The girls and I spent yesterday in Madison, Indiana. It is a beautiful small town on the banks of the Ohio river. We were able to find parking near this gorgeous fountain. We took some time to make a wish before strolling around town. We browsed a few shops including one that sells natural soaps called All Good Things Soaps & Such. That place smelled amazing!
We were getting hungry and were lucky enough to stop for lunch at the Historic Broadway Hotel & Tavern. It’s a small place and had an old time atmosphere. We started off with beer battered fried mushrooms. They were amazing! We all had burgers and chips. I had a mushroom Swiss burger. It was a decent burger. I would eat here again just for those fried mushrooms.
We walked down Main Street and browsed shops after lunch. This is a cute little town. It is clean and the people were friendly. We never know what we may find while on the road and small towns are no different. Many small towns have quirky things that you will not see elsewhere. We visited a shop called The Birdhouse Wild Bird and Nature Shop (Update: named changed to Cultivate). This was an odd shop. It is an all natural gift shop. The girls enjoyed looking at all the odds and ends this place had to offer. The basement of this place is where things got a little weird. They set up a fake forest in the basement with ribbons with wishes written on them hanging in the trees. It was very dark and a little creepy down there. The kids were not sure what to think. It is one of those places that you are going to bring up on the list of odd things you have found on the road. It’s worth stopping by if only for the oddity factor. Somebody put a ton of work into this! I have to respect their dedication.
Village Lights Bookstore was one of our favorite stops. It is hard not to be impressed by the shelves of books covering this place. The girls loved that there was a cat to pet. It was so nice to be back in a small town bookstore. There are little nooks everywhere and it feels amazing.
We browsed through many shops. We looked at funky vintage clothing, antiques, furniture, and loads of pretties. This town is pretty cool. It’s a great place to spend a day with kids. I bet it would be a fun place to do some holiday shopping. Maybe we will venture back sometime to see how it looks around Christmas. We finished our day with a trip to a candy shop on the walk back to our car. We stopped at Cocoa Safari Chocolates. We each picked out a small treat. This place is amazing! I love the pig statue out front! I had a dark chocolate covered caramel with sea salt. Yum! Ivy got the same thing and Isabella got a chocolate with an M&M on top.
I really enjoyed our Girl’s day in Madison, Indiana! I would come back here again.
On a trip to Chicago we were trying to find a place to eat around Indianapolis. We were intrigued by a billboard promising burritos the size of your head. I could not eat a burrito the size of my head but the thought was interesting. I hoped I would see somebody order one. When we first came into the parking lot there was a building behind the restaurant with the name “Babes” on the side. I thought, “Now that’s an interesting name for a clothing store.” We went into the restaurant which had certainly seen better days but the smell was intoxicating and invited us in. After getting a whiff we were ordering food, even if we had to eat in the car.
Ivy and I ordered chicken tacos. They were more on our level in the size department. Ivy also got a plate full of cactus. Isabella got a cheese quesadilla. Michael was over the moon when he found out they had tongue tacos. They are hard to find in this area and he loved them growing up. We ordered a plate of rice to share. They have a condiment bar with hot sauces and spiced, pickled vegetables. They have fountain drinks but they also have traditional Mexican drinks at the front. My tacos were really good! I tried a bite of his because I had not eaten tongue before. It was not too bad but had an odd sweet taste. I wonder if that is just the way they cooked it. A man did indeed come in and order one of those burritos while we were eating. It was in fact as big as his head and a foot long. All I could think was “What a big freaking burrito! I hope he’s sharing with a couple people.”
It was great food at very reasonable prices! We ate our food and cleaned up our table. As we walked outside my husband started laughing. I asked what and he pointed to the building I had seen earlier. I said “Yeah, I know. It’s a weird name.” That just made him laugh harder. We got the kids in and situated. As we were buckling our own seat belts, he told Ivy to find a movie for Isabella and her to watch. There was no way out of the parking lot except to go behind the restaurant and past “Babes.” As we were driving out of the lot it finally hit me. We were driving through the lot of a strip club. That explained my husband’s laughing and the fact that he was trying to keep Ivy from looking out of the window. I guess this is a life lesson “When following billboards with children in the car into questionable neighborhoods you may stumble across strip clubs.” All I can say was that the food was well worth it and the laugh was just a bonus. Here’s to another crazy travel story!
Location: 3820 Lafayette Rd Indianapolis, IN 46254
Cost: $25 for a family of four
Is it possible to get decent Chinese food in a small country town in Indiana? I would have thought no but then I stopped off at Hong Dragon in Versailles, IN. This is not fancy Chinese food but the food is great and so are the prices. After a day of hiking or boating at Versailles State Park this is one of the best options for affordable food in the area. If you are looking for something really hot order the General Tso’s and tell her extra, extra spicy. They will ask if you are sure. Say yes and pay extra if it’s asked but it normally is not. If you do not like your food spicy try their vegetable Lo-mein. It is inexpensive and a real treat. I also liked their Sesame Chicken, Fried rice, Crab Rangoons, Egg Rolls, and their Lo-mein varieties. They make everything fresh. It takes about 20 minutes on most nights to get your food. You can call ahead but I found it more interesting to stay and enjoy the family dynamic of the place.
On a side note: This place is easy to miss when heading down South Adams toward Madison. They are by a Dairy Queen. If you pass all the stores & businesses and hit houses and countryside you have gone too far. Turn back and try again.
Location: 1014 S Adams St, Versailles, IN
Cost: Less than $10 a person