Skip to content

Latest Blogs

Pin to Trip

Trip Ideas for Outdoor Enthusiasts

Whether you want to unplug or gear up, you don't have to search far to find a natural escape in Council Bluffs and Pottawattamie County. Spend your day undisturbed in our parks, trails, and natural adventures. This might be uncharted territory for some - but not for you, soon. We've put together an itinerary for the perfect outdoor getaway in Pottawattamie County to enjoy in the spring, summer, and fall months!

Places to Visit:

1. Hitchcock Nature Center

View this post on Instagram

Spend a day undisturbed in the Loess Hills at Hitchcock Nature Center! Explore some of the largest remaining prairie remnants in Iowa while you hike, camp, picnic, and bird watch at one of the county’s most popular and scenic parks. In the winter, visitors enjoy cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding on the trails. 

Hours: 6 a.m. - 10 p.m. 
Location: 27792 Ski Hill Loop Honey Creek, IA 51542
Admission: $5 per vehicle, payable with exact change or check at the gate

2Tom Hanafan River's Edge Park

View this post on Instagram

Enjoy wide-open green space and the best views of the Omaha metro area skyline at Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park! At the park, you will find multiple Iowa West Public Art pieces and the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge. Don’t forget to go ‘bobbing’ by striking a pose while standing in two states at the same time!

Hours: 5 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Location: 4250 River's Edge Parkway
Admission: Free

3. Wabash Trace Nature Trail

View this post on Instagram

The Wabash Trace Nature Trail makes for a scenic evening bike ride, winding through the countryside and the Loess Hills—a rare formation of windblown soils created during the last ice age. The trail is a converted railroad and runs a total of 63 miles. On Thursday nights, you can join other local cyclists on the 20-mile round trip Taco Ride for tacos at Tobey Jack’s Mineola Steak House! During the colder months, visitors enjoy snowshoeing and cross country skiing.

Hours: Open 24 hours
Trailhead Location: 4102 Harry Langdon Blvd Council Bluffs, IA 51503
Admission: $2 per day or $20 per year, payable with exact change at the trailhead or purchase annual passes online

Places to Eat:

1. Christy Creme

View this post on Instagram

This third-generation family-owned business is known for its delicious burgers, sandwiches, and all your soft-serve favorites, including cones, sundaes, milkshakes, malts, and floats. Locals love their daily rotating sherbet flavors and outdoor patio! 

Hours: Monday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 10 p.m, and Sundays from 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. 
Location: 2853 North Broadway, Council Bluffs, Iowa 51503 

2. Boxer Barbeque

View this post on Instagram

Boxer Barbeque is an award-winning restaurant offering lunch, dinner, and carry-out and uses only the finest cuts of meat. Enjoy traditional barbeque with a modern twist!

Hours: Tuesday - Thursday 11 a.m. - 9 p.m., Friday - Saturday 11 a.m. - 10 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Location: 513 South Main Street Council Bluffs, IA 51503

More Places to Eat

3. The Buck Snort Neola

View this post on Instagram

The Buck Snort in Neola is a fast-casual restaurant that's great for the whole family. Their menu includes favorites like burgers, sandwiches, wraps, Phillies, pizza, and more. 

Hours: 10:30 - 8:00 p.m. daily 
Location: 113 4th Street, Neola, IA 51559 

Places to Stay | Camping Options:

Hitchcock Nature Center Campground

  • Cabin Camping
    Three modern cabins with air condition and heating, electricity, a refrigerator, microwave, tables, and chairs are available for rental. 
  • Modern Tent Camping
    Multi-tent group campsites are available and located near the RV campground and cabins. Sites include a fire ring, water hydrant, picnic table, and grill with nearby access to parking, pit and flush toilets, and a shower house.
  • RV Camping
    18 RV sites with electric hookups are available with a modern shower house, water hookups, and a dump station.
  • Primitive Camping
    Seven backcountry campsites are available located deep within the park. The primitive sites do not include access to modern amenities including drinking water or restrooms. 

More Information

Arrowhead Park Campground

  • Cabin Camping
    Arrowhead has three brand-new modern ranch-style cabins with full bathrooms and modern kitchens available, as well as three camping cabins that include heating, air conditioning, electricity, a refrigerator, microwave, tables, and chairs. 
  • Modern Tent Camping
    Multiple tent camping sites are offered throughout the park. Sites include a fire ring, water hydrant, picnic table, and grill with nearby access to parking, pit and flush toilets, and a shower house.
  • RV Camping
    54 RV sites with electric hookups are available with shower facilities, water hookups, and a dump station.

More Information

Botna Bend Park Campground

  • Modern Tent Camping
    Botna Bend has eight tent sites available at various locations throughout the park. All sites have a picnic table, fire pit, and charcoal grill. All tent sites are within walking distance of water hydrants and restroom facilities. 
  • RV Camping
    There are three different RV camping areas at Botna Bend, including electric grass sites and electric concrete pad sites, all within walking distance of water hydrants, showers and restroom facilities. 

More Information

Lake Manawa State Park Campground 

  • RV Camping
    Lake Manawa State Park Campground features 40 RV sites with modern amenities, including a gated entrance, full hook-up campsites, a shower house, and a paved walking trail connecting Lake Manawa State Park Beach and Dream Playground. No walk-ins are allowed. Visitors must make a reservation ahead of time. 

More Information

Horseshoe Casino RV Park

  • RV Camping
    There are 20 electric sites available at the RV park with modern restrooms, water spigots, a shower house, and dump station. Please note that this RV park is located in a parking lot and is not ideal for those looking for an outdoor adventure. 

More Information

Places to Stay | Hotel Options:

Looking for a hotel in Council Bluffs? Browse our website and book directly!  

Hotel Packages

More Places to Check Out:

Let us show you around. Explore our visitor guide
Let's stay in touch. Subscribe to our e-Newsletter
509 23rd Ave.
Council Bluffs, IA 51501
844-271-6909 | 712-256-2577
©2024 Council Bluffs CVB | Accessibility | Legal | Privacy Policy