South Bend, perhaps today most famous for young Mayor Pete Buttigieg, has plenty of distractions for a daycation. Museums, theaters, and a diverse range of restaurants offer a lot of choice, and we’ve picked out some of the best in our city guide.
Your South Bend Day Stay Suggestions
Restaurants Aplenty – Fans of wine and food from around the world should visit upscale establishment Café Navarre, whilst patrons of Carmela’s Restaurant can enjoy Italian food and Tuscan décor. Tapas, Japanese, Mexican, Cambodian and other cuisine is also available, so you’re bound to find something you like.
Museums – Gearheads with a taste for history should check out the Studebaker National Museum. Spread over three floors, this expansive museum explores car culture, and displays vintage cars and presidential carriages. Nearby is The History Museum, which features the Oliver Mansion, a thirty-eight room mansion from the late 19th century fully decked out in original furnishings.
Potawatomi Zoo – A century old, the Potawatomi Zoo is a small but fun animal park with exotic residents such as alligators, deer, monkeys, and reptiles. There’s an education center and playground for children, making it ideal for travelers with kids.
Theatrical Delights – The South Bend Civic Theatre puts on shows varying from improv to cabaret, plays and musicals. Nearby, the Morris Performing Arts Center is housed in a building a century old and hosts concerts, musicals and more.
Five Interesting South Bend Facts
South Bend’s name derives from the southernmost bend of the St. Joseph River.
The area was long inhabited by Native Americans before the first Europeans arrived, with the French exploring the region in the 17th century.
The city was established in the mid-19th century, having been originally settled by fur traders some decades earlier.
South Bend’s Mayor Pete Buttigieg became the youngest mayor elected to a city of over 100,000 people, and has announced his aspiration to become president in the 2020 election.
Other famous people from South Bend include Indy car driver Luther Johnson, astronomer Debra Elmegreen, and James H. Kasler, the only man to be awarded the Air Force Cross three times.