The Best Iowa State Parks Near Lake Okoboji

The Oakwood Inn is a Select Registry Bed and Breakfast Inn located in Okoboji near Spirit Lake.

Gorgeous fall sunset from Iowa State Parks near Lake Okoboji

With crisp, cool air replacing the hot dog days of summer, and beautiful foliage bursting with color everywhere you turn, there are few things more magical than a getaway at our Okoboji, Iowa Hotel. Whether you want to get out and have some outdoor adventure at the Iowa State Parks near Lake Okoboji or you’d rather relax with a glass of wine and a good meal in town, we have plenty of ideas for you to enjoy your getaway.

While Lake Okoboji and the Iowa Great Lakes Region is generally considered a summer destination, fall is delightful – especially when you include a trip to at least one of the Iowa State Parks in the area. The crowds thin out a bit, the weather cools off, and you have the freedom to explore and enjoy the best of this area at your leisure.

While there are plenty of things to do in Okoboji, including visiting beautiful Iowa State Parks, there are also plenty of reasons to take full advantage of our charming boutique hotel. We’re located within easy reach of the area’s top attractions, but we also offer several acres of gorgeous gardens and grounds for you to enjoy, not to mention luxurious accommodations and exceptional hospitality. It’s time to experience just how special this part of the state can be in the fall. Book your room at our Lake Okoboji Hotel today!

Gorgeous fall foliage at Iowa State Parks near Lake Okoboji

Visit These Iowa State Parks This Fall

State Parks are a fantastic way to get out and explore the natural beauty of any state park – and Iowa State Parks are no exception! In total, 83 Iowa State Parks are spread throughout the state, with several of them right here in the Iowa Great Lakes Region.

Whether you’re looking for a quiet place to spend an afternoon, perhaps for a walk, hike, or picnic, these Iowa State Parks all top our list of recommendations.

  1. Gull Point State Park is one of the biggest and most popular Iowa State Parks on West Okoboji Lake, the largest and most popular of the lakes in the Iowa Great Lakes Region. There’s a boat launch and some excellent hiking trails throughout the park.
  2. Pikes Point State Park is another state park on West Okoboji Lake. Here, you’ll find one of the most popular swim beaches in the area, but it’s also a great place to enjoy a picnic, launch a boating adventure, and relax on a beautiful fall afternoon.
  3. Elinor Bedell State Park is one of the newest Iowa State Parks on East Lake Okoboji. A great trail system here winds its way through the various ecosystems, including wetlands, and offers access to some of the best fishing in the area.
  4. Fort Defiance State Park is about 20 minutes east of our Okoboji, Iowa Hotel and more than worth the day trip. It’s a beautiful woodland park that is great for hikes and birdwatching, especially in the fall. A highlight of the park is an army-post-style lodge.

Woman riding a bike through foliage at iowa state Parks in the Okoboji area

More Great Things to do in Okoboji This Fall

No matter the season you visit, there are plenty of things to do in Okoboji – these Iowa State Parks are just the beginning! Fall trips to Okoboji are a far cry from the traditional summer getaway. Instead, they offer couples the chance to slow down and reconnect with loved ones, surrounded by the stunning beauty of the Iowa Great Lakes Region.

There’s something for everyone in Okoboji, including excellent restaurants, shops, wineries, and breweries, plenty of parks and trails for hiking and biking, exciting museums and attractions, and so much more. Below, you’ll find a list of ten of our favorite things to do in Okoboji in the fall.

  1. One of the most beautiful ways to get around the Iowa Great Lakes Region in the fall is by bike – and there are some great bike trails and scenic country roads here to enjoy. An easy ride for our guests is on The Kenue Park Trail of the Dickinson County Trail system. You can rent bikes from Okoboji Expedition Company.
  2. Head out for traditional fall fun, and pick some apples at the Little Sioux Orchard.
  3. The weather is still perfectly pleasant for a round or two of golf! Four golf courses are near our Okoboji, Iowa hotel, including Brooks Golf Club, Emerald Hills Golf Course & Country Club, Okoboji View Golf Course, and Indian Hills Golf Club.
  4. Go wine tasting! There are a few wineries in the area, but our favorite is Round Lake Vineyard, located next to a quiet and beautiful lake straddling the Iowa and Minnesota state line. Another option is Little Swan Lake Vineyard. If you’d rather sip on a cold pint of craft beer, head to West O Beer or the Okoboji Brewing Company.
  5. Spend an afternoon shopping in the small towns and antique stores in the Iowa Great Lakes area. We have a few favorite stops on our website and are happy to provide you with a printed map while visiting!
  6. Car enthusiasts won’t want to miss the Okoboji Classic Car Museum or the Indian Motorcycle Factory & Visitor Center.
  7. Art lovers, don’t miss a trip to the Pearson Lakes Art Center. It’s one of the top-rated art museums in Iowa.

Upon check-in at our Okoboji, Iowa hotel, you’ll be given Bridget & Bill’s Guide to the “best of Okojobi,” which features all of these fantastic things to do in Okoboji, plus many more personalized recommendations. We’re looking forward to a gorgeous fall in the Iowa Great Lakes Region and can’t wait to welcome you to this tranquil paradise. Book your room at our Okoboji, Iowa hotel today!

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