You and your family do not have to go to the Caribbean or California, the Rockies or Disney World to have a fun-filled vacation complete with sports, theme parks, history and natural beauty. The Midwest offers all of this, and it's no more than half-way across the country for anyone--right?
The Bread Basket of America is good, solid land. Much of this area was prairie and supported herds of buffalo until the last century. Now farms, industry, towns and recreation areas fill the landscape.
Iowa is one of those unassuming places, which quietly goes about its business providing for everyone else and taking its pleasure in simple things. One of the peoples who contributed to this lifestyle is the Amana community. These communities now open their doors to those who are curious or wish to reconnect with their roots. Take the time to stop and see what life is like without call-waiting, in-line skates and 50 cable channels.
Settled fairly late and still predominantly agricultural, Iowa provides watersports on its various rivers and hiking and camping in its various parks. Easy to get to from such metropolitan areas as Chicago and St. Louis, Iowa can be the ideal getaway without having to go too far. Fishermen especially enjoy the many waterways available, while shoppers are quite happy with the many outlets and malls.
Nebraska was the path of many peoples as they wandered west. It bridges the Great Prairie from the Missouri River to the Rocky Mountain foothills. Early settlers found it ideal for planting, and it still is corn country. But this was also good hunting, fishing and trapping country. Nebraska seems pretty tame these days, but when Buffalo Bill Cody was growing up here, life was rough-and-tumble. Sod houses were standard and some still exist for you to examine. You develop a new respect for those who settled and worked the plains when you see the homes they built and lived in. So take your time and check out the history between fishing, hunting and shopping jaunts.
Iowa Tourism Office
200 East Grand Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50309
Department of Natural Resources
East Ninth Street at Grand Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50319
Nebraska Department of Economic Development
Division of Travel & Tourism
P.O. Box 94666
Lincoln, Nebraska 68509
Department of Game & Parks
P.O. Box 30370
Lincoln, Nebraska 68503
Bed and Breakfast Inns