Well, this isn't what I was expecting!

A recent article from Cosmopolitan outlines the "Most Beautiful Places in all 50 States," and as soon as I saw the title, I assumed that I already knew the answer. I've seen a ton of articles in the past that list Maquoketa Caves State Park as their Iowa pick, so I was pretty surprised to see another familiar place listed instead!

The Amana Colonies were chosen as the most beautiful place in Iowa, and I can't say I disagree! It's my mom's favorite place to go whenever she comes to visit me from Michigan. There are so many cute shops and wineries and restaurants, not to mention all the pretty scenery and historic buildings! The article reads:

"The historic Amana Colonies are made up of a total of seven villages. Settled by German Pietists who lived a communal lifestyle until the 1930s, the colonies are approximately 150 years old. Today, they attract visitors with charming brick and clapboard homes, blooming gardens, and locally made beer and wine."

My absolute favorite thing about the Amana Colonies is the festivals. My friends and I try to attend Oktoberfest every year, because it's a blast! The Festhalle Barn is always decorated with lights and filled with people singing and dancing and drinking... it's the best! And Winterfest is great, too (when the weather cooperates).

Courtlin
Courtlin

I also love all the food and drink options. Ox Yoke Inn is my go-to for fried chicken, Millstream has amazing beer, and Ackerman Winery has the BEST fruit wines. Oh, and don't forget about all the shops! I love the General Store, especially around Christmas time, but there's also an abundance of antique stores that are great to go hunting in, plus places that sell art, clothing, baked goods, coffee, jewelry, fudge... the list goes on and on! The best part is that it's all walking distance, so you can easily check out EVERYTHING.

Courtlin
Courtlin

If you still don't think the Amana Colonies deserves to be named the most beautiful place in Iowa, here are a few more photos of the scenery to convince you:

What's your favorite part about the Amana Colonies? Let us know in the comments!

Photos That Show the Beauty of Iowa