48 Hours in Indy! Fun Stuff to Do on Your Indianapolis Weekend Getaway for Couples, Besties

Indianapolis Bottle Works INDY Sign at Night

Perfect Indianapolis Weekend Getaway

Indianapolis makes a pretty sweet Midwest weekend getaway for couples or friend groups – even if you’re not into car racing. Of course, Indy is bursting with things to do for sports-lovers and families.

If you’re looking for a place where you can kick back and enjoy top-notch museums, amazing cuisine, and fun nightlife scene – all served up with some good ‘ol Midwestern hospitality – then you need to put an Indianapolis weekend getaway your calendar ASAP.

Stroll the Downtown Canal Walk - Indianapolis Weekend Getaway
Canal Walk in Downtown Indianapolis

Build your weekend getaway itinerary from this list of fun stuff to do in Indianapolis for an easy-breezy escape.

Friday Night Fun Stuff to Do in Indianapolis

Lucky you! Everything you could want is at your fingertips in the cool, compact Bottleworks District!

Bottleworks District

Friday night is all about fun in the Bottleworks District, a new, reimagined warehouse community in Indianapolis. Rooftop bars, games, live music, movies, and delicious eats all anchor this fun-infused destination.

Bottle Works District at night - Indianapolis fun stuff to do
Indianapolis Bottleworks District

Bottleworks Hotel

First up – let’s get checked into the Bottleworks Hotel.

Located at 850 Massachusetts Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46204, this historic gem used to be a Coca-Cola bottling plant.

It’s since been transformed into a luxurious boutique hotel.

You’ll love the stylish décor and unique ambiance – and that this stunning Art Deco hotel will be your home base for the weekend! 

Staying at Bottleworks Hotel

Big props to the folks that transformed this old building into a hotel. It is solid.

Quality workmanship is evident everywhere and the rooms do not disappoint; they’re spacious and outfitted with luxurious amenities.

It’s hard to leave digs like this but it’s time to meet friends for drinks at the Garage Food Hall.

Garage Food Hall at Bottleworks

Grab a drink and a snack at The Garage Food Hall, a cool hangout spot that offers a wide selection of world cuisines and beverages.

Bottleworks District Garage Food Hall

The building, once home to the plant’s Coca-Cola delivery trucks, still retains its industrial charm today with elements like large roll-up bay doors.

Great Legs Wine Bar - Art Deco Exterior Garage Food Hall at Bottle Works District
Great Legs Wine Bar at the Garage Food

We’d be here all day if we ticked off every vendor inside the hall. Just know that you’re in for poke, Mexican, a juice bar, Greek food, Cuban-inspired cuisine, Lobster rolls, and a whole lot more.

Bottleworks District Garage Food Hall Indianapolis

Now, is it time for a movie or is it time to play?

Pins Mechanical Co

Pins Mechanical Company at Bottleworks (856 Carrollton Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46202) is the ultimate bar game hangout and is loaded with fun stuff to do.

Try your hand at duck pin bowling – a fun and challenging twist on traditional bowling, with smaller balls and pins.

Duck Pin Bowling Indianapolis - Pins Mechanical
Duck Pin Bowling

They’ve got vintage pinball machines, ping pong, foosball, and even bocce ball.

And of course, an enormous selection of draft beers and cocktails.

Bar at Pins Mechanical - Bottle Works

Upstairs, their large year-round patio has cozy bonfires and giant Jenga. It’s the perfect adults-only destination (21+ after 8 pm.)

Living Room Theaters

Or, you can catch an indie or first-run movie at The Living Room Theaters just across the street.

It’s a state-of-the-art movie-watching facility with intimate, living room-style theaters.

Living Room Theaters - Exterior -Indianapolis
Living Room Theaters in the Bottleworks District

Enjoy selections from the full bar of local craft beers, wines, and cocktails, as well as in-theater dining options from the gourmet kitchen.

Mass Ave for Dinner

If dinner in the theater isn’t what you’re after, head to Mass Ave for a great selection of restaurants and bars.

This vibrant street is just steps away from the hotel and is packed with great eats.

Mass Ave at Bottle Works District looking toward downtown Indy, on the Cultural Trail
Mass Ave in Bottleworks District, looking toward Downtown Indy

Popular options include Mesh on Mass, a contemporary American restaurant with an extensive wine list, and Livery, a Latin restaurant with a great vibes and a winning rooftop patio.

Saturday Stuff to Do

Good morning, sunshine! This day is filled with more wonderful choices.

Yes, there’s so much stuff to do in Indianapolis that you will need to make a few selections. The good news – there’s no wrong answer!

Regardless of where you end up, coffee is likely your first stop of the day. Bottleworks Hotel has you covered – just head down to the main level and visit the inhouse coffee spot, Blue Collar Coffee Co, for your morning brew and a bite of breakfast.

Then, lace up your walking shoes. Because today, you’re going places.

Newfields & The Lume

Our first stop of the day is the Newfields campus (4000 N Michigan Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46208.)

This 150-acre destination is home to:

  • The Indianapolis Museum of Art
  • The LUME
  • The Gardens at Newfields
  • The Garden Terrace Cafe & Beer Garden
  • The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park: 100 Acres
  • The historic Lilly House, and more.
Newfields Sign in Garden at LUME Indianapolis Art Museum

(If you’re looking for things to do in Indianapolis, Newfields should be on your list.)

Art & Nature Park at Newfields

If you’re up early, start at the Art & Nature Park.

Open from dawn to dusk, the Virginia B. Fairbanks 100-acre outdoor art park (1850 W 38th St, Indianapolis, IN 46228) is always free and is part of the Newfields campus.

newfields map - stuff to do in indianapolis

Take a 30-minute nature walk around the lake – it’s mostly flat – or take in the sculptures and art that are located near the parking area.

*Enter the Art & Nature park via the parking lot is located at 1850 West 38th St, about one-half block west of the main Newfields entrance.

The Lume at Newfields

The LUME, inside of the The Indiana Art Museum, is your next stop.

Book timed tickets in advance (Monet & Friends exhibit runs through May 2023) and get ready to step into a color-drenched art experience that puts you in the middle of it all.

Meet the exhibit artists via story snippets as you walk the path toward the exhibit hall. Sound and light take center stage in this immersive experience, inviting you to move through the LUME’s impressive 30,000 square feet at your own pace.

The dark path opens into a great open room. Floor-to-ceiling walls dot the space, serving as backdrops for the colorful 3-D displays put forth by 150 projectors in the room.

Wander through the space, peering around corners, and let your senses take over.

You’ll spend about 60 minutes here, followed by a drink and snack from the themed café.

Indiana Art Museum & Gardens

Your Newfields ticket also includes admission to the Art Museum and Gardens.

If art is your thing, stroll through the remaining exhibits in the Art Museum – this is one of the oldest art museums in the US and it houses an extensive list of works.

Inside the Indianapolis Museum of Art
Inside the Indianapolis Museum of Art

Be sure to visit the Clowes Pavilion, too. The LED ceiling is particularly impressive.

Clowes Pavillion at Newfields - Indianapolis things to do
Clowes Pavilion – Indiana Museum of Art

Lilly House & the Gardens

You can also walk the gardens and tour the Lilly House.

If the weather is nice, head outside to the Garden Terrace for a bite to eat – they serve sandwiches, beer, snacks and more.

Garden Terrace at Newfields in Indy

Relax at the Woodhouse Spa

After all of that activity, it’s time to get refreshed back at the Bottleworks District.

Book a couples massage, facials, nail services or the oh-so-delightful WH Signature Calming Retreat to help you unwind.

Described as “Seven specialized treatments combine for head-to-toe bliss, beginning with a full-body exfoliation and a therapeutic stone massage. Then, a specialized neck and shoulder massage release upper body tension, followed by acupressure and a massage of the scalp. A foot scrub and the restorative ancient art of reflexology complete this holistic experience,” we can’t think of many things better.

PS – Before you leave, be sure to take a photo with the iconic NDY sign in front of the hotel.

Bottleworks District INDY Sign

Dinner at Traders Point Creamery or the Jazz Kitchen

Refreshed and rejuevenated, let’s get ready for a wonderful night out. The question is – will it be live music or foodie-focused? (No matter your choice, reservations are recommended.)

Dinner at Traders Point Creamery is a delightful foodie experience.

Traders Point Creamery (9101 Moore Rd, Zionsville, IN 46077) is a picturesque organic farm and restaurant in NW Indy suburb.

The Creamery’s unique farm-to-table dining experience uses locally-sourced ingredients and is full of delectable offerings that will make your mouth dance.

If you appreciate natural foods in a cozy historic barn setting, you must dine here.

The Jazz Kitchen (5377 N College Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220), a lively jazz staple in the Broad Ripple neighborhood of Indianapolis, is another dinner option.

This spot is known for it’s Cajun and Creole-inspired menu and you can order a variety of cocktails, wines, or beers from their fully stocked bar, too.

Jazz Kitchen Indianapolis Broad Ripple

Picture the small stage, dimly lit, with saxophone and trombone strains filling the air. It’s a cozy and intimate place.

@lovelife34573

♬ original sound – lovelife34573

Pick this option if you want to unwind and enjoy a night out with good food, music, and drinks.

You really can’t go wrong.

Sunday Weekend Itinerary Ideas

The last of the weekend has more treats in store – espeically if your tastebuds are looking for adventure.

Brunch at Milktooth

Milktooth, a trendy brunch spot in Fountain Square (534 Virginia Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46203) with indoor/outdoor seating is worth the wait. Their somewhat short menu offers unexpected flavor combinations that surprise and delight.

Round out brunch with coffee or a cocktail.

Good to know: seating is walk-in only and the place fills up fast – get there early for the shortest wait.

Midland Arts & Antiques Market

Next, it’s time to hunt at the Midland Arts and Antiques Market (907 E Michigan St, Indianapolis, IN 46202.)

The four-story brick building, built in 1912, is itself an antique. Once home to a window and door factory, today it houses 200 or so vendors selling a variety of old, interesting items. 

Midland Antiques Indianapolis

Come with a list – and a way to haul your treasures away. You never know what you’ll discover.

Downtown Walking Tours

Ready to get in a few steps? Pull out your phone and open up one of the free Walk Indianapolis tours.

Follow the map and listen as leading Indianapolis architects tell you the stories and history behind the prominent city buildings and spaces or bring you up to speed on the city’s many monuments.

Monuments & Memorials Walking Tour

In the US, only Washington DC, has more war memorials than Indianapolis. Follow this tour to see and learn about these impressive structures.

Soldiers & Sailors Monument in Indianapolis
Soldiers & Sailors Monument

Downtown Venues

Learn about the iconic buildings and destinations on this walking tour. Some of the stops on the route:

Cake Bake Shop

End your Indianapolis weekend getaway on a sweet note at The Cake Bake Shop (6515 Carrollton Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220) in Broad Ripple.

A stop here is nothing short of magical. Quant and charming, it’s like something out of a fairytale. Sparkling chandeliers and peachy-pink accents set the tone, letting the bakery’s exquisite cakes shine.

It’s no surprise this business will be opening a location at Disney World later this summer!

If you can’t decide what to order – a common problem here – Gwendolyn’s famous Earl’s Court Chocolate Cake is an excellent choice. Or, try a slice of the popular Raspberry Champagne Cake.

No matter what you choose, these glitter-infused whimsical delights are sure to please.

More Indianapolis Weekend Getaway Activities

If this itinerary needs tweaking, no worries.

When it comes to things to do in Indianapolis, you’ve got options. Swap out activity ideas with others on this list to create your own custom weekend getaway. Fun Stuff to do in Indianapolis made easy!

More things to Do

White River State Park is the cultural hub of Indy. Trails, museums, the Zoo, and a ton of recreation are found here.

Indianapolis Cultural Trail – 8 miles of trails connecting 6 downtown Indy cultural districts

Circle Center Mall (49 W Maryland St, Indianapolis, IN 46204)

Canal Walk Three-mile loop along the Indy waterfront with bike rentals, kayak rentals and more.

Canal Walk in Indianapolis
Canal Walk in Indianapolis

Speedway Indoor Karting (1067 N Main St, Speedway, IN 46224)

@kal.newp Things to do in Indianapolis pt. 1! 🏎️ #Indy500 #speedway #indianapolis #travel #indianatravel ♬ Ooh Ahh (My Life Be Like) [feat. Tobymac] – Grits

Tappers Arcade Bar (501 Virginia Ave #102, Indianapolis, IN 46203)

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