There’s a reason why 6.6 million people call Indiana home. For some, it may be the Hoosier State’s rustic charm; for others, it may be the lure of opportunities in manufacturing or agriculture. Whatever the reason, one thing is clear - Indiana has the cultural and economic diversity other states seem to lack. If you’re thinking about living in Indiana, one of these top places might be the perfect spot.
Indiana is located in the Midwestern U.S. It’s bordered by the other U.S. states of Ohio, Kentucky, Illinois, and Michigan. The state capital is Indianapolis, and the state’s largest metro area is located around the capital. Indiana’s other three largest metropolitan areas are Fort Wayne, Evansville, and South Bend.
Indiana is known as the “Crossroads of America” and has 14 interstates, more than any other state its size. Indiana also has several major river systems, including the Whitewater and Wabash rivers. The state is dominated by geographic extremes: northwest Indiana contains many sand ridges and dunes, while central Indiana is mostly flat, except for some gently rolling hills. Southern Indiana is characterized in some places by dramatic valleys and hilly terrain. The soil in central and southern Indiana is very fertile due to the composition of glacial sands, gravel, and clay in the ground. Winters here can be cold, with temperatures dropping to as low as 15 degrees in the north and 25 degrees in the south. Indiana summers can turn hot and humid, with temperatures across the state approaching 90 degrees.
Indiana is known for its exceptional academic community. Some of the nation’s top universities, like the University of Notre Dame and Purdue, are located here. Indiana University Bloomington is also one of the most prestigious universities in the country, contributing cutting-edge research and innovation to fields as diverse as nuclear physics and elementary education. Indianapolis boasts big museums, a vibrant nightlife, and the annual Indy 500. The annual Indiana State Fair, a regional and national draw, is held in the capital’s fairgrounds. The Hoosier State is also well-known for its athletic teams, like the Indianapolis Colts and the Indiana Pacers.
Even if you base yourself in one of Indiana’s bustling cities, though, there’s a long list of quaint towns and beautiful scenic areas to take in that are just an hour’s drive away. The cost of living here is lower than the national average, so let yourself take in everything the state has to offer! Covered bridges especially are worth seeing in rural Indiana, and the countryside is ideal for outdoor recreation. It’s this mix of culture and nature that really make Indiana so appealing. Some of Indiana’s coolest towns are also the quietest and friendliest, where brewers craft beers and family-owned farms create delicious gourmet cheeses.
With an abundance of great cities and neighborhoods, finding the perfect spot to settle down in Indiana isn't easy. We'll give you a head start as these cities are our picks for the best places to live in Indiana. To further narrow down your list of the best places to live in Indiana, you can also specify your search radius, population size, home/rent budget and what metrics (amenities, crime, cost of living, education, employment, housing, weather) are most important to you.