South Shore Posters
Grinders vintage baseball games and a stroll along Lake George are just two of the many free things to do along the South Shore.
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Stay Close Explore More at Serenity Springs

Stay any 3 nights for $599. Visit local shops and wineries. Press your luck at one of the two nearby casinos. …more

30 Free Things to Do

  1. Bike Trails
    Take a ride down one of our many regional bike trails.
  2. Galleries and Exhibits
    View the works of art at the local galleries and exhibit halls.
  3. The Shrine of Christ's Passion
    Connect with your spiritual side at The Shrine of Christ's Passion in St. John.
  4. South Shore Civil War Memorial Trail
    Honor our boys in blue along the trail throughout Northwest Indiana.
  5. Vintage Baseball
    Step back in time with a Grinders vintage baseball game at Deep River County Park in Hobart or with the Centennials at Centennial Park in Munster.
  6. Albanese Candy
    Entertain your sweet tooth with a tour of the candy factory in Hobart.
  7. Car and Cycle Show
    Rev your engines for the Car and Cycle Show every May in Munster.
  8. Sledding
    Sled down the hills at Lost Marsh Golf Course or Lake County Fairgrounds.
  9. Beaches
    Relax on the beaches along Lake Michigan at Lake View, Dunbar, Kemil, Porter or Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk at no charge in the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.
  10. Parks
    Exhaust the kids on the playgrounds at the many city and county parks throughout the South Shore.
  11. Clocktower Model Boat Race
    Stroll along the lakefront of Lake George and cheer on model boats flying through the water at the Clocktower Model Boat Race, every September in Hobart.
  12. Kayaking
    Launch your kayak on the waters of Wolf Lake in Hammond.
  13. Popcorn Festival
    Catch the annual parade at Popcorn Festival, every September in downtown Valparaiso.
  14. Skateboarding
    Hone your skate boarding skills at Munster Skate Park or Michigan City Skate Park.
  15. Community Veterans Memorial
    Pay your respects to veterans at Community Veterans Memorial in Munster.
  16. "A Christmas Story" Comes Home
    Get into the holiday spirit at the "A Christmas Story" Comes Home Exhibit, every November and December at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond.
  17. St. Patrick's Day Parade
    Celebrate with the Irish at the St. Patrick's Day Parade in downtown Crown Point.
  18. First Friday Art Walk
    Discover the shops and artwork in downtown Michigan City with their monthly First Friday Art Walk.
  19. Car Cruises
    Find a variety of classic beauties at the car cruise nights in downtown Crown Point and Whiting.
  20. Wine Tastings
    Stop in at Carpenter Creek Cellars in Remington for a free wine tasting. When they're not too busy, they offer free tours as well!
  21. Summer Symphonies
    Sit back and relax during the summer symphony performances.
    • Summer Rhapsody Music Festival, Central Park Plaza, Valparaiso
    • South Shore Summer Music Festival, throughout Northwest Indiana
    • Summer with the Symphony, Lakefront Park, Whiting
  22. Pierogi Fest®
    Enjoy all kinds of wacky fun at Pierogi Fest®, every July in downtown Whiting.
  23. Touch of Dutch
    Enjoy some Dutch delicacies at the Touch of Dutch Festival every August.
  24. Rotblatt-Amrany Trail
    Follow the Rotblatt-Amrany Trail to see the studio's amazing bronze creations including "The Spirit" of Michael Jordan in Chicago and "Flick" stuck to a flagpole in Hammond, a character from the "A Christmas Story" movie.
  25. Explore the South Shore
    "Explore the South Shore" every spring at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond.
  26. Sandhill Cranes
    Connect with nature watching the sandhill cranes fall migration every fall at the Jasper-Pulaski Fish and Wildlife Area.
  27. Old Jail Museum
    Tour the Old Jail Museum in Valparaiso.
  28. Birding
    Watch for an amazing variety of birds at places like the Grand Kankakee Marsh, Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, and Lakefront Park and Bird Sanctuary.
  29. Fishing
    Fish off the pier at the Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk or head out to LaSalle or Willow Slough Fish and Wildlife Areas.
  30. Maple Syrup Time
    Help tap the trees in early March during the maple syrup season at Deep River County Park and the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

Indiana Welcome Center

Tours of the Albanese Candy Factory

Shrine of Christ's Passion

Deep River Grinders Baseball

Uniquely South Shore
Northwest Indiana’s very own candy factory boasts the world’s best gummies! Tour the factory and experience your favorites being made, see the world’s tallest chocolate waterfall and sample some of the best candies around!…more
What began as a local newspaper’s effort to tell the compelling stories of Northwest Indiana men and women who sacrificed during the Civil War has evolved into a large-scale historical preservation effort. The joint partnership of the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority and the Calumet Region Civil War Preservation Project seeks to carry forward on hundreds of hours of community service that already have taken place. …more
Conveniently located between Chicago and Indianapolis, Fair Oaks Farms offers a fun family playground that everyone will enjoy! From the Dairy Adventure and Birthday Barn, to the Cheese Factory and Mooville, Fair Oaks Farms will keep the family entertained, and well-fed, for a full day of education and fun!…more
When a guest visits a hotel, restaurant, bank, or gas station, they rarely meet the manager or owner of the establishment. It's up to the front-line employee to make the customer's visit enjoyable.The R.O.S.E. Awards were created to recognize these "directors of first impression" who consistently work hard to make our lives easier. Guests & managers are able to nominate an employee who consistently "goes the extra mile."…more
Heavy industry carried the South Shore economy for decades. Now, the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority tells a story about a community: it’s been built by steel but changing from tourism. Northwest Indiana’s appeal is its devotion to ensure new & already existing businesses succeed. Area leaders have teamed together to revitalize the mill towns and make Northwest Indiana the place people want to live & work. …more
Experience the journey of the Passion of Christ as never before in this interactive trail featuring 40 life-sized bronze statues. Experience the various Stations of the Cross with audio descriptions as you walk the winding pathway.…more
With five different casinos, Northwest Indiana offers much excitement and action along the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan! With decadent restaurants, world class entertainment and floors (and floors) of slots and table games, your night is just getting started when you test your luck at one of our casinos.…more
A breathtaking adventure awaits at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, home to a plethora of diverse natural resources. The National Park is comprised of more than 15,000 acres of sand dunes, bogs, marshes, swamps, fens, prairies, rivers, oak savannas, and woodland forests. It provides visitors with opportunities for bird watching, camping, 45 miles of hiking, fishing, swimming, horseback riding and cross-country skiing.…more
Pierogi Fest, the pride of Whiting, is an opportunity for the residents to celebrate their heritage while poking a little fun at themselves at the same time. The one of a kind parade and festival have received countrywide recognition having been featured on the Food Network and the Travel Channel.…more
This holiday season, The Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond will feature 6 animated displays featuring scenes from "A Christmas Story". The displays include: Higbee’s Department Store Window, Flick’s Tongue and the Triple Dog Dare, It’s a Major Award, Santa’s Mountain at Higbee’s, the Bumpus Hounds, and the Parker Living Room. The displays were first showcased in 2003 in the windows of the Herald Square Macy’s in New York City. …more
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