German immigrants and the Mississippi River—flowing east to west here rather than its usual north to south—shaped Davenport (population: 101,000). Explore those forces in the heart of the Quad Cities.

By The editors of
Updated May 06, 2021

What to do

Figge Art Museum One gallery is dedicated to Frank Lloyd Wright; another features American artists of the 1920s and 1930s, including Grant Wood.

Freight House Farmers Market Find fresh produce, baked goods and crafts on Saturdays year-round.

German American Heritage Center Housed in an 1860s hotel where many German immigrants stayed, this center focuses on the immigrants' experiences, as well as the history of the Quad Cities area and German culture.

German American Heritage Center
German American Heritage Center. Courtesy of the Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Modern Woodmen Park The minor-league Quad Cities River Bandits play at this ballpark where bumper cars, a roller coaster and a carousel provide entertainment off the field.

Nahant Marsh A self-guided tour through the marsh introduces you to several types of wetland environments. The educational center hosts events for kids and adults.

Putnam Museum and Science Center Get up close to polar bears in the Hall of Mammals or have fun with hands-on experiments in the Science Center.

Putnam Museum exhibit
Putnam Museum. Courtesy of the Quad Cities Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Vander Veer Botanical Park Explore a 33-acre park's conservatory, gardens and lagoon.

Where to eat

Boozie's Bar and Grill This restaurant is the perfect spot to discuss your Davenport discoveries.

Cafe Indigo Creative breakfasts include delicious French toast stuffed with strawberries and an artichoke-and-asiago frittata.

The Machine Shed Stuffed pork chops, pot roast, and creamed chicken and biscuits are among the hearty, from-scratch meals at this farm-theme restaurant.

Lagomarcino's Soda Fountain Indulge in hot fudge sundaes, banana splits, ice cream sodas and chocolate-covered toffees at this century-old store.

Where to stay

The Current Iowa This boutique hotel opened recently in the 1910 Putnam building. Original artwork in every room and Mississippi River views enhance your stay.

Hotel Blackhawk The refurbished 11-story Hotel Blackhawk blends classic and contemporary styles to create a chic overnight spot downtown.

Hotel Blackhawk
Hotel Blackhawk
| Credit: Jay Wilde

Radisson Quad City Plaza Downtown, the Radisson skywalk connects to RiverCenter and the Adler Theatre. An expansive atrium anchors the hotel.