About this trip idea
Allow 2-3 days.
Explore Northern Indiana’s transportation and motorsports history at museums, manufacturing plants and diners.
Motor into the past
Relive the history of automobiles in the northern part of Indiana. The Studebaker National Museum in South Bend is a hidden treasure downtown where you can experience the birthplace of the brand, learn about the Studebaker brothers and see cars that date back to the early 1900s. For a different type of automotive history, head east to Elkhart to tour the RV/MH Hall of Fame and Museum and trace the progression of the RV industry from the 1920s to the present. In the Founders Hall, take a step back in time and peek into various styles of early motor homes to see what life on the road was like in the middle of the twentieth century.
Steam into railroad country
Take a break from riding in the car to enjoy an older form of transportation in Fort Wayne . Get a glimpse into the history of rail travel at Baker Street Station , opened in 1914. Admire the breathtaking architecture and stand on the platform where Hoosiers listened to Franklin D. Roosevelt and other presidential candidates give whistle-stop campaign speeches. Across town, see the trains that once rode these rails at the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society . Get a close view of the engines or make a reservation to be an Engineer for an Hour and learn the art of locomotive operation.
Zoom back to the present
Complete your tour by experiencing the power and construction of today’s cars. Head southwest from Fort Wayne to the Kokomo Speedway for a family-oriented racing atmosphere. Catch a street stock or sprint car race, cheer on your favorite driver and enjoy their post-race fireworks. West of Kokomo, the Subaru of Indiana plant in Lafayette offers free tours (by appointment) of the manufacturing process. Watch as workers create parts, assemble bodies, paint cars and test new vehicles for safety and quality. Then, fill up your tanks with a juicy burger and creamy root beer at Lafayette’s Dog ‘n Suds Drive-In .
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