Generations of families have made northwest Iowa’s chain of five glacial lakes their summer destination. Around Okoboji, you’ll find nostalgia in the waterfront amusement park Arnolds Park, hours of beachside fun and great lakeside cocktails.

By By the editors of
Lake Okoboji.

Day 1

The beachfront cottages at Fillenwarth Beach Resort draw girlfriends and families on weekend getaways.

Fill your day on the rides at Arnolds Park Amusement Park: Catch a spectacular view of Lake Okoboji from atop the Ferris wheel, and scream your way around The Legend, the world's 13th-oldest wooden roller coaster.

Dine on the shady deck or sunny patio of Maxwell's Beach Cafe.

Rough-hewn Abbie Gardner Sharp Cabin and Museum takes visitors back to the earliest years of pioneer settlements with a video, paintings and displays about the 1857 Spirit Lake Massacre.

Bridges Bay Resort is home to Boji Splash, the area's only indoor water park.

Lake Okoboji

Day 2

Get pancakes at O'Farrell's Sisters Restaurant, where the sweets are so delicious you have to order whole pies 24 hours in advance.

Okoboji Boat Works provides boat rentals, glass-bottom boat tours and last-minute swim gear.

The mix of specialty stores and the antiques mall make downtown a must for shopping for souvenirs and collectibles.

Drive, boat or water taxi your way to Barefoot Bar for fun tiki bar cocktails, or end your day at Bracco for tropical-inspired favorites like jerk chicken.

More information: Okoboji Tourism; (800) 270-2574;