Explore 7 Hidden Gems Of Iowa City

Iowa City is a great place. It is more than just a college town because there really is something for everyone. I have called Iowa City home for over a year now, and while that is a pretty short amount of time, I have found many spots both on and off campus that are either underrated or not very well known. There are so many great spots in Iowa City, and I know that this list hardly even scratches the surface, but I know that during the rest of my years here Iowa I will continue to find many more. 

1. The Sciences Library

In terms of underrated study spots, this one is great. It is always super quiet, and there usually aren't that many people there at one time. It serves coffee and tea, and during finals week there are even amazing homemade brownies. I love to go there in between classes when I have some homework to do instead of the main library because it can be hard to find a good spot in the main library, especially during finals week. 

2. Petersen's lobby

You may have seen Petersen's lobby and thought it looked super nice, but what many people don't realize is that it is a great study spot. Unlike the sciences library, it is noisier, but it was my number one study spot last year when I was a resident there. While it is over the river and kind of a hike, it is worth it if you want a relaxed study space with an almost guaranteed spot. The best perk, however, is that Black's Gold Grill is downstairs and has some seriously bomb food. 

3. Jimmy Jack's Rib Shack

There are so many great food places downtown that everyone talks about, but I never heard much hype about this one. They just opened up downtown but have another location near highway six. I am a southern girl who loves good barbeque, and I was super impressed with this place. I have only been there once, but I will definitely be back. 

4. Hurts Donuts Co.

I feel like this is a place that people know about, but I rarely hear of people actually going there. It is outside of walking distance, but if you have a car it is so worth it. The donuts are amazing, and there are so many great flavors. The best part is that they are open 24/7... like they seriously never close, which I think is the greatest thing ever. I really don't know a college kid out there who wouldn't' want a donut at 3 a.m. at some point. 

5. Voxman

Of course this place isn't underrated to the music majors out there, but I know a ton of people who seriously haven't been inside this amazing place. It is extremely beautiful everywhere, and you should definitely check it out for that alone. However, a super great place to hang out or study when the weather is nice is the terrace. There are tables and chairs out there, and it is a great place to watch the sunset or enjoy a nice day. Also, there are a few good study spots inside as well if it is a rainy or cold day. 

6. Fired Up

If you're looking for a cute place to go with your girlfriends that isn't downtown, this place is great to check out. This is a cute little paint your own pottery place on East Washington Street. Not only is it fun, but there are always dogs there to pet, and that alone makes it worth it to me. 

7. Cortado

This new coffee shop isn't actually hidden, but I think that it is definitely underrated compared to Starbucks or The Java House. It is on the pricier side when it comes to coffee so that might be a turn off for a lot of us broke college students, but the coffee is really good when you are looking to treat yourself. Besides the coffee, they have amazing sandwiches that are unique and worth the splurge. 


{photos courtesy of Google images }

First year Psychology student at The University of Iowa. Made of big dreams and a lot of coffee.

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