Dubuque, Iowa

My husband and I went to Dubuque, Iowa over Memorial Day weekend to see something different and get away for a few days. Neither one of us had been there, nor had we spent much time on the Mississippi River. We were both glad to go, and that we had the opportunity to travel there.

We arrived late Friday night, so we just grabbed dinner at a locally sourced restaurant. Afterwards, we hung out in our hotel room and planned our adventures for the next day.

Day One

After a quick breakfast, we explored Dubuque. Our first stop was the Carnegie-Stout Public Library. It’s one of our traditions to stop at the library where ever we go and check out the architecture. This library did not disappoint.

When we had seen enough of the library, we walked downtown to check out the rest of the architecture. My husband enjoys looking at old buildings and since he humors me a lot, I try and do things that he enjoys just as much.

While on our walk we found the world’s shortest and steepest railroad. So naturally, we had to ride it. From the top of the railroad, you can see four different states, and the view was amazing. If we go that way again, I’m going to research the sun’s location better to try and take advantage of the color in the morning or evening.

We rode the train back to the bottom and then we stopped at a few shops to look around and get some chocolate. Once we were full of sugar, we went to the Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens. I took way too many photos there, and it was its own adventure, so I’ll write a separate blog post about that.

Once we were done exploring the gardens we were both starving so we found a pizza place for a late lunch. We even got deep-fried ice cream which was phenomenal. After lunch, we relaxed in our room for a while. Before dinner, we went on a scavenger hunt for gnomes in a nature preserve. My husband was better at spotting them than I was, but I still had a lot of fun hiking through the woods and looking for gnomes.

A bridge in the woods
We found this bridge while looking for gnomes.

Day Two

On Sunday we went to the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium. This was easily my favorite part of the whole trip. I am a sucker for aquariums, so I always try and go whenever I get the chance. There was even a stingray exhibit where we could tuck them. It has been my fourth or fifth time getting to touch stingrays, and it never gets old.

A turtle
There were a lot of turtles in the Mississippi River.

My husband had to bribe me with two bookstores and coffee to get me out of there. With our coffee and books in hand, we walked along the Mississippi for a while. We then went to a third bookstore until dinner. After dinner, we hung out at the hotel and got packed up to go home.

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