Field Trips to Take in Elkhart

It is likely that you may not have Elkhart County, Indiana, on your radar as a top spot for school field trips, but we are here to bring this lesser-known destination to light for teachers and group leaders.

Elkhart Indiana is a place where culture and commerce combine, where a storied past meets a bright future, where your student group can explore and discover a rural community full of educational opportunity everywhere you look.

This community provides entertaining and historic theaters, midwest comfort-food-filled eateries, and outdoor adventure sports and recreation that all students love. The county is considered to be a 'cultural cornerstone' of the state of Indiana, with Amish tradition mixing with modern artisan culture. Visit the highly popular Quilted Gardens, RV Hall of Fame, nearby Notre Dame University, and so much more.

Kindergarten and Younger

  • National New York Central Railroad Museum
    • Youngsters will love exploring the National New York Central Railroad Museum, a local museum that holds the most significant collection of New York Central artifacts in the world! This 'timetable to the past' celebrates what was once the second-biggest railroad east of the Mississippi, allowing guests to explore immersive exhibits and rail artifacts all throughout.
  • Hall of Superheroes
    • Your little superheroes won't want to miss this opportunity, the Hall of Superheroes in Elkhart County allowing guests to immerse themselves in DC and Marvel fandom. The building itself is designed as a replica of the Hall of Justice, the interior housing over 80 years of TV, film, and comic memorabilia. See over 60,000 comic books, over 100 pieces of original art, and over 10,000 toys and props such as Adam West's Batman Costume and Chris Evans' Captain America Shield.

Elementary School

  • Linton's Enchanted Gardens
    • Younger students will love an opportunity to explore Linton's Enchanted Gardens, the 9-acre center considered to be the 'Disney of Garden Centers'. Linton's is the state's largest garden center, featuring award-winning display gardens filled with rare and exotic plants. There is also a village of shops on site, a well-stocked Garden Cafe, a free petting zoo, gemstone mining opportunities, swan boat rides, and the fan-favorite train ride through the center!

      Lintons Elkhart County, IN CVB VisitElkhartCounty (2)

  • Das Dutchman Essenhaus
    • Das Dutchman Essenhaus is an Amish heritage cultural installment in Elkhart County that features a massive restaurant, bakery, shops, onsite theater, and inn all in one! Enjoy Amish-style fare in the restaurant and bakery, then head over to the 5 different shops for some shopping, watch any onsite shows happening, play a round of mini-golf, and enjoy heritage-style carriage rides. Das Dutchman Essenhaus is considered to be the state's largest and friendliest family-style restaurant and bakery and is 100% authentic!

Middle School

  • Wellfield Botanical Gardens
    • The Wellfield Botanical Gardens offer guests the opportunity to immerse themselves within 36 acres of pristine nature, with local and exotic plants left and right. Many people consider this to be the county's most relaxing attraction, featuring 20 themed gardens and 18 acres of lakes, streams, and waterfalls. Spend some time meditating in the Island Garden, or perhaps go enjoy some playtime in the Children's Garden.
  • Quilted Gardens
    • The only experience of its kind in the world, Quilted Gardens along the Heritage Trail is one of the most unique and beautiful attraction offerings in Elkhart County. Enjoy a colorful patchwork of quilt inspired gardens and hand-painted, quilt-themed, super-sized murals that 'deliver dazzling views of the surrounding communities'. There are over 1 million blooms within 16 gardens along the trail, the endeavor combining quilting, gardening, and art into one massively impressive product.

      Quilt Gardens Elkhart County, IN CVB VisitElkhartCounty (2)

  • Menno-Hof
    • Located in the community of Shipshewana, Menno-Hof is a learning experience that allows guests to learn all about the Amish and Mennonite communities. Learn the story of these communities from persecution in Europe to the founding in Switzerland to the settlement here via multimedia presentations, historic exhibits, and colorful displays. See a 17th-century sailing ship, 19th-century print shop, historic home, and so much more during your educational visit!

High School

  • Ruthmere Mansion
    • High school-aged students will enjoy a visit to Ruthmere Mansion, the home that was once the center of social life in Elkhart County. There are actually 2 homes onsite, each preserving the culture and history of the city via exhibits and artifacts concerning the first family of Elkhart, the Beardsley's. Learn all about the Gilded Age in this area as you discover lavish historic furnishings like Tiffany Lamps and Rodin Sculptures. The homes themselves were built in 1908.

      Fall 2010 scenes of the Ruthmere Mansion IN CVB

  • Studebaker National Museum
    • With 33 classic Studebakers as a part of its permanent collection as well as the largest collection of United States President carriages in the world, this auto-based museum is a great stop for older students with an interest in vehicles, vehicle history, or vehicle commerce. See over 114 years of transportation history inside the museum, with examples on display such as a 1934 Bendix Car, a 1956 Packard, and President Lincoln's Carriage.
  • RV Hall of Fame
    • The RV Hall of Fame is one of the most unique attractions in Elkhart County, existing 'in celebration of life on the road'. Elkhart county actually produces over 80% of all RVs built in the United States, and you can see over 8 decades of them all throughout the center. See models from the 1920s to today, the Exhibitors Hall showing the best of the best industry models over time. You will learn all about how they have impacted our nation and transportation over time!
      RVHF Elkhart County, IN CVB

      RVHF Elkhart County, IN CVB

College Visits

  • Notre Dame University
    • Located just about 40 minutes from Elkhart County you will find one of our nation's greatest secondary education institutions, Notre Dame University. Notre Dame University was first founded in 1842, quickly growing into one of our nation's absolute best private Catholic research universities. Head to the Eck Visitor Center and get a free public tour, allowing you to see the Grotto, Basilica, Golden Dome, and the 'Touchdown Jesus', all while getting an impressive historic and social overview of the school. This is an excellent stop for high school students and college perspectives!
      University of Notre Dame Elkhart County, IN CVB

      University of Notre Dame Elkhart County, IN CVB


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