"Well worth getting off I-35" Lamoni by yooperprof

Lamoni Travel Guide: 8 reviews and 23 photos

Historic small town (with a good cafe)

I was driving to Kansas City in May 2008, and was looking for a place for food and fuel when I stopped in Lamoni for the first time. Good choice: it's a pleasant place with a college, Graceland University, and a decent cafe on the main square in the center of town. It's the Linden Street Cafe, and they make a nice veggie sandwich.

Such is the United States today that a traveller can be pretty well assured of finding good fresh food and decent coffee in any community where there is higher education. So much better than just going to one of those chain places along the highways. And please, whatever you do, don't drink coffee that is brewed in a gas station. Your coffee taste buds will shrivel up and die!

The town of Lamoni (population 2444) is actually about 2 miles west of I-35 on US 69 but if you are passing by, I recommend that you consider making a stop here. It's the last (or first) exit in Iowa, and about halfway between Des Moines and Kansas City.

Graceland University is a small institution (2300) students associated with the Community of Christ - the denomination formerly known as the Reorganized Church of Latter Day Saints. (Aka the reformed Mormons.) At one time it was the headquarters of the institutions, and there are several interesting historic sites nearby - which you can read about on MtnCorp's Lamoni page here:


The name of Lamoni comes from the Book of Mormon: he was an important King of the Lamanite people.

This area is also home to a significant Amish population. I was passing through on a Saturday, and I saw several horse-and-buggy outfits making their way into town.

It's nice that this isn't a touristy place: it always makes me a little uncomfortable to see tourists taking photographs of Amish people.

  • Last visit to Lamoni: May 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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