Last Updated on August 19, 2022 by Jim Ferri
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
By Carla Marie Rupp and Jason Rupp
Indiana Amish country will take you to another world. A trip here in the U.S. Midwest is a trip through a simpler and, perhaps, a more comfortable time.
Amish people live a good life, give thanks to their Creator God, enjoy animals and nature, work hard and make delicious food for their families. Some will even cook and bake for visitors and show you their wares and crafts as well as horse-shoeing and buggy-making.
If you’re contemplating a trip to Amish Country, visit Northern Indiana. This marvelous patch of the America is home to the third-largest Amish settlement in the U.S. It’s authentic, rural, down-home America populated with wonderful people.
Amish Settlements Galore
Throughout Indiana’s Amish country you’ll find small Amish towns dotting the countryside. Be sure to visit such famous Amish towns such as as Shipshewana, Elkhart, Goshen, Wakarusa, Bristol, Middlebury and Nappanee. In addition, there are also smaller villages and farms galore scattered between these communities.
Unquestionably, summer is a great time to visit and to enjoy all the garden-picked produce. You’ll also find delicious homemade meals in little country stops you’ll discover, and in the farmer’s markets you’ll encounter.
Driving is also a joy out here, and the scenery suits just fine. The black buggies with the Amish inside are a familiar sight and you’ll often hear the clip-clop of their horse’s hooves on the roads. There are also special car tours that take visitors to see Amish crafts, wood-working, buggy shops, schools and farms.
The Menno-Hof information center in Shipshewana is a good place to learn about the life and the faith of the Indiana Amish and Mennonites,. It’s also a good place for information on Amish and Mennonite sight-seeing in Northern Indiana. At the Elkhart County Visitor Center it isn’t uncommon to find lovely, hand-made quilts for sale.
Indiana Amish Heritage Guide
There’s also a fascinating Heritage Trail Audio Driving Tour that instructs visitors on a 90-mile-road trip through Indiana Amish Country. It’s a real asset in touring the northern part of the state, and chock full of good tidbits of information and sights to see. The free guide – yes, free – is available through the Elkhart County Visitor Center (link above).
If you’re looking for country charm, you’ll undoubtedly want to stay atone of the numerous bed & breakfast accommodations in Indiana’s Amish Country. Many, in fact, are full of antiques. You’ll also find numerous inns and reasonably priced motel rooms. You can even pick an Amish farmhouse or a converted barn made into a bed-and-breakfast!
Food, Auctions and Flea Markets
All over the area you’ll also find plenty of tasty Amish food. Stop at popular Das Dutchman Essenhaus in Middlebury, Indiana’s largest family-style restaurant and bakery. There you can enjoy meals created from generations-old family recipes, including 30+ varieties of pies baked daily.
Of course, there’s also a chance you’ll come across a country auction or flea market. One of the largest flea markets in the Midwest is in the hamlet of Shipshewana. More than 900 vendors spread their merchandise out over 15 acres there.
It’s fun, of course, and visitors can find all kinds of antiques and collectibles, even tools and furniture and who-knows-what else. The popular, year-round event is held every Wednesday and attracts bidders from as far away as New York and Florida.
You’ll also find Amish attractions, bakeries, fabric and gift shops and cute little boutiques in the town of Shipshewana.
It’s fun to wander around this part of Indiana Amish Country, a place you’ll find lots of memories to take home.
Photos courtesy of the Elkhart County Convention and Visitors Bureau
If You Go:
Elkhart County Visitor Center
3421 Cassopolis St
Shipshewana / LaGrange County Convention & Visitors Bureau
350 S. Van Buren St.
Shipshewana, Indiana 46565
The Menno-Hof Information Center
510 South Van Buren St.