Are you looking for the best and most fun things to do in Sioux City Iowa? Whether you’re in Sioux City, Iowa, to visit friends and family or on business, it can be hard to find things to do that don’t break the bank and still get your blood pumping.
Sioux City, Iowa, is a large community with much to offer residents and visitors. From the largest musical instrument museum in the world to one of the best zoos in the region, this list should keep you busy while you’re visiting this fun city!
Here are some of the best things to do in Sioux City that you can check out anytime you’re in town or looking for a weekend away.
25 Fun Things to Do in Sioux City Iowa
#1. Cone Park
The park’s lake is open for swimming, fishing, and ice skating during the winter. In addition to several sports fields, there is a swimming beach and an adventure playground for children. Picnic areas with tables and barbecue grills are located around Cone Park.
It is open year-round, Cone Park is perfect for your family outings. Cone Park is filled with various attractions, such as ice skating, tubing, and winter fire pits.
The pool and splash pad are open in the summer so that people can enjoy themselves indoors. This should be on your list of fun things to do in Sioux City in winter to have a good time.
Address: 3800 Line Dr, Sioux City, IA 51106, United States
#2. Orpheum Theatre
One of the best things to do in Sioux City this weekend is to visit the Orpheum Theatre. The Orpheum Theatre is a landmark of Sioux City.
It was originally constructed as a vaudeville and movie house, and it is now home to a non-profit group that provides educational and family entertainment.
The theatre underwent a complete renovation in 1991. Today it seats 1,100 people on its main floor and balcony and has become one of Iowa’s leading venues for popular music concerts. It is also home to Opera Omaha’s Prairie Lights series each December through April.
In addition to opera performances such as La Boheme or Carmen, it features an impressive selection of Broadway shows, including Hairspray, Rent, The Producers, and others, each year during its summer season.
Additionally, Sioux City’s Orpheum Theatre has gorgeous auditoriums and an excellent view of the stage from any seat. The space features wonderful settings and historical scripts.
Address: Orpheum Electric Building, 528 Pierce St, Sioux City, IA 51101, United States
#3. Sioux City Art Center
If you’re into art, check out Sioux City Art Center. The building itself is worth seeing, as it looks like a giant crystal hanging over Columbus Park.
Once inside, you can explore your inner artist with pottery classes and more. We suggest stopping by during one of their exhibit openings; they have many shows throughout the year.
Plus, there are cool workshops where you can try your hand at making art from scratch! It’s also a great place for kids to participate in arts and crafts.
Address: 225 Nebraska St, Sioux City, IA 51101, United States
#4. Bacon Creek Park
This park is one of our favourite hidden gems in Sioux City. It’s an off-the-beaten-path kind of park that most tourists probably won’t find on their own.
This is especially true if you don’t have a car because it requires a bit of a walk from public transportation (i.e., no biking or driving).
Don’t let its relative isolation discourage you from visiting. Bacon Creek Park has some beautiful nature trails, several picnic tables with grills, and plenty of space for running around and relaxing under large shade trees.
Not only does Bacon Creek Park have a large, impressive lake, but there is also an extensive recreational area. The park is extensive, filled with different kinds of trees. It is a spectacular setting, certain to inspire you to show off your photography skills.
This area provides the best opportunity for kayaking, while it also offers an excellent place for picnics and a separate area for children to play.
Bacon Creek Park is a great place to spend time with kids, your family, or coworkers, and you’ll want to put it on your list of outdoor things to do in Sioux City this weekend!
Address: 5015 Correctionville Rd, Sioux City, IA 51106, United States
Are you considering a road trip to Iowa? Here are guides on the best things to do in Waterloo IOWA.
#5. Jolly Time Museum and Koated Kernels Shop
The Jolly Time Museum is a food museum located in downtown Sioux City. It focuses on all things popcorn and contains artifacts from Abraham Lincoln’s first trip to the circus.
There are also lots of movie props and costumes. You can even pick up some delicious flavored popcorn sold by a local confectionary shop at its Koated Kernels Shop. If you love popcorn or want something different for your children, then make sure you check out both of these museums!
This location is a spot for small business owners and other hopeful entrepreneurs to learn from the fantastic story of how a local family company started and continues to grow within the food industry.
The museum boasts historical and contemporary exhibits like the 100-year-old Koated Kernels Popcorn Shop and the Jolly Time vintage packaging.
Many fun activities are available to visitors, such as competitions, exhibition days, original products from the founding family, and timeless celebrity endorsements.
With the excellent location near the city of Sioux, the Jolly Time Museum and Koated Kernels Shoppe are a place for visitors to spend time with family and friends, get-togethers, and a perfect location for business meetings.
Address: 1717 Terminal Dr, Sioux City, IA 51105, United States
#6. The Sergeant Floyd River Museum
Sergeant Floyd River Museum is among the best museums in the country and should be added to your list of outdoor things to do in Sioux City, Iowa.
The facility was originally built as a working house for the Missouri River but was eventually converted into a three-story-high museum.
The museum has Lewis and Clark era items relating to the river on display. There’s an open-air shop on the deck with many pretty items, and admission is free.
Address: 1000 Larsen Park Rd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#7. Anderson Dance Pavilion
One of Sioux City’s most anticipated events of 2017, Anderson Dance Pavilion is a high-energy variety show that puts a modern twist on 1920s-style jazz dance.
This event is atypical for Sioux City because it brings national talent and entertainment to town. The rest of America may have gotten hip to it first. Still, Anderson Dance Pavilion has taken off like wildfire across social media, and everyone from South Dakota to Minnesota can’t wait for their chance to see it live.
It’s an innovative take on a classic art form, and whether you love or hate jazz (or don’t even know what it is), there’s no denying that only seeing Anderson Dance Pavilion once will leave you wanting more.
If you’re looking for something fun to do in Sioux City, IA, then avoid missing out on Anderson Dance Pavilion.
Address: Larsen Park Rd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#8. Mercy Field
Exploring the tranquil Mercy field for a one-of-a-kind outdoor experience, with many activities to see, such as biking, fishing, and much more, is sure to make your list of what to do in Sioux City, Iowa.
The Mercy Field exists at the famous Lewis & Clark Park, which was opened in 1993 in conjunction with the opening of the Explorers.
These spectacular views range from the perspective of down the first baseline to the view from behind the home plate at Lewis & Clark Park and the sight of the grandstand from the left-field corner.
This stadium includes the Mercy field, which includes baseball games that showcase teams in the Sioux City Explorers (the independent American Association) 2017 season.
This location is one of the best attractions in Sioux City and is frequented by a range of guests from pro baseball teams to just kids, giving them plenty of space to be kids.
Address: 3400 Line Dr, Sioux City, IA 51106, United States
#9. Floyds Bluff
This unique park offers a great view of Lake Manawa and Western Iowa. Visitors can also check out a statue honoring Custer and other details about the Battle of Little Big Horn.
Even a small museum tells more stories about Native Americans and their history in Sioux City. Floyd’s Bluff is free and open year-round. It’s a great place for family fun!
#10. Sergeant Floyd Monument
Start your vacation season by enjoying a trip to the Sergeant Floyd Monument, the most important and remarkable site in the city and one of the best things to do in Sioux City.
In commemoration of Sergeant Charles Floyd, who died in 1804 on an upstream voyage, the monument sits on the Missouri River and memorializes his contribution.
Construction of the monument began on May 29, 1900, and concluded on August 20, 1900, which coincided with the memorial year of Charles Floyd’s death.
The monument was designed to mimic an Egyptian obelisk and is built with Kettle River sandstone, making it one of the city’s rarest and most expensive structures.
The site is open to anyone who wants to experience the natural environment, think creatively, take beautiful pictures, and learn about the site’s history and legacy.
Address: 2601 S Lewis Blvd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#11. Visit Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Sioux City is a large casino that offers a variety of gaming options like blackjack and craps.
While playing games at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, make sure you try out their delicious food from their Cazza Kitchen restaurant or stop by one of their bars for a drink like an ice-cold beer.
It’s no wonder why over 7 million people have visited Hard Rock Casino since it opened. Stop by today! The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is the best place to visit for those looking for entertainment. The casino has a variety of slot machines and a ton of tables to gamble at.
This includes three restaurants and an outdoor pool, plus there are 50+ themed rooms in the casino.
Guests can have a drink at this attraction and enjoy a performance from a band.
Although it can be quite expensive, it’s worth it if you’re looking for the best things to do in Sioux City for entertainment.
Address: 111 3rd St, Sioux City, IA 51101, United States
#12. Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center
The Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center is an awesome spot to take your kids! Explore a massive diorama of Sacagawea, pointing out landmarks along their 3,700-mile journey.
The Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center is right on the right side of the Missouri River and is easily accessible.
The Animating and Interactive displays at the Lewis and Clark Centre, including games and interaction, will keep you entertained while learning about this area’s history.
It’s one of the most fun ways to teach children about the nation’s development. They’ll bark and wail like their tail is on fire.
This community center also has an outdoor garden and an outdoor picnic area with an accommodating staff.
Address: 900 Larsen Park Rd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#13. Sioux City Railroad Museum
The Railroad Museum of Iowa opened in 1978 and is one of South Dakota’s most popular destinations. The museum boasts six historic steam locomotives, many railroad cars, and artifacts on display.
The Sioux City Railroad Museum is located on the site of an operating train yard, converted into a museum.
This museum is home to many preserved rail lines and some maintenance shops. When in the museum, visitors can explore the caboose, a passenger car, a dining car that includes a kitchen, and many locomotives.
When the visitors look at the galleries, they can see the workers’ lives. Railway history stretches more than 100 years and is entertainingly explained by volunteers.
Don’t forget that the museum also offers a train ride, so do yourself a favour and note it if you are into railroads.
Address: 3400 Sioux River Rd, Sioux City, IA 51109, United States
#14. Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center
One of the best activities for nature lovers in Sioux City, IA, is visiting the Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center.
The Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center is situated on a stunning site and includes both outdoor and indoor spaces for visitors to observe animals.
We have an indoor pool, but there’s also a theater, outdoor seating, and many outdoor features.
With breathtaking views of the panorama and bird chirps as the background music, this hike will delight any park-goer.
You can see animals such as turkeys and rabbits in their free-range habitat or play with toys.
Along with attractions for the adults, there is also a children’s play area, suitable for all ages.
Address: 4500 Sioux River Rd, Sioux City, IA 51109, United States
#15. Palmer Candy
The Palmer Candy Company is a family-owned business selling candy and other goodies. They produce over 500 different confections on-site and hold food tours year-round.
During those tours, visitors can learn about how candy is made, enjoy samples, and learn more about Sioux City’s history as a confectionery mecca.
The tour lasts approximately 20 minutes, including walking from the parking lot to the building. If you want to visit during warmer months, wear comfortable shoes because you will walk at least half a mile around their campus.
If you are looking for something fun to do in Sioux City, I recommend taking one of their food tours!
#16. Sioux City Public Museum
In 1887, Sioux City started its life as a town with a public museum. That first museum was only open for two years before it was forced to close due to a lack of funding.
Nowadays, over 100 years later, we have four museums in total. The History Museum covers the military history and natural history, while special exhibitions typically revolve around topics like art and science.
If you’re into American Civil War era art (and who isn’t?), try visiting during an event sponsored by the National Society Daughters of American Revolution (NSDAR).
They host regular tours for members where you can see artwork from famous painters such as Gilbert Stuart and Howard Chandler Christy. And if you’ve got kids, don’t miss out on their special Kids Day events!
There’s no better way to get your kids interested in history than hands-on activities. And if they get bored of learning about history, there’s always that Planetarium! You’ll never know what could happen when they turn those lights off.
#17. Riverside Park
Riverside Park is located on the banks of the River Sioux. It’s a large park with multiple courts for games like tennis.
There are six volleyball courts, two tennis courts, a soccer field, and other recreational opportunities. The park also has a pool and things for kids, and a play area.
This beautiful park includes a variety of picnic spots with grills and places to climb, and things to do for all ages.
To round out your to-do list for Sioux City, visit Riverside Park for some memorable experiences.
Address: 1301 Riverside Blvd, Sioux City, IA 51109, United States
#18. Fourth Street Historic District
One of the best things to do in Sioux City is a trip to the Fourth Street Historic District, which is always busy, welcoming, and filled with history. You can explore and find lots of interesting things.
The district has been full of buildings ever since the 1880s, so it’s one of the top attractions in town.
The wonderfully-gorgeous district is affectionately known for a stylish architectural design called Richardsonian Romanesque, a well-known design that emerged in the 1800s.
Located just south of Washington, D.C., it boasts around fifteen late-nineteenth-century buildings.
Iowan Streets and The Virginia buildings with an anachronistic history between 1889 and 1915.
Additionally, the Fourth Street Historic District is home to several centers, including specialty shops, restaurants, and drinking establishments.
#19. Trinity Heights
Trinity Heights is a huge church with a serene atmosphere. It houses a 30-foot sculpture of the holy heart of Jesus, The Last Supper, Carmel Mary, and many other beautiful sculptures.
There is ample space for wandering around and many benches for you to sit and relax. This space is situated in a beautiful environment with numerous plants, birds, and even little gardens.
This gives you the chance to renew your spirit. It also has masses offered early in the morning, and the chapels are open around the clock.
Take the time to browse through the store’s selection; there are many items you can add to your own or give as a gift to a family member or friend.
Address: 2509 33rd St, Sioux City, IA 51108, United States
#20. Chief War Eagle Monument
Sioux City’s Chief War Eagle monument was created by sculptor Gutzon Borglum of Mount Rushmore fame. Here, his piece pays tribute to leaders like Chief War Eagle, who negotiated peace between tribes and settlers during violent times.
The statue depicts a warrior standing proudly with his spear raised; it is located on Cliff Avenue overlooking beautiful downtown Sioux City.
The Chief War Eagle Monument began as nothing more than a landmark to be used when visiting the family burial site and evolved into an informative and historical destination.
This is a historic site representing one of the first American settlements by whites. War Eagle had representatives from his tribe work together with white Americans.
The cemetery where he is buried is named after him. You can have a beautiful view of the mighty Sioux River coming in to merge with the equally strong Missouri River.
One of the best ways to spend an afternoon during the summer is to walk at the Chief War Eagle Monument.
Address: Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#21. McCook Lake
This lake is filled with fun for everyone. It’s easy to see why people flock here every year to enjoy boating, swimming, and fishing.
The expansive beach area features plenty of shade trees, sand volleyball courts, and a concession stand. There are so many activities that it can be hard to decide where you want to spend your time.
Swimming, surfing, and sunbathing are all popular options on McCook Lake, and they’re just some of what makes it a great spot for spending time outdoors with friends and family members.
You’ll also have access to paddleboats, jet skis, and speed boats when you visit McCook Lake; these options can help you customize your experience based on what you most want from your day at the beach.
#22. Stone State Park
The park lies within a unique transitional zone between Iowa’s prairie-dominated landscape and its wooded eastern portions.
Over 3 miles of walking trails wind through what is considered one of Iowa’s best state parks for observing wildlife in their natural habitat.
The park is home to over 300 plant species and 200 animal species, including deer, foxes, raccoons, coyotes, skunks, and even timberwolves.
While Stone State Park is open year-round, most visitors come during spring and fall when flowers are blooming or when leaves are changing colors.
During winter months, snowshoeing is a popular activity on some of the park’s more than 30 miles of groomed cross-country ski trails.
Address: 5001 Talbot Rd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
#23. Belle Salon & Spa
For a day at the spa (the way they used to do it), Belle Salon & Spa is your best bet. The full-service salon and day spa offers hair styling and colouring services for women, men, and children.
They also offer massage therapy services, reflexology treatments, and facials. Of course, you can always opt for a haircut or blowout if you’re looking for something quick that will leave you feeling refreshed on any given day of your trip.
Either way, their staff will make sure that you walk out feeling pampered from head to toe.
#24. America’s Museum of Aviation and Transportation
Explore local history and have fun at some of America’s most popular attractions! You will find something to do at the America Museum of Aviation and Transportation, whether young or old.
The award-winning museum features flight simulators, aviation artifacts from all over the world, and interactive exhibits for kids.
Visitors can fly through a realistic storm on an aircraft simulator or trip down memory lane with antique planes and vintage cars on display outside.
Also, learn how an airport operates by taking control of a working simulator! If the weather is uncooperative, then catch an IMAX movie during your visit!
Address: 2600 Expedition Ct, Sioux City, IA 51102, United States
#25. Chris Larsen City Park
Get out of downtown Sioux City and enjoy a picnic with your family or friends at Chris Larsen Park. The park contains multiple playgrounds, including one for children with disabilities.
Christopher Larsen City Park is an open-air park with biking and walking trails that make it a great place to picnic or enjoy a walk.
If the time to visit the park is during the winter, there is a high likelihood that the park will be flooded. A more suitable time to visit the park is during the summer.
The park also has three playgrounds for kids. A portion of the land is also home to the Flight 232 Memorial, a place in which over a hundred people died when an airplane crashed.
Address: 1280 Larsen Park Rd, Sioux City, IA 51103, United States
Plan Your Trip To Sioux City
While planning your trip to Sioux City, IA, it’s important not to miss these great attractions. Enjoy both indoor and outdoor activities; treat yourself to a local spa or take a step back in time at one of our many historical landmarks.
Whether you’re visiting for business or pleasure, you’ll find plenty of great things to do on your vacation here. Find more ideas for weekend getaways by checking out Vast Tourist vacation spot guide.
We hope you have an amazing time! If you need help finding something specific, just ask us in the comments below! If we can’t answer it, we’ll make sure someone who knows does.