Dubuque, Iowa is a picturesque city located along the Mississippi River where Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin meet. It has won the distinction of being on Forbes’ list of “The Best Small Cities to Raise a Family.” Little wonder, as there are plenty of activities to do in Dubuque, Iowa.
National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium
The National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium is located at 350 E Third Street, Port of Dubuque. Explore an indoor waterfall and river cave, along with other hands-on activities for the kids. Even the grown-ups can get involved by piloting a barge up the Mississippi River. There is so much to do at the popular Dubuque, Iowa attraction that your ticket will be honored for two days. Please check their website for the most up-to-date information on the changing exhibits, hours and price of admission.
Crystal Lake Cave
Crystal Lake Cave is south of Dubuque, Iowa on Highway 52. In 1868, miners drilling for lead discovered the natural beauty of this cave. It was opened to the public in 1932 for touring. Crystal Lake Cave is open from May to October for guided tours. The exact times the cave is open for touring varies, so please check their website before going. It is recommended that you wear a jacket as the average temperature in Crystal Lake Cave is 52°.
Grand Harbor Resort and Waterpark
A place to stay when visiting Dubuque, Iowa is the Grand Harbor Resort and Waterpark. It is located right on the Mississippi River, and features an indoor water park for the kids. This resort also features a pool-side snack bar and Tony Roma’s restaurant. Rates for the Grand Harbor Resort are higher on the weekends, but check out their website for current specials. It is recommended that you make a reservation beforehand.
Stone Cliff Winery
Within walking distance of the Grand Harbor Resort is the Stone Cliff Winery in the Port of Dubuque, IA. Take a tour and taste some of the wines produced in the area while enjoying views of the Mississippi River. Stop by on a Friday or Saturday evening after 7 pm and you will be entertained by Stone Cliff Winery’s piano bar. The mystery dinner theater is back so please refer to the Stone Cliff’s website for exact dates, times, and reservations.
Diamond Jo Casino
Not only can you play the slots and tables, Diamond Jo Casino offers bowling, dining and live entertainment. It is located at 301 Bell Street in Dubuque. Please visit their website to see current entertainment and events.
Mississippi River Walk
Take a leisurely stroll along the Mississippi River Walk, located in the Port of Dubuque. Not only will you have a great view of the mighty Mississippi, but you will be able to see Dubuque’s Art on the River exhibit, the Grand River Center, the Grand Harbor Resort and Waterpark, and the old Shot Tower, to name a few.
Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens
Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens is located on Arboretum Drive in Dubuque, IA. The many species of trees, plants and shrubs lends itself to all-season appeal. The property includes a Japanese garden, rose garden, and English Formal garden. This is the perfect spot for pictures, or a wedding reception. As the garden hosts several concerts and other events throughout the year, visit their website to see what is going on the day of your planned visit. Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens is wheelchair accessible.
Dubuque River Rides
Take a cruise in a replica of a 100 year old steamboat and learn the history and enjoy the beauty of the Mississippi River. Dubuque River Rides is located on East Third St in Dubuque, and offers sight-seeing cruises, lunch cruises, and dinner cruises. They also offer specialty cruises such as a fall-foliage cruise and mystery dinner cruises. Dubuque River Rides also offers a magistrate who will perform a wedding ceremony on board. Current rates and schedules can be found on their website.
Fenelon Place Elevator
The Fenelon Place Elevator, located on Fenelon Place in Dubuque with an entrance on Fourth St, claims to be the world’s shortest and steepest railway. It is 296 feet long and has an elevation of 189 feet. Passengers can get a fantastic view of Dubuque and the Mississippi River from the elevator. It is open April 1st until November 30th from 8 am to 10 pm. Information of historical interest and rates can be found on Dubuque’s website.
Eagle Point Park
Eagle Point Park, located on Shiras Ave. in Dubuque, is situated on rock outcroppings overlooking the Mississippi River. Many visitors have seen the American Bald Eagle in the park’s 164 acres. The park has a picnic area, tennis courts, pavilions, horseshoes, a playground, lily pond, restrooms, and many scenic trails that visitors can hike, bike, or walk. Eagle Point Park is wheelchair accessible, and is open from the first weekend in May until the last weekend in October. For hours and other information, please visit Dubuque’s website.
City of Dubuque