Superfast race cars and historic horse-drawn carriages, dreamy sand dunes, and lively art galleries – the Hoosier State of Indiana is full of contrasts. Follow us to the Midwest of the USA, and let us surprise you!

Indiana facts

Capital: Indianapolis
Area: about 94,000 km²
Population: about 6.8 million
Location: Midwest of the USA
Nickname: The Hoosier State
Hotspots: Indianapolis, Indiana Dunes National Park
Time tone: UTC -5 (Eastern), UTC -6 (Central)

Indiana: location & population

Indiana belongs to the Midwest of the USA. The Hoosier State is bordered by Lake Michigan and the state of Michigan to the North, Ohio to the East, Kentucky to the South, and Illinois to the West.

With its 6.8 million residents, Indiana currently ranks 17th among the 50 states in terms of inhabitants. The population is made up of 76 % Whites, 11 % African Americans, 8 % Hispanics, and 3 % Asians. Many of the residents with European roots have ancestors from Germany, England, Ireland, or Poland.

The largest cities in Indiana

Indiana's urban centers are located in the North as well as the Central part of the state. Based on population, the five largest cities are:

City Population
Indianapolis 863,000
Fort Wayne 266,000
Evansville 119,000
South Bend 102,000
Carmel 92,000

Nature and climate

The US state of Indiana is mainly characterized by two regions: the Central Lowlands and the Interior Low Plateaus. Therefore, large plains with some low hills dominate in the North and Central regions, which are mainly used as farmland.

There are also numerous small lakes to the North and various sand ridges and dunes to the Northwest. Most of them extend along the Lake Michigan shoreline and along the Kankakee River. Higher elevations are found in the South, which has a rugged, hilly terrain. There is a lot of limestone in the area, so you'll also find caves and quarries.

For the most part, Indiana has a humid continental climate that brings cold winters and hot, humid summers. Only the far South has a more humid subtropical climate and thus more rainfall than the rest of Indiana. The continental climate brings large temperature differences throughout the year. Thus, the thermometer climbs to 40 °C in summer and drops to - 10 °C in winter.

Best time to travel to Indiana

For a trip to Indiana, you should choose the period between April and October. Then you can expect plenty of sunshine, but only a little precipitation.

Indiana in spring

Our top tip for Indiana: Come to the capital Indianapolis in May and experience America true to its motto, "bigger is better!" The Indycar race "Indianapolis 500", short "Indy 500," is an event of superlatives. With about 400,000 visitors, the car race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the largest one-day sporting event in the world. Don't miss this amazing atmosphere!

Indiana in summer

There are so many great festivals in Indiana this summer, you'll have a hard time deciding where to go first. Enjoy top international music at the Bean Blossom Bluegrass Festival, great acrobatics at the Peru Circus City Festival, charming handicrafts at the Amish Acres Arts & Crafts Festival, and exciting summer nights at the Indiana State Fair.

Traveling to Indiana

By far the most important airport in Indiana is Indianapolis International Airport (IND), which is used by more than 7 million passengers annually.

Other hubs are:

  • Fort Wayne International Airport (FWA)
  • South Bend International Airport (SBN)
  • Evansville Regional Airport (EVV)

The Indianapolis airport is served by United Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, and Air Canada, among others. However, we found the cheapest connection from Europe with KLM. The tickets cost about € 630. You fly from Munich with a stopover in Detroit to Indianapolis.

Connections from the Asia-Pacific region cost at least € 800 to € 1,000. We were able to find the cheapest flights with Air Canada. You fly for about € 800 from Tokyo with a stopover in Toronto to Indianapolis.

Flights to Indiana

Travel authorization Indiana

If you are not a US citizen or Green Card holder, you will need a visa or ESTA to enter the state of Indiana.

ESTA – visa-free to the USA

With an ESTA, you can stay 90 days visa-free in the USA. Apply online now!

Airport transfer in Indiana

The Indianapolis airport is located about 14 km sSouthwest of the city center. From there, you have the following transfer options to arrive at your accommodation:

Public transport from Indianapolis airport

IndyGo buses connect the airport with the entire Indianapolis metropolitan area. You can get to the city center on Route 8 for $ 1.75. If you want to go further, you can purchase a day pass for $ 4.

Shuttle from Indianapolis airport

Some hotels in Indianapolis have free shuttles that will pick you up from the airport. Check with your hotel before you travel to see if they offer this service.

Taxi from Indianapolis airport

The taxi stop is located on the lower level of the terminal, directly in front of baggage claim. A basic fee of $ 15 is charged for a ride from the airport. Each kilometer driven costs $ 1.38.

National Parks and State Parks in Indiana

Indiana hides a number of enchanting natural wonders that you're sure to enjoy discovering.

Indiana Dunes National Park

Indiana's only national park is located in the far nNorthwestern part of the state on the shores of Lake Michigan. Take a long walk along the 24 km coastline of the Indiana Dunes and marvel at the towering sand dunes that have formed over thousands of years and reach heights of up to 60 m. At the Dorothy Buell Memorial Visitor Center near Porter, you can learn about the park's highlights. The rangers also offer lectures and free hikes through the park.

Brown County State Park

Brown County State Park, Indiana's largest state park by area, is dotted with rugged hills, ridges, and canyons. Also known as the "Little Smokies," the recreation area is considered an insider's tip for mountain biking and horseback riding. Since the park is located just a few miles south of Indianapolis, you can easily take a relaxing day trip if you're vacationing in the capital.

Turkey Run State Park

Indiana's second-oldest nature park, Turkey Run State Park, stretches along Sugar Creek in the Western part of the state and is best known for its canyons and nature trails. Enjoy scenic vistas, explore the sandstone canyons along Sugar Creek, and then venture across the suspension bridge that connects the two riverbanks.

Top 10 sightseeing highlights in Indiana

Do you already know the ten most popular attractions in Indiana? If not, put them on your travel list right now.

  • Indiana Dunes National Park
  • Brown County State Park
  • Turkey Run State Park
  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway
  • Newfields
  • Eiteljorg Museum
  • Indianapolis Zoo
  • Conner Prairie
  • Holiday World
  • The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

City highlights in Indiana

If you want exciting cities during your Indiana trip, your path will most likely lead you to Indianapolis and Fort Wayne.

City highlights Indianapolis

IIndiana's capital city welcomes you with an exciting mix of thrilling sporting events, cultural highlights, and a thriving food and brewery scene. Over the past ten years, Indianapolis has become a hotspot for the arts. You simply must see the many creative galleries in downtown Indy!

These city highlights are waiting for you in Indianapolis:

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway
  • Newfields
  • Eiteljorg Museum
  • Indianapolis Zoo
  • The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

Accomodation in Indianapolis

City highlights Fort Wayne

If you're taking a family vacation, Fort Wayne will be a worthwhile stop on your Indiana trip. In the second- largest city, attractions like the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, Science Central, and the Botanical Conservatory await. Outdoors, you'll find plenty of opportunities for boating, hiking, or playing sports.

Don't miss out on the highlights in Fort Wayne:

  • Fort Wayne Museum of Art
  • History Center
  • Foellinger-Friemann Botanical Conservatory
  • Science Central
  • Fort Wayne Children's Zoo

Accomodation in Fort Wayne

Road trip in Indiana

So, what's still missing from the travel list? After seeing the most beautiful nature parks and exciting city highlights in Indiana, we're going on a road trip to some of the Hoosier State's historical sites and interesting buildings.

East Pierhead Lighthouse in Michigan City Harbor is the only operating lighthouse in Indiana. It was built in 1904 and is a historically significant Michigan City structure. In addition, the pier at East Pierhead Lighthouse is perfect for watching sunsets and provides a wonderful scenery for a pretty lighthouse photo.

If you see historic horse-drawn carriages on the streets of Northeastern Indiana more often than not, you haven't stumbled into a parade or anniversary celebration but are in Amish County. After Pennsylvania and Ohio, Indiana is home to the third- largest Amish population in the United States. Their farms are located near the towns of Shipshewana and Middlebury. It's also worth stopping here to buy something when you see families selling fresh food or homemade household items.

US President Abraham Lincoln spent his youth in Southern Indiana. The site where his family lived is now home to the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial, which features a replica of Lincoln's 1820s farm. Admission is always free, and once you've toured the historically significant home, you can explore the surrounding nature on the park's hiking trails.

Instagram hotspots in Indiana

Do you want to entertain your followers with great vacation photos from Indiana? Then visit these five places::

  • Indiana Dunes Roosevelt National Park
  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway
  • Downtown Indianapolis
  • East Pierhead Lighthouse
  • Big Peach

Food and drinks in Indiana

Do you want to experience the culinary highlights of Indiana? Try these specialties:

  • Buttered Corn on the Cob
  • Barbecue with Mac'n'Cheese
  • Chili Cheese Dogs (hot dog topped with chili con carne)
  • Sugar Cream Pie (pie with a filling of flour, butter, salt, vanilla, cream, and brown sugar)
  • Sun Brewed Tea (iced tea with lemon and ice cubes)

Indiana fun facts

You probably haven't heard these interesting facts about the US state of Indiana:

  • Six American vice presidents have come from Indiana: Schuyler Colfax, Thomas A. Hendricks, Charles W. Fairbanks, Thomas Marshall, Dan Quayle, and Mike Pence. For this reason, the state is also nicknamed the "Mother of Vice Presidents." However, there has never been a president born in Indiana yet.
  • In Southern Indiana, there is a town called Santa Claus. During the Christmas season, over half a million letters addressed to Santa Claus arrive there every year.
  • Indiana produces more than 20 % of America's popcorn.
  • By law, it is illegal in Indiana to catch fish with dynamite, firearms, a crossbow, or your bare hands.
  • A giant peach stands on US 41 near Bruceville. The 6-meter-high "Big Peach" is located in front of a fruit and vegetable market – right next to a replica of the Washington Monument.

Immigrate to Indiana

You can't picture anything better than staying in Indiana forever? We've collected some tips on living and working in the Hoosier State that will help you plan your move.

Working in Indiana

A large part of Indiana's economic power comes from manufacturing and agriculture. Major exports include steel, motor vehicles and motor vehicle parts, industrial machinery, electrical machinery, optical and medical equipment, and pharmaceutical products. Indiana is also located in the Corn Belt and Grain Belt of the USA and is a large producer of corn, soybeans, wheat, and tobacco. If you'd like to work for a large corporation, Indiana has seven Fortune 500 companies to choose from, including Cummins Inc, Eli Lilly and Company, and Simon Property Group.

Living in Indiana

If you're looking to move to Indiana, we've got good news for you: housing prices here are among the most affordable in the country! Homes in the Hoosier State are a whopping 38 % less expensive than average US prices. Transportation and healthcare costs are also affordable. Overall, you'll save about 18 % on the cost of living compared to the average American. At the same time, you can expect a growing economy and good educational opportunities. For example, Indiana is home to two prestigious American universities, Purdue and Notre Dame. If you are looking for a good place to live, we recommend Carmel, Fishers, Munster, Plainfield, and Indianapolis.

Immigrate to Indiana with a Green Card

If you want to relocate to Indiana, you need a Green Card. The Permanent Resident Card allows you to live and work in the US indefinitely. Every year, the American government gives away 55,000 cards to USA fans from all over the world through the Green Card Lottery. Sign up now. Just a few clicks, and you are in the lottery pot!