Bounded by the Great Lakes and Canada to the north, the Appalachian Mountains to the east, and the Rocky Mountains and Great Plains to the west, much of the Midwest is defined by endless plains and farmland with rolling hills, prairies and forests that break up the monotony of Sometimes.
Despite that Midwestern image, there's actually quite a bit of geographic diversity to behold, with beautiful sand dunes in Indiana, Ozarks in Missouri, and Minnesota and Michigan, home to thousands of sparkling lakes.
Away from majestic natural landscapes and incredible wilderness, the Midwestern states offer some big cities, including Chicago, Cleveland and Detroit. The region is also known as the "Heart of America" because of its manufacturing, industrial and agricultural activities. In addition, it also showcases a proud Native American heritage with many significant historical, cultural and spiritual landmarks spread across many Midwestern states.
Bordering Lake Michigan in the northeast of the state,Illinoisit consists mostly of endless farmland, with only river valleys, hills and forests to break up the southern monotony. Here you'll find the beautiful Shawnee National Forest and the fascinating Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site.
Illinois' main attraction is the cosmopolitan cityChicago, the third largest in the country and the most important and influential city in the Midwest. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago is blessed with a majestic skyline. Hidden amongst the stunning architecture, you'll discover world-class museums, iconic sights and vibrant neighborhoods - with plenty of beaches available too.
While Chicago understandably dominates most visitors' itineraries, it's worth venturing further afield. The charming town of Galena, on the Mississippi River, is filled with historic attractions for you to enjoy.Springfeld, the state capital, has several monuments and museums related to Abraham Lincoln - his most famous son.
Although it is known as "The Crossroads of America" for all the highways that cross it,Indianait's much more than just an overflight state. It offers plenty of picturesque scenery and farmland, and a few larger towns and lively university towns are scattered here and there.
One of the most popular attractions is the lovely Indiana Dunes National Park, which sits on the shores of Lake Michigan. It offers a wide range of outdoor activities, with walking, horse riding and bird watching being particularly popular, whilst the beautiful lake is perfect for swimming and sailing.
In addition to Indianapolis, the largest and most important city in the state, Indiana also has the fun and friendly college towns of Bloomington, Evansville and Terre Haute. The George Rogers Clark National Historical Park and its wonderful murals and memorials are also a popular attraction.
Primarily from rural areas and farmland as far as the eye can see,Iowait is bordered on the west and east by the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, with most major cities on one river or the other.
monges, capital and largest city in the state, is on the banks of the river of the same name. The Capitol Building is one of Iowa's most popular attractions, as is its thriving arts and cultural scene. Plus, the college towns of Cedar Falls and Iowa City are fun, festive places with a youthful, energetic vibe.
Away from the built-up areas, the state also has the Great Lakes of Iowa. Here you can go swimming, boating or kayaking in the beautiful waterways. The Amana Colonies - seven historic villages displaying wonderful German heritage - and the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail offer interesting history and culture.
Known as the "Sunflower State" for its endless fields of colorful flowers,Kansasin fact, it's right in the geographic heart of the United States. Though often overlooked by visitors to the region, Kansas has much to offer beyond its picturesque farmland and countryside.
DuringWichitais the largest city in the state, Dodge City and Lawrence are much more interesting to visit. The former is a historic cattle town and the latter is home to the best arts, bars and music scenes in the Midwest alongside Chicago.
Additionally, Kansas is also a great place to visit if you want to learn more about the American West. Many towns you'll find have old historic buildings and monuments dedicated to this part of the country's history, with interesting information and exhibits about the Lewis and Clark Expedition that can be found at the Frontier Army Museum.
Located in the heart of the Great Lakes region, also borderingYou have, Michigan is an incredibly beautiful place to explore; It has over 12,000 lakes, endless forests, beaches and rivers, and more coastline than any other state except Alaska.
Consisting of two large peninsulas, each surrounded by water on three sides,Michiganit is blessed with beautiful scenery. There are many outdoor activities on offer, with swimming, sailing and fishing in the lakes, all popular pastimes with locals and visitors alike. Places like Isle Royale National Park and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore are great for hiking and camping, while skiing and snowboarding are also available in the winter.
In addition to its wealth of wonderful natural attractions, Michigan is also home to some interesting cities, withDetroitbe by far the biggest. Ann Arbor is also worth a visit for its vibrant art and cultural scene, as is Saugatuck-Douglas - a fashionable beach town.
Despite being known as "the land of 10,000 lakes", it actually sellsMinnesotaAll in all, how remarkably it has twice as much spread across the entire state, with beautiful forests and beautiful wilderness areas thrown in for good measure.
Minnesota borders Canada and is home to the northernmost point of the continental United States. Minnesota is known for being a friendly and welcoming place, with cities and communities like Minneapolis, St. Paul and Rochester housing diverse multicultural populations.
While the cities are beautiful to visit, Minnesota's majestic wilderness is what most people are looking for. Boundary Waters Canoe Area, Itasca State Park and Voyageurs National Park are among the most impressive natural attractions; Each has excellent kayaking, hiking, camping and swimming opportunities.
Due to its proximity to the Great Plains and the Southern StatesMissouriit has many facets, yet is closer economically and culturally to other states in the Midwest.
Rarely visited by tourists, Missouri is an off the beaten path destination with many hidden gems to be discovered. For example, hiking, horseback riding and canoeing are great outdoor activities to enjoy amidst the stunning scenery of the Ozarks, and the Mark Twain National Forest is fantastic to explore.
While the diverse landscapes, rivers, and scenic landscapes are enticing to travel, Missouri also has some great cities to visit.Kansas Cityhas a lot of barbecue and blues music to offer, while St. Louis offers many interesting historical and cultural sites; Its iconic Gateway Arch is just one of the must-sees.
With vast open plains and endless skies stretching as far as the eye can see, there's something strangely beautiful and alluring.NebraskaThe endless farm and ranch of the country, though many people miss it when traveling through the Midwest.
That would be a mistake, however, as the sparsely populated state is also home to incredible natural attractions such as the Sand Hills - the largest cluster of dunes in America - and the magnificent Pine Ridge, which is covered in forests and dotted with many jagged hills.
Plus, you can always visit the many art galleries and museums in Omaha, the largest city in the state, kayak the Niobrara River or hike the scenic Oregon Trail.
Dakota do Norte
Located precisely in the center-north region of the country,Dakota do NorteIt borders Canada and its sparsely populated landscape is dotted with rolling hills, sparkling lakes, desolate wastelands and endless plains.
It's a nature lover's dream, and there are a wide range of outdoor activities to enjoy, with horse riding, walking and cycling being some of the most popular. Cross-country skiing and snowmobiling are also available in the winter, and some of the best scenery can be found in Theodore Roosevelt National Park.
Popular gateways to the beautiful North Dakota wilderness include Bismarck, the state capital, and Devils Lake, which is easily accessible from many beautiful waterways. To top it off, the state also boasts a proud Native American heritage, and many significant historical, spiritual, and sacred sites are scattered throughout its many magnificent landscapes.
Due to its prime location in the center of the most densely populated areas in the United States, its delightful mix of cities and towns, beautiful farmland and strong industry,Ohioaptly and affectionately dubbed "the heart of it all".
The state really packs a punch; You can explore the bustling cities ofCleveland,Colombo, eCincinnatione minute, the charming towns, villages and wineries of the Lake Erie Islands the next, and end the day camping in one of the amazing state parks.
Ohio is filled with natural beauty that includes sparkling Lake Erie to the north and the foothills of the Allegheny and Appalachian Mountains to the southeast. Home to the beautiful Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the beautiful Wayne National Forest, Ohio really does have something for everyone.
While South Dakota is primarily known for being home to the impressive Mount Rushmore National Memorial, the state has so much more to offer, with plenty of interesting natural and cultural attractions for you to check out.
Some of the main attractions are the Badlands National Park and the Black Hills National Forest in the west of the state. Here you'll find rugged and wild landscapes filled with forests, rock formations and mountains, frontier towns and Native American reservations. Jewel Cave National Monument, the third largest cave in the world, and Wind Cave National Park are other popular natural attractions.
In addition to all the breathtaking scenery and the wide variety of outdoor activities these landscapes offer, South Dakota is steeped in history and boasts a proud cultural heritage in the form of famous figures like Lewis and Clark, Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse. The cities are also worth a visitSioux Falls, Custer and Rapid City are home to monuments, memorials and museums documenting the state's rich past.
Bounded by Lake Michigan to the east and Lake Superior to the north,Wisconsinproperly means "meeting of the waters." Its two long and picturesque coastlines are dotted with beautiful beaches, forests and towns, with many excellent water sports.
In fact, there are thousands of inland lakes and waterways across the state. Two of the most popular places for tourists are Wisconsin Dells, which has plenty of family-friendly activities and water parks to enjoy, andDoor County, which offers many fantastic beaches, fascinating historical sites and culturally vibrant cities.
While Wisconsin's main attraction is undoubtedly its beautiful outdoors and picturesque lakes, it's also home to some fantastic cities such asMilwaukeeemadison. The former is known for its many festivals and microbreweries, and the latter is a vibrant university town set in stunning surroundings between two lakes.
What are the 12 Midwest states? ›
The Midwest, as defined by the federal government, comprises the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.What is the most visited place in the Midwest? ›
1. Marvel at Mount Rushmore. One of the top tourist attractions in the entire country, not just in the Midwest, is Mount Rushmore in South Dakota.Is the Midwest pretty? ›
The Midwest has everything from stunning seashores and towering mountains to prairies, glimmering lakes and lush forests. While it's hard to pick the prettiest spots (because there are just so many options), we love a good challenge.What is most famous about the Midwest? ›
Made up of countless small towns that come together to form what some call “America's Heartland,” the Midwest is known for its industry, farming, and residents with friendly, down-to-earth attitudes. On a trip to the region, you'll get a little bit of city, a little bit of country, and everything in between.What is the prettiest state in the Midwest? ›
Michigan. What is this? Lying at the heart of the Great Lakes region on the border with Canada, Michigan is a breathtakingly beautiful place to explore; it has over 12,000 inland lakes, endless forests, beaches, and rivers, as well as more coastline than any other state apart from Alaska.What is the nickname for the Midwest? ›
The Midwest is a region of the United States of America known as "America's Heartland", which refers to its primary role in the nation's manufacturing and farming sectors as well as its patchwork of big commercial cities and small towns that, in combination, are considered as the broadest representation of American ...What is the most beautiful city in the Midwest? ›
- Spring Green, Wisconsin. Spring Green, WI, USA | Photo by Dave Hoefler on Unsplash. ...
- Grand Marais, Minnesota. Boundary Waters Canoe Area, Gunflint Trail, Grand Marais | Photo by Joe Pohle on Unsplash. ...
- Nashville, Indiana. ...
- Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. ...
- Madison, Wisconsin. ...
- Galena, Illinois.
Chicago – The heart of the Midwest.What is the most Midwestern city? ›
|3||Minneapolis–St. Paul–Bloomington||MN, WI|
|4||St. Louis||MO, IL|
One Western state and one Southern state made the top 10. Idaho (eighth), Virginia (10th) and Wisconsin (12th) are the safest states in the West, South and Midwest, respectively. Maine had the lowest violent crime rate per capita, and Massachusetts had the lowest property crime rate.
What is the best Midwest city to live? ›
- Rogers Park (Chicago), Illinois.
- Ann Arbor, Michigan.
- Naperville, Illinois.
- Carmel, Indiana.
- Overland Park, Kansas.
- Madison, Wisconsin.
- Woodbury, Minnesota.
- Eagan, Minnesota.
- You measure distance in hours. ...
- You drive everywhere but can't parallel park. ...
- You say 'hi' to strangers when walking. ...
- You don't know how to say 'goodbye' ...
- You apologize — a lot. ...
- You're exceedingly friendly. ...
- You secretly judge people by their lawns.
After establishing the geographic area that defines the Midwest, Van Dam set out to understand Midwestern culture. Using words that were mentioned in at least 300 listing descriptions, Van Dam declared that the "the most Midwestern thing on Earth is the walleye," a freshwater fish common throughout the region.What is a Midwestern personality? ›
The profile and traits of the Midwest (Friendly and Conventional) implies a regional cluster of personalities that are family-oriented, religious, and thus drawn to more conservative political orientations. There is a psychological dimension to highly innovative, entrepreneurial and creative places.What is the Midwest mentality? ›
Hard work, caring for the community, a sense of humbleness, close family ties, and doing what was right were all key ingredients tossed into this Midwest melting pot. The people we met were helpful, loving, honest, proud yet modest, and unafraid to get their hands dirty.What is the nicest looking state? ›
Home to nine national parks (more parks than any other state in the country), California is undoubtedly the most beautiful state in America for natural wonders. From sandy beaches drenched in sunlight to majestic granite mountains, arid desert landscapes and the tallest trees in the world, California has it all.Which US state has most natural beauty? ›
- Washington, the Evergreen State, takes top spot. ...
- In second place, with a beauty score of 8.64, is California. ...
- Alaska takes the third position and due to being so vast and with such little population, it offers tremendous untouched natural beauty to explore: glaciers, mountains, rushing rivers and pristine lakes.
- Utah. ...
- Arizona. ...
- Hawaii. ...
- Colorado. ...
- Michigan. ...
- Oregon. ...
- Florida. Also known as the Sunshine State, Florida is an alluring mix of gorgeous beaches, balmy weather, and sweet Latin vibe. ...
That's the premise of the famed Midwestern goodbye. It starts with an indication that you're about to leave, usually smacking your knees, standing up, stretching, then the words, “Welp, I/we should probably get going.” The Midwestern goodbye ritual then ensues and can go on for anywhere from a few minutes to an hour.What are some Midwest sayings? ›
- "If I had my druthers…" ...
- "Oh, for cute!" or "Oh, for fun!" ...
- "For cryin' out loud." ...
- "That makes as much sense as government cheese." ...
- "He's schnookered!" ...
- "The Frozen Chosen." ...
- "Duck Duck Gray Duck" ...
- "He's got the holler tail."
Why the Midwest is awesome? ›
Cheese curds, lakes, beer, quality education, four seasons: There's a lot to love about being in the Midwest. Ah, the Midwest: Home to Henry Ford, cheese curds, The Great Lakes, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, countless professional sports teams and more acres of farmland than anyone cares to count.What is America's Friendliest city? ›
1. Savannah, Georgia. Earning the top spot among the friendliest cities in the U.S., Savannah made quite an impression on travelers this past year. It's hard to say what exactly makes the locals here so happy.What is the fastest growing city in the Midwest? ›
The 25 Fastest Shrinking Cities in the U.S.
|24. Rockford, IL||3.1%|
|25. Lima, OH||3.0%|
Cincinnati was also featured in the travel section of Into. Into's writer calls our town "the gem of the Midwest" after spending a jam-packed weekend exploring Downtown and Over-the-Rhine and other local favorites.What is the Vegas of the Midwest? ›
Hoosier State: Vegas of the Midwest | Midwestern Traveler.Why do they call it the Midwest? ›
In the 1850s, Americans tried to grapple with those new territories and settled on Middle West because the territory sat between the Southwest of Oklahoma and Texas, and the Northwest of the Dakota Territory. That is, Americans understood the Midwest as a place west of the Mississippi but between North and South.What is the jewel of the Midwest? ›
Chicago is often referred to as “The Jewel of the Midwest” due to the abundance of tourist attractions scattered throughout the city.Where is the cheapest place to live in the Midwest? ›
- Omaha, Nebraska. ...
- Lincoln, Nebraska. ...
- Des Moines, Iowa. ...
- Fargo, North Dakota. ...
- Davenport, Iowa. ...
- Grand Forks, North Dakota. Average monthly state income: $4,304. ...
- Columbus, Indiana. Average monthly state income: $4,128. ...
- Fort Wayne, Indiana. Average monthly state income: $4,128.
- Ann Arbor, MI.
- Carmel, IN.
- Cedar Rapids, IA.
- Columbia, MO.
- Columbus, OH.
- Fort Wayne, IN.
- Madison, WI.
- Naperville, IL.
The Midwest has a rep for friendly people, cheap land, and a stress-free lifestyle that differs dramatically from other US regions. Many people are flocking to the Midwest because of its affordable cost of living, open spaces, and relaxed pace of life.
Where are Midwesterners moving to? ›
Indiana has been neutral in the report since 2011. Between 2011 and 2021, Michigan and Illinois have seen more people move out of those states than move in, according to the report. The top inbound states for 2021 were South Carolina, Colorado, Oregon, Texas and Florida.What state is the lowest in crime? ›
Crime in the U.S.
Those figures saw broad variation among states; Maine saw the lowest rate of violent crime – about 115 per 100,000 people – while Alaska, the state with the highest rate, had about 867 incidents per 100,000 people.
- San Diego, California.
- Hartford, Connecticut.
- Portland, Maine.
- Reno, Nevada.
- Fort Collins, Colorado.
- Boston, Massachusetts.
- Madison, Wisconsin.
- Trenton, New Jersey.
Kansas City is known for its sweet barbeque and rich culture, and is also our number-one pick for best weather of the Midwest. The city enjoys 62% of the year in the sun and maintains an average temperature of 57 degrees, although it can get as cold as -23. Staying in the plains states, second place goes to Omaha.Is the Midwest declining? ›
The growth rate of 0.1 percent between July 1, 2020, and July 1, 2021, marks the lowest year-over-year increase since the nation's founding, and the most recent U.S. Census Bureau data also show the number of people living in the 11-state Midwest actually on the decline.Do people in the Midwest get married younger? ›
Not-so-surprising is that the average age of couples varies according to region. Among 2021 couples, the average age of marriage was highest in the Northeast (34), while couples in the Midwest and Southwest wed at 32.Why do people love the Midwest? ›
Everything is more relaxed in the Midwest – and that includes the cost of living. Housing, food, transportation, and entertainment are all much cheaper than on the coast, so your money goes further here, even in well-known cities like Chicago.What language do Midwestern speak? ›
North-Central American English (in the United States, also known as the Upper Midwestern or North-Central dialect and stereotypically recognized as a Minnesota accent or Wisconsin accent) is an American English dialect native to the Upper Midwestern United States, an area that somewhat overlaps with speakers of the ...Are people happier in the Midwest? ›
Midwesterners are generally happier than people living in the South. Of the top ten happiest states in our ranking six of them — Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Iowa — are in the Midwest.What is Midwest nice stereotype? ›
Midwest Nice is the cultural stereotype applied to the behavior of the people in the Midwest as they are known for being unusually polite, reserved, or passive-aggressive. The Midwest includes many states, large cities, and rural communities. This makes Midwest Nice an ever changing standard.
What accent do Midwesterners have? ›
As indicated by the Midwesterner above, Midland American English speakers often don't think they have an accent all. This accent is indeed the closest to General American, but it is rapidly changing. The accent is mostly associated with Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Indiana, Ohio and parts of Illinois.What is a Midwestern work ethic? ›
Midwestern Work Ethic: A Higher Standard
From youngsters, Midwesterners are raised to work until the work is done, stay humble, treat others as we, ourselves, want to be treated, and never stop learning. We learn from example that by working hard, we can achieve whatever we set out to do. Work first, play later.
The Midwest also has a lot of tall people because so many people have lanky German, Swedish, Danish and Norwegian ancestry, according to the report (those genes must have skipped this reporter).What things are unique to the Midwest? ›
There are many foods, sayings, weather patterns, and hobbies that are only found in the Midwest. We've gathered up some of the things that only Midwesterners can appreciate. Examples include tornado warnings, steakburgers from Steak 'n Shake, cornhole, spending summers at the lake, and Big Ten team allegiances.Why is it still called the Midwest? ›
“Midwest” was invented in the 19th Century, to describe the states of the old Northwest Ordinance, a term that became outdated once the nation spread to the Pacific Coast. “Midwest” is applied to a chunk of America that seems unclassifiable to the rest of the country: neither North, South, East or West.How many states make up the Midwest? ›
12 States Make up the Midwest Region of the Country.What is the most popular cities in the Midwest region? ›
1 Chicago, Illinois Chicago, officially the City of Chicago, is the third-most populous city in the United States. With over 2.7 million residents, it is also the most populous city in both the state of Illinois and the Midwestern United States.Is Tennessee considered the Midwest? ›
Mideast = Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia; Midwest = Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, and Wisconsin; Mountain-Prairie = Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Wyoming; Northeast = Connecticut, Maine, ...Is Ohio considered the Midwest? ›
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Midwest comprises the Old Northwest states (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin) as well as North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri.What do Midwesterners say differently? ›
In the Midwest, "jeez" is a polite way of expressing frustration. A lot of words and phrases from the Midwest originate out of politeness. Instead of offensive words, they'll choose soft alternatives such as the word "jeez," used to express frustration, amazement, or surprise.
Why are people moving away from the Midwest? ›
High taxes, more affordable housing and better job prospects are chief reasons more people are leaving the Midwest for other parts of the country including the Southeast and Southwest, a study revealed.Why is the Midwest so muggy? ›
In the Midwest and northern Plains, corn and soybean crops draw moisture from the ground through their roots into their leaves, stems and fruits. The water evaporates into the surrounding air through their leaves, joining forces with neighboring water molecules to humidify the air.Why is the Midwest unique? ›
The Midwest has a rep for friendly people, cheap land, and a stress-free lifestyle that differs dramatically from other US regions. Many people are flocking to the Midwest because of its affordable cost of living, open spaces, and relaxed pace of life.What makes the Midwest unique? ›
Often called “America's Heartland”, the Midwestern United States is made of large cities, small towns and farming communities spread across a large area of the U.S. Images of the Midwest often focus on flat plains and sprawling farmland, but it's also home to major cities like Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, Minneapolis- ...