Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Planning Your Indianapolis Trip on a Budget

Image via Flickr by MCC_Indianapolis
If you're traveling to Indianapolis by car, you can find great value surrounding the city along the interstate highways. Book Americas Best Value Inn, south of downtown on I-65, for as little as $60 per night in the summer. This hotel offers a free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, and free parking.
On I-70 northeast of the city center, several budget-friendly chains are available. Days Inn Indianapolis East and La Quinta Indianapolis East both offer a free breakfast and cost less than $70 per night, depending on the season.
While conveniently located, downtown hotels are typically the most expensive in the city. However, it is still possible to find rooms within walking distance of attractions for less than $150 per night. Try La Quinta Inn & Suites Indianapolis Downton or the Fairfield Inn & Suites Downtown Indianapolis.

The Best Indianapolis Attractions On A Budget
Add captionImage via Flickr by Roger Lynn
Highly rated by tourists, The Indianapolis Museum of Art offers free admission daily and limited free parking. Visit on the weekends between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to paint or craft a free souvenir at the Make & Take Star Studio. 
If you're traveling to Indianapolis with your family, you can't miss the Children's Museum of Indianapolis. The museum offers free admission on select holidays and on the first Thursday of every month from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Your children will love star-gazing at the planetarium, digging for dinosaur bones, and creating their very own glass sculptures.
During the summer months, the Indianapolis Zoo offers free parking and free shuttle service to the zoo from the Vermont Street parking garage in downtown. Make sure you take in the live dolphin show; it's the only one of its kind in the Midwest.  After visiting the zoo, stop by the surrounding White River State Park to see the famous Gardens, Medal of Honor Memorial, and Victory Field. 

Before you leave the hotel, check the Indianapolis tourism site for ticket coupons.

Where To Eat For Cheap In Indianapolis
With daily drink and appetizer specials, Scotty's Brewhouse won't leave you hungry. On Sundays and Tuesdays, kids can dine on free mini hamburgers or mac and cheese, while parents are sure to enjoy the local craft beers on tap.
An Indianapolis fixture for over 50 years, the Mug N' Bun Drive-In features old-time service in your car at old-time prices. Most burgers cost less than $3, while kids meals are $4.
A favorite brunch spot among locals, the downtown City Cafe offers farm-fresh food at affordable prices. You can't go wrong with the homemade biscuits and gravy served with sausage for just $4.25.
With these tips, there's no reason to break the bank for an Indianapolis vacation. Just one last piece of advice to avoid high prices -- avoid traveling during major sporting events like the NFL's Indianapolis Colts home games or the Indianapolis 500, which usually happens in late May.
Image via Flickr by Blake Facey

Author Bio: A former journalist, Tammy Banfield is a freelance travel writer who loves scouring the web for the best travel experiences. Tammy has written about more than 2,000 hotels and has traveled extensively throughout Canada and the United States.   

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