A photo of the Old Bag Factory at sunset.
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Our Top 10 Instagram Photos of 2017

It’s no secret that Indiana’s Cool North is ridiculously photogenic. Don’t believe us? A quick peek at our Instagram reveals a bevy of sparkling sunsets, beautiful beaches, and charming country scenes that are sure to change your mind.

With 2017 winding down and a new year on the horizon, we’ve compiled our top ten Instagram photos of 2017—shared by users just like you—to inspire even more exploring for 2018.

Unique Finds in Elkhart County

When it comes to antiquing, a visit to Dutch Lady Antiques in Elkhart County is a must. Housed in the historic Coppes Commons, it is a veritable treasure trove of unique finds. In fact, Indiana’s Cool North has an abundance of shops, markets, and even auctions to quell your curio curiosity—we recommend embarking on an “Antiques Roadshow” of your own and exploring them all.


Delightful Views

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One of Michigan City LaPorte’s most photographed sites, it’s no surprise to see the Michigan City Lighthouse on the list. Built in 1904, the structure sits at the end of a elevated walkway once traveled by lighthouse keepers until the pier was electrified in 1933. Captured from any angle, it’s sure to inspire your next Midwest getaway.


Nothing Beats a Midwest Sunset

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Revered as one of the most stunning campuses in the Midwest, catching a sunset at the University of Notre Dame is a must when visiting South Bend. As you stroll the campus, keep an eye out for its many natural spaces—the God Quad, surrounded by mature trees, or the spring fed St. Joseph Lake—all that’s left is to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.


Feel Small, in a Big Way

This golden glow over Valparaiso is proof that no two Midwest sunsets are the same. A big city with a down-home feel, Valparaiso is boasts a bustling downtown district and a one-of-a-kind arts scene. But to really get away from it all—and see sunsets like this one—you’ll need to explore Valparaiso’s abundance of trails, gardens, and green spaces.



Lake lovers are drawn to Indiana’s Cool North, and with this shot, it’s not hard to see why. Here in Kosciusko County, you can explore over 100 bodies of water by canoe, kayak, and even paddleboat. With that much water to explore, experiencing lake life in Northern Indiana has never been easier.


Take it Easy

In Shipshewana, taking the road less traveled is standard. In a place that values the simple things in life, charming country scenes like this one can be found around every corner. If you’re looking to slow down, unwind, and connect with nature, you’ve come to the right place.


Hit the Trails

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In Potato Creek State Park, grassy trails wind through dense forests and wonderful wetlands for some of the most scenic hiking and biking in the Midwest. But it’s not just here—outdoor adventures abound all over Indiana’s Cool North. And, with trail names like PumpkinVine and Mapleheart, snapping a ‘Gram-worthy pic is a walk in the park!


Did Someone Say Road Trip?

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Nothing beats hitting the open road, especially in Indiana’s Cool North. It comes as no surprise to see Marshall County singled out— its rolling hillsides and colorful Quilt Barn Trail are what road trip dreams (and Instagram feeds) are made of. Planning to explore Northern Indiana by car? Check out our Road Trip Bingo printable and challenge your passengers to a friendly game!


Gorgeous Goshen

Located in Goshen’s eclectic downtown district, The Old Bag Factory sat as a heap of rubble until revitalization began in 1984. Now, the nostalgic building is known for its unique shopping experience—housing independent artist studios, specialty shops, and local dining—not to mention how good it photographs at sunset!


Life’s a Beach

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It wouldn’t be a Northern Indiana top ten list without mentioning Indiana Dunes State Park. One of the most popular spots in the area, its beautiful beaches and windswept dunes are picture perfect. Pro tip: if you visit on a clear day, you can see the Chicago skyline from the shore.

Feeling inspired? Don’t forget to share your photos with us using the hashtag #IndianasCoolNorth or tag @indianascoolnorth on Instagram. Who knows? You might just find yourself on this list next year.