The Great Outdoors

Did you hear that? It’s the call of the wild. Listen up and you might learn a secret about Iowa.

We’ve got year-round hunting seasons, beautiful trout streams and stocked fishing holes, more than 1,000 miles of interconnected bike trails, hiking backpacking, native prairies, forests caves, tons of rivers and even our own Great Lakes. Yes, Iowa has it all — so whether you’re a doer, a goer or a go-getter, there’s no shortage of outdoor experiences to explore.

You’ll want to check out the Yellow River State Forest and the Maquoketa Caves in northeaster Iowa’s Driftless Area, plus 83 more amazing state parks, most crisscrossed by well-maintained trail systems. Closer to central Iowa, the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge sits on 8,654 acres of federal land. Then, head west to Iowa’s Loess Hills, the likes of which are unmatched anywhere else in the world (except Shannxi, China (but we prefer Iowa’s version).

No matter what you’re into, you can probably find it here. And with so much to do outside in Iowa, we hope there’s nothing but blue skies in your future. So don’t hide away indoors — go on, get out there!

Maquoketa Caves State Park, Maquoketa

Shhh… this place is wide open for all your favorite outdoor activities.

Check out RAGBRAI

A river-to-river bike tour across Iowa. At more than 400 miles over seven days, you and 10,000 of your newest friends will eat, drink and pedal your way through the oldest, longest and largest recreational ride in the world.

Dunning Spring Park, Decorah
The Parks

Find outdoor attractions like the Big River State Forest, Delabar State Park and Nauvoo State Park in Southeast Iowa.

The Reiman Gardens, Ames
Beyond The Parks

Including our 83 state parks, Iowa has a total of 850 public outdoor areas, including greenspaces, beaches, gardens and more, plus 22 nature centers and 69 paved bike trails.

Check the Web

Check out Travel Iowa for itineraries, maps, attraction details and more information on Iowa’s great outdoors. Visit

Veterans Wanted

Find communities and employers offering specific benefits for Veterans at Homebase Iowa