Things to do In Spirit Lake, Iowa

things to do in spirit lake iowa

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Spirit Lake, Iowa, might be a small city, but it offers more than you can expect and imagine in a charming little city.

This article is meant to help visitors, new residents, and locals explore this stunning area. You might only know Spirit Lake as a place ideal only for fishing, well, you are wrong! There are a plethora of fun and enjoyable activities you can do here!

Let us explore this comprehensive guide to the best things to do in Spirit Lake, Iowa!

Outdoor Adventures in Spirit Lake

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No one in or near Spirit Lake, Iowa, should skip exploring the city’s outdoor activities. Fishing, boating, hiking, and camping are great and fun-packed here. Here’s why!

Fishing and Boating Paradise

Spirit Lake is your ideal location for fishing and boating. Explore the stunning waters of Spirit Lake in a boat or cast your very first fishing rod!

It’s a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts who love water-related activities, with tons of fish to catch and breathtaking landscapes. Here are the fishes that you might catch from the lake:

Hiking and Camping Spots

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If camping and hiking are more your thing, there are several spots that you can explore in Spirit Lake. The great thing about the hiking and camping spots in the area is that they can cater to all experience levels. Here are some of the spots that you may go to:



Enjoy a relaxing stroll along paths surrounded by trees, or push yourself on an adventure-packed hike that offers fantastic vistas.

Later at night, camp out at night for an immersed encounter with the natural world. All of these can be done in a single place! And that is, of course, in Spirit Lake, Iowa.

Winter Sports Excitement

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Lastly, cold will not keep you from having fun outdoor adventures! Yes, Spirit Lake offers activities all year round. Spirit Lake becomes a beautiful winter wonderland when the ground is covered with snow during winter.

You can snowmobile along the picturesque paths with your loved ones, ice skate, play with the snow, or go ice fishing!

Historical Sites and Museums

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One way to connect with the place is to explore its history. Immerse yourself in the local customs and festivities that color the Spirit Lake community.

Discover its past story that contributes to the city’s distinct character. Here are some of the places you should visit to have a deep cultural dive in Spirit Lake, Iowa:

Art and Music Venues

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Things to do in Spirit Lake involve going to art and music venues. Spirit Lake boasts a thriving art and music scene that will captivate your interest. Let yourself be enchanted by the locals’ fascinating talents in crafts and performing arts.

  • SAMI Bedell Center For The Performing Arts – A 1000-seater performing arts place where world-class performances are held. It is home to the music legends’ Elton John limited edition Yamaha red concert grand piano.

Local Cuisine and Dining

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Since you are already exploring the things to do in Spirit Lake, Iowa, make sure to taste its mouthwatering local cuisine and dining! Below are some recommendations.

Let your tastebuds rejoice by visiting the top restaurants in Spirit Lake! These restaurants, which we’ll share with you today, are known to be among patrons’ favorites.

They offer a fantastic dining experience and quality service. The food is superb, and the prices are not overwhelming.

  • Maxwell’s Beach Cafe is known for its picturesque lakeside setting and fantastic American food. It’s the place for fresh seafood and sandwiches. They offer fine dining that feels casual.
  • At Los Pueblos Mexican Restaurant, your taste buds will thank you for letting them experience authentic Mexican cuisine. Indulge in their delicious tacos, flavorful enchiladas, and homemade salsas, which add an extra kick to every bite.
  • The Family Diner is a cozy local favorite, beloved for its comforting classics served in generous portions. Don’t forget to try their best-selling cinnamon and caramel rolls!

Local Food Specialties

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Spirit Lake is unmatched when it comes to local food. Taste the city’s distinctive flavors and ingredients to understand why it has become a tourist favorite. You’ll find many unmatched flavors that honor the region’s food scene, from flavorful smoked meats to farm-fresh veggies.

Try customary foods like freshly caught walleye, corn-fed beef from Iowa, and handcrafted pastries. These dishes celebrate Spirit Lake’s rich culinary traditions and serve as an identity of the place.

Family-Friendly Activities

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Did you know that Spirit Lake, Iowa, is a family-friendly place? Yes! Truthfully, it is an excellent place for people of all ages. All family members will have a great time here.

Spirit Lake has many parks and leisure spaces, which is ideal for all! There is a place for everyone to enjoy themselves, including vast green spaces to relax or play or tranquil and lovely lakeside views to feed the eye.

Parks and Recreational Areas

  • Memorial Park is a jewel, with its charming picnic spaces, walking paths, and stunning lake views. It is a well-loved park in the area by families.
  • Center Lake is a 50-foot shoreline where tourists and residents can have picnic dates with their loved ones.
  • Kiwanis Park is a one-acre park with a shelter house, a trail system, picnic tables, benches, and restrooms for PWDs, which are the most notable amenities. It is a family-friendly and inclusive park in Spirit Lake, Iowa.
  • Bob Allen Park is a lovely neighborhood park with a kiddie playground, sand play area, and easy access to bike trails. It is a great place for children to have fun under the sun.

These are just some of the many parks and recreational spots in Spirit Lake. There are still more to visit, so explore them while you are in the area.

Educational and Fun Activities

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These places are perfect for kids to learn and experience their surroundings. Spirit Lake is a child-friendly place that caters to the needs of its treasured young residents.

All of these places offer fun and educational experiences to children of all ages.

Shopping and Souvenirs

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This guide to the best things to do in Spirit Lake, Iowa, also includes shopping! Whether you are looking for souvenirs or personal items, you can find what you want in one of the stores here.

A local store in the Okoboji area has been serving the city for over 50 years. The store is called “The Three Sons.” If you are searching for a store close to the residents’ heart, The Tree Sons is the place you should visit.

It is a family-owned business that sells various items, including accessories, home goods, and apparel, in addition to gifts. At The Three Sons, you’re bound to find something unique, whether shopping for fashionable apparel, distinctive home accents, or heartfelt gifts for loved ones.

Mary’s Gift Shoppe is a gift shop that offers a wide range of products. If you are looking for a place to buy unique kitchen gadgets, home decorations, accessories, and collegiate products, this is the place for you.

Events and Festivals

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If you love parties or wish to participate in events or celebrations, come and visit these Spirit Lake Events!

Annual Celebrations

  • Okoboji Blue Water Festival – This meaningful and purposeful festival is held every year. It promotes clear and clean water quality and its importance. It is a free event where bands perform, kids play and learn, and adults enjoy exhibits.
  • Okoboji Winter Games – This annual winter sports festival features activities like ice fishing, snowmobiling, and polar plunges, as well as live music and entertainment.
  • Spirit Lake Homecoming – A tradition that brings together current residents and alumni for a day.

Seasonal Events

  • Spirit Lake Winter Wonderland is a festive holiday event featuring ice skating, sleigh rides, and visits with Santa Claus.
  • Spring Fling celebrates spring’s arrival with outdoor activities, gardening workshops, and community clean-up events.
  • Fall Harvest Festival is a fall-themed activity for the whole family, a celebration of the autumn harvest.

Staying in Spirit Lake

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Accommodation opportunities in Spirit Lake are plentiful. You choose the type of accommodation you wish to have. Do you wish to stay in a hotel, lakeside resort, campground, RV park, or vacation rental? The choice is yours!

Accommodation Options

  • The Oakwood Inn is an exclusive place for adults. The upper floor has a two-room suite and several rooms with luxurious whirlpools. A full breakfast is made every morning using old family dishes, and the property’s coffee is offered.
  • Ramada by Wyndham Spirit Lake/Okoboji is a hotel offering great amenities, including a heated indoor pool, whirlpool, and free internet access. Rooms are equipped with home appliances, including personal use like hair dryers and microwaves for the kitchen.
  • Super 8 by Wyndham Spirit Lake/Okoboji is a part of the biggest low-cost hotel chain in the country. Complimentary coffee, free breakfast, free local phone calls, ironing boards, hair dryers, and irons are all in every room, all of which contribute to the comfortable design of each accommodation, as is the cable TV.
  • Travelodge by Wyndham Spirit Lake/Okoboji is a great place for short stays. It offers pet-friendly rooms, free Wi-Fi, parking, breakfast, and many other amenities.
  • Cenla Campground is a beautiful RV park spot for campers, complete with lakefront views!
  • Village West Resort is a lakefront resort in Spirit Lake. They offer hotel units and condos. Amenities include pools, lounges, recreation centers, and more.

Practical Information for Visitors

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Best Time to Visit

Summer is the ideal time to visit Spirit Lake if you wish to see it at its most vibrant. From June to August, many people come to the city to witness and experience its beauty. The weather is sunny and bright, allowing you to do more things around.

If you seek a slow-paced life in a place with mild weather, then the best time to visit Spirit Lake is during spring and fall! During these seasons, the striking landscape of the area is at its clearest.

These times are ideal for leisure walks and serene exploration of the lake and its other offered activities. Moreover, fewer people are around so you can enjoy the peace and stunning glory of Spirit Lake without a crowd.

Getting Around Spirit Lake

Getting around Spirit Lake is best through car and boat rides. Opt for a guided boat tour if you want to familiarize yourself with the waters. These tours will allow you to explore Spirit Lake with caution and the guidance of a more knowledgeable person.

Final Thoughts

Spirit Lake is a fantastic place for various activities. On top of being packed with things to do, one of its primary traits is the serenity it offers. Yes, you can have fun here, but more than the fun, you may find your peace here!

So, do not limit what Spirit Lake can offer! Although a small city, it could be a competitive candidate for your favorite place in the world.

With that, let us know if you want to know more about this precious community! We’ll familiarize you with the area, its real estate offerings, lifestyle, entertainment, and more! Feel free to connect with our team by calling us at 712 336 4000 or send us a message via or through our social media channels below:

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Frequently Asked Questions

Going to the famous Arnolds Park Amusement Park, fishing, swimming, and boating at Spirit Lake, and exploring the parks and trails in Spirit Lake are the area’s top-most and most well-liked family activities in the city.

Lakefront restaurants are a great dining experience in Spirit Lake. Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy good food while your eyes feast on the beautiful lake before you!

Yes! There are several events and festivals in Spirit Lake that visitors and locals await every year.

  • Okoboji Blue Water Festival
  • Arnolds Park Concert Series (Live Music Fest)
  • Okoboji Winter Games

Explore the lake by swimming, fishing, and boating, and view its unsullied beauty. Hiking, camping, and biking are also fantastic for exploring and appreciating Spirit Lake’s wonders.

These activities are excellent for learning more about Spirit Lake since you will encounter various things, including learning about the marine life in the lake and the wildlife living on the grounds.