The meeting of three states, Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin, Dubuque is a part of the American Midwest called the Driftless Area, known for it’s deeply carved river valleys and unique limestone bluffs along the Mississippi River.

One of the fastest growing tourist towns and an All-American city, Dubuque is the perfect destination for a long weekend with the family or friends.

"Fenelon Place Elevator Car" by Jim Ellwanger via Flickr Creative Commons

Ride The Fenelon Place Elevator

While an elevator typically doesn’t make a list of attractions, The Fenelon Place Elevator is listed in Iowa’s National Register of Historic Places and is more a ride than a mode of transportation. Described as the world's shortest, steepest scenic railway, from its 189 feet elevation you’ll be able to enjoy stunning views of the city’s historic downtown area, the mighty Mississippi, and no less than three states to Instagram to your heart’s content.

Photo Credit: Rebecca Bollwitt

Sip at America’s largest wine growing region

While Napa Valley is the unofficial wine destination of the US, you may be surprised to learn the largest wine region is actually in the heartland, Dubuque, Iowa to be exact. If you don’t want to worry about driving, there are a variety of unique and reasonably priced tours offered year-round through Iowa Wine Tours, Inc., like their Bald Eagle Watch & Wine, Mystery Pub Cruise, and Mississippi River Wine Tour.

"Muscatine High Bridge, Iowa, Illinois, Steamer, Steamboat, Wake Robin" by Photolibrarian via Flickr Creative Commons

Drink, play and stay at the Port of Dubuque

Home to a Riverwalk, the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium, the Grand Harbor Waterpark, a historic brewery, and two casinos, there’s more than enough to keep the kids and adults alike entertained at Dubuque’s waterfront. A great time to come is the second weekend of June, when the annual River Fest is held featuring big name headliners, free performances and a Dock Dogs competition.

" Dubuque's Monument Tower at Mines of Spain Park" by Richie Diesterheft via Flickr Creative Commons

Enjoy the Outdoors at Spain Recreation Area

A former Native American and mining region, explore 1,437 wooded acres, wetlands, meadows, and 20 miles of hiking and cross country skiing trails. For the adventurous spirits out there, the Heritage Trail will take you past mining ghost towns, old railroad tracks, and stunning scenery.