The Most Popular Place in the Midwest: Revealing the Top Destination

Choose the place you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 16, 2024 06:25
Welcome to StrawPoll, your one-stop destination for the most engaging polls and rankings! We're excited to present our latest ranking - "What is the most popular place in the Midwest?" Whether you're a local or a traveler, we know you've got a favorite spot in the heart of America. From bustling cities to breathtaking natural wonders, the Midwest has it all. So, why not make your voice heard and cast your vote for the ultimate Midwest destination? Not seeing your top choice on our list? No worries! Feel free to suggest a missing option, and join the growing community of passionate Midwest enthusiasts. Don't miss out on the opportunity to showcase your favorite spot and potentially discover new ones! Dive into the lively discussion, and let's find out together which place will take the crown as the most popular place in the Midwest!

What Is the Most Popular Place in the Midwest?

  1. 1

    Chicago, Illinois

    Jean Baptiste Point du Sable
    Known for its architecture, museums, sports teams, and deep-dish pizza, Chicago is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Midwest.
    Chicago, Illinois is a vibrant and culturally rich city located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Known as the 'Windy City,' it is renowned for its stunning architecture, diverse neighborhoods, and thriving arts and culinary scene.
    • Population: 2.7 million
    • Area: 234 square miles
    • Architecture: Home to the iconic Willis Tower and stunning skyline
    • Cultural Institutions: The Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of Science and Industry, and Field Museum
    • Parks: Millennium Park, Grant Park, and Lincoln Park
    Chicago, Illinois in other rankings
  2. 2
    Mall of America, Minnesota
    René Sinn · Attribution
    As the largest mall in the United States, the Mall of America draws millions of visitors each year with its hundreds of stores, restaurants, and attractions.
    The Mall of America, located in Bloomington, Minnesota, is a renowned shopping and entertainment destination in the Midwest. Spread over an enormous area of 2.8 million square feet, it is the largest mall in the United States and attracts millions of visitors every year. The mall features a wide range of retail outlets, dining options, and entertainment attractions, making it a one-stop destination for shopping, leisure, and family fun.
    • Size: 2.8 million square feet
    • Number of Stores: over 500
    • Entertainment Attractions: including Nickelodeon Universe, SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium, and Crayola Experience
    • Dining Options: over 50 restaurants and food outlets
    • Hotel: attached Radisson Blu hotel with over 500 rooms
  3. 3
    This iconic sculpture of four American presidents is a major draw for tourists visiting the Midwest.
    Mount Rushmore is a massive sculpture carved into the granite face of Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills region of South Dakota. It features the 60-foot-tall faces of four American presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.
    • Location: Keystone, South Dakota
    • Year of completion: 1941
    • Size: Approximately 60 feet tall
    • Materials Used: Granite
    • Presidents featured: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln
  4. 4
    This charming island in Lake Huron is known for its Victorian architecture, fudge shops, and horse-drawn carriages.
    Mackinac Island, located in Lake Huron, Michigan, is a captivating small island town known for its timeless charm and pristine natural beauty. With its enchanting Victorian-era architecture, horse-drawn carriages, and absence of motorized vehicles, the island offers a unique step back in time to visitors.
    • Size: 3.8 square miles (9.8 square kilometers)
    • Population: Approximately 500 permanent residents
    • Tourism: Nearly one million visitors annually
    • Transportation: No motorized vehicles allowed; transportation options include horse-drawn carriages, bicycles, and walking
    • Attractions: Fort Mackinac, Arch Rock, Mackinac Island State Park, Grand Hotel, Historic Downtown
    Mackinac Island, Michigan in other rankings
  5. 5
    Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin
    User Royalbroil on en.wikipedia · CC BY-SA 2.5
    With its water parks, amusement parks, and scenic natural beauty, Wisconsin Dells is a popular vacation spot for families.
    Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin is a popular tourist destination in the Midwest known for its scenic beauty and abundance of entertainment options. It is often called the 'Waterpark Capital of the World' due to its numerous water parks and attractions.
    • Location: Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin, United States
    • Area: 1.5 square miles
    • Population: 2,678 (as of 2019)
    • Tourism Industry: Major source of revenue for the region
    • Water Parks: Over 20 water parks and amusement parks
  6. 6

    Gateway Arch, Missouri

    Eero Saarinen
    This iconic monument in St. Louis is a symbol of the westward expansion of the United States.
    The Gateway Arch is a stunning monument located in St. Louis, Missouri. As the iconic symbol of the city, it stands on the western bank of the Mississippi River, representing the 'Gateway to the West'.
    • Height: 630 feet (192 meters)
    • Width: 630 feet (192 meters)
    • Weight: 42,878 tons
    • Construction Materials: Stainless steel and concrete
    • Arch Span: 630 feet (192 meters)
  7. 7
    This massive freshwater lake borders four states (Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin) and offers stunning scenery, beaches, and recreational activities.
    Lake Michigan is a stunning freshwater lake located in the Northern part of the United States, specifically serving as one of the five Great Lakes. It is a natural wonder that borders the states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin. With its crystal clear blue waters, sandy shores, and scenic beauty, Lake Michigan is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful lakes in Illinois.
    • Location: Northern United States
    • Bordered States: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin
    • Surface Area: Approximately 22,400 square miles (58,000 square kilometers)
    • Maximum Depth: Approximately 925 feet (282 meters)
    • Water Volume: 4,918 cubic kilometers (1,180 cubic miles)
    Lake Michigan in other rankings
  8. 8
    This amusement park on Lake Erie is known for its thrilling roller coasters and attracts visitors from across the country.
  9. 9
    Grand Ole Opry, Tennessee
    Bobak Ha'Eri · CC BY 3.0
    Although not technically in the Midwest, the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee is a major destination for country music fans from all over.
    The Grand Ole Opry in Tennessee is a historic and iconic country music venue. It is widely known for hosting live performances of country music, including famous singers, musicians, and bands. The Opry has a rich history and maintains a strong connection to the roots of country music.
    • Location: Nashville, Tennessee
    • Year established: 1925
    • Architecture: Rustic and traditional with an iconic barn-shaped structure
    • Seating capacity: Over 4,400 seats
    • Broadcasting: Longest-running live radio broadcast in the United States
  10. 10
    This mountainous region in southern Missouri is known for its natural beauty, outdoor recreation, and small towns with unique charm.
    The Ozarks, Missouri is a scenic region located in the Midwest of the United States. It is known for its stunning natural beauty, including rolling hills, lush forests, and picturesque lakes and rivers. The area offers endless opportunities for outdoor recreation, such as hiking, boating, fishing, and camping. Additionally, the Ozarks is home to several charming towns and quaint villages, where visitors can explore local culture and enjoy friendly hospitality. With its diverse wildlife, stunning vistas, and recreational activities, the Ozarks holds a special place in the hearts of nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers.
    • Location: Midwest, United States
    • Geographical Features: Rolling hills, forests, lakes, rivers
    • Outdoor Activities: Hiking, boating, fishing, camping
    • Wildlife: Diverse
    • Scenic Views: Stunning vistas

Missing your favorite place?


Ranking factors for popular place

  1. Population
    The number of people living in the area can indicate its popularity and how well-known the place is.
  2. Tourism
    The number of tourists visiting the place each year can be a good measure of its popularity. This includes attractions, events, and landmarks that make the place appealing to visitors.
  3. Cultural significance
    Places with significant historical or cultural importance can be popular as they attract locals and tourists alike.
  4. Economy
    A bustling economy with job opportunities and a strong business environment can make a place popular, as it will draw people to live and work there.
  5. Quality of life
    The safety, cleanliness, and overall livability of a place can contribute to its popularity. Additionally, access to quality healthcare, education, and recreational facilities can make a place more attractive.
  6. Connectivity and transportation
    Good infrastructure, such as well-developed roads, public transport, and connectivity to other major cities can make a place popular by making it easy to reach and navigate.
  7. Natural beauty and outdoor activities
    Places with beautiful landscapes, parks, and outdoor recreational options can draw people in and contribute to their popularity.
  8. Cost of living
    An affordable cost of living can make a place popular, as it will attract people from various economic backgrounds.
  9. Climate
    A mild and pleasant climate can make a place popular, as people generally prefer to live and visit areas with nice weather.
  10. Reviews and ratings
    Online reviews and ratings can provide valuable insight into the popularity of a place, as people often rely on these when choosing where to live or visit.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular place in the Midwest. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or location is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 172 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each location once every 24 hours. The rank of each location is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular place in the midwest

The Midwest region of the United States is known for its vast open spaces, friendly people, and unique culture. It stretches from the Great Lakes in the north to the Ohio River in the south and is home to many major cities such as Chicago, Detroit, and St. Louis. The region is also famous for its food, with deep-dish pizza in Chicago and barbecue in Kansas City being some of the most popular dishes. When it comes to the most popular place in the Midwest, there are many contenders, each with their own unique charm and attractions. From bustling cities to quaint small towns, the Midwest has something to offer for everyone.

Share this article