If you love the City of Fishers as much as I do, your out of town friends probably have big expectations when they come to visit. There are so many fun things to do and great places to eat around town that it can get hard to know where to take your visitors. Allow me to plan your day for you!
Have you heard? There’s a new trail in town! The Nickel Plate Trail is the perfect way to spend a day when you have someone visiting. It cuts right through the center of town, giving you access to tons of entertainment, shopping, and dining options. Plus, the tunnel and the Monumental Stairs with amphitheater style seating is always a fun place to take a friend for the day. Here are a few of my favorite places you can visit in the Nickel Plate District while walking the trail.
Free and convenient parking is available in one of the downtown parking garages, like the Fishers Police Garage (4 Municipal Drive) or the Switch Garage (east of City Hall), and just a short walk to the trail’s downtown amenities. See a parking map for more info.
You gotta start your day with coffee. If you follow me on Instagram, you know my passion for our local coffee shops. I can’t preach it enough! We have several local cafes with absolutely incredible missions, and another one just opened up slightly off the trail, but worth the extra minute or so of walking. MOTW was founded with the intention to bring marginalized people together and provide a space where all religions, cultures, and differences are celebrated. Here you’ll find Arabic coffee, French pastries, Turkish and Islamic interior design and the sweetest owners who are ready to tell you all about their menu and their story.
Next, head over to another brand new business, Snakeroot Botanicals, which has taken over the building where Gallery116 was for years. It’s cool to see the space reinvented for something totally different. Snakeroot puts a modern boho twist on your typical garden center, with indoor plants as far as the eye can see! One of my favorite things about this place is that they have a bulk soil station, so you can get your potting mix without packaging. Don’t forget to check out the upstairs for lots of fantastic gift ideas, from books and incense to bulk tea blends (another way to avoid packaging!) and local honey, even macrame plant hangers!
Are you ready for lunch? There are several great eateries right off the trail, so you have your pick of genres! Samano’s has great, quick Mexican food and a top notch tres leches cake you can’t skip. Poke Bros offers fresh fish Hawaiian bowls with incredible flavor and great portions. If you want a brunch vibe, Another Broken Egg is known for their Eggs Benedict and Cinnamon Roll French Toast, both fabulous. However, my all-time favorite is without a doubt Thai Sushi House. We have probably eaten here a hundred times. Every curry is fantastic and authentic. The sushi is hand rolled at the bar, which my kids love to watch. The menu is so extensive, it would be impossible not to find something you love. I can never skip the Crab Rangoon or the Las Vegas Roll- fried crab and cream cheese heaven!
After all that food, you’re going to want to walk it off! Now is the perfect time to check out the tunnel that goes under 116th street, along with the Monumental Stairs and the seating areas around the trail. Then, head south on the trail toward Cheeney Creek Nature Area. If you have kids in tow, check out the Heritage Meadows Park Playground, as well. Once you get near Cheeney Creek, the trail goes from a city feel to a nature park ambiance; it’s gorgeous and peaceful. Eventually you’ll make your way out to the trailhead and onto 106th Street.
Right across the way is Hub & Spoke, a mixed-use building housing a design center, retail showrooms, and the Maker Playground. You probably have no idea what any of that means if you haven’t visited before, so I’ll walk you through it. Think: high end kitchen, bathroom, lighting, and flooring showrooms. Think: ultra-contemporary coworking space. Think: state-of-the-art public workshop areas where you can tinker, create, and learn hands on S.T.E.A.M.-based skills and crafts. It’s a lot to take in, I know, so you’re absolutely going to want to check it out for yourself. You will find a woodshop, metal shop, 3D printers, tools, technology and art supplies enough to make your head spin. If you have kids with you, the Tinker Cart at the entrance is a great space to get your hands and minds creating! This is without a doubt, one of the coolest amenities our city has, so please dive right in!
If you haven’t completely worn yourselves out yet, I have one last stop to suggest. The animals of the Hamilton County Humane Society recently got a sweet new home just a 2 minute walk from Hub & Spoke. This incredible new $12M, 40,000 square foot building provides shelter for hundreds of animals who are looking for new families. This no-kill shelter pulls out all the stops- bigger enclosures with glass and walls instead of bars and wires, patios and lounge spaces for the cats, and a huge dog run in the back for them to play with the volunteers and staff. It’s a phenomenal upgrade for these furry friends, making for much happier pets- which in turn, makes them more adoptable. You’ll love checking it out and you just might fall in love with one of them!
Phewww! What a day! Your visitors will probably want to move to Fishers after that tour of our city, so great job showing them the best of the Nickel Plate District and the new Nickel Plate Trail! I hope you enjoyed yourselves, and maybe found a new favorite way to spend the day in Fishers.
If you tried any of these places, have other favorites in the area, or have any feedback on the trail or tunnel, I’d love to hear from you on Instagram at @talesoftheyales.
Kelly Yale is a long-time resident of Fishers (she’s lived here since she was 12!) who lives on the east side of the city. She loves hiking in parks, cooking and trying new restaurants, visiting the Fishers Farmers’ Market, and spending time with her family. Wife and daughter of small business owners, she’s passionate about local businesses and loves exploring shops around the City. She is vegetarian and tries to avoid plastic and waste as much as possible, along with buying secondhand instead of new. Her favorite thing about Fishers is experiencing all of new things that it has to offer since she was a child, while still being able to reminisce on her childhood memories here. She has a 9 year old daughter and welcomed a baby boy in October. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram.