Notes: Of course, you could do this trip all in one day, but why? Stretch it out over a few and enjoy yourself. Also, be sure to check routes and attraction hours before setting out.
3 hours, 57 minutes
START HERE: MAUCKPORT Explore the wonders of southern Indiana 90 feet beneath the surface at Squire Boone Caverns, where you can glimpse millions of years’ worth of cave formation in a moment. Above ground, there’s a zipline course, including a newer one for kids.
2 CORYDON (15 miles/21 min.) Indiana’s first capital city is steeped in the past—it’s also the site of the state’s only Civil War battle. Have a picnic beneath the spreading branches of Constitution Elm, where state delegates met in 1816 to draft the first Indiana Constitution.
3 LEAVENWORTH (12 miles/17 min.) Up for more spelunking? Take in the stunning stalactites and stalagmites of Wyandotte Caves, part of O’Bannon Woods State Park, nestled inside the sprawling, 26,000- acre Harrison Crawford State Forest, a favorite destination for bird-watchers, bikers, horseback riders and hunters.
4 MARENGO (18 miles/27 min.) The famous caves here beckon you to go gemstone mining, cave crawling, hiking and picnicking. The crown jewel of the cave “rooms”: the Crystal Palace, an easy 40-minute stroll.
5 FRENCH LICK (34 miles/39 min.) Best known for its historic pair of lavish hotels, French Lick Springs and West Baden Springs Hotels, it’s also home to sprawling Patoka Lake, a great place to see wildlife.
6 JASPER (25 miles/37 min.)
The Dubois County Museum and Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame are major draws to Jasper. Best time to go? August, when the annual Strassenfest fills the streets with German music, food, a beer garden, car show, parade and much more.
7 HUNTINGBURG (7 miles/13 min.) Five churches on a Dubois County driving tour of 19 historical temples of worship, the Trail of Faith, are located in the small town of Huntingburg.
8 FERDINAND (10 miles/13 min.) Monkey Hollow Winery showcases award-winning vino, and Ferdinand Christkindlmarkt is a major draw for shopping for everything holidays: antiques, handicrafts, primitives, and more.
9 SANTA CLAUS (8 miles/12 min.) It’s Christmas all year long in this one-of-a-kind town, with draws like Santa’s Candy Castle and Frosty’s Fun Center along with the major theme park Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari.
10 EVANSVILLE (61 miles/58 min.) Outdoor fun abounds in the state’s third-largest city. Splash through Burdette Park and Aquatic Center, see Komodo dragons at Mesker Park Zoo & Botanic Garden or hit the trails at Angel Mounds.