Top Ten Reasons to take a road trip to Decorah

20160528_125228Decorah is more than just the home of Luther College and some bald eagles.  It’s a charming town that is worth making a visit to whether you want to spend a few hours there or an entire weekend.  The following are reasons why you should make Decorah your next day trip destination.

  1. Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum– This is the most extensive Norwegian American museum in the United States with over 24,000 artifacts. It was founded in 1877 as part of Luther College and in 1967 it moved to it’s permanent home in downtown Decorah in building that used to house a publishing company. This is a very informative museum and is great for everyone in the family. For more information. Tickets are $10 for adults and children ages 7-18 are $5.

  2. Decorah Fish Hatchery This is the spot to take the trout fisher-person in your life.  There’s about a football sized area of tanks full of fish depending on when in the year you’re visiting. A miniature waterfall is nearby that many locals use as a background for wedding pictures. According to the DNR, there’s approximately 130,000 catchable rainbow trout reared annually at the Decorah fish hatchery.  There are many spots to fish for trout in the area as well, which in itself is a reason for some people to take a trip to Decorah.

  3. Toppling Goliath Brewery–  this brewery is housed in a small inconspicuous building that you may drive by if you’re not careful but they’re quickly becoming a nationally recognized brewery with their Pseudo Sue American pale ale and Rover Truck oatmeal stout. They recently started distributing to Hyvee stores so if you want to try them before driving to Decorah, go to your local Hyvee and see what all the buzz is about.

  4. Dunning Springs Parkthis park features a 200 foot waterfall as well as plenty of hiking opportunities for those interested in hiking along with seeing the beautiful waterfall.  This would be a beautiful spot to hold a family reunion especially since they have ample picnic areas.

  5. Downtown Decorah- their downtown area is one of the quaintest small town hubs I’ve been to. The stores on their main street- Water Street- are all locally owned and offer a wide variety of things to buy. Their restaurants are also exceptional with the Rubiayat restaurant being a personal favorite. This is a vibrant shopping area that many small towns lack in this day and age.

  6. Trout Run TrailThe trail is an 11 mile loop that goes around Decorah and runs next to the trout run hatchery and even gives you the chance to see the famous Decorah bald eagles six foot wide nest. The path is very close to Decorah so if you want to break off and take a break in town, you won’t have to go too far to do so.

  7. Ice Cavethe Decorah Ice Cave is one of the largest glaciers in the Midwest sitting on 3 acres of land. This is a free spot but there aren’t any park rangers or any sort guides to take you through the cave so they recommend you be familiar with caving before visiting. Be sure to bring something warm to wear since the cave stays a consistent 35 degrees.

  8. Day Spring Spalocated on Washington Street, my husband and I both received massages here and we both felt immensely better afterward. This is one of the best massages I have received. The spa is in a beautiful building with a ton of natural sunlight and the wooden floors give it a homey feel. You will feel instantly relaxed even before you receive any treatments.

  9. Whippy Dip Ice Cream– located on College drive, you’ll know you’ve found Whippy Dip by the long lines that snake around the building and onto the sidewalk. Their tornadoes are well worthy of being a top spot holder on the top ten ice cream spots on this website if they were closer to Des Moines. I had a chunk of melted together reeses peanut butter cups that was about the size of an egg on top of the other sizeable pieces mixed into my chocolate ice cream. Bring cash since they don’t take debit or credit cards.

  10. Decorah River Tubes The staff is very helpful with pickups to get you to a spot to start your floating time.  This is an awesome way to spend your afternoon cooling off on a hot summer day. They even give you free ice when you rent a cooler. This company is well known for excellent customer service so be assured you will be treated like family when you come here.
Decorah Retro Unisex T-shirt $19.99 @



2 Comments Add yours

  1. Anonymous says:

    What about Pulpit Rock Brewery and The Sugar Bowl?

    Liked by 1 person

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