check out all the great destinations in our “Unique Things to Do” Series and take a step out of the ordinary on your next trip.