Top 9 Hot Spots Around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Indianapolis is a booming tourist destination. With tons of restaurants, hotels, and attractions close to the race track, it may be seriously overwhelming to figure out your itinerary for race weekend. The good news? LeafFilter Racing has found some hot spots in the area so you can easily narrow it down for a jam packed weekend of fun!

  • Indianapolis Zoo Indianapolis, IN

    Indianapolis Zoo

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Who doesn’t like going to the zoo? Lucky for you, the Indianapolis Zoo is one of the best in the country. We guarantee you’ll squeal with delight at all the cute zoo babies, like the giraffe and orangutan. The Dolphin Pavilion is another must-see. If you get there early enough for seating close to the Splash Zone, you’ll be in for a wild time during the extremely popular dolphin presentation. Don’t miss out on talking with the friendly zoo keepers – they’ll give you the inside scoop on all the behind the scenes action, like how the animals are fed and groomed. Pack a good pair of tennis shoes if you’re going to visit the Indianapolis Zoo – this family-friendly activity will certainly provide hours of entertainment.

  • Black Acre Brewing Indianapolis, IN

    Black Acre Brewing

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Black Acre Brewing is a mandatory stop for beer enthusiasts. In addition to the usual beer fare, they have some truly unique beers, like Hive Wire, which has a hint of refreshing mango. We highly recommend you pair your beer with one of their many satisfying sandwiches, like the Pegasus, for a true taste explosion. Oh, and did we mention the fantastic staff? Every worker at this place, from the owner to the waiters, are astoundingly hospitable. Don’t believe us? Check out their remarkable reviews. You’ll be hard pressed to find another brewery where you’ll feel as comfortable and welcomed.

  • Cerulean Restaurant Indianapolis, IN

    Cerulean Restaurant

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    The upscale Cerulean will provide the perfect setting for an unforgettable date night (or a celebration after your favorite driver wins this weekend’s NASCAR race!). Past diners rave about the atmosphere, service, and, of course, the food. Rest assured, there are no bad picks here – all their offerings are truly delectable. But, if you want to play it safe, go with the special five or seven course tasting menu, which are carefully crafted for a top notch dining experience. One final tip: If you’ve got a large group, request the architecturally stunning Nest dining area. Just trust us.

  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum Indianapolis, IN

    Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    This is obviously a must for any NASCAR fan visiting the “racing capital of the world.” Here, you’ll get an up-close look at tons of race cars, motorcycles, dragsters, and other record-setting vehicles. Long-time fans will love taking a trip down memory lane in the Racing Hall of Fame. Kids will have fun hopping in the driver’s seat and posing for a picture in of one of the race cars on display. The museum is sure to be busy this weekend, so get there early!

  • Spoke and Steel Indianapolis, IN

    Spoke and Steel

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    In the words of a past customer, this is one “classy joint!” Start your night off right by stopping by the contemporary, perfectly laid back, Spoke and Steel. You can play it safe and order a classic cocktail paired with a cheese or charcuterie sampler, but if you go a little outside the norm, you won’t be disappointed. We highly recommend trying a house original cocktail, such as the Wonka-like Friendsgiving, or the perfectly balanced Cannot Even. With its handcrafted cocktails and outstanding service, this place is one of the hidden gems of Indy.

  • Indy City Market Indianapolis, IN

    Indy City Market

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Maybe you want to visit one of the many fun picnic spots in Indy, and need some food to put a quick lunch together – the Indy City Market is just the place for you. With the freshest, locally sourced foods in town, your picnic will be one for the books. If you just want a place to rest and refresh, the market hides one of the best spots to hang out – the Tomlinson Taproom. But, whichever stand you decide to visit at the Indy City Market, you’re sure to experience Hoosier hospitality and find some tasty treats.

  • Children's Museum of Indianapolis, IN

    Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is renowned as one of the best educational experiences around, which should come as no surprise. As soon as you walk up to the entrance, you’ll find a larger than life dinosaur poking its head into the museum, and it just gets cooler from there. Kids of all ages will enjoy the prehistoric displays, as well as the ancient Egyptian replicas and outer space exhibit. The museum is filed to the hilt with hands-on activities and exciting discussions about science, history, and so much more. A stop to the gift shop is a must after such a memorable experience. (Hint: Get one of the museum-exclusive Blvd. Bruiser Hot Wheels cars so you’ll always remember the Hot Wheels™: Race to Win™ exhibit!)

  • Conner Prairie Outdoor Museum Fishers, IN

    Conner Prairie Outdoor Museum

    Fishers, Indiana

    Get a firsthand look at life on the prairie at the Conner Prairie Outdoor Museum. You can take a dreamlike hot air balloon ride, or keep your feet firmly planted on the ground as you learn about the area’s Native American population or its Civil War history. Kids will have a blast inventing a new thingamabob at the Create.Connect workshop, which pays homage to the innovative minds that have lived in Indiana. The Conner Prairie Outdoor Museum provides the perfect opportunity for families to explore and learn new things.

  • Bluebeard Restaurant Indianapolis, IN

    Bluebeard Restaurant

    Indianapolis, Indiana

    Bluebeard Restaurant is the place to go for fresh, locally sourced food. Let the size of your appetite dictate what you order. For a large appetite, we recommend the mouth-watering lamb loin, while those who are a little less hungry will surely enjoy FBP&J, the restaurant’s unique take on the classic PB&J sandwich. Located in a renovated 1924 factory warehouse, this place is about as hip as it gets. It’s definitely a place to bring your friends.

Come cheer on Blake in the Lilly Diabetes 250 race, and don’t forget to check out these awesome local businesses while you’re in the area!

What are your favorite places to visit around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway? Let us know in the comments below! We’d love to hear from you!

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