Discover some of the many reasons to explore Minnesota, listed here in no particular order.
1. Winter B&Bs
In a state with a great variety of environments to enjoy a winter B&B getaway, a lakeside room at Duluth’s Solglimt Bed and Breakfast offers some of the best (and warmest) views of Superior’s gunmetal grays and blinding blue water.
Minnesota is home to a number of older stages that have been lovingly restored and continue to host live music today. Here are five notable venues where spectators can appreciate not only the talent onstage, but also the history of the venue within its community.
It’s just you, the line you drop through a hole in the ice, and the fish you pull back through the hole. No boat, no motor, no casting, no trolling, and typically no depth-finder or other high-tech equipment. In its purest form, ice fishing is sweet and simple.
Minnesota's 4,000 miles of paved trails are a cyclist's dream, much of it ideal for winter biking on fat tires. Many bike trails are along former railroad beds, offering secluded, scenic biking. Several are part of the Minnesota State Trails system, while other trails and routes are regional or metropolitan.
Finding a good cup of coffee is at the top of many travelers' lists as soon as they arrive at their destination. In Minnesota, a local coffee shop is never far away, whether it's on a small town main street or in a big city neighborhood. Grab a good book or a good friend and feel like a regular at any of these cafes around the state.
To some, art and theater come across as stuffy, sophisticated and best suited to adults. But not here. Multiple museums, theaters and performing arts groups in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area cater to the littlest ones in the family with special exhibits, performances and events created just for them.
There's no shortage of sports teams to cheer in Minnesota, from professional leagues to college teams to local clubs. Whether you love Vikings football or Timberwolves basketball, you can watch top athletes compete at venues around the state.
From Greyhound buses and snowmobiles to SPAM and Red Wing Pottery, Minnesota boasts a boatful of great inventions and beloved products that have been woven into American life for generations. Check out museums and factory tours devoted to the North Star state’s best-known creations.
There are a few spots across the state that do an especially great job working directly with farmers to source local ingredients. Here’s a look at some places that say farm-to-table—and actually mean it.
Minnesota’s top-notch professional theater scene gets plenty of well-deserved attention, but there’s a home-town exuberance and excitement that’s unique to community theater—plays performed by amateur actors out of civic pride and love of the art, with auditions typically open to all.
Snowshoes are more than just another way to get around in the snow. They can take you deeper into the wilderness than you’ve probably ever been. They’re easy to learn to use (just strap them onto your shoes and start walking), relatively inexpensive, and better than skis for getting into unexplored areas.
The great heritage of Minnesota’s state park system begins at the source of America’s greatest river. Itasca State Park, home to the headwaters of the Mississippi River, was established in 1891, launching what is now the second-oldest state park system in the nation.
For years, domestic beer was viewed as wine's lowbrow cousin, suitable for drinking during sporting events or cookouts, and little else. The craft brew revolution has turned that thinking on its head, and the past five to 10 years have seen an explosion in artisan beer production in Minnesota.
Minneapolis and St. Paul have a lot of connections: The Mississippi River flows through them both, their residents root for the same sports teams, and their museums and theaters are world class. Now, they’re also physically connected by the Metro Green Line light rail, which runs between Minneapolis’ Target Field and St. Paul’s Union Depot.
Wildlife sanctuaries dedicated to wolves, bears and eagles offer fun and education for animal lovers of all ages. Plan a trip to the International Wolf Center and North American Bear Center in Ely, the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary near Orr, and the National Eagle Center in Wabasha.
Ojibwe (or Anishinaabe) and Dakota (Sioux) heritage figure strongly in Minnesota’s past and its present. Here are some of the best places to admire tribal artistry, learn about their histories, and appreciate their cultures through storytelling and music.
Want to know the best spots in Minnesota? How about tips on how to make the most of your time in a specific city? Our Minnesota experts can answer your questions, offer advice, or plan the perfect Minnesota trip for you. For free.
Sign up forMinnesota Newsletters
Get travel info and updates on deals, events, birding, fishing, skiing, and more!