We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
WINNER WONDERLAND
Win Big When You Book on TripAdvisor

Carlson's Drive In

Certificate of Excellence
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Get directions
118 W Coolspring Ave, Michigan City, IN 46360-6166
+1 219-872-0331
Website
Today
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Closed now
All hours
Hours:
Sun - Sat 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
More Info
Add Photo Write a Review

83 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
Showing 83: English reviews
Michigan City, Indiana
Level Contributor
41 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 21, 2016

Styled after 50's/60's Drive in with carhops. Food is just as expected.. Root Beer is made on site. Mr Herman is one of the nicest proprietors I have seen.

Helpful?
Thank MstrMstr
Macomb, IL
Level Contributor
118 reviews
75 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2016

Best root beer I have ever had is made right on the premises daily. Plan your trip because Carlson's is only open during the summer and tourist season; they will be closing in early October. I am not sure when they open back up. Food choices are very drive-in ish...hot dogs, hamburgers, polish, Italian beef..all good and hot. Service was... More 

Helpful?
Thank maiagaia
Level Contributor
82 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2016 via mobile

They are a little pricey, but the root bear & cream soda are great! There is parking or picnic tables available for seating. No animals, cash only. Carhops are pleasant. It's always clean. Seasonal.

Helpful?
Thank Teverly
Michigan City, Indiana
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 22, 2016

Great quality food and great service. The freshly made Root beer and Cream Soda is amazing, even the diet versions they make are spectacular. This is a must try if your in the area.

Helpful?
Thank Chris C
Michigan City, Indiana
Level Contributor
19 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 25, 2016

In 1947 Carlson’s drive in opened, now in 2016 they are still open! Come and experience the real drive in with car hops and floats! The food is good (I love the polish sausage) and the cost is good. But the big reason to come here is the nostalgia! I remember hearing the stories of my dad taking my mom... More 

Helpful?
Thank matt b
michigan city, United States
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 25, 2016

The food is good drive-up food. The waitresses are friendly and fast. The prices have gone up in the last year but we go for a treat every now and then. Easier to get in and out when they are not as busy. Very busy during lunch and on the weekends. They do have the best homemade root beer around.... More 

Helpful?
Thank Teresa P
Michigan City, Indiana
Level Contributor
14 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 19, 2016 via mobile

A fun place to eat with good food. It has your typical fast food delivered right to your car. Service is fast and friendly. The family will enjoy their meal. Go enjoy.

Helpful?
Thank Steve1943
Quincy, Illinois, United States
Level Contributor
41 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 4, 2016

I visited Carlson's Drive In for the first time over the weekend. I've been meaning to try it for years. I'm happy I finally did. It's an old fashioned drive in with a large menu board and a huge variety of food. I had the Italian Beef sandwich, which had a very generous helping of finely seasoned beef on a... More 

Helpful?
Thank Greg G
Michigan City, Indiana
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 29, 2016

Hot dogs don't get any better than those at Carlson's! This drive in hasn't changed much since I was a kid and every time we go there, it is like a trip down memory lane. The root beer is excellent, is icy cold and served in a glass mug. The car hops are always friendly and quick to serve.

Helpful?
Thank Kim M
Level Contributor
82 reviews
45 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 28, 2016 via mobile

Love Carlson's. It's centrally located in Michigan City. Classic style drive in with carhops. A little pricey, but we go for the atmosphere. $7 a gallon for root beer is overpriced, but it does taste good. Tipping is recommended. No animals. There is outdoor seating if you don't want to sit in your car. Cash only. Seasonal.

Helpful?
Thank Teverly

Travelers who viewed Carlson's Drive In also viewed

 

Been to Carlson's Drive In? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing
Improve this listing

Restaurant Details

Rating summary
  • Food
    4 of 5 bubbles
    Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
    Atmosphere
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Cuisine
American, Fast Food
Meals
Lunch, Dinner
Restaurant features
Takeout, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Waitstaff, Parking Available, Wheelchair Accessible
Good for
Kids, Families with children, Dining on a budget
Open Hours
Sunday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Monday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Tuesday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Wednesday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Thursday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Friday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Saturday
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Location and Contact Information
  • Address: 118 W Coolspring Ave, Michigan City, IN 46360-6166
  • Location: United States  >  Indiana (IN)  >  Michigan City
  • Phone Number: +1 219-872-0331

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Carlson's Drive In staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do you have gluten-free options?
  • Is there a dress code?
  • Do you allow dogs on the outdoor patio?