We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

One afternoon/evening around campus

Michigan
Level Contributor
64 posts
123 reviews
One afternoon/evening around campus

My husband and I love to visit Big Ten campuses, as we both went to one.

Since we'll be driving through IC after being in Yellowstone, we're planning an overnight. We'll be staying in nearby Coralville, and would like to go down to campus in the afternoon, walk around then get dinner somewhere. We'll have our two daughters with us (9 & 13).

Can we get some ideas of campus/off campus areas to see? What streets, etc. Local shops, record stores, bookstores, cafés, etc. Then an idea for dinner would be great. We like most types of food..

Not sure if the union has bowling or anything (both of ours did), thought that may be an idea for kitschy fun.

Suggestions welcome! Thanks.

10 replies to this topic
USA
Level Contributor
7,134 posts
257 reviews
1. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Prairie Lights Bookstore is the THE bookstore in Iowa City: http://www.prairielights.com/ You might stick your head into nearby Iowa Book to check out U of I logo wear. http://www.iowabook.com/ The old heart of campus is across the street from Iowa Book at the Pentacrest. Step inside the gold domed Old Capitol building for a look see. Nearby Macbride Hall houses the free Museum of Natural History. tripadvisor.com/Attractions-g38020-Activitie…

You have scads of restaurants to choose from in Coralville and Iowa City. Hamburg Inn is a run of mill old diner that is a required stop for politicos on the campaign trail. You might want to head out of town to the unique 19th century communal Amana Colonies for dinner at the Ox Yoke Inn or Ronnenburg's. tripadvisor.com/Restaurants-g29354-Amana_Iow…

In Coralville, the Antique Car Museum of Iowa is across the street from the Marriott, if someone has time to visit. I hate to mention that Coral Ridge Mall is the largest in Iowa.

West Branch, Iowa is just 10 miles east of Iowa City. The Herbert Hoover National Historic Site is just off the interstate with a wonderful open air museum. Free. 12 minute video in the visitor center or spend as little or as much time as you want visiting the schoolhouse, Friends meeting house, blacksmith shop and Hoover's boyhood home. The adjacent presidential library costs $6 per adult and requires at least an hour.

Michigan
Level Contributor
64 posts
123 reviews
2. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Thank you - lots of good ideas here!

Any buildings on campus that we shouldn't miss?

Didn't realize there was a presidential site nearby - bonus!

And don't worry, the mall isn't high on our priority list. :)

Thanks again,

Kris

USA
Level Contributor
7,134 posts
257 reviews
3. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

"Any buildings on campus that we shouldn't miss?"

The Pentacrest that I mentioned above is a group of five campus buildings with the Old Capitol at its center. The Memorial Union is catty corner to the Pentacrest, down the hill and to the northwest. I last visited the Union 40 years ago and remember nothing of interest. The main library is about three blocks south of the Union. I don't find the library interesting unless you are searching for materials, but you could visit a building that the majority of students have not. I am not that familiar with the campus, but these building should all be open during the summer.

The campus straddles the beautiful Iowa River which is currently flooded. If things are cleaned up in time for your visit you can walk the trails beside it.

You might want to drive past Kinnick Stadium and Carver Hawkeye Arena. University of Iowa Hospitals are a world class medical facility, but I don't think it is place people choose to visit.

The Recreation and Wellness is modern and impressive looking as I drive past on Burlington Street. Forgive me if there is an awesome attraction that I just don't know about.

If anyone enjoys ghost stories, you might visit the Black Angel: …wikipedia.org/wiki/…29

USA
Level Contributor
7,134 posts
257 reviews
4. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

I should have thought of campus tours earlier: …uiowa.edu/sites/default/files/uploading/fil…

Saint James City...
Destination Expert
for San Pedro
Level Contributor
16,481 posts
10 reviews
5. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Hamburg Inn had a grease fire a month or so ago. I don't think they have reopened yet, and, read that the opening had been delayed even further.

Michigan
Level Contributor
64 posts
123 reviews
6. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

All these new ideas are great and just the stuff I was looking for. How cool to have the old Capitol in the middle of campus! We'll definitely walk around there.

Too bad about the Hamburg - that was a place I was reading about. Any other restaurants popular with the college crowd? We could always have dinner closer to the hotel but I like campus eateries.

Thanks again for everything!

Kris

Ps -we're there in mid-August so hopefully the water will be lower by then...

USA
Level Contributor
7,134 posts
257 reviews
7. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Restaurants? I look at the college dining area as a rectangle roughly bordered by Burlington, Clinton, Market and Gilbert. My kids recently received their degrees from the U of I. My wife says the portions are small and the prices are high at my vegetarian daughter's favorite Trumpet Blossom Cafe: tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g38020-d33… We generally ate at with the kids and were satisfied with El Banditos: tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g38020-d21…

The rest of the family likes Thai Flavors better than I do: tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g38020-d45…

Pagliai's has been around forever and serves good pizza: tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g38020-d45…

Michigan
Level Contributor
64 posts
123 reviews
8. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Excellent advice again. You know your stuff!

Great suggestions, plus an area to explore for others. Thanks again!

Iowa
Level Contributor
414 posts
127 reviews
9. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

My husband and I love these IC restaurants: The Bluebird Diner, which uses mostly locally sourced ingredients; Mekong for yummy Asian food; Orchard Green for a fine dining experience; Basta for homemade pasta; Devotay or Share for tapas; and Pagliai's for the best pizza in town. Downtown IC offers great shopping options. Check out the IC Public Library. It's a cool building.

Edited: 19 July 2014, 22:26
Michigan
Level Contributor
64 posts
123 reviews
10. Re: One afternoon/evening around campus

Thank you - looks like I have a lot of options now!

Reply to: One afternoon/evening around campus
Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted