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Council Bluffs is a city in Southwest Iowa, just across the Missouri River from Omaha. It is known for its casinos and ties to the transcontinental railroad. It is sometimes called "Iowa's Leading Edge."


Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

By car[edit]

Visitors from an easterly city, like Des Moines will continue west on I-80, or from the west through Omaha until crossing over the Missouri River. To the north and south are Sioux City and Kansas City, respectively, which connect to Council Bluffs via I-29/I-680 and I-29/US-59.

By bus[edit]

Omaha Metro [formerly dead link] operates the blue and yellow routes to Council Bluffs. These routes run from 19th street and Douglas in Downtown Omaha to downtown Council Bluffs, Iowa Western Community College, Mall of the Bluffs and Mid America Center. The westbound buses stop on Dodge street before going to the 16th street Mall and 19th street and Douglas in Omaha.

By train[edit]

Amtrak serves neighboring Omaha via its California Zephyr route, running between Emeryville (in the San Francisco Bay Area) and Chicago.

Get around[edit]

By bus[edit]

Omaha Metro [formerly dead link] has two routes that serve Council Bluffs: blue and yellow. The blue route stops at the Iowa Western Community College, Mall of the Bluffs. The Yellow route goes to the Mid America Center.


Map of Council Bluffs


Plenty to do for the gambler. Most of the casinos can be seen along I-80. Since the state of Nebraska doesn't allow gambling, Omaha dwellers cross the state border and do their gambling here.


  • 4 Taco Ride. Billed as the world's largest weekly group bicycle ride. Every Thursday night in the summer, hundreds of cyclists ride the Wabash Trace through Iowa to a restaruant in Mineola, Iowa to consume thousands of tacos and margaritas. The trail begins in the parking lot of Lewis Central High School.






Go next[edit]

  • Loess Hills State Forest [formerly dead link],40 mi north in Pisgah, offers a sort of oasis in the farmlands of Iowa. Camping and fishing are available. This is arguably the state's most interesting state park or forest.
  • Elk Horn is 50 mi east and the nation's largest rural Danish settlement from the prairie days. The Danish Windmill is a state treasure.
Routes through Council Bluffs
Sioux CityMissouri Valley  N I-29.svg S  St. JosephKansas City
North PlatteOmaha  W I-80.svg E  West Des MoinesDes Moines
HastingsOmaha  W US 6.svg E  AtlanticDes Moines

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