About this trip idea

Allow 2-3 days.

Nestled in the heart of Northern Indiana along the meandering banks of the St. Joseph River, South Bend offers a wealth of cultural and recreational activities for an event-filled getaway for two!

Stroll a Japanese garden. Located in Merrifield Park, the Shiojiri Niwa Gardens symbolizes the Sister-City relationship between Mishawaka and Shiojiri City, Nagano Prefecture, Japan. Featuring more than 20 different varieties of large plant material and a lovely teahouse pavilion - the perfect quiet place to reconnect.

For a little more excitement, ride the waves at East Race Waterway in the heart of downtown South Bend. As North America’s first artificial white water course, this one-of-a-kind recreational facility takes you on a thrill ride as you tackle the rapids. Bring a kayak, rent a raft or just observe from the banks of the East Race. The East Race, part of the St. Joseph River, is open weekends June through mid-August.

Learn a little something
Get the inside scoop at the South Bend Chocolate Factory Tour and Chocolate Museum on the making of chocolate. The tour features an informative video, artifact museum, factory tour and samples. The factory even houses a café and factory shop for additional tasting pleasures!

Experience the 38-room Oliver Mansion at The History Museum .  The mansion is just as it appeared when Anna and J.D. Oliver and their four children lived there. Learn a bit about the history of the home through its completely original furnishings. The exquisite 12,000 square foot historic home provides a remarkable glimpse of the family's daily life. A guided tour captures the beauty of the Victorian home and conjures images of bygone days.

Walk the legendary University of Notre Dame   campus, home to the world famous Fighting Irish™. Talk the campus tour for a history lesson about historical sites like the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, the Golden Dome and the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes. The tour begins at the Eck Visitors Center with a brief video.

Take in a show
Grab dinner at Tippecanoe Place , historic Studebaker mansion turned wonderful fine dining experience before catching a show at the Morris Performing Arts Center . Originally built in 1921 as a vaudeville house, the Morris hosted such great acts as Amos & Andy, Houdini, Imogene Coco and Frank Sinatra during the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Today, the Morris is the hottest tickets in town for national acts and tours including Broadway tours, musical concerts, comedians and family shows.

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