25 Best Things to do in Indianapolis at Night | 2024 (with Photos)

Lara Mega

Lara Mega - Head of Content

Published: September 29, 2023

Hey there! I'm Lara, your guide to the vibrant nightlife scene in Indianapolis. With my extensive knowledge and passion for this city, I'll show you the top picks for unforgettable experiences and fun-filled nights in Indianapolis. Enjoy your time exploring and creating unforgettable memories!

Best Things to do in Indianapolis at Night

Indianapolis, the bustling capital city of Indiana, offers visitors a vibrant nightlife scene filled with exciting and memorable experiences.

From live music venues to comedy clubs and outdoor adventures, there is something for everyone to enjoy during the evening hours in this dynamic city.

Whether you're visiting Indianapolis for a date night, a fun night out with friends, or seeking unique experiences, here are 25 unique and fun activities in Indianapolis.

Most Recommended Thing to Do

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Top Choice Hotel

The Alexander

Our Top Choice Restaurant

St. Elmo Steak House

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Tiki Bob's Cantina

Best Time to Visit

Best time to visit Indianapolis: spring or autumn.

Average Temperature

Moderate with hot summers and cold winters, Indianapolis

Transportation Options

Bus, car, bike, tram, train, scooter, taxi, walking.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Indianapolis is a vibrant city that offers something for everyone. Spend your time exploring the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where you can experience the adrenaline rush of racing or marvel at the history of the Indy 500 in the museum.

Immerse yourself in culture by visiting the Indianapolis Museum of Art, which boasts an impressive collection of artworks from around the world, or take a leisurely stroll along the picturesque Canal Walk, lined with charming cafes and boutiques, where you can relax and soak in the city's atmosphere.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Comfortable walking shoes
  2. Light and breathable clothing
  3. A hat or cap for sun protection
  4. Sunscreen
  5. Reusable water bottle
  6. Portable charger for your electronic devices
  7. Travel guidebook or map of the city
  8. Snacks or small refreshments for exploring
  9. Camera or smartphone for capturing memories
  10. A sense of adventure and curiosity

What Not to Miss

  1. Indianapolis Motor Speedway
  2. Indianapolis Museum of Art
  3. White River State Park
  4. Indianapolis Zoo
  5. Monument Circle
  6. Lucas Oil Stadium
  7. Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art
  8. Indiana State Museum
  9. Eagle Creek Park
  10. The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

What to Avoid

  1. Rush hour traffic
  2. High crime areas
  3. Street vendors without proper licenses
  4. Overpriced tourist traps
  5. Public transportation during peak hours
  6. Walking alone at night in unfamiliar neighborhoods
  7. Ignoring local customs and traditions
  8. Leaving valuable belongings unattended
  9. Engaging with aggressive or pushy beggars
  10. Excessive partying or intoxicated behavior

1. Explore Downtown Indy

Downtown Indianapolis

Exploring Downtown Indy promises a great night in the city. From the iconic Monument Circle to the bustling Mass Ave district, there are plenty of fun things to see and do.

Discover the eclectic mix of bars, restaurants, and entertainment venues that line the streets, offering a wide range of culinary delights and live performances.

Grab a seat at a sidewalk café or find a cozy spot in a rooftop bar to enjoy some people-watching and witness the city come alive at night.

2. Have a Few Laughs at Crackers Comedy Club

Crackers Comedy Club

Get ready for an evening filled with laughter and pure enjoyment at Crackers Comedy Club at College Ave. Its location makes it a great spot to meet friends and enjoy a show.

The venue hosts weekly open mic nights, seasonal events, and performances by both local and nationally acclaimed comedians

At Crackers Comedy Club, you can also indulge in the benefits of an open bar while savoring the comedic brilliance unfolding before you.

3. Attend a Performance at the Fountain Square Theatre

Fountain Square Theatre

Experience top-notch theatrical productions of various genres at the Fountain Square Theatre.

This Fountain Square Theatre Building is also said to offer the only authentic duckpin bowling experience in the Midwest.

To make your night truly unforgettable, immerse yourself in the magic of the theater, engage in a round of bowling, or embrace the dynamic ambiance of the Rooftop Garden Lounge.

4. Have Retro Fun at the Tappers Arcade Bar

Tappers Arcade Bar

Tappers Arcade Bar pays homage to the golden age of gaming with its extensive collection of arcade machines spanning different eras.

With classic arcades and pinball machines, there are plenty of fun things to do here.

Immerse yourself in the world of retro gaming while enjoying delicious bar food and a tempting cocktail menu with nightly specials.

With a wide selection of ice-cold beers on tap, Tappers Arcade Bar sets the stage for an unforgettable evening of tipsy retro fun.

5. Dine and Dance in the Jazz Kitchen

Jazz Kitchen

Immerse yourself in the vibrant ambiance of the Jazz Kitchen, a beloved gathering spot at College Ave in Indianapolis that captures the essence of the region's fun-loving spirit.

Live jazz music and authentic Latin dancing define this establishment, creating an atmosphere that demands your unwavering attention.

With its Cajun, Brazilian, and Caribbean influences, the Jazz Kitchen offers a tantalizing array of flavors.

Not only does the Jazz Kitchen host seasonal music events, but it also serves as a platform for lively dance performances and benefit concerts.

6. Take Part in a Murder Mystery Game with The Dinner Detective

The Dinner Detective

Dinner Detective is an interactive comedy murder mystery show that offers a truly unique experience and is one of the most fun things to do on a night out.

Combining a gourmet dinner with a thrilling mystery plot, The Dinner Detective invites audience members to take the stage in a live mystery/comedy presentation.

Indulge in a delectable four-course meal while the captivating murder mystery unfolds.

Be prepared to find yourself on the edge of your seat one moment, fully engaged in the suspense, and holding your stomach in laughter the next.

7. Get an Adrenaline Rush with Speedway Indoor Karting

Speedway Indoor Karting

Get your adrenaline pumping at Speedway Indoor Karting, where you can compete against friends on a two-level road course.

With a great location close to the renowned Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Speedway Indoor Karting is an exceptional indoor karting facility.

The venue offers visitors of all ages and skill levels a fun way to immerse themselves in the world of racing with go-karts.

At Speedway Indoor Karting, you can unleash your inner racer on a European-style, multi-level road course, designed to provide an authentic and thrilling driving experience.

8. Play Laser Tag at Royal Pin

Laser Tag at Royal Pin

This classic bowling alley in Indy offers much more than just ten-pin lanes. Prepare for an action-packed adventure for the whole family.

Step into the multi-level, black-lit arena, where a maze of lasers and obstacles awaits.

The Royal Pin has three locations across the city and guarantees an unforgettable adventure filled with fun and excitement, no matter where you are staying.

9. Connect with Nature at Eagle Creek Park and Nature Preserve

Eagle Creek Park and Nature Preserve

Discover the captivating beauty of Eagle Creek Park and Nature Preserve, a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

Unleash your thrill-seeking spirit and soar through the treetops on exhilarating zip lines.

Immerse yourself in the tranquility of the park's scenic trails, allowing you to reconnect with nature and experience the wonders of the outdoors.

Spanning over 3,900 acres, Eagle Creek Park is one of the largest urban parks in the nation, providing ample opportunities to explore its stunning woodlands.

10. Listen to Jazz at the Chatterbox Jazz Club

Chatterbox Jazz Club

Immerse yourself in the enchanting world of jazz at Chatterbox Jazz Club, a popular and often crowded bar, located on the trendy Mass Ave in Indianapolis.

This intimate bar, adorned with quirky decor, offers a delightful ambiance where you can unwind and savor a selection of drinks and a limited menu.

As the evening unfolds, prepare to be captivated by live music performances that commence at 7:30 PM from Sunday to Thursday, and at 9:30 PM on Fridays and Saturdays.

11. Visit the Indianapolis Art Center

Indianapolis Art Center

Situated along the White River, the Indianapolis Art Center is a captivating city attraction showcasing the finest in modern and contemporary art.

With free entry, this local gallery has curated remarkable exhibits for over a century, offering classes, workshops, and engaging events.

Explore stunning photography and sculptures by local artists, stroll through the outdoor sculpture garden, and enjoy the peaceful café.

Open weekdays from 9 am - 10 pm and weekends until 6 pm.

12. Enjoy Live Music at the Slippery Noodle Inn

Slippery Noodle Inn

Experience the perfect blend of relaxation and excitement at the Slippery Noodle Inn, the oldest operating bar in the entire state of Indiana.

Every day of the week, you can immerse yourself in the finest local music at 372 S Meridian St, within an atmosphere brimming with culture and enthusiasm.

Having once served as a stop on the Underground Railroad, this historic venue has transformed into a haven for those seeking authentic libations and a soulful musical journey.

13. Go Bowling

Royal Pin Woodland

Enjoy a round of bowling, the perfect indoor rainy day activity, or even a fun date night idea.

Bowling in Indy guarantees a good time, with numerous lanes available at various locations throughout the city.

If you're unsure where to begin, head to Action Duckpin Bowl in Fountain Square.

With its century-long history, this establishment offers eight charming duckpin bowling lanes and a spacious eatery, ensuring a delightful experience for all.

14. See a Movie at the Tibbs Drive-In Theater

Tibbs Drive-In Theater

Tibbs Drive-In Theater in Indy offers a unique cinematic experience where you can enjoy the latest movies from the comfort of your vehicle.

Park your car, sit back, and immerse yourself in the large-screen presentation of recent theatrical releases.

With excellent service, reasonable prices, and regular discounts, Tibbs Drive-In Theater is the perfect destination for an unforgettable date night or movie night with friends and family.

15. Visit Urban Vines Winery & Brewery

Urban Vines Winery & Brewery

Discover Urban Vines Winery & Brewery in Westfield, Indiana, offering both wine-tasting and brewing experiences, catering to a variety of preferences.

On Saturdays and Sundays, you can savor a very good selection of organic and award-winning wines.

If wine isn't your preferred beverage, they also host beer tastings, allowing you to explore their delightful brews.

For an extra special treat, try to visit on a Saturday and enjoy the added bonus of free live music, which will be the highlight of your trip.

16. Play Games at Punch Bowl Social

Punch Bowl Social

Situated just a short two-block distance from the Indiana Convention Center, Punch Bowl Social is a vibrant hub of dining and entertainment.

This restaurant and bar not only serves delicious food but also offers a wide array of entertainment options.

Engage in a friendly game of bowling, showcase your singing skills with karaoke, challenge your friends to a round of ping pong, pool, or Foosball, or immerse yourself in the nostalgia of a vintage arcade.

17. See a Show at The Vogue Theatre

The Vogue Theatre

Located in Broad Ripple, The Vogue Theatre stands as one of the Midwest's most renowned and storied venues.

This former movie house in Indy has transformed into a vibrant nightclub that hosts dance parties, concerts, and captivating burlesque shows.

With multiple bars available, attendees can enjoy a wide selection of drinks - regional beers, craft cocktails, and wine.

The venue boasts a legendary stage, a vintage 1930s marquee, and impressive audio-visual capabilities, ensuring unforgettable entertainment experiences.

18. Leave the Kids at Home and Visit the Children’s Museum After Dark

Indianapolis Children’s Museum

The Children's Museum of Indianapolis takes the fun to another level with their exclusive After Dark events, designed exclusively for big kids aged 21 and above.

Gather your friends and colleagues for the ultimate happy hour experience in Indy and enjoy fun events, food, and refreshing beverages available for purchase as you enjoy the vibrant atmosphere.

The museum is a great place with year-round After Dark events, so mark your calendars for an unforgettable evening of grown-up fun.

19. Have a Fun Time at Howl at the Moon

Howl at the Moon

Howl at the Moon is a popular bar chain known for its high-energy music shows and novelty bucket drinks.

Located at 20 E Georgia St, this vibrant venue attracts a diverse crowd and is great for a guy's night out.

From locals seeking live entertainment throughout the week to those enjoying happy hour gatherings, and bachelorette parties, Howl at the Moon offers something for everyone.

Join the lively atmosphere and enjoy a fun-filled night at this dynamic bar.

20. Hang Out at the Rathskeller


This unique indoor/outdoor bar offers a Bavarian atmosphere that sets the stage for an amazing evening.

Indulge in authentic German cuisine and beverages as you immerse yourself in the vibrant ambiance and lively atmosphere that locals and visitors love.

Whether you're enjoying the beer garden or grooving to the finest locally sourced music throughout the year, the Rathskeller is sure to offer a fun-filled night in Indy.

21. Taste Local Brews at the Sun King Brewing

Sun King Brewing

Sun King Brewing is the premier craft microbrewery in Indy, boasting an impressive production of nearly 25,000 barrels annually.

Renowned for their exceptional brews such as the Sun King Cream Ale, Osiris Pale Ale, Wee Mac Scottish Ale, and many others, Sun King offers a great night for beer enthusiasts.

Visit their downtown location or their tasting room in Fishers and savor their diverse range of beers, including exclusive brews that can only be found within the state of Indiana.

22. Check What's On at Monument Circle

Monument Circle

Monument Circle serves as the vibrant centerpiece of Downtown Indianapolis, embracing the majestic 284-foot-tall Soldiers and Sailors Monument.

This iconic location hosts a multitude of festivals and offers breathtaking views from its observation deck.

It serves as the focal point for the city's major events, accompanied by a delightful array of local food trucks and occasional enchanting light shows after sundown.

23. Have an Incredible Dining Experience at the Hinata Restaurant

Hinata Japanese Fine Dining

Hinata Restaurant invites you to savor the exquisite blend of beauty and flavor within its modern Japanese interior.

Indulge in the authentic and immersive experience of traditional Japanese multi-course meals known as "kaiseki," meticulously crafted to delight your senses.

With each dish carefully prepared using fresh, high-quality ingredients, Hinata Restaurant transports you to the heart of Japan, offering a harmonious symphony of flavors that will leave you longing for more.

24. Ride the Ferris Wheel at the Indiana State Fair Midway

Views from Ferris Wheel at the Indiana State Fair Midway

The Indiana State Fair Midway draws crowds from late July to late August and is a perfect spot for families or a fun date night.

Adjacent to The Track of Champions, this expansive attraction spans 11 acres and features an impressive collection of over 100 exhilarating rides.

From thrilling roller coasters to majestic Ferris wheels and a plethora of high-speed whirls, this legendary fairground has been captivating visitors since the mid-1800s.

25. Watch a Baseball Game at Victory Field

Victory Field

Located in White River State Park, Victory Field is the home stadium for the Indianapolis Indians, the city's minor league team.

The stadium features on-site bars, and there are numerous dining options nearby, ensuring a delightful night out.

To secure your spot, make sure to secure your tickets in advance and be prepared for an unforgettable time at Victory Field.

FAQs: The Best Things to Do in Indianapolis at Night

In this section, we provide answers to common questions relating the best things to do in Indianapolis at night.

Does Indianapolis have a good nightlife?

Yes, Indianapolis has a vibrant nightlife scene. You can find numerous bars, clubs, and restaurants that stay open late in downtown Indianapolis.

The city offers a diverse range of fun things to do, including comedy clubs, sports bars, dance clubs, and fun events, ensuring there's something for everyone to enjoy.

What is Indianapolis famous for?

Indianapolis is famous for several reasons. One of them is the Indianapolis 500, one of the world's most iconic automobile races held annually at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Indianapolis is also known for being the birthplace of Kurt Vonnegut and playing a significant role in the Civil Rights Movement.

What time is the light show in downtown Indianapolis?

A popular light show that takes place in downtown Indianapolis is the Circle of Lights, which is an annual holiday tradition.

The Circle of Lights typically starts in late November or early December and runs until early January.

Can you walk around downtown Indianapolis?

Yes, you can walk around downtown Indianapolis. The city center is pedestrian-friendly, and many streets and areas are designed with pedestrians in mind.

Downtown Indianapolis offers wide sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian-friendly paths, making it easy to explore the area on foot.

What are some free things to do in Indianapolis?

Some free things to do in Indianapolis include visiting the Indianapolis Museum of Art, exploring the Canal Walk, walking or biking along the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, enjoying the White River State Park, and attending free festivals and fun events throughout the city.

Summing Up: The Best Things to Do in Indianapolis at Night

As you can see, there’s no shortage of fun things to do in Indianapolis at night. It offers a vibrant nightlife that caters to all tastes and interests.

From exploring the city's hidden gems to trying unique and fun activities, there is never a dull moment after sunset.

Indulge in the nostalgia of duckpin bowling at Action Duckpin Bowl, ride go-karts, or discover the local haunts and cultural hotspots.

Embrace the vibrant Indianapolis nightlife and create lasting memories during your visit to the Hoosier State.