Things to do in Cedar Rapids

Explore the growing, vibrant and family-friendly city of Cedar Rapids


You can bike, hike and play in four county parks and three state parks. To explore the region’s history, pay a visit to Ushers Ferry Historic Village or take a day trip out to the historic Amana Colonies while you’re here. Keep reading below to get the scoop on more Cedar Rapids attractions.

Discoveries at the Museum

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art houses more than 7,200 works, spanning from the ancient world to the 20th century. Spend your day touring the museum, pausing to admire its collection of Roman busts and the impressive homage to Iowa painter Grant Wood, creator of "American Gothic." Continue your cultural explorations at the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library. Learn about the region's prominent ethnic group through exhibits on Czech food, drink, clothing and artwork. You’ll also find personal artifacts, including photographs and written histories, detailing the Czech immigrant experience in Cedar Rapids.

A Day in the Garden

Brucemore, a one-time privately owned 1884 estate, is now open for viewing to the general public. Get lost in the lush landscape of its 26-acre garden. Take a peaceful walk along the pond, soak up the scents of the fruit orchard and marvel at the floral bounty in the formal garden. The grounds host special events throughout the year, including art shows, concerts and children’s theater productions. If you want a truly peaceful respite from the city, make the 10-minute drive east of downtown Cedar Rapids to the Indian Creek Nature Center. Explore the large sanctuary on 4 miles of trails through pristine, oak-hickory savannas and wander along wetlands and wildflower-dotted prairies. Your kids will love the Sense of Wonder Trail, a pathway outfitted with a sensory garden, weather station, frog pond and a willow tunnel.

All the World's Stage

The arts are alive and well at the lavish, 1,690-seat Paramount Theatre in downtown Cedar Rapids. Take in a Broadway musical, classic screening, major concert or symphonic performance by Orchestra Iowa in this historic 1920s-style venue. Looking for a more intimate theatrical experience? Treat yourself to a night at the Theatre Cedar Rapids, downtown’s 500-seat community theater. Housed inside an ornate vaudeville theater from the 1920s, the playhouse now stages classic plays, popular musicals and Shakespearean productions throughout the year.

Good Eats in Cedar Rapids

Village Meat Market & Cafe is nestled in the heart of the city’s trendy Czech Village neighborhood. Fittingly, the eatery specializes in Czech fare, including homemade sausages, sauerkraut, schnitzel and goulash. Top it off with an imported Czech beer in this laid-back cafe. For ethnic food of a different sort, head downtown to taste authentic Cuban cuisine. The Lost Cuban serves Cuban-pressed sandwiches and pastelitos. Festive Cuban music plays in the background at this casual counter-service eatery.

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