Fort Harrison State Park, Indianapolis

4.4
#7 of 9 in Parks in Indianapolis
Fort Harrison State Park is a state park for many seasons for many reasons. Patrons may enjoy visiting the park all year round, especially in winter since Fort Harrison features the Sledding Hill, one of the biggest in this area. Spring is the season to walk with the woodland wildflowers in full bloom across the park. Summer is the perfect time for a canoe trip down Fall Creek, the major water feature that runs through the north side of Fort Harrison. Autumn brings warm, sunny days and breathtaking fall colors to this, the last forested corner left in Marion County. Enjoy The Fort Golf Course and for an overnight trip, stay at the Fort Harrison Inn and Conference Center.
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Fort Harrison State Park Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
111 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Grab your bike and get to Fort Harrison. A beautiful place to walk, hike, bike, and picnic. The houses formerly used for officers are now private, but they retained their beauty. It is truly a hidden ...  more »
  • This is a great state park. Lots of trails for all ages and abilities. The history of the park is really interesting, be sure to check out the visitor center. Also nice playgrounds & picnic areas.  more »
  • State park experience without spending a fortune on gas or finding time you don't have. Huge fish in the pond but they are apparently too smart or well fed to bite.  more »
Google
  • Great place for sledding. It has a very large hill at the back of the park that was perfect for sledding. It has trails and pavilions throughout the park as well. I've never been there before and only went for the sledding, but it looks like a good place to have a half day adventure. It cost $7/ carload, but there are passes available for locals. It has sizable parking lots and plenty of space to spread out too.
  • An old military center converted into a state park, Fort Ben has quite a bit to do. There are a pair of trails for mountain bikers, pavilions for families and friend groups to picnic, and an asphalt loop for bikers, runners, and walkers. Be aware: that loop has quite the hill on it. The mountain bike/hiking trail is surprisingly hilly as well given our overall flatness in Indy, almost feeling like it belongs down south in Brown County. One has to pay to park a vehicle, but you can also park off of the Fall Creek Trail and bike/run/walk less than a mile to get in for free.
  • Nice park to walk around. Good place to let your kids run loose and enjoy the outdoors. It has several play grounds and an awesome sledding hill. Someday I want to head out there when we have a big snowstorm and take advantage of it.
  • Cannot recommend the horseback riding at all. The staff is rude as hell. First I showed my husband, who is nervous around horses as he has no experience, some horses relaxing in a paddock. We yelled at multiple times by an employee on a smoke break (at a barn, and near children - are you kidding me?!) To "Not feed the horses". She was about 20 yards away, and there was a sign immediately next to us stating not to feed them. As we were not feeding them, I continued to acclimate my spouse to the horses. I about 5 minutes she screamed twice more about not feeding the horses, but couldn't be arsed to come over and actually SEE that no one was feeding the horses. When we get around to actually requesting a ride, the woman behind the counter seemed exasperated - the ride we wanted was just getting ready to leave. And by that she meant they hadn't even been assigned horses yet. Speaking of horses - half of them are overweight, and all of them are bored out of their minds. They tack them in western gear, but instruct you to use English signals "if you need to - but you shouldn't have to do anything." That's right, they tell you that you should literally have to give no direction to these horses. Good thing, too, since the makeshift reins they give you are so short that if you try to actually have an appropriate grip the guide will scream at you to loosen the tension. I spent this entire ride contorted in an awkward position to keep my arm stretched 1/4 way up the horse's neck, holding the reins with a single hooked finger. I guess it's a good thing we never broke out of a slow walk. I've been riding since I was a child. I know the equestrian community is famous for having stuck up, hypocritical people as the majority of their rank. If the point of this barn is to demonstrate this, bravo, job well done. You've managed to make my husband want nothing to do with "horse people" unless I can make sure they aren't like the staff here.
  • Great park! Many trails for many skill levels! Mountain bike trails are accessible and maintained. Harrison Trace is paved and is an easy walk for those with mobility concerns. Lawrence Creek Trail could be signed better as it is easy to get lost on that trail!

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With limited public transportation in the city, those traveling without a car should consider the location of their accommodations carefully. To stay within walking distance of Indianapolis’ best restaurants and bars, look for a hotel or apartment rental in the arty Mass Ave or Broad Ripple neighborhoods. Downtown lodgings are often more expensive, but provide easy access to Indy’s best-known attractions for those on vacation. Bed and breakfasts in the city’s residential areas provide a healthy dose of Midwestern charm.
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