When you’re a confirmed introvert, you know that American culture tends to push people to do things in groups — as if that’s the only way to have fun. Well, there’s nothing wrong with exploring Indianapolis entirely on your own.
Every introvert knows that going solo is often the best way to really enjoy some of a city’s attractions, anyhow. You don’t necessarily mind other people being around — just as long as you don’t have to operate on anyone else’s timetable. When you’re keeping yourself company as you wander around the city, you can fully relax because you know you don’t have to worry about anyone’s comfort or entertainment but your own. You also don’t have to worry if the things you enjoy are suitable to anybody else’s tastes.
Here are seven awesome things to do in and around Indy by yourself:
- Explore the Indiana Medical History Museum
This museum is a fascinating glimpse into the past, with exhibits that come from the very start of modern medicine and the beginnings of psychiatric research. The building itself was formerly home to the Central Indiana Hospital for the Insane, and it’s largely been preserved just as it was when it closed.
Bear in mind that many of the exhibits are a bit morbid for modern sensibilities, because there are medical oddities (think: brains and organs) and skeletons on display. Just the same, this is one place that anyone with a love of history or medicine should see — and it may be best visited alone since it isn’t for everyone’s tastes.
- Check out the Ruins in Holliday Park
Holliday Park is one of the most beautiful open spaces you’ll find in Indianapolis, and The Ruins stand in the park’s very center. Since the late 1800s, the eerie and forlorn assembly of statues, stone columns and overgrown fountains has provided a distinctive, beautiful and somewhat haunting attraction.
Holliday Park also offers 94 acres to explore, including miles of hiking trails and pathways along the White River’s banks. If you’re an introvert who also loves nature, you can spend the entire day (or days) listening to the birds, checking out the wildflower gardens and looking at the exhibits in the park’s massive Nature Center.
- Experience the Museum of Psychophonics
Known formally as the “Museum of Psychophonics and Collection of Adjacent Mythologies” and located right on Virginia Avenue near Fountain Square, the museum bills itself as the antithesis of made-for-tourists attractions that tend to be part of every major city. This small, eclectic museum is like a walk-in cabinet of curiosities, so you want to give yourself plenty of time to look at all the fabulous spiritual and musical items, many of which come with a uniquely “Afrofuturistic” connection. This is definitely a place to go if you’re seeking to escape mundane reality for a little while.
- Visit the Center for Ray Bradbury Studies
Whether you fell in love with “Fahrenheit 451” way back in college or you still get chills thinking about “Something Wicked This Way Comes,” there’s every reason to love the work of Ray Bradbury. Indy happens to be home to a museum in his honor. It is open to the public (call for arrangements), and you can see everything from the masterful author’s desk and personal effects to his manuscripts, drawings and other memorabilia.
- Find Indy’s Teeny Statue of Liberty Museum
Located on East 10th Street in downtown Indy, the Teeny Statue of Liberty Museum started as a love project and it’s grown in popularity over the years — but not in size. The museum is only nine feet long and 16 feet wide, but it holds over 1000 Statue of Liberty-themed items, of all kinds. This teeny little museum planted its roots over 33 years ago, and it’s still only 50 cents to get in!
- Go on the Massachusetts Avenue Food Tour
“Mass. Ave.” is a place that many people in Indy refer to with affection both for its numerous shops and restaurants alike. The Food Tours available sometimes take a general approach and let you sample a little of everything available, while others are focused around a specific culture’s cuisine.
Either way, you get the opportunity to check out some of the district’s historical venues, including The Athenaeum, which is home to both the city’s oldest restaurant and the first German community center. You can also check out the eclectic array of boutique goods while you’re there — but don’t leave without trying at least a few homemade desserts or chocolates.
- Take in a Movie at the Artcraft Theatre
This historic, Art Deco theater began with live vaudeville entertainers and silent movies and operated for 75 years without interruption until mega-theaters put it out of business. After a non-profit purchased and renovated the theater in the early 2000s, Artcraft Theatre has been providing movie lovers a steady stream of black-and-white films, classics from the Golden Age of Hollywood and more. We happen to think it’s the perfect place to go, grab a soda and a bag of popcorn, and while an afternoon away, especially if you don’t mind being among people but still don’t want to actually be social.
Naturally, Indianapolis offers much more than these few places to enjoy. The Indianapolis Museum of Art, for example, offers everything from standard exhibits to immersive displays that will help redefine what it means to be part of creation.
Once again, Indy proves that it has something that appeals to everyone — no matter what your particular “vibe.”