Des Moines Things to Do

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Des Moines

  • 1. John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park

    The Des Moines Arts Center continues to collect - and commission - new work. The Sculpture Garden in particular has continued to expand. It's a lovely place with flowers, tree, hills, and water. If I...

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  • 2. Grays Lake

    A walk around Grays lake especially at night is a relaxing activity. The lake is a former quarry that has been turned into a hub for bicyclists and walkers. It...

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  • 3. Science Center

    The Science Center in downtown Des Moines was kind of neat. My favorite parts were the dinosaur model on display (although I hear it's a traveling exhibit), the...

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  • 4. Des Moines Botanical Center

    Here is a nice little outing for anyone who has some time to spend in Des Moines. This place has an interesting collection of plants from around the world. Most...

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  • 5. Des Moines Art Center

    Nothing to do in Des Moines? Well, that's not quite accurate. This museum has a good set of collections for a city this size. If you're passing through this...

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  • 6. Pork Expo

    Iowa is one of the largest producers of pork and shares an Expo alternating years with Illinois. If you like pork take a trip to the State Fair grounds (on the...

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  • 7. State Capitol

    When we drove to Pella we noticed this building on our way back to our hotel returning from Pella we decided to stop by.The golden dome really attracts the...

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  • 8. "History & Iowa"

    These allegorical figures are from the Soldiers and Sailors Monument on Capitol Hill, and they are the most "controversial" part of the entire "piece." The...

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  • 9. Soldiers and Sailors Memorial

    Like other states - Massachusetts, for example - Iowa has a 19th century Soldiers and Sailors Memorial honoring its Civil War Veterans. And as is the case in...

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  • 10. Allison Monument on Capitol Hill

    William Allison (1828-1908) served Iowa in the US House of Representitives for 43 years. After his death, his fellow Hawkeyes erected this monument in honor of...

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  • 11. Judicial Branch Building

    This was a surprisingly interesting place that I hadn't expected. This is a new addition to Des Moines' "Capitol Hill" district. Just finished this year, the...

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  • 12. Iowa State Capital

    Iowa's State Capital is quite interesting - not only does it have a central gilded dome, it also has four smaller "dome-lets" that surround it, almost like...

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  • 13. Des Moines Arts Center - Meier Building

    Richard Meier's is the most recently built section of the Art Center. It's also the most thoroughly successful in my view. The design echoes that found in...

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  • 14. Des Moines Arts Center - Courtyard

    The Courtyard of the Museum is where the three buildings "come together" - so to speak. It's as if it is a collaborative work between Saarinen, Pei, and...

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  • 15. Des Moines Arts Center - Pei Building

    The I.M. Pei structure was designed in the 1960s - before he discovered the wonders of glass. The use of concrete is somewhat ungainly from this viewpoint, but...

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  • 16. Des Moines Arts Center - Saarinen Building

    The Des Moines Arts Center is highly unusual in that it consists of three separate buildings that nonetheless relate closely to each other, even those they were...

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  • 17. Downtown Des Moines

    Downtown. Des Moines has many things to do right in the heart of the city. This is a picture of some giant artwork in Nollen Plaza. From this spot, it's a short...

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  • 18. The State Historical Building...

    The State Historical Building is great but I have to say it made me feel old. I saw a lot of things on display in the museum I remembered using as a boy. Made...

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  • 19. Visit the Iowa State Capitol...

    Visit the Iowa State Capitol Building. It is beautiful inside with ornate wood work and paintings. Park below the capital building and you will be near the...

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  • 20. Living History Farm is 600...

    Living History Farm is 600 acres of land. There are different farms in operation there showing the different farming styles of the past. There is also a typical...

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  • 21. The Salisbury House.

    It's a very large mansion filled with paintings and antiques. It was built to resemble old English style mansions and was actually built with authentic English...

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  • 22. See an Iowa Cubs Game.

    They play in one of the best stadiums in the Minor leagues, you get a great veiw of the Des Moines skyline from the right feild stands. The ticket prices are...

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  • 23. I have decided to make this a...

    I have decided to make this a must-see activity with a warning in the middle of it. Downtown Des Moines has a neat network called the Sky Walk which threads...

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  • 24. The Iowa State Fair is a...

    The Iowa State Fair is a definite must-see! Every August Iowans gather in Des Moines for corn dogs and rides and 1/2 pound pork tenderloin sandwiches and to see...

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  • 25. If visiting in the Fall, be...

    If visiting in the Fall, be sure to attend the Iowa State Fair. Adventureland is a family amusement park with several decent rides...takes 4-6 hours to do...

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Des Moines Things to Do

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