The Most Instagrammable Places in Indiana’s Cool North
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The Most Instagrammable Places in Indiana’s Cool North

There’s no doubt about it – when you visit Indiana’s Cool North, you’ll be inspired to snap a photo nearly everywhere you go. It’s not just the discovery of Amish back roads, sandy dunes and beaches, pristine lakes, rousing festivals, and peaceful bike trails that will have you reaching for your camera or Smartphone. It’s that desire to take home those special memories in a substantive form. Here are some Instagram posts to give you some great ideas for your own picture-perfect Northern Indiana getaway.

Indiana Dunes  and the Indiana Dunes National Park

Indiana Dunes

Sandy peaks embellished with graceful patches of dune grass rise next to strikingly blue Lake Michigan waters at the Indiana Dunes National Park.  The dunes and beaches (including several where Fido is welcome) invite hiking, strolling, swimming and plenty of photo ops.


No lakeside vacation is complete without that classic shot of the setting sun reflecting in brilliant red and orange on the water. You can view the day’s grand finale from beaches and parks all along the Lake Michigan shoreline.   Seagulls and other shore birds add to the panorama.

Uptown Arts District and Washington Park

Michigan City LaPorte


It’s artsy…. It’s lively…. it’s Michigan City’s own Uptown Arts District!  Galleries, shops and restaurants fill the historic area, where photogenic outdoor sculptures and loads of special events bring artists, food trucks and fun to the streets. Special events and tours make history come alive at the area’s 1857 Barker Mansion.

Don’t miss taking your own shot of the pristine Michigan City Lighthouse, an iconic subject for photographers and painters alike. There’s more you and your camera will love here in Washington Park, with a glorious expanse of prime beach, pier, and boardwalk. Meet some great subjects right next door at the Washington Park Zoo, home to some 90 species.

Amish Country and Quilt Gardens along the Heritage Trail

Amish Country

Amish farmers plow fertile green fields with horse-drawn equipment along tranquil back roads where pristine white farmhouses dot the countryside. Fine Amish quilts, furniture, clocks and crafts plus tempting baked goods fill small countryside “shingle shops” and stores in friendly towns. Everywhere, the landscapes, the street scenes, and the food invite pics you’ll want to take home with you.

Color bursts everywhere in Amish Country’s Quilt Gardens, where huge patches of ground are planted with hundreds of thousands of flowers each year in treasured quilt designs. You’ll find them along the Heritage Trail, a 90-mile tour that will take you to plenty of other photo-worthy attractions as well as the blooming displays.

Pumpkinvine Nature Trail and Shipshewana

Shipshewana/LaGrange County

Get a close-up picture or two of Amish life along the Pumpkinvine Nature Trail, a relatively easy 25-mile bike route named for an early 1900s train route. The trail runs through the heavily Amish area of Goshen, Middlebury and Shipshewana. Along the way, you’re sure to spot horse-drawn buggies, quiet ponds, and Amish farmsteads set in the serene green countryside.


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The community of Shipshewana is a terrific spot to get in touch with Amish culture, food, and workmanship as you visit a museum, theater, shops, restaurants and bakeries. Horse-drawn buggies seem to be everywhere, and a huge flea market is a hot spot for finding treasures. You’ll want your camera close at hand throughout your visit.

University of Notre Dame and South Bend River Lights

South Bend Mishawaka


Quiet spots, sacred spots and places that seem to resonate with a resounding cheer for the Fighting Irish make the University of Notre Dame a place for capturing special memories – in your heart and on film. Tour the tree-shaded campus, revel in football weekend activities, admire the spires of the Notre Dame Basilica, and find reflection and beauty at the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes.


If light, water, and unique art forms bring out the photographer in you, here’s a must see – the South Bend River Lights, an artwork that transforms the St. Joseph River. Color splashes from light sculptures on either side of the river. They amplify a majestic cascade of water and the “Keeper of the Fire” statue. The lights turn on each day one-half hour before sunset and stay on all night.

Marshall County Blueberry Festival and Swan Lake Resort

Marshall County



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The blueberry is king in this fertile region, and Marshall County celebrates its succulent fruit in high style every Labor Day weekend with four days of all-American fun at the Marshall County Blueberry Festival. There’s loads to enjoy – and capture with your camera – from hot air balloons to parade floats to fab fireworks. Fill up on every blueberry concoction imaginable, including pies, smoothies, and donuts.

Picture-perfect days on a serene, manicured golf course under a sunny blue sky – it’s every golfer’s dream. Swan Lake Resort in Plymouth makes it a reality with 36 holes at one of the Midwest’s top golf resorts. Choose from hotel rooms, fancy villas that face the course or upscale cottages in a wooded setting. Swim, play tennis, visit the spa, and dine, too!


The Dixie Boat and Village at Winona

Kosciusko County


As if pictures of Indiana’s oldest sternwheeler aren’t enough, lovely lake and shoreline views abound when you take a 75-minute cruise around Webster Lake in North Webster aboard the 1929 Dixie Boat. You’ll get a little history, lots of old-time music and the fun of cruising to the accompaniment of gentle lake breezes just like in days long ago.



Shopping, bicycling, and expansive views of Lake Winona fill this community of the same name, ripe with opportunities to snap both land and water shots. The Village at Winona, a thriving arts community along the Winona Lake shore is a shopper’s dream where galleries, studios, shops and trendy restaurants fill charmingly restored workmen’s homes. The Heritage Bike Trail hugs the shoreline


Now it’s time for you to Instagram across our amazingly photogenic Northern Indiana region!  We’d love to see photos of all the unique places you’ve discovered. Please share them with us using the hashtag #IndianasCoolNorth and you just might see them appear in our online gallery.