Kayaking the Mississippi River with friends
Split Rock Lighthouse reigns over Lake Superior
Crossing Minneapolis’ Third Avenue Bridge
Hastings historic City Hall
Railroad magnate James J. Hill’s 1891 mansion in St. Paul
Minneapolis dusted by snow
A clear view to Downtown Duluth
Mall of America’s Nickelodeon Universe
Reflection of the Weisman Art Museum
Canoe fishing in the Boundary Waters at sunset
- Land of 10,000 Lakes
Calling all nature-loving outdoor explorers
A Lay of the Land
The Mighty Mississippi begins in a small spring-fed lake in Itasca State Park and winds its 1,126-kilometer path through Minnesota before flowing south to the Gulf of Mexico. Visitors can walk a stone path across the source of the Mississippi to ensure a long and happy life, according to legend. The 240-kilometer Highway 61 along Lake Superior’s coast, an All-American Road, offers state parks, scenic overlooks, waterfalls and the Split Rock Lighthouse, whether you’re traveling by auto, bicycle or motorcycle, or hiking the North Shore scenic trail. Visit harbor town Duluth, a lively, welcoming place hopping with breweries and a vibrant lakefront scene.
Two national monuments – Grand Portage on Minnesota’s northeastern tip and Pipestone National Monument in its southwestern corner – preserve the state’s rich American Indian and fur-trapping heritage. Twenty-six state historic sites document the growth of Minnesota, including the boyhood home of aviator Charles Lindbergh, the estate of the Mayo brothers (of Mayo Clinic fame) and the original Main Street of author Sinclair Lewis. Outdoor recreation opportunities include Voyageurs National Park, the only water-based national park in the country, and the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, a region with 1,300 lakes. Additionally, 76 state parks, 58 state forests and two national forests provide camping, hiking, biking and scenic driving experiences for visitors of all ages and skills.
In the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, Mall of America, the largest enclosed shopping and entertainment complex in the U.S., offers plenty of excitement for all ages, with 520 stores, 50 restaurants, 14 movie theaters, SEALIFE Aquarium, Nickelodeon Universe Amusement Park, free live concerts and events, attractions and salons (and there’s no sales tax on clothing or shoes in Minnesota). Scores of theaters, museums and galleries define the Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington area as an influential arts haven. The music scene is legendary, launching such native superstars as Bob Dylan and Prince, artists whose stomping grounds you can still see today. The Walker Art Center is one of the nation’s top modern art institutes, and the Weisman Art Center, designed by Frank Gehry, sparkles on the University of Minnesota’s Mississippi riverfront campus.
The world’s largest hockey stick and puck are located in downtown Eveleth, which is often called the capital of American hockey and is home to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame.
Due to a topographer’s error, the Northwest Angle is separated from the rest of the state and can only be accessed by water or through Canadian customs by land.
There are more “Rails to Trails” – former railroad routes that have been converted into bicycling and walking paths – paved in Minnesota than any other state in the U.S.