4 Museums to Visit During a Trip to Indianapolis

Indianapolis at sunrise – downtown seen accross the river

Indianapolis is referred to as the “Crossroads of America” because the city has the highest number of interstate highways crossing it in the United States. This easily accessible travel spot is home to many diverse cultural institutions. Learn about four must-see museums for your visit to Indianapolis.

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis 

Indianapolis boasts the largest children’s museum in the world at North Meridian and West 30th Street. Created in 1925 to give children a unique experience, the downtown facility is still committed to that vision today. The museum is almost 475,000 square feet resting on 29 acres. A nonprofit organization with 1.27 million visitors annually, it houses 120,000 artifacts and pieces. The museum’s interactive exhibits teach kids about world cultures, natural and physical sciences, and the life of dinosaurs more than 60 million years ago.

Indianapolis Museum of Art

Located at 4000 Michigan Rd., the Indianapolis Museum of Art displays works from artists spanning several centuries, including Rembrandt, Cezanne, O’Keeffe, Lichtenstein, and more. Pop Art, Minimalism, and Abstract Expressionism styles are among the most viewed pieces. Here you will find what is considered North America’s most comprehensive collection of Neo-Impressionist paintings. Art pieces from around the world such as South America, Asia, and Greece are represented as well. Indianapolis Museum of Art is now part of Newfields, A Place for Nature and the Arts, which encompasses Fairbanks Park, The Garden, Lilly House, and the Elder Greenhouse.

The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art

Image via Flickr by kajsahartig

Another downtown Indianapolis museum to visit is The Eiteljorg, which is located at 500 West Washington St. in White River State Park. This area is an optimal spot for your hotel stay due to its proximity to the museums on this list. Founded by philanthropist Harrison Eiteljorg, The Eiteljorg Museum shares an appreciation of the art, history, and cultures of the American West and the indigenous peoples of North America. This one-of-a-kind facility includes pieces from Andy Warhol, Kay WalkingStick, Georgia O’Keeffe, Frederic Remington, and Allan Houser. Special exhibitions have included Jewish life in the West, African American and Native American connections, and the history of motorcycles and pistols.

Indiana State Museum

Also in White River State Park at 650 West Washington St. is the Indiana State Museum. Explore the history and culture of Indiana from the prehistoric era to today. The building itself is an extension of the exhibits showcasing the state’s architecture and sculptures. Adults will gain a wealth of knowledge from the renowned Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection. Your younger family members will race you to the state’s largest movie screen at the IMAX Theater. The museum is also home to the legendary L.S. Ayres Tea Room, a restaurant known for its chicken velvet soup and Monte Cristo sandwiches. Be sure to call ahead for dining reservations.

These are just some of the museums that Indianapolis has for your cultural enjoyment. Whether you stay for a weekend or a week, you will have plenty of historical landmarks and memorials to see.