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good place to stay near I80

illinois
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good place to stay near I80

We will be coming home from a road trip to Yellowstone taking 80. We'll be stopping at Green River,WY, then Ogallala,NE, and I figured we night stop next near Des Moines before heading into Chicago. I was wondering if you could tell me of anything (not far off of 80) we should see along the way? How about where to stay in the area? We will have 5 kids with us (aged 1 through 18) and I need something for them to look at or somewhere cool to stay or they'll drive me crazy! LOL. Thanks!

Crystal Lake, IL
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1. Re: good place to stay near I80

Bobann....

As a business traveller, I've stayed in Des Moines frequently over dthe past few years. Since I travel on business, I'm not going to be much help with the tourist attractions...but I might be able to help you out a little with where to stay.

If you're looking at Des Moines, most of the better lodging and dining establishments are on the west side of town....the suburbs of Clive and Urandale to be exact. I'm a Marriott Platinum frequent guest, so I'm baised toward that chain. The full service Marriott West is just off I-80 at exit 121 or 122, if memory serves. You'll come upon this just before the junction with I-35. Its a good hotel and it can be quite a bargain on weekends. Nice restaurant on-premises, and several fast food places nearby.

A few miles closer in...right after the I-35 junction (so keep in the right lane) are the Marriott Courtyard and Fairfield Inn...along with several other hotels/motels including a nice Holiday Inn. These places are a little closer to a wide array of restaurants and shopping than the full-service Marriott. The Holiday Inn has a Damon's (Ribs) on-premises. Otherwise, you'll find the usual array of familiar chains nearby (Applebee's, Outback, etc.).

If you want to go about another hour and a half beyond Des Moines, you can't beat the Amana Colonies. There's a large, uniquely designed Holiday Inn right at exit 225 and a couple of other hotels nearby (a Days Inn and a Super 8 if I'm not mistaken). The Amana colonies themselves are worth the 10-minute trip. However, if you don't have the time or inclination, there are a few Amana shops across the parking lot from the Holiday Inn....and the Holiday Inn itself has a good Amana-style German restaurant. Very nice large indoor pool in the hotel also.

20 miles beyond Amana and you're in Iowa City. As a Marriott guy, I'm partial to the Fairfield Inn at Exit 242. There are several other hotels in the area along with loads of dining and shopping options.

Hope this helps. Have a safe and fun trip!

cedar rapids,ia
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2. Re: good place to stay near I80

Of of I80 at Hwy 6 in the western part of Des Moines there is a Comfort Suites and a Sleep Inn. There is also a good resturant called The Iowa Machine Shed with "Iowa dishes". Both hotels are fairly new and have nice Indoor Pools and decent continental breakfasts. If you have the time, see Living History Farms right next door. It is a hands on museum that has three different types of working farms.

iowa
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3. Re: good place to stay near I80

I've lived here all my life and I would definetly agree to stay on the west side of town. The Marriott as posted above in WEst Des Moines is wonderful, as are the four or so hotels around it. The indoor pool at the Marriot West is fabulous and the restuarant in the hotel is wonderful too. They are close to the new Jordan Creek Mall which has a number of restaurants and shops that are new to the Des Moines area.

I would also reccommend anything around the University/Clive exit too which is right off of I-80 and also close to Living History Farms which will be a hit for your smaller children.

illinois
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4. Re: good place to stay near I80

Thanks so much!!

Bloomingdale, MI
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5. Re: good place to stay near I80

The Field of Dreams is in Dyersville Iowa-cool!

Kansas
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6. Re: good place to stay near I80

The Living History Farms are a MUST see - especially for the kids. You can't beat a meal at the Machine Shed next door.

illinois
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7. Re: good place to stay near I80

Thanks!

Nebraska
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8. Re: good place to stay near I80

So I want to know where you ended up staying and you would stay there again?

Nebraska
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9. Re: good place to stay near I80

So I want to know where you ended up staying and you would stay there again?

illinois
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10. Re: good place to stay near I80

We ended up staying at the Newton Inn. I can't remember the exit number, but I can look it up on the map later. Right now I just remember that it was in Newton,IN, I think 3 exits or so past Des Moines. We were running late, so we didn't have time for sightseeing. It was nothing fancy, but it was great for the kids. They have a great pool, a putting green, game room, pool tables, good breakfast, bar, nice people. Best of all, we got two connecting rooms for $100. I have to run now to take the little ones to Kiddie Land to see Sponge Bob, so let me know if you need any info. When I get home later, I'll kick the teenagers off the machine so I can answer.