Discover The Landing Fort Wayne: A Must-Visit Spot for Midwest Families

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Welcome to Fort Wayne! If you’re looking for a cool place to hang out with the family, Fort Wayne Indiana is one of my favorites. With a fantastic zoo, kid-friendly science museum, fun art museums, and plenty of outdoor activities, this city is made for family fun. And when you are ready for a lunch or dinner break, you’ll want to head over to The Landing Fort Wayne. It’s right in the heart of downtown Fort Wayne and it’s the perfect mix of old and new.

The Landing is where a historic part of downtown got a new lease on life, housing everything from trendy shops to awesome eateries. It’s a real community hub, ideal for a day out with the kids or just a casual stroll to see what’s new. Ready to see what all the fuss is about? Let’s dive into why The Landing should be added to any day out in Fort Wayne.

The Landing in Fort Wayne Indiana

A special thanks to Visit Fort Wayne for sponsoring a recent visit. All of the opinions in this post are 100% mine.

History of The Landing in Fort Wayne

Way back in the day—like, the 1830s—the area which is now known as the Landing was Fort Wayne’s major hotspot because it was where the city’s first post office, hotel, and theatre was located. It’s the place where everyone in town would show up, catch up, and trade everything from gossip to goods.

Fast forward to today, and it’s gotten a major facelift but kept its lively spirit. Those old warehouses and shops have been spruced up and turned into fantastic restaurants and shops along with residential space for Fort Wayne residents who want to live amid the action. The whole area has transformed into a bustling scene where the past meets the present in the coolest way possible.

Inside Urban Hippie at The Landing Fort Wayne

Attractions at The Landing

Although most visitors hit the Landing for the fantastic restaurants, it’s also a wonderful place just to hang out. With the street blocked from cars, it’s safe for pedestrians and perfect for events.

The Landing Fort Wayne Things to Do

The Landing is a great spot to add to a laid-back day of exploring Fort Wayne. There are a few cool shops that are definitely worth a visit. The Blue Bottle Shop is full of specialty liquor and you’ll find interior design options at House to Home. Just down the way, Urban Hippie has a fantastic selection of handmade jewelry, organic skincare, and boho-style clothing that’s hard to resist.

If you need to get some work done, there’s an awesome co-working space right on the street. It’s a modern and creative environment that’s perfect for remote work or just a change of scenery from your usual office.

One of the best things about The Landing is that the street is closed off to traffic, making it a lovely place for a stroll. With charming buildings, cozy cafes, and vibrant street art, every part of The Landing invites you to slow down and enjoy. Whether you’re shopping, working, or just wandering around, The Landing is a great spot for a fun, relaxed day out.

Marquee patio at the Landing in Fort Wayne Indiana

The Landing Fort Wayne Restaurants

The Landing is also a food lover’s dream with a fantastic variety of restaurants to choose from. If you’re in the mood for Asian cuisine, Nawa is the place to be, offering delicious dishes with a modern twist. For a more upscale dining experience, Marquee serves up a sophisticated menu that’s perfect for a special night out.

If you’re craving something casual but flavorful, Mercado offers a taste of Latin street food that’s sure to satisfy. Pizza lovers will feel right at home at Papi’s Pizza, where you can grab a slice or a whole pie loaded with your favorite toppings.

For those looking for a cozy spot to enjoy a fresh coffee, Utopian Coffee & Kitchen offers a warm atmosphere and a menu full of comforting options. Dana’s is another great choice, known for its outstanding cocktails and French-inspired cuisine.

Finally, although you’ll need to leave the kids at home for this one, Night Train is a must-visit for anyone wanting to experience a unique bar vibe (it’s in the basement of Dana’s) with a great atmosphere and drinks. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick bite or a leisurely meal, The Landing has something to please every palate.

Street scene at the Landing. Shows store front of Mercado and Papi's Pizza

The Landing Fort Wayne Events

The Landing is not just about great shops and delicious food – it’s also a hub for exciting events throughout the year. In the summer, Thirsty Thursday is a must-attend event, offering a fun way to kick off the weekend early with live music, food vendors, and, of course, plenty of drinks to enjoy.

For those looking to stay active, there are yoga sessions several times a month at The Landing. These classes are a great way to unwind, get some exercise, and enjoy the beautiful surroundings. Whether you’re a seasoned yogi or just starting out, you’ll find these sessions both relaxing and invigorating.

One of the unique events that draw a crowd is Le Tour de Fort. This annual event brings together cyclists of all levels for a fun and festive ride through the area. It’s a great way to explore the neighborhood, meet new people, and enjoy a day of outdoor activity.

From regular gatherings to special events, The Landing is always buzzing with something fun to do. Whether you’re a local or just visiting, you’ll find plenty of ways to enjoy your time and make lasting memories.

Utopian Coffee + KItchen entrance at the Landing Fort Wayne Indiana

Practical Information for Visiting The Landing Fort Wayne

Hopefully, by now I’ve convinced you to add a stop at The Landing to your Fort Wayne outing, so let me make it easier for you to visit with a few tips.

Best times to visit The Landing in Fort Wayne Indiana

The Landing is hopping all year, but it’s definitely the most fun to visit when the weather is warm as it’s such a walkable area. I’ve been there in the rain (we were ducking raindrops running from place to place), in the winter (and Indiana winters are COLD) all the way to sunny afternoons where I enjoyed drinks and charcuterie at Marquee, and I have to say, I enjoyed the sunny afternoon the most. So visit whenever you can, but keep the weather in mind.

Accessibility & facilities at The Landing

I love that unlike many other cities, in Fort Wayne, parking is a breeze. After 5 PM, you can take advantage of free street parking, making it easy to enjoy an evening out without worrying about meters. If you arrive earlier or prefer a guaranteed spot, there are plenty of garages downtown with affordable pricing.

One of the most convenient options is the Plaza Garage, located at 1 East Main Street. It’s just a block east of The Landing, so you can park your car and be at your destination within minutes. The affordable rates make it a great choice for those planning to spend a few hours exploring.

If you’re staying downtown, walking is the best way to get to The Landing. The area is pedestrian-friendly and perfect for a leisurely stroll. Plus, you’ll get to take in the wonderful street art (download the Public Art Trail from Visit Fort Wayne to help you), and enjoy the atmosphere along the way. Whether you drive in or walk, getting to The Landing is easy and hassle-free.

The Landing Fort Wayne Map

FAQs: The Landing Fort Wayne Indiana

Where is the Landing in Fort Wayne?

Right downtown near Freiman Square on South Calhoun Street.

What’s your favorite bar in Fort Wayne?

Night Train at the Landing is a very fun bar!

The Bradley in Fort Wayne Indiana's lobby

Where to stay when visiting The Landing Fort Wayne Indiana

My favorite choice for hotels in downtown Fort Wayne when you are visiting the Landing is The Bradley. Its location is perfect for walking over to the Landing, and the hotel itself is gorgeous.

Book your stay at The Bradley today!

If you have the kids with you and want a less bougie option (my teens love bougie, but younger kids might not), consider the Hampton Inn & Suites – it’s a further walk to The Landing, but a terrific home base for exploring Fort Wayne.

Nawa Inspired Asian Cuisine at The Landing Fort Wayne

Tips for Visiting The Landing in Fort Wayne IN with Kids

Are you planning a trip to The Landing with your kids? Here are a few steps to ensure a fun and memorable day for the whole family.

  1. Start with a Sweet Treat at Kilwins
    • Begin your visit with a stop at Kilwins, just around the corner from The Landing. Their delicious ice cream and handmade chocolates are sure to be a hit with the kids and set a sweet tone for the day. In my family, the rule is if we see a Kilwin’s, we must stop! Thanks to our years of family vacations in Petoskey where Kilwins’ is based, we are huge fans!
  2. Explore the Shops and Restaurants
    • After enjoying some treats, take a leisurely stroll through The Landing. Check out the unique shops like the Blue Bottle Shop and Urban Hippie, where you can find fun and interesting items that might catch your or your kids’ attention.
  3. Lunch at a Family-Friendly Restaurant
    • When it’s time for lunch, there are plenty of family-friendly options. Papi’s Pizza is always a winner with kids, offering tasty pizzas that everyone will love. For a variety of flavors, try Mercado or Nawa.
  4. Burn Off Energy at Promenade Park
    • After lunch, head over to Promenade Park, which is just a short walk away. This park is perfect for letting the kids run around and burn off some energy. With playgrounds, open spaces, and beautiful views, it’s a great spot for some family fun.
  5. Enjoy Thirsty Thursday or Other Events
    • If you’re visiting on a Thursday during the summer, stick around for Thirsty Thursday. While you enjoy the live music and festive atmosphere, the kids can enjoy the outdoor space and the various food options.
  6. Wrap Up with Some Relaxation
    • Finish your day with a relaxing stroll around The Landing, taking in the charming area closed off to traffic. It’s a lovely way to wind down and enjoy the evening with your family before heading back to your hotel.

With these steps, visiting The Landing with kids becomes a fun and engaging adventure for everyone.

Conclusion: Having Fun at The Landing in Fort Wayne

Visiting The Landing in Fort Wayne is a delightful experience for families, couples, and solo travelers alike. Its mix of history, modern charm, and community spirit make it a unique destination that’s perfect for a day out. Whether you’re indulging in an amazing coffee at Urban Cafe, exploring eclectic shops like the Blue Bottle Shop and Urban Hippie, or enjoying a meal at one of the many fantastic restaurants, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

The Landing’s pedestrian-friendly streets and vibrant atmosphere create a welcoming environment for events and casual strolls alike. From Thirsty Thursday gatherings in the summer to yoga sessions and the festive Le Tour de Fort, there’s always something happening that adds to the area’s lively character.

With convenient parking options like the Plaza Garage and the ease of walking from downtown hotels, getting to The Landing is hassle-free. And with the beautiful Promenade Park nearby, it’s easy to extend your visit with even more family fun.

So, next time you’re in Fort Wayne, make sure to add The Landing to your itinerary – I know I don’t visit Fort Wayne anymore without at least one trip over to the Landing. It’s a place where the past meets the present in the most enjoyable way, offering endless opportunities for making memories with your loved ones. Whether you’re there for the food, the shops, or the events, The Landing is a destination that promises a great time for all.


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