Despite the sun going down, Iowa's nightlife keeps the adventure going well into the night. Embrace nightfall by catching a dinner show, sipping a delicious drink at a cocktail bar or enjoying an extravagant meal at an upscale restaurant.

Iowa City

A group of friends enjoy drinks on a bar's patio at night.
Photo courtesy Bardot Iowa Facebook

Joystick Comedy Bar & Arcade

Formerly known as the Yacht Club, this barcade welcomes live local, regional and national comedians to their stage every week. Amateurs can also have their time in the spotlight during Monday and Thursday open mics and daily karaoke. If you're not into performing, grab a drink and check out the ever-growing selection of arcade games, most of which are free to play.

Gabe's

Located in downtown Iowa City, this historic two-story music venue offers a night of never-ending entertainment. Relax in the lower level's beer garden or head upstairs and enjoy live performances featuring everything from comedy to bluegrass, indie, metal and jam bands.

Vue Rooftop

Offering some of the best night views from the 12th floor of the Hilton Garden Inn, the Vue's menu offers an array of craft cocktails and entrees alongside events such as murder mystery dinners, trivia nights, dueling pianos and live music.

Bardot Iowa

Home to a unique atmosphere, authentic flavors and electrifying sounds, the Bardot has been transporting visitors to a tropical oasis since 2014. Stop by and experience it for yourself alongside live music, watch parties and delicious food specials.

The Englert Theater

Spend a night embracing the arts at Iowa City's last historic theater. The Englert offers a variety of performances that include live music, comedy, dance and community productions, all held in a beautifully renovated space.

Cedar Rapids

A group walking into a tan brick building illuminated by purple lights.
Photo courtesy Black Sheep Social Club Facebook

Black Sheep Social Club

Serving Iowa soul food with an international twist, the Black Sheep offers a casual dining experience in a unique environment that merges rustic décor with industrial art. Pair your meal with one of the 24 local craft beers on tap or make a selection from their eclectic wine list and cocktail menu, which is inspired by kitchen and garden themes.

White Star Ale House

This newly revived restaurant and entertainment venue serves a mean prime rib every Saturday alongside a regular menu full of fresh dishes. Enjoy a quiet dinner in the dining area or join the crowd on the entertainment side as they watch whatever live entertainment is in the lineup.

Brick's Bar & Grill

Home to a rotating selection of 60 handpicked beers on tap and a menu filled with quality smoked meats, this acclaimed craft beer bar sits right in the heart of downtown Cedar Rapids. The ambiance is just as exciting and features walls of aged brick adorned with antiques and other curiosities.

Pub 217

Offering an ideal pairing of comfortable restaurant and neighborhood bar, a visit to Pub 217 makes for a relaxing night. With dozens of TVs perfect for catching your favorite sports team, a menu offering handcrafted burgers, sandwiches and soups and a wide array of drinks, you won't want to leave.

Lion Bridge Brewing Co.

Discover unique beers at this 10-barrel brewery located in the Czech Village New Bohemia Main Street District. Their 10-15 artisan brews on tap offer a perfect addition to any selection from their beer-centric food menu. Be sure to check their event calendar for another reason to visit.

Cedar Falls

The interior of a bar featuring decorative chandeliers and red tapestries.
Photo courtesy Roxxy Cedar Falls Facebook

Bar Winslow

Located in the historic Black Hawk Hotel, this Prohibition-inspired craft cocktail bar offers the perfect place for a relaxing night out. They're known for their modern twists on classic drinks and unique wine and beer menus. Though Bar Winslow doesn't offer food, guests can order dinner and charcuterie boards from the Carter House next door.

Double Tap Beercade

Embrace your inner child with Double Tap's collection of 50 retro and modern video games and pinball machines. Their full bar serves cocktails, craft beer and homemade pizza by the slice, ensuring a night full of gaming with your friends and family.

Roxxy

A step through Roxxy's doors will wow any visitor as they take in the bar's eclectic decorations. Retro in nature, this unique spot celebrates 80s, 90s and early 2000s music and culture alongside delicious drinks.

Whiskey Road

For a more relaxing night in Cedar Falls, stop by Whiskey Road and enjoy a night filled with amazing food and drinks. Their menu features American fusion fare and an extensive whiskey collection.

Brass Tap

Taste the flavors of the world with Brass Tap's selection of 200 craft beers while enjoying events like live music, music bingo and trivia nights. Add a great meal to your order and prepare for a relaxing night filled with fun.

Ames

Three skee ball machines glow in a dark room.
Photo courtesy Time Out Facebook

Mother's Pub

Whether you're looking to catch a comedy show, compete in a trivia night, play your friends in a game of pool or simply sit and sip on a beverage, Mother's Pub offers a great way to end the day.

Time Out

Take a break from the daily stresses of life and revert to your childhood with Time Out's collection of arcade games. However, you don't have to be a kid in every sense, so be sure to grab a unique specialty drink from the bar and enjoy live music and karaoke.

Aunt Maudes

For a peaceful night complete with a delectable meal, stop by Aunt Maudes. Their rotating menu features seasonal flavors and homemade cuisine that will make you sure to visit again.

Sweet Caroline's

Catch a live band, watch your favorite sports team, relax on the patio or head to the game loft to play pool, foosball and shuffleboard. Whatever experience you're looking for, Sweet Caroline's has just that alongside 24 rotating craft beer taps, a full menu of southern comfort food and board games.

Des Moines

The brick exterior of a historic depot and its patio.
Photo courtesy Secret Admirer Facebook

Secret Admirer

This quaint and airy indoor bar offers much more than stunning views of the city skyline. Located in a historic 1900 boiler house, Secret Admirer also boasts unique drinks that can be enjoyed on their garden/park-inspired patio.

Up Down

Step back in time and try your luck at arcade games from the 80s and 90s, including pinball, Skee-Ball, Nintendo and Sega console games, all of which cost just 25 cents to play. With an extensive craft beer selection, sweet cocktails and heavenly pizza served by the slice, you can make a full night of it at Up Down.

TeeHee's Comedy Club

This premier independent comedy club is owned by comedians who know how to make the most of a night. The space is complete with a full bar and superior audio and visual capabilities that make their stand-up, open mic and improv shows unforgettable.

The Blazing Saddle

Open 365 days a year with daily events, the Blazing Saddle has come to be a cornerstone entertainment location in Des Moines' East Village. Stop by on Wednesdays for Latin Nights, or Thursdays, Fridays and select Saturdays to catch a drag show.

Bellhop Tiki

This neighborhood tropical bar is home to a vibrant atmosphere, fun drinks and relaxing music. Pretend you're on vacation by ordering a poolside classic, tiki variation or a house cocktail, all of which are served in exotic glasses.

Iowa Tap Room and Ken's

Located beneath the Iowa Tap Room, Ken's is a not-so-secret speakeasy named after Des Moines' most notorious bootlegger during Prohibition. The bar pays homage to its history with its 1920s vibe while serving classic cocktails, craft beer and a wide whiskey selection accompanied by jazz, swing, blues and ragtime music.

Sioux City

A Bloody Mary drink adorned with sliders, a corn dog and veggies.
Photo courtesy The Marquee Facebook

The Marquee

Known as the area's premier live music venue, the Marquee features local, regional and national acts of all genres, including live music and comedy shows. They're also well-recognized for their specialty cocktails, especially the Ultimate Bloody Mary that's stacked high with everything from a corn dog and sliders to shrimp, bacon and veggies.

Marto Brewing Co.

This local brewpub's passion for craft beer brewed with quality grains and hops from all over the world results in a rotating selection that features the best seasonal lineup. Pair your beverage of choice with a delicious dish from their menu, which includes pastas, pizzas and pretzels all made to perfection in their wood-fired oven.

Main + Abbey

Located inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Main & Abbey is the perfect place to start your night out in Sioux City. Order a tasty American entrée alongside a craft beer or specialty drink and sit back and enjoy the contemporary atmosphere.

Orpheum Theatre

Just a few blocks away from Main + Abbey is the Orpheum Theatre, where you can enjoy a variety of live performances including Broadway shows, symphonies and music concerts. If you didn't get a chance to eat before the show, grab a drink and a snack from the concessions.

Council Bluffs

An extravagant tin bar with gold bar stools and a brick wall filled with liquors.
Photo courtesy The BLK Squirrel Facebook

The BLK Squirrel

Enjoy a slow summer night on the BLK Squirrel's large shaded patio while enjoying their delicious handmade cocktails. Or head inside and participate in a trivia night alongside friendly locals.

Hard Luck Saloon

Though known by locals as the old dive bar on the southside, the Hard Luck Saloon is more than meets the eye. Step inside for a laid back experience complete with karaoke, great cocktails and endless games of pool on the antique Irving Kaye Lion Head tables. Or for a more peaceful evening, take your drink outside and relax on the beer garden patio.

The Porch

Head to The Porch for a night filled with homecooked quality food, savory drinks, live music and, a summer favorite, sand volleyball. Challenge your friends or some locals to a game and play the night away.

Chanticleer Theater

Enjoy a night filled with arts at the Chanticleer Theater. Part of the new Hoff Family Arts & Culture Center, this community theater offers a wide repertoire of plays, programs and night shows as well as a beautiful art gallery.