100 Family Day Trips | Driving Distance of the Quad Cities


We’ve got a lot to offer in the Quad City area, but if you’re like me, sometimes you want a change of scenery. We’ve compiled a fantastic lists of day trips you can take this summer! These are organized in order of distance (closest to furthest — ranging from 7 miles to 128 miles, which makes them all doable for a day adventure!

And if you are looking for something to keep the kids occupied closer to home this summer — you won’t want to miss our 2022 QC Area Summer Camp Guide!

West Lake 7 miles

Four lakes with a beach, paddle boats, kayaking and canoeing. This is an ideal location for birthday parties, camping, any time you want to get out into nature a bit without driving too far.

Eldridge IA 10 miles

Helium Trampoline Park You know how in A Christmas Story they’re always telling the little boy “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid!”? I have nothing against trampoline parks and own a trampoline myself. It doesn’t stop me from always wanting to say to my kids when we go to this great value of a park “You’ll break your neck, kid!”

Walnut Grove Pioneer Village

Several little shops line a main street of this literal pioneer village. Go during a festival if you can, and not only because you’ll get in free if you don pioneer outfits but also there’s kettle corn and gun fights! Just going on your own any old day makes this a fun outing. Plenty of room to run around, and some historical education make this a great spot to plan a picnic with friends. It’s an easy area to keep an eye on your kids.

Scott County Park

Free to enter, bike trails, hiking, an Olympic size swimming pool and splash pad, picnic areas and camping make this a perfect day away from home. The trails vary from wide open mown paths on which you could take a stroller, to narrow trails in the woods. There’s sand volley ball and creeks to play in and many picturesque scenes.

Lost Grove Lake

Fishing, canoeing, kayaking or just walking on a few trails in this open prairie type area. In July there are fields of sunflowers.

Bliss and Backroads

A fantastic little boutique which is locally owned, you can find something adorable just for you whether on line, at one of our events, or in the physical store. Check them out!

Summer Festival and Moonlight Chase (Eldridge)

A small town festival worth making the jaunt for – second weekend in July.

Miss Effie’s Country Garden

At Iowa’s first pick your own flowers farm, you can make an incredible bouquet inexpensively. Besides seeing all of Miss Effie’s beautiful posies, you can pet her cats and see her chickens and ducks. You could even plan brunch with your pals and rent tables in the Corn-Zebo.

Hampton IL 12 miles

Illiniwek Forest Preserve

Nature Spiral, a literal spiral primarily made of 65 boulders, with outlined images of native birds, fish, insects, animals, and plants cut into the surface of many of the stones was made by a local artist.

Heritage Park Interpretive Center

Learn about the Mississippi and its importance in our area’s settlement and growth.

Stone’s Apple Barn

Apples and orchards galore!

Great River Trail

Wildlife and nature. Take a long bike ride or a short stroll, it’s all beautiful!

Brettun & Black Mercantile Store

A dry goods store and museum as it appeared in 1849. Education and shopping! What’s not to love?

Walcott IA 13 miles

I-80 Truckstop

The World’s Biggest Truckstop is not an exaggeration. This is a good spot to kill a sweltering summer afternoon just browsing. Be prepared for all of the “Mama, can we buy this?” requests because the kids are fascinated by the place!

Iowa 80 Trucking Museum

The varied collection of trucks and vehicles is amazing even if you don’t consider yourself a fan of trucks. The display is organized and spacious. Friendly and helpful staff answer any questions your truck aficionados may have. While the tour is free, donations are appreciated.

Truckers Jamboree

In July | Antique Truck Display some dating back to 1900, over 175 exhibits, Iowa Pork Chop Cookout Carnival games, a pet contest, trucker olympics, live music, and. fireworks—all for free!

When you’re tired of looking at trucks, eat at any of the nearby restaurants including Gramma’s Kitchen, which supports local farmers with delicious food, or head into Walcott itself for burning off some energy at one of their great parks or check out the cutest little public library.

LeClaire IA 18 miles

Buffalo Bill Museum

All about a government scout and Wild West showman, the museum is so interesting and inspiring that if you’re not careful, you may end up with a cowboy and buffalo lover who now begs you to take him to Wyoming to see where Buffalo Bill retired.

Reusable Usables

The store’s motto is “Engage a mind, save a landfill!” By repurposing junk into art, being creative, viewing other artists’ work, perhaps even taking a workshop, you’ll find they live up to their motto!

Shameless Chocaholic

Do I really even need to try to convince you to go here?

The Crane and Pelican

Locally sourced menu, delicious food in an adorable river boat captain’s mansion make this one of LeClaire’s top restaurants.

The skate park and nearby creek

My kids bring their bikes and love the hill and the obstacles. Then they cool off by walking into the shaded creek area nearby and imaginatively playing, discovering “new lands”, and getting grubby.

Princeton IA 23 miles

The Buffalo Bill Cody Homestead

The boyhood home of Buffalo Bill Cody, replete with buffalo on site. The old fashioned house is fun to browse through no matter if you care about Buffalo Bill or not. Typical of the time period of Little House on the Prairie kids will love to see how our ancestors lived.

Dewitt IA 23 miles

Clinton County Fair

Each July you’ll find all kinds of things to love at this perfectly sized fair. Live music and carnival rides are a given, and watching the rodeo is not to be missed.


After a day out wrangling the kids and giving them the summer of their lives, you deserve a moment to catch your breath at the serenity pond while you taste locally delectable wines.

Smilee’s Ice Cream

Support a local family while you enjoy melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork sandwhiches and the kids devour a sampling of one of the 32 flavors of melt-all-over-the-floor-and-their-face ice creams.

German Hausbarn Museum

Built in Germany in 1727, you’ll be amazed to find a relic like this in Iowa! Only open on weekdays.

Malone Park

This 30-acre park includes a 9-acre lake for fishing and swimming, perfect for a quiet afternoon of enjoying the water, but shallow and small so you aren’t as anxious about watching the kids.

Clinton IA 25 miles

Stone Tower 

Eagle Point Park A breathtaking view of the river and beyond.

Bulger’s Hollow Recreation Area

This sweet little area literally dead ends into the river! You’ll find a nice little picnic area and chance to sit still and enjoy nature.

Eagle Point Park Bike Trails

A beautiful bike ride.

Coney Island at Cattail Slough

This secluded little spot is nestled along the river with a small sandy beach and an area for fishing. Enjoy a picnic or bring along your guitar and have a good old fashioned singalong.

Mississippi River Eco Tourism Center

You’ll find a huge aquarium here boasting local species of fish. Whether you want to rent a kayak or get a ride with a naturalist for a guided tour, you’ll likely find what your looking for with this little stop off.

Sawmill Museum

I’m sure you know the reason the semi-pro baseball team in Clinton is called “The Lumberkings”. If you don’t know, you can find out why and more at the Sawmill Museum. This is especially a hit with fans of big machinery (aka most little kids I know!)

Clinton Area Showboat Theater

Just as it sounds, you can take in a musical while you’re on a boat. Support local theater and enjoy the show!

Clinton County Historical Society and Museum

Home to one of only three manually powered engines in the world.

Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center

A basic small town children’s play area. My kids love to build for days with their giant collection of citibloks, and I like it because I can see the whole room at one time so there’s no having to follow right behind them to keep track of them.

Bickelhaupt Arboretum

Learn about all kinds of varieties of flowers and plants with the nifty labeled signage.

Wide River Winery

After a long day of kid-centric fun, you deserve to take some time for yourself. Buy a bunch of different flavors. If you find a favorite you can also buy their wine in the metro area to restock.

River Arts Center

You can paint your own pottery or you take in some local artists’ work. This also is home to a cool local theater with lots of adults eager to share their love of theater with families.

Cordova IL 25 miles

Cordova International Raceway

Love noise, action packed fun, and big engines? This is for you!

Colona IL 26 miles

Lavender Crest Winery

Just go here.

Hennepin Canal Parkway State Park

The Hennepin Canal State Trail is an ideal destination for a relaxing day of picnicking, hiking, biking, fishing and old fashioned family fun. There are plenty of picnic tables along the 104.5-mile linear park spanning five Illinois counties (Rock Island, Bureau, Henry, Lee and Whiteside). If you want to be extra, you can look up information about the canals ahead of time, such as the Panama Canal, Erie Canal or Suez Canal and help everyone see what an incredible feat of engineering this was for the time.

Green Rock Memorial Bike Path

Running along the Hennepin Canal, this is a picturesque hike or walk, or bike ride.

Fort Obie Rendezvous and Living History Encampment

Second weekend in October – Living history in the time of the mountain men, offering many demonstrations, some in which kids can participate in. Mark your calendar for this wonderful experience.

Colona’s Scott Family Park

This is where you’ll find activities for everyone, including a swimming pool, miniature golf, arcade, paddle boats, a stocked fishing pond, and more.

Aledo IL 30 miles

Deja Brew Coffee Shop

That alone would be enough to pique my interest, but it’s also attached to clothing boutique.

Rhubarb Festival

Early June – Aledo is also the home to the Rhubarb Festival. Now I don’t know if it’s really true, but the governor of that fine state dubbed it to be the Rhubarb Capital of Illinois. If you’re not familiar with rhubarb, come get acquainted. It’s a tart odd looking stem of a plant, which, when you add enough sugar is absolutely out of this world delicious. The fine people of Aledo have been perfecting rhubarb recipes for decades. It’s small town fun at it’s finest.

Mercer County Fair

Mid July – From the expected carnival rides, animal shows and pageantry you can also enter your baby into the decorated diaper contest or wander through the Pumpkin House or have your small set enter the pedal tractor pull. One of the earliest county fairs in the area!

Wilton, IA 30 miles

Wilton Candy Kitchen

The owners are Wilton natives who just love all of their customers. Dating back to 1860, it’s an old-fashioned soda fountain, and the oldest in the country, right here in Iowa! You can sit right in front at the counter and watch them mix your drinks/ice cream. Everything on the menu sounds really yummy. The place has a whimsical, magical feel to it.

Public Library

When you’re done browsing at the candy kitchen, take a stroll around the tiny downtown. Visit the adorable library and let the kids play at the park.

Maquoketa, IA 47 miles

Maquoketa Caves

If you have yet to visit the caves, please try it this year. I’ve done it while baby wearing. It’s not too arduous; you just will need someone to make sure you’re bending low enough if you go into some of the caves with babe on your back. We always have a fantastic time getting muddy and wet (bring towels!) and it is always nice and cool, even on the most humid Iowa summer day.

Iowa Grape Vines Winery, Root Beer and Ice Cream

Just one word: Yum.

Clinton Engines Museum

You don’t really need much of a descriptor, it’s an engines museum.

Hurstville Interpretative Center 

This is really a local hidden gem in my opinion. It’s a small room, packed with information and learning opportunities. Out doors you’ll find a pair of swans and other wildlife. Inside, many chances to learn about all sorts of nature. Among other highlights, they have a bee hive which enables you to watch the bees work at their tasks. Fascinating.

Hurstville Lime Kilns

I didn’t even know such a thing existed until we saw the sign on the highway. According to LowTechMagazine.com, ““Lime” here means neither the citrus fruit nor the tree, but refers to a white powder derived from limestone. For at least 7,000 years humans created lime in kilns, much like they hardened pottery. Creating mortar for construction was a primary use.” Concrete made by Romans in this way has lasted for thousands of years, while our concrete usually only lasts for decades. These kilns aren’t from ancient Rome, but it’s still cool to see the original technology of our ancestors. It’s also much more fun if you read up about something before you go see it, so you and your kids have some context about why it’s so interesting.

61 Drive In

Outdoor movie theater – one of the only in the area.

Bluff Lake

A restaurant built by hand in the 1960s, it’s been family owned its entire existence. Everyone who’s eaten there exclaims over the deliciousness of the food and the casualness of the owners. Perfect for eating with kids when you don’t want to worry about table manners. Open only on weekends.

Monmouth, IL 48 miles

LeSuer Nature Preserve

You can take a walk among several different habitats, such as prairie before the people moved in, (did you know that the prairie grass would have been as high as a school bus?!) forest and water. A beautiful place in which to observe nature.

Wyatt Earp Birthplace

A 30 second shootout at the OK Corral has become the stuff of legend. Depicted by many actors, including Kevin Costner and Kurt Russell, and fodder for many Westerns, it all started here, in humble Monmouth IL.

Bishop Hill, IL 50 miles

Bishop Hill National Landmark

A historical township with Swedish heritage; you’ll find reenactors here when you visit during a special event. The buildings are open for a self guided tour Wednesdays through Sundays. Much more than a historical learning opportunity, you’ll find something for everyone from sweet little restaurants where kids are welcome and cherished to boutiques for mom, all with the picturesque feel of days gone by.

Iowa City, IA 52 miles

Old Capitol

In the original capital of Iowa, the capitol holds much history of our state.

Uof I Museum of Natural History

A huge place with all kinds of animals, birds, and more. Anyone would find this an enjoyable outing. Perfect for a rainy day. I like it because it’s quiet and educational.

The Iowa Children’s Museum The Museum

In Coral Ridge Mall. It has a lot to offer kids of all ages. While you’re there, go ice skating at Coral Ridge Mall or visit Trader Joe’s. You could spend some time at Scheel’s or eat at Zombie Burger.

Hickory Hill Park Walk

Run trail routes, picnicking, grilling, and nature study. What more could a person ask for from a park?

University of Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame

For the sports fans in the family, this is a mecca. For the rest of you, you’ll find something to enjoy here too.

On a nice day be sure to visit Devonian Fossil Gorge

You can see a dried out riverbed that has all kinds of fossils and learn about them. Rock Island reader Ashley highly recommends a visit and tells us, “They have maps that correspond to the various numbers around the gorge about the many fossil types located at different spots. Fascinating!”

Macbride State Park near Solon, IA

They have a raptor center there where you can see all kinds of raptors that are there for various reasons such as injury, have been imprinted on humans, etc, like owls, hawks, kestrels, and eagles. Additionally, there’s a bird blind where you can watch all kinds of birds come to their feeders. Nearby posters about the birds help you identify and learn more about the avian visitors. Hiking and waterfalls make this an ideal family outing! All free.

Columbus Junction, IA 53 miles

Lovers Leap Swinging Bridge 8 stories above the ground

Chinkapin Bluffs Park

Odessa Wildlife Refuge.

Simply Soothing Iowa Marketplace 

Galesburg, IL 56 miles

Discovery Depot Children’s Museum

Galesburg Railroad Museum

Carl Sandburg State Historical Site

Coney Island

 National Railroad Hall of Fame

Riverside, IA 57 miles

Trek Fest

The last weekend in June

The Voyage Home Museum

Future Birthplace of Captain Kirk

St. Mary’s Catholic Church

Riverside Casino

For excellent food options

Sabula IA 58 miles (The only island city in Iowa)

Great River Road National Scenic Byway

Island City Days

Ski Bellevue Water Ski Show

Jackson County Welcome Center

Replica of old-fashioned schoolhouse, complete with a bell to ring and authentic furnishings.

Island City Harbor

Refreshing, not crowded beach on the river

Green Island Wildlife Area

Kayak, boat, fish get wet and muddy It is a true blessing being alive when you can see nature at its best in places like this.

Burlington, IA 58 miles

Snake Alley 

A street located in Burlington, Iowa, which was built in 1894. In 2017, Ripley’s Believe It or Not! recognized the street as “Unbelievably Crooked” and the #1 Odd Spot in their Odd Spots Across America Campaign

Fun City

With an indoor/outdoor water park, bowling alley, go-kart track, laser-tag arena and arcade, it is literally a fun city! Davenport mom, Maggie, says it’s their top day trip destination because her “boys love it all!”

Catfish Bend Casino & Resort

Great food and fun city for the grown ups.

Crapo Park

A city park with arboretum and botanical garden, alongside the Mississippi River.

Dankwardt Park

Burlington’s city parks have a lot to offer. You’ll find grand views and places to stretch your legs as well as the chance to catch some nature doing what nature does. Being all “nature-y”.

Mosquito Park

Starr’s Cave Park, Preserve, and Nature Center

Did someone say cave? Yes, there’s a cave, named for a guy named Starr, and a park. Lots to see and do here, if you can tear the kids away from the bumper cars at Fun City, you definitely want to check it out.

Rock Falls, IL 62 miles

Crystal Lake

A totally unexpected gem of an outing. This spot is a bounce house extravaganza on the water. I have a wide range of ages in my family and my teens had just as much fun as my toddlers.

Dillon Home Museum

With steam engine in back yard.

Hennepin Canal Trail

A lovely trail most of which is shady. Perfect if you’re walking, biking, or even pushing a stroller.

Sinnissippi Mounds Hopewell

Mound builders were native peoples living in our area. Imagine taking buckets and buckets of dirt by hand in order to make hills, which are then made into a shape which can only be seen from the sky! But as far as we know they didn’t have a way to see the designs they made! Definitely do some research about this fascinating history before you check it out in person; it will make your day trip from the Quad Cities so much more enjoyable.

Mt Vernon, IA 65 miles

American Gothic Barn

If you’re not familiar with the painting by Cedar Rapids native “American Gothic”, you need to GET familiar with it. Someone duplicated this famous artwork on the entire side of the barn! In the middle of nowhere, it’s a startling beauty!

Palisades-Kepler State Park

Gorgeous hiking trails and beautiful woods and views. Both easy and more arduous trails. Last I checked it was still closed from Derecho last summer, but keep it near the top of your list of family day trips near the Quad Cities.

Algers Pizza Palace

Delicious pizza with a gigantic fun mural on the walls. The servers are as personable as can be and loved the kids, who were acting very much like kids. We enjoyed every minute of this family day trip from the Quad Cities.


You’ll definitely want to check this place out! The owner has a mission of creating a safe place for family fun!

St. Donatus, IA 68 miles

Pronounced Doh-NAY-tus, St. Donatus is “old world,” Iowa’s version of the tiny European country of Luxembourg. It so closely resembles Europe, you’ll find it hard to believe you’re still in the midwest.


Possibly try big bowls of homemade noodles and sauerkraut and sausage alongside the wiener schnitzel a breaded pork, is always served at Kalmes.

Dubuque, IA 72 miles

Fenelon Place Elevator

Lots of history in finding out about this crazy trip straight up a hill. We do this almost every time we go to Dubuque and it never gets old.

Union Park Shot Tower

Lots to learn about this and offers great views of surrounding area.

Crystal Lake Cave 

Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium

here is so much to see here you could probably go every month and learn new things. They have a touching tank, and it surprises me the HUGE variety of animals that live in the Mississippi River ecosystem. Lots of history and hands on activities.

Grand Harbor Resort and Water Park

Fun in the summer or the winter! You can go to the water park without staying at the hotel. It’s most expensive on Saturdays, so plan a day trip from the Quad Cities for another day if you’d like to save some money. The park is included with a hotel stay.

Cedar Rapids, IA 80 miles

African American Museum of Iowa

I’m white of European descent, along with 75% of the population of the Quad Cities. That majority will never understand what it’s like to have a Black heritage, and raise a Black family in these times, but I can do my best to educate myself and advocate for my brothers and sisters who are richer in melanin than I am. Taking my kids to museums like this one is a way I can do that. Please do it too.

Ushers Ferry Historic Village

They have a Civil War re-enactment weekend in the fall, but it’s cool all the time!

Wickiup Hill

An environmental learning center featuring hands on exhibits for kids, educational programming, history, and live animal displays. The huge outdoor area includes interpretive trails and Native American mounds, and a playscape.

The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

It’s so important to expose your kids to real art. Seeing it in books or on a video is good, but there is something incredible about seeing it in person.

The Play Station

A three story indoor playground, perfect for a rainy day road trip!

Dixon, IL 86 miles

One reviewer said: The Next Picture show has a variety of art forms, as well as specific shows of individual artists. It is a great local resource for encouraging the arts in the local community. You will see something that grabs you when you visit the shop. It is a place that changes, so you will need to go back again and again.

Old Settlers Memorial Cabin

Ronald Reagan Boyhood Home

Flynnie’s Diner

A delicious Homestyle Cookin’ diner located in Dixon Illinois. We feature classic Diner style stools, tables and booths in a very friendly and personal environment. We are not a truck stop. We are a personal family experience where even the old guys can hang out daily and feel well known.

Railroad Street Arches

Built in 1855, these are just cool stone arches to explore above the street and below the arch.

Galena, IL and Elizabeth, IL area 86 miles

Fossils from the shallow oceans that once covered Illinois can be found easily in the majestic limestone bluffs of Galena and the nearby Mississippi River. Absolutely the most beautifully scenic area of the Midwest, it is no wonder the Native American chose this place for their home. They called Manatoumi, or Sacred Ground.

We often think of the Galena area as the place to go skiing in Iowa, but it has so much to offer for your summer roadtrip too!

Alpine Slide

Fun for grownups; I want to do all of these things with my kids!

Soaring Eagle Zipline

Segway Tours

River Cruise

Mini Golf & Disc Golf, Hiking, Biking

Apple River Fort

Today known as the Apple River Fort State Historic Site, was one of many frontier forts hastily completed by settlers in northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin following the onset of the 1832 Black Hawk War. Live reanactors are there to answer yo ur questions.

The Winston Tunnel

A railroad tunnel located 9 miles west of Elizabeth, Illinois. The tunnel was completed in 1888 for the Minnesota and Northwestern Railroad, a predecessor to the Chicago Great Western Railway

Tapely Woods State Natural Area

Fergedaboudit Vineyard & Winery

One reviewer said, “This place is amazing! They have several tasting options, a couple versions of which you can try all their wines. The owner and associate that served us were terrific. Very knowledgeable and fun people. The outdoor area is incredible; views that need to be captured, outdoor seating, decorative water landscaping, a deck with live music on Saturdays, altogether breathtaking. And the wine was…WOW! Left with two cases.”

Long Hollow Canopy Tours

Long Hollow Scenic Overlook

Chicago Great Western Railway Depot Museum

Have a train lover in the family? Here’s the spot for you!

Balltown, IA

Opened in 1852 by federal permit issued from President Millard Fillmore, Breitbach’s is Iowa’s oldest food and drinking establishment. Jacob Breitbach, great-great grandfather of the present owner, purchased the business in 1862, and through six generations, the Breitbach family has been in ownership ever since.

Town of less than 100 scenic overlook is not to be missed.

Dyersville, IA 89 miles

Field of Dreams

A movie from the 1980s, has continuted to capivate audiences for years. You can visit the movie site. First, you need to have a movie night at home so your kids understand why you’re driving all this way to see a baseball field and corn when we have perfectly good baseball fields and corn back home in the Quad Cities.

Peoria, IL 90 miles

Playhouse Children’s Museum

There is so much to see and do here, this could be your only stop in Peoria. Kids of all ages love it.

Peoria Zoo

A great zoo so close to home.

Riverfront Museum Art. Science. Culture.

Put this one at the top of your list.

Luthy Botanical Gardens

I used to think that botanical gardens were kind of boring frankly- I mean, plants aren’t really that fun and flashy. Then I learned to look at spaces like this with the wonder of a child and I’ve changed my mind!

Forest Park

With miles of nature enjoyment, you can also take classes on everything from bats to bugs and even have a guided hike to bolster your learning experience.

Sculpture Walk

A unique chance to walk around with your kids and interpret art. You can learn to ask each other good questions, and better use your imaginations. It’s really a lot of fun!

Kartville Go carts, dune buggies, mini golf, batting cages and more

ROC Ice Cream and Golf

Ice cream. Golf.

One World Cafe Peoria

Lots of wonderful restaurants. I chose to highlight this one because they strive to offer midwest hospitality and globally inspired flavors. I just love that!

Kickapoo Creek Winery

Delicious wines, and with a name like Kickapoo, I kind of feel like you really need your whole wine cellar filled with it.

Caterpillar Visitors Center

It has a lot to offer families, a lot like our own John Deere Visitors Center.

Grandview Drive

An online review said: Several friends joined me for a lovely picnic dinner along beautiful Grandview Drive recently. There are several spots that have a few picnic tables and we each brought a sack meal (fast food or home made) and enjoyed each other’s company and the beautiful views. It’s very high up and you can see up and down the river for miles. It’s not a place you’d expect to find picnic areas but it works and is a special surprise. Very peaceful and serene, you’ll be glad you took this day trip from the Quad Cities.

Utica, IL 95 miles

Starved Rock State Park

Such a popular attraction it is the only Illinois run park that actually has its own website! Try to go on a weekday because weekends are really crowded.

Matthessien State Park

Lots of waterfalls and wooded paths. Completely enjoyable.

Two Girls and a Cupcake

Two sisters wanted to make cupcakes. So they did. They make them so well, with real cream, you’ll want to buy one of each kind. (I actually did do that!)

Illinois River Winery

Truly a family run business, you’ll find locally grown grapes and deliciously made wines.

Flutterby Popcorn

Two words: YUM. MEE. I wish this were closer so I could buy it every day-which technically I could because you can buy it on their website. Nevertheless, put it on your list of day trips from the Quad Cities.

McGregor, IA 128 miles

Effigy Mounds National Monument

More mound builders. Seriously, research this part of our local history and learn with your kids about it! In Outside Online’s article 50 Best Hikes,  Effigy Mounds was chosen as the best one in Iowa.

Pikes Peak State Park

With 12 miles of hiking and skiing trails, including the gorgeously scenic Bridal Veil Falls

Wyalusing State Park

Yellow River State Forest

In an Outside magazine list of the Midwest’s Choice Hikes,  Yellow River was chosen. The magazine calls it Iowa’s answer to the Rockies. Definitely worth the day trip from the Quad Cities.

Historical Museum

Has incredibly intricate sand paintings inside bottles

Dan Slaughter’s yard, is part of a business called Wood Crafts & Junk, but also a folk-art extravaganza.

River Junction Trade Co.

A shop that may as well be a museum.

Guided boat tour at Spook Cave 

At the base of a bluff along Bloody Run Creek is definitely going to be a capstone of your summer.

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Jessica is a home educator and owner of QC Moms. She lives in a geriatric, temperamental Victorian home with her six children ages 16, 14, 12, 10, 8 and 5. She is passionate about natural living, homeschooling her wild and free children, gentle parenting, and trying to glorify God in her daily life. If there is any time left over, she enjoys reading, her planner, reading, cooking, writing, baking, Netflix and Facebook, reading, and learning new things. She used to write at http://www.farmfreshjessica.com.


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