About this trip idea
1. START HERE: MUNSTER One of Indiana’s most acclaimed breweries, Three Floyds Brewing Co., attracts craft-beer aficionados who are loyal to its Zombie Dust and Yum Yum pale ales, its extensive list of seasonal sips and a menu of farm-fresh pub grub.
2. CROWN POINT (15 miles/31 min.) See John Dillinger’s tombstone (which had to be removed from his grave due to visitors chipping off pieces) and the wooden gun that the infamous criminal used to escape the Lake County Courthouse at the John Dillinger Museum.
3. MERRILLVILLE (9 miles/16 min.) If you’ve ever wanted to visit Willy Wonka’s fictional sugar-filled dreamland, we suggest Albanese Candy Factory as a sweet alternative. Check out the giant chocolate fountain, and don’t leave without a bag of 12-flavor gummy bears.
4. VALPARAISO (11 miles/17 min.) Don't expect standard Mexican fare at Ricochet Tacos, where creative food with a complex flavor is all wrapped up in an unassuming taco.
5. VALPARAISO (7 miles/14 min.) Admire lush themed gardens, such as those dedicated to roses and native plants, and keep an eye out for numerous species of animals and birds at Taltree Arboretum & Gardens, a 330-acre nature-lover’s paradise.
6. CHESTERTON (20 miles/31 min.) The grass-fed beef patties at Octave Grill’s are often topped with unexpected fripperies such as Cheetos and fried plantains.
7. HESSTON (27 miles/31 min.) The Hesston Steam Museum brings the Industrial Age back to life, with various trains (hop on for a ride!), a working steam-powered sawmill and blacksmiths—find their wares in the gift shop.
8. NOTRE DAME (40miles/45 min.) Marvel over impressive campus landmarks, such as Basilica of the Sacred Heart, the Grotto and Touchdown Jesus, during a guided walking tour of the University of Notre Dame.
9. ELKHART (15 miles/34 min.) The Gateway Mile, dotted with boutiques, restaurants, museums and scenic views, is an easy way to explore the city’s three major downtown enclaves.
10. BRISTOL (8 miles/11 min.) Stop in Fruit Hills Winery & Orchard, located on the grounds of a fruit farm, to enjoy a glass of vino produced on site; its semi-sweet Traminette is especially popular.