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Iowa State Fairgrounds

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 3000 E Grand Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317
Phone Number:
+1 800-545-3247

The internationally acclaimed Iowa State Fair is the single largest event...

The internationally acclaimed Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines is Iowa’s great celebration, a salute to the state’s best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. It is the true heartbeat of the Midwest, unequalled and unduplicated.The Iowa State Fair, the inspiration for the original novel “State Fair” by Iowan Phil Stong, three motion pictures and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Broadway musical, is without a doubt the country’s most famous state fair. National media frequently rank the Fair as one of the top events in the country. In 2004, USA Weekend named the event the #2 choice for summer fun in America, topping New York City’s Times Square, Cedar Point Amusement Park Resort in Ohio and Disneyland in California. Midwest Living magazine named the Fair one of the “Top 30 Things Every Midwesterner Should Experience.” The Fair is also included in the New York Times best-selling travel book 1000 Places to See Before You Die and the subsequent travel book, 1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. and Canada Before you Die. Join us August 7-17, 2014.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 642 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 441
  • 140
    Very good
  • 44
  • 6
  • 7
Best summer activity ever

The Iowa State Fair is the best summer activity that I can think of. There is food for any craving that you could have.

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 6 days ago
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642 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 638: English reviews
Level Contributor
3 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

The Iowa State Fair is the best summer activity that I can think of. There is food for any craving that you could have.

Houston, United States
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Great facility for many events. During the Iowa State Fair it really shines. Some of their buildings are available for use year around.

Thank robertcV5336BN
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

There is something of interest for anyone and everyone ... the best of midwest hospitality pride ... clearly a great asset for the USA!!!

Thank Becci W
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

The Iowa State fairgrounds have a really great place because the food is really good it has a lot good exhibitions and it has a lot of good rides for kids. And I have been to many fairs this one is the best.

Thank kcptlacb
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
58 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

The Iowa State Fair defies comparison. It's homey, safe, eclectic, upscale, traditional and immense. It's difficult to see it all in one day. There is parking on-site, but attempting to secure a spot in the morning will put you in a line of cars that can stretch a mile or more. Towards the afternoon or evening lines to the parking... More 

Thank hazmatt457
Des Moines, Iowa
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 weeks ago

I grew up going to and working at this Great Fair. I have been to fairs from Texas to GA and many others but none compare.

Thank James B
Des Moines, Iowa
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

No more comment needed. You can find anything and everything to eat. Some nutritious, some just sinfully delicious.

Thank KMH1337835
Anchorage, Alaska
Level Contributor
27 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 weeks ago

Best place to see big names in concert without paying hundreds of dollars and you get close! Best state fair in the USA. Butter cow a must see!

Thank cdalaska
Des Moines, Iowa
Level Contributor
19 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 weeks ago

By far one of the US's better State Fairs, and with so much to see it doesn't hurt to visit more than one day. Some things aren't to be missed, take your pick of amazing food and meat can be ordered. The animals are a major highlight and competition is stiff for the biggest, best of breed and more! Decent... More 

Thank Marian T
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Level Contributor
221 reviews
133 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 weeks ago

Food of all varieties. Free shows that highlight the best of Iowa. Car display is ok. The animal shows are amazing. Highlights are the butter cow, largest bore, and largest bull.

Thank cdhcch

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Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of Iowa State Fairgrounds and other visitors
7 questions
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over a year ago
Minneapolis, Minnesota
8 months ago
over a year ago

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Questions? Get answers from Iowa State Fairgrounds staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?