Madison, one of Indiana’s top historic towns located on the Ohio River was once a thriving hub for both the steamship and then later the railroad, was founded in 1809 and has the largest National Historic Landmark District in the country with over with over 1,500 nineteenth century structures. You’ll enjoy shopping in the quaint historic downtown filled with over 60 local shops, restaurants and antique stores. Madison hosts many events throughout the year.
Home to a large settlement of freed African Americans, Madison was a major player in the Underground Railroad. Many of these historic buildings still remain and can be seen on the Georgetown Historic Interpretive Walking Tour Map, available at the Madison Visitors Center. Madison is part of the Indiana Wine Trail and has several wineries including two near the river—the award winning Lanthier Winery, the city’s oldest, and The Thomas Family Winery, located in an 1850’s stable, which also features hard ciders. Also stop at Madison Vineyards which has a bed and breakfast with great views of the vineyards.
Head to the awe inspiring Clifty Falls State Park with its limestone bluffs, fantastic river overlooks, canyons, creeks and seven waterfalls. Many of the rooms have views of the river and downtown Madison.
Madison has many wonderful house museums including the 1818 Judge Jeremiah Sullivan House, the 1815 Schofield House, believed to be the city’s first two-story tavern. The grandest of all is the apricot colored Lanier Mansion, a splendid Greek Revival home built in 1844 on the Ohio River.
For dining there’s the Broadway Hotel & Tavern, which first opened in 1834 and is Indiana’s oldest hotel and tavern, at the corner of Main and Broadway just across the street from the famed Broadway Fountain, a city landmark since the late 1800s.
Pick one of many B&B’s and let the innkeepers pamper YOU or take over an entire Guest House and do your own thing and enjoy a quiet evening meal at one of their fine restaurants and enjoy live music any night of the week.
Want a glimpse into the lives of the rich and famous of 1850? Visit the Lanier Mansion State Historic Site. Envision yourself as the lady of the manor with a stroll through the formal gardens overlooking the river along with many other historic museums.
Nothing is better than a little “shopping therapy” in Madison’s historic downtown shopping district. There are all sorts of specialty shops from which to choose, and grab lunch Gallery 115 Café.
Enjoy some outdoor adventure by spending the day at Clifty Falls State Park, then wind down with some wine tastings at one of three award winning wineries.
Take a stroll along Madison’s beautiful riverfront or if you really went overboard, hike the Heritage Trail. End your day at the famous Key West Shrimp House located near the riverfront.
LOCATION Two hours southeast of Indianapolis.
FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO PLAN YOUR WEEKEND GO TO VisitMadison.org