Indiana’s Cool North is filled with creative makers! It’s a great place to live and work; or to plan your next getaway around some of those coolest things made in Northern Indiana.
It’s a great idea to call an attraction, restaurant and shop to make sure they’re open before visiting.
⇒ 13 minutes to Misbeehavin' & Aftermath
1. Learn all about the beast that is an American icon when you visit a facility where bison are raised. Shop for an assortment of bison meat, bison hides and skulls, as well as handmade bison leather purses and other bison leather products and jewelry. Take a tour aboard a wagon that travels into the resident bison herd. You’ll be introduced to the importance of bison in Native American life and how bison are used today.
Check out the Fun Kid Friendly Activities to find more animals in Indiana’s Cool North.
⇐ 13 minutes to Broken Wagon Bison ⇒ 21 minutes to Chesterton
2. Misbeehavin’ Meads, a winery in downtown Valparaiso, creates their own meads on site, features a tasting room, and has available meat, cheese, fruit and honey pairings. Aftermath Cidery and Winery offers their locally-made ciders with small-plate food pairings.
Discover more delicious dining in downtown Valparaiso.
⇐ 21 minutes to Misbeehavin' & Aftermath ⇒ 21 minutes to Beach Bum Jewels
3. Enjoy the local artists of downtown Chesterton and perhaps bring home a painting or two to remind you of your trip. Start off by visiting the gallery of Holly Jackson, whose colorful paintings are inspired by local landscapes of the Indiana Dunes. Then walk over to the Chesterton Art Center to attend artist exhibitions, view artwork for sale in their member gallery, or purchase locally-made paintings, drawings, fiberworks, or stained glass in their gift shop.
Discover the most instagrammable places where you can be inspired for your own artistic creations.
⇐ 21 minutes to Chesterton ⇒ 19 minutes to Hook Pottery Paper
4. The beach bum jewels studio/gift shop features authentic beach glass jewelry, tumbled by Mother Nature and handcrafted by 3 generations of “beach bums.” It also contains artwork by local artists, artisan crafted gift items, nautical home decor and more.
Learn more about the top 15 things locals love to do in Indiana’s Cool North.
⇐ 19 minutes to Beach Bum Jewels ⇒ 18 minutes to Little Chocolates
5. At Hook Pottery Paper two Northern Indiana artists like to incorporate materials indigenous to the area so they can reflect the region in two very different types of art. Jon Hook creates ceramics uniquely fired with wood.The wood ash dusts the surface of his pottery and sculptures,creating glazed flashes of color. Andrea Peterson makes unusual papers and stationery that reflect the environment, as well as prints and drawings. You can also shop for soaps and beeswax candles
Discover other artisans in Indiana’s Cool North on the Art and Earth Trail.
⇐ 18 minutes to Hook Pottery Paper ⇒ 36 minutes to Studebaker National Museum
6. A unique array of fresh, hand-made candies. Everything a chocoholic could dream of from turtles, truffles, caramels and cake pops. You’re sure to find something that delights your taste buds. Everyone could use a “Little Chocolate.”
Chocolate lovers will find more of those delicious sweets in Indiana’s Cool North!
⇐ 36 minutes to Little Chocolates ⇒ 32 minutes to RV Hall of Fame
7. Exhibits and vehicles relate how the family business evolved from a blacksmith shop in 1852 to the largest wagon and buggy manufacturer in the world. Impressive Studebaker-built carriages for presidents Ulysses S. Grant and Benjamin Harrison are part of the museum’s National Treasures collection, which includes the carriage that transported Abraham Lincoln to the Ford’s Theatre on April 14, 1865. The Studebakers purchased that historic vehicle in 1889
If you love a good museum, be sure to check out the coolest museums in Northern Indiana.
⇐ 32 minutes to Studebaker National Museum ⇒ 22 minutes to Goshen
8. Did you know that the first recreational vehicle was built 120 years ago or that Elkhart County is the RV Capital of the world! That’s right, Elkhart County produces over 80% of all RVs built in the U.S. Come to the place where RVs are built and explore the nation’s only shrine to the RV, the RV/MH Hall of Fame. Here you’ll discover the fascinating history of RVs from early 1913 travel-trailers to today’s state-of-the-art motor homes.
Go to the best camping spots in Northern Indiana to see some of the RV’s in use!
⇐ 22 minutes to RV Hall of Fame ⇒ 5 minutes to Heritage Trail
9. Enjoy Goshen, IN, a city where innovation meets craftsmanship and a magnet for creative young entrepreneurs. Hand-crafted isn’t just a buzzword here. Amp up your ride with a hand-manufactured, custom designed motorcycle from Janus Motorcycles. These lightweight easy-to-ride motorcycles are built in Goshen, IN and offer bullet proof power for a thrilling ride. Discover the artfully crafted wood-fired pizza at Venturi and then head over to Goshen Brewing Co. (or GBCo, as the locals call it) for a craft brew. Shop for luxurious handcrafted soap and skincare products at the Soapy Gnome then drive over to the Old Bag Factory to watch Mark Goertzen at the pottery wheel where traditional techniques meet contemporary designs.
Venturi has award winning pizza, and Northern Indiana locals have also chosen their favorite pizzas. A Chicago food critic wrote all about it!.
⇐ 5 minutes to Goshen
10. Welcome to Elkhart County, Indiana. A place where close-knit communities are connected by a passion for craftsmanship and quality of life. From classic small towns to vibrant cities, the handmade welcome mat is always out. The best way to experience all that Elkhart County has to offer is along the Heritage Trail. Let the free Heritage Trail audio driving tour be your personal guide to must-see attractions, handmade special finds and behind the scenes glimpses of Amish life. Along the way, reminders of what’s made here are all around. From RVs and motorcycles to Amish furniture, quilts, and noodles. It’s well crafted in Elkhart County.
Shop Amish made goods while you are on the Heritage Trail!
See individual theatres for schedule of shows and concerts.
Indiana's Cool North
Indiana's Cool North has a number of theatres. See the individual theatres for their show and concert schedules.View Details
Auctions are held every Wednesday and Friday, year-round
Auction Buildings and Barns at Shipshewana Trading Place
Antique and miscellaneous auctions and a livestock auction is held every Wednesday. A horse auction is held every Friday, in addition to special yearly sales.View Details
November 11 - December 31, 2023
Experience the magic of Shipshewana during Christmas time. Shipshewana will put you in the Christmas spirit with holiday lights, musicals, and much more.View Details
November 11 - January 05, 2024
Lubeznik Center for the Arts
Explore our Holiday Artisan Market with dozens of regional artists contributing hundreds of hand-crafted holiday pieces,View Details
November 17-18; then November 24-December 31
Shipshewana Auction & Flea Market
Features more than two million LED Christmas lights displayed in a mile and a half long symphony of colorful light scenesView Details
Thurs-Sun, Nov 17-Dec 14; Daily Dec 14-31.
Fair Oaks Farms
Marvel at the abundance of color in the Forest of Lights at Fair Oaks Farms during the holiday seasonView Details