The lighter side of real estate

24 Reasons You Need To Move to Lafayette, Indiana

Lafayette, Indiana is a beautiful place to move in and there are plenty of things to do there. If you still looking for reasons, here we have few of them.

Sally Olsson

Movoto Evangelist

5 articles, 0 comments

1. DT Kirby’s


An official Chicago-style bar decked out with Wrigley Field memorabilia. Best known for their Chicago hot dogs and enormous burgers, this bar has probably the best greasy bar food you’ll ever taste. Try the Grilled Cheese Cheeseburger (yes, two grilled cheese sandwiches are used as the bun). Their site is for a reason. (Warning: They won’t let you use ketchup on your hot dogs or let you cut your burger in half. House rules.)

2. The Elliott Hall of Music

Source: Flickr user Wes Jackson

Located on Purdue’s campus, this proscenium-style theater is massive. It has a 6,005 seat capacity, which is about 100 more seats than Radio City Music Hall in NYC. National musical artists, musicals, and comedians regularly come to perform at Elliott.

3. Purdue University


The Lafayette area wouldn’t be what it is without Purdue University on the other side of the Wabash River in West Lafayette. It’s just the truth. Division 1 sports, rich tradition, national entertainment, academic prestige, and multicultural college students make the Greater Lafayette area an exciting place to be.

4. Proximity to Chicago and Indy

Source: wikipedia

Lafayette is right off the interstate at about 65 miles from Indianapolis and 130 miles from Chicago. It’s always easy to commute to some big city entertainment and getaways. Many people earn a living by commuting to work in Indianapolis and even Chicago, so the Lafayette economy in part runs off of these two cities. Lafayette offers small city living for big city jobs.

5. It’s a Smart City


The Greater Lafayette Area has been ranked multiple times as a brainiac zone, due to Purdue being a leading research university. Lafayette doesn’t quite rank as high as West Lafayette, so that adds to the rivalry flames between the two towns.

6. People’s Brewery


Lafayette has a long tradition of brewing, dating back to 1855. People’s continues the tradition as a full size brewery serving Lafayette and most of Indiana with quality, handcrafted lagers and ales. Try the Space Cowboy at 9 percent ABV, but maybe just have one.

7. Lafayette Brewing Company

Source: flickr user farm9

MORE BEER! LBC ended a nearly 40 year dry spell of no local beer in Lafayette back in 1993 and has kept the cities blood thinned out since. It’s a microbrewery with great food in the heart of downtown on Main Street. If you have a strong local DIY ethic, LBC is definitely a great place for you.

8. Perk Up at Greyhouse

Source: flickr user sarajean

This place is always packed with students getting a big caffeine buzz to study on school nights, and on weekends you are likely to hear live music, and performances, which pairs nicely with a freshly brewed French press. The owners have a strong conviction for ethically sourced products and use only the finest fair trade coffee. Coffee and music are not the only reasons to stop in this unique shop as they also serve housemade gelato and crepes.

9. A City of Diversity

Source: flickr user ufv

People from all over the world call the greater Lafayette area home. Purdue has the second highest international student population among public universities, and is fourth overall. Just about anywhere you go in the world, you’ll be able to yell out “Boiler Up!” and find an alumnus.

10. Three Farmer’s Markets

Source: wikipedia

Lafayette and West Lafayette combined offers three vibrant farmers markets every week, which start in April and continue to thrive through October. You get everything from fresh organic produce to authentic Amish pastries–and even Craneberry Farm’s award-winning hummus. You NEED to try it.

11. Wabash Heritage Trail

Source: flickr user elizakendall/

Take a walk on the riverside. The Wabash Heritage Trail offers 13 miles of exploration and wildlife observation as long as the path isn’t flooded.

12. Frequent Festivals


Summertime means festival time and for a small town, Lafayette has them frequently. The Mosey Down Main Street, Taste of Tippecanoe, and the Dancing in the Streets are the main events, but almost every Saturday there’s something going on downtown. Large Mosey Beer to go anyone?

13. Columbian Park

Source: flickr user hammer51012

Where else can you watch monkeys hanging around at the free zoo, take a spin on carnival rides, and hit up one of the largest water slides in the state, all in one park?

14. Wolf Park

Source: flickr user Serge Melki

Howl the night away at the nearby Wolf Park. This family friendly park has educational guided tours of the wolves, coyotes, foxes and even bison. If you’re lucky you may even see some newborn pups. Youth camps are also available during June and July.

15. Prophetstown State Park

Source: flickr user mikesmemphistours/

As you can tell, the Greater Lafayette area has an abundance of parks and as Indiana’s newest state park, Prophetstown is one you shouldn’t miss. Pitch your tent or park your RV for the weekend (or ride your bike here for a day trip) and explore the 900 acres of restored prairie. Adventure seekers will not be disappointed with the several hiking and biking trails, horse drawn trolley rides and by joining one the many educational programs that are offered. Don’t miss the Country Fair Weekend in mid-September.

16. Celery Bog Nature Area

Source: wikipedia

Get your feet wet plunging through 950 acres of wetlands, woods and fields at Celery Bog. Learn all about the local environment with hands-on investigations, which are provided on-site at the Lilly Nature Center. Natural history talks and workshops are available on “Wednesday’s in the Wild”.

17. The Discount Den


This is not your average convenience store—there’s just something cool about it. Students wait in huge lines between classes to get a 32 ounce fountain drink for only 56 cents. There is a wall full of custom fountain pop recipes. Sorority girls, like, totally travel in packs of 20 to get a “Den Pop! omgz!!”

18. Slayter Hill

Source: flickr use farm4

Most of northern Indiana is flat, so any hill is really a big deal. Located right by Purdue’s residential campus, this is a really cool venue used for outdoor performances and movies in warmer months and sledding in the winter. There is a tradition of students stealing lunch trays and using them as sleds.

19. Triple XXX


For the most part this is your average Midwestern diner that’s open 24/7. It’s a staple in the Purdue community, featuring menu items endorsed by Drew Brees and other Purdue alum. The most popular specialty item is the Duane Pervis, a cheeseburger with peanut butter on it. You either love it or you hate it. Guy Fieri stopped by for one of his TV shows and wasn’t a huge fan. Give it a try and decide for yourself!

20. Purdue sports


Yeah, their football team and men’s basketball teams have seen better days, but there’s a lot of tradition with Purdue athletics. Tickets are pretty easy to come by and there’s a pretty decent tailgate scene as well. Mackey Arena has been called one of the best venues in all of college basketball. Boiler Up! (Just don’t wear an Indiana University shirt to a game or you might get stabbed with a protractor.)

21. Insomnia Cookies

Source: flickr user mesohungry

Awesomely overpriced cookies delivered to your door at almost any hour. Try one and you’ll be hooked, especially if you have the (ahem) late-night munchies.

22. Purdue Boilermaker Special Train Rides

Source: wikipedia

The Boilermaker Special is a train that is the official mascot of Purdue. Occasionally, you’ll see it around town. Jump on for a free ride around the community and show off that Boiler pride!

23. Knickerbocker Saloon


They claim to have been issued Indiana’s first liquor license. Back in the 1870’s gentlemen could stop in for a shave, haircut, and a brew. Over the years the saloon has been visited by President Grant, Mark Twain, Al Capone, and Purdue’s alumnus, Neil Armstrong. Today, the Knickerbocker still has a great vibe, outdoor patio and live bands throughout the week.

24. Nine Irish

Source: flickr user lapstrake

The best and only Irish pub in town. It’s not awesome just because it’s the only Irish pub, it’s crazy LEGIT. They pour the best pint o’ Guinness in the states, in fact they won a competition year after year so they just stopped holding the competition. Celtic bands regularly play here and a few of the bands say it’s the best venue in the U.S. and Ireland. Come by and dance with the owner Jerry on top of the bar.

24.5 Preston’s

Who can forget about Preston’s? The best patio and the friendliest (and hottest) staff in all of Lafayette. There’s nowhere better to enjoy a beer than on Preston’s patio in the summertime.

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posted on: August 6, 2013
71,165 views, 46 comments


  1. Steve

    You forgot about Main Street Amusements. The best pinball collection in the Midwest, and open to the public.

  2. Mojo Bone

    Perhaps you should have mentioned that the Mosey Down Main Street is a FREE monthly event in the summers, and there’s also the annual Indiana Fiddler’s Gathering or that Greyhouse is only one of half a dozen truly exceptional coffeehouses, including the original Java Roaster, which used to roast their beans on the premises, filling the entire downtown area with deliciously aromatic clouds of advertising. There’s also a very diverse local economy with low unemployment and reasonably-priced housing.

  3. Yim Yames

    Perhaps, also, you should consider re-titling your article as to not lump West Lafayette into Lafayette. Contrary to some people’s beliefs, they are two separate cities. I count at least 12 list items that are exclusive to WEST Lafayette.

    • ChrisC in response to Yim Yames

      Two different cities perhaps but same county, same courthouse. Take away Purdue and it’s all Lafayette…. Just sayin’

      • ChrisC in response to ChrisC

        Perhaps I should have also stated there is no downtown West Lafayette…ya’ll come across the river to Lafayette to have a place to call downtown.

        • KatyN in response to ChrisC

          NO downtown but their own mayor and court system, police force, fire dept, etc not related to Purdue. Purdue student are just part of the population. West Lafayette IS NOT Lafayette. There are more than Lafayette and West Lafayette in Tippecanoe county as well. And for your information that is the County courthouse that has to be located somewhere and Lafayette is the county seat. Get your history/information correct before you say that they are the same.West Lafayette residents have enough education to not use such terms as y’all. (I’m guessing you are not from around here or yo

          • Katy N in response to KatyN

            or you would not say such things about these TWO wonderful cities. (my cat walked across my keyboard and sent my first part before I finished)

          • ChrisC in response to KatyN

            Born and raised in Lafayette, graduated from Jeff, went to and worked at Purdue. Don’t think I said anything so horrible. Truth is without Purdue what would Tippecanoe County be?? There will always be a Lafayette/West Lafayette rivalry but if people can swallow their pride and egos (especially from the West Lafayette side) they’d admit that both cities need/feed off each other…well, feed off Purdue. Ya’ll….I know so many people FROM Tippecanoe County who use that word…shhhhh don’t tell no one but I ain’t as educated as ya’ll West siders! For ya ta figure me all out from sayin’ ya’ll just tells me ya must be studying psych at Purdue.

            BY THE WAY….NO BRUNO’S ON THIS LIST???? Come on people!!!

  4. joe

    Another good reason- while your list is good- only 5 or so wouldve made my top 24! In short the GLA offers a lot for a lot of different people.

  5. Nick Johnso

    I can testify that Craneberry Farm’s hummus is to die for. Last week they had Roasted Garlic with Rosemary, Spicy Curry, White Bean and Lemon Sage and Black Olive with Oregano. Yum!

  6. Abby

    Uhhhh….The Sparrow. What the heck?

    • nick in response to Abby

      Abby, the Sparrow is cool. We can’t list every bar in town. :)

  7. Jesse Trent

    Harry’s and Bruno’s got snubbed? And no mention of the original Arni’s or Frozen custard? How did you manage to leave 4 of the oldest and best greater Lafayette staples off this list?

    • Coffee Steve in response to Jesse Trent

      And the Best Soda’s ever at McCord Candies. And while its not an old established restaurant like the others mentioned it’s really good, South street Smokehouse.

      • mp in response to Coffee Steve

        i thought the last time i visited McCords was gone? I was disappointed if its still there it should be on the li
        st for sure

  8. Dusty Ray

    A distinction between the two cities or a broader title would be better served for the write up. However, it is a good start to “100 reasons to move to the Twin Cities of Indiana”. Just keep in mind this write up is not a ranking of such, merely a list of a few. We all know there are a bunch of “reasons” worthy of this list.

  9. SmellitUp

    What about Jane’s Gourmet Deli?

    Civic Theatre of Greater Lafayette?

    Mosey on Down Main Street?

    Dancing in the Streets?

  10. Rich Cox

    And somewhere near the top………..The Java Roaster!

  11. Emily

    While Insomnia Cookies is great, it’s not unique to Lafayette… they’re all over the eastern US

  12. Robyn Smith

    Some decent considerations listed here. I assume that this is generally aimed at the college-age student as it lists so many drinking establishments, specifically. We are more than just bars, however. I do agree with the suggestion of McCord’s, Arni’s, and Frozen Custard. They are LOOONG established, Lafayette grown businesses.
    I appreciate the mention of all the festivals. We really do offer a lot of great get-together occasions. I would add that, both through Purdue, as well as community groups, there are also lots of free concerts of various types throughout the year. One last thing; our really terrific park (amazing for the size of town we live in) is Columbian (with an “n” at the end), just fyi. Thanks for the article. It was fun!

  13. chris

    It is Columbian Park, not Columbia Park and no mention of ARNI’S and The Custard? Beer is good but pizza is what sustains!

  14. Chris

    I’m guessing this list would have been a helluva lot more accurate if created by someone born and raised in Lafayette(an assumption).
    First of all, it’s much better to just say the “Greater Lafayette” area. Both sided of the river, together, makes it the awesome community it is.
    There are many reasons/places missing that are much more representative of the community by tradition and popularity. Such as, the previously mentioned Arni’s, Frozen Custard, and Harry’s Chocolate Shop. There are events like Feast of the Hunter’s Moon and Mosey Down Main Street.
    The park listed is Columbian Park, not “Columbia” Park.
    If this list is to represent this community of ours, then I believe it should have been a collaborative effort of several members who were much more familiar with the highlights of Tippecanoe County.

  15. Jerry

    Not a mention of Lafayette’s Main St.
    I had no idea that “Proximity to Chicago and Indy” was a great reason to move to Lafayette was such a big deal…if so, why not move to Chicago or Indy and be done with it!

    • Chris Kolmar in response to Jerry

      It’s not an insult. It’s the reason that Marin County near San Francisco is so expensive, or Hoboken in New Jersey (Across the river from NYC). People want to be close to the action without having to deal with the action all the time. Seems like a good reason to move to me.

      • jerry in response to Chris Kolmar

        I lived in Chicago for 26 years, I moved to Lafayette to get out of that place…and it is an insult. Plus more places in West Lafayette were listed than Lafayette, just a bit lopsided don’t you think!

  16. Kevin Patrick

    I thought the list was really well done. The other places and venues that I love in Lafayette, I don’t want to share with the rest of the world…but if you love rivers as much as I do…then you know that hanging out in the Wildcat, Tippecanoe and the Wabash is great Indiana fun.

  17. Sadie

    Nine Irish isn’t the only Irish pub in town, either. There’s one on Klondike Road. Also- I agree about talking about the Greater Lafayette area, instead of Lafayette/West Lafayette- particularly since you mentioned Battleground in here too. If you’re gonna talk about Prophetstown, you might as well talk about Battleground in general since it’s so historic. I don’t know why people are talking about Arni’s, though. It may be long established in Lafayette, but we’re trying to convince people why they should move here, and Arni’s is a dump with crap pizza.

  18. david

    Can’t we all agree that if not for the Wabash River, there would be no West Lafayette. I imagine back in 1869, when Purdue was formed, there were no bridges over the Wabash River. Now let me start what I think will be a really big controversy on here. Lafayette and West Lafayette should do what Indianapolis did, although on a smaller scale, and become one city. UNIGOV was a great success for Marion County since Indianapolis WAS all of Marion County. Joining Lafayette and West Lafayette under one city would save taxpayers billions. BTW, who pays for the bridges, Lafayette or West Lafayette or do they split if down the middle. My guess is the state pays for them since both are state highways.

  19. Kathy

    These are GREAT…but where are the museums? the civic Theatre? The Feast Of the Hunter’s Moon? Other restaurants in addition to the ones with great beer? McGraws? Mosey Down Main Street is FREE. and the list goes on

  20. MK

    Bistro 501 – best restaurant in town. McGraw’s best restaurant just outside of town. Lot’s of great stuff on either side of the river. Lived here all my life and being able to take a short drive to shop or play in INDY or CHI is an advantage.

  21. MP

    how could you put the discount den on the list but leave out Arni’s?

    • Sean Molin in response to MP

      Arni’s is available all over central Indiana.

  22. lori

    you missed out on some really other great places that make lafayette as well. arni’s at market square – the toy room there! the ORIGINAL frozen custard. columbian park. harry’s chocolate shop that has been a trademark to west lafayette for quite sometime.

    • Sean Molin in response to lori

      There are several Arni’s locations throughout central Indiana. It’s not exclusive to Lafayette. Also, they mentioned Columbia Park, and while the frozen custard is top notch there are several similar frozen custard places just about everywhere.

  23. Judy

    OMG!!!!! Everyone what about DOG&SUDS !!! Locations in both Lafayette,and West Lafayette.

    • Sean Molin in response to Judy

      There are Dog ‘n Suds outside of Lafayette. There’s about three locations in Indy… not counting the one at the Indianapolis Zoo. AND you can buy the root beer at Wal-Mart.

  24. kathy

    How can you forget the best donuts in the world MaryLous

  25. Jason

    Who’s the Purdue kid that made this list? Is this real or a paid advertisement?

  26. Ashley

    The only LGBTA Community Center in the state has had it’s home in Lafayette for 11 Years, Pride Lafayette, Inc.

  27. Pat

    I hate that they’re mixing all of the West Lafayette staples in with a dump like Lafayette.

  28. Susan Martin



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