Things to Do in Minnesota
MN Activities: Things to Do Across the State
Find four seasons of things to do across the state of Minnesota – on land or on lake, by bike or by boat, on the course or on the slopes.
In the late 1800s, Minnesota had its own gold rush that drew miners to northern lakes in search of riches. Today, take a guided tour to abandoned mines and learn about early gold mining history on Rainy Lake in Voyageurs National Park.
Every region of the state has distinctive parks. What state park offers the best waterfalls? Most unique place to stay? The best classic park feel? Or maybe you'd like to scuba dive? Try one (or all) of these great state parks - which one will be your favorite?
The Superior Hiking Trail is a go-to destination year round. With scenic vistas and varying levels of difficulty, there are numerous options for a day hike or a backpacking excursion. Plan one of these five great hikes into your North Shore visit.
Step back in history to a preserved historic village at Montevideo, MN's Historic Chippewa City. Walk through 24 restored buildings dating back to the late 1800's resting on 20 acres with one of the most extensive antique collections you may ever see.
A garden oasis close to the Twin Cities, the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum's 1,200 acres of gardens, 12.5 miles of paths and walking trails, and three-mile driving tour are a year round escape. Come for a garden stroll, drive the tour or stay for a workshop.
Planning a Minnesota camping trip? Don't miss these top 7 Minnesota State Park camping destinations. See the prairie, swim on sandy beaches, stay in a camper cabin, canoe, hike or fly fish. These MN State Park camping spots will provide top recreation and relaxation.
Among MN's unique historic sites, the once-bustling Phelps Mill in Western MN harkens back to the state's early milling history. Today, Phelps Mill in Ottertail County, MN, allows visitors to step back in time to the turn of the century when wheat was king.
Blue Mounds State Park offers untouched views of the same prairie the first settlers crossed. Today visitors can hike 15 miles of trails, climb 100-foot cliffs and have a rare opportunity to view a herd of bison on the prairie.
Summer hasn't arrived in Granite Falls, MN, until the night the Kiwanis Club Popcorn Stand opens. Each evening from May to August, downtown visitors enjoy fresh popcorn and 1919 root beer, carrying on a longstanding community tradition.
Native American tribes called Minnesota's prairie home for hundreds of years. Today that prairie is preserved at one of the state's must unique and beautiful state parks, where visitors can spend the night in a real tipi and hike trails crossing prairie, forest and river wetlands.
Set on a working farm, MN's Hinterland Vineyards grows cold-hardy grapes that it has transformed into some of the best wines in the state. Visit for a tasting and be sure to try each of this winery's varieties, including Frontenac, LaCrescent and Marquette.
Wine and country charm bring visitors to Carlos Creek Winery in Alexandria, MN. Set amid vineyards and apple trees, the winery offers tastings year round. Visit the restored equestrian barn for locally made crafts.
Minnesota may not have mountains, but we do have great rock climbing spots throughout the state. If you're looking for a vertical adventure, find a certified guide to try one of these three climbing hot spots located throughout the state.
An important era in our nation's history began right here in Minnesota. Granite Falls, MN was once home to Rep. Andrew J. Volstead, a nine-term MN Congressman whose historic legislation had significant impacts on our nation's history. Today his home is a National Landmark.
At the transition from prairie to forest, the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center in Fergus Falls, MN preserves a diverse habitat that's a nesting ground for more than 170 bird species. Walk miles of trails, take a workshop or learn birding techniques at this MN nature center.
In the state where golfing is only possible half the year – or less – Minnesota golfers takes full advantage of the warm weather months to get out on the courses. But don't just make it a day. Book one of these top golf getaways for your next golfing trip.
Red Wing, MN's Falconer Vineyards and Winery is one of Minnesota's top cold hardy grape vineyards, including winning awards for its Frontenac Port. A new bistro adds wood fired pizza to the menu during the warmer months, with wine tastings available year round.
Covered wooden bridges served a practical purpose when they came into popularity in the 19th century, but today visitors are drawn to their romantic charm. The Zumbrota Covered Bridge is MN's last authentic covered bridge and a symbol of the state's early history.
For just one night a year, Minneapolis' panoramic skyline comes into view from the top of the tallest point in town. Rising over the tree tops, the Prospect Park Water Tower, nicknamed the "Witch's Hat," has elicited mystery for nearly a century.
The grapes are ripe and harvest time is here at Minnesota's vineyards. This fall, head out to a wine tasting event at one of the state's top wineries and vineyards. Many hold harvest events, host live music and offer wine tastings to celebrate the season.
Fall has arrived and before the last leaf drops, head out to enjoy one of these three things to do during the MN Fall. Pick your own pumpkin at the patch. Visit a MN State Park. Enjoy the best of Minnesota's harvest at a farmers market or art crawl.
When fall arrives it's time to plan an afternoon at an orchard. Minnesota is known for unique cold hardy apples – it's not fall if you don't bite into a Honeycrisp or the new SweeTango. If you're looking for an orchard to visit, here are five to try.
The best spot to get a pumpkin is straight from the patch. Across Minnesota, farms and orchards offer pick-your-own events all through the fall. Many host a range of fall activities including hay rides, petting zoos and corn mazes for the whole family.
As the air turns crisp and the leaves turn color, get out and enjoy fall across Minnesota. While almost everyone has gone for a drive in the country there are many other ways to get out to experience fall. Try one (or all?) of these five ways to enjoy the fall leaves . . .
Enjoy the cool air and fall colors with a glass of wine at one of Minnesota's many wineries. Throughout the fall, local wineries offer a variety of events to enjoy a glass below the fall leaves, including special tastings, dinners, live music and fall harvest events.
Looking for the best locations enjoy the fall colors around the state? Every region of Minnesota offers a unique view of the fall leaves and plenty to do and see along the way. Here are some of the best destinations in each region to see the fall colors across the state.
When the air cools and the leaves turn, it's time to head out to the picturesque regions of the state and celebrate art. Head to one of these top art shows to see a variety of art, and enjoy local shopping, dining and recreation that will make a great Weekend Away.
Red Wing's distinctive pottery is an international collector's item. Head to Red Wing, MN to buy Red Wing Stoneware and Red Wing Pottery straight from the source or find valuable historic pieces throughout town at the various antique dealers or learn more at the historic center.
For nearly 50 years, Macy's 8th Floor Auditorium holiday display mesmerized visitors of all ages. Generations of Minnesotans continue to remember its animated themes and a visit to jolly man himself, as a favorite MN holiday tradition.
It's winter in the city! Enjoy the season at Rice Park's Winter Skate outdoor rink. Located in downtown St. Paul next to the Landmark Center, Winter Skate offers an outdoor ice skating experience nearby shopping, dining, lodging and museums.
Find a unique Minnesota holiday gift or something special for that person who has everything in locally owned shops and galleries around the state. Make it a Weekend Getaway at one of these five holiday shopping and dining escapes.
Visiting Northfield's annual Winter Walk festival, you'll think you've stepped into a Norman Rockwell-style, small town Christmas. Candle-lit shopping and dining, music and horse-drawn wagon rides along Division Street are favorite traditions as the town kicks off its holiday season.
No true Minnesotan can let a holiday season go by without a piece of lefse, the potato flatbread traditionally spread with butter and sprinkled with sugar or cinnamon. If you're looking for a home-style piece, try one of these stores across the state.
As winter arrives in Minnesota, it's time to head outdoors and celebrate the season. The St. Paul Winter Carnival marks the season with new and traditional favorites including parades, ice and snow sculptures, skating, Crashed Ice and a beer tasting.
If you're looking to ice fishing but don't want to invest in all the gear, some Minnesota resorts offer heated ice fishing house rentals right out of the lodge's front door – and even full equipment. These Minnesota resort ice fishing house rentals will get you on the ice in no time.
There are plenty of MN winter activities and things to do in winter in MN. Get out and ski or snowshoe, cozy up by the fire at a romantic resort or splash in an indoor waterpark. This winter, get out of the house and try one of these things to do in the MN winter.
Try one of these 7 MN Winter Weekend Getaways to enjoy outdoor recreation, dining or a cozy fire. Candlelight skiing, snowmobiling and ice house fishing are just a few things to do in MN in winter. Winter is here and you don't have to go far to have fun!
This winter hit the slopes to go downhill skiing! Whether you're new to skiing or an expert, looking for a family winter getaway or a romantic resort escape, MN has the slope for you. Try one of these top places to downhill ski in Minnesota.
Winter is no time to stay cooped up inside. Head out to a Minnesota State Park to ski, snowshoe, sled, ice fish or snowmobile. Parks across the state offer heated camper cabins to enjoy the park year round. Many parks even offer lessons for first time winter enthusiasts!
Duluth's Spirit Mountain offers an urban ski escape with runs for skiers of all abilities, and the largest snowboard terrain park in the Midwest. Away from the 22 different downhill runs, enjoy 22km of Nordic skiing and the park's new Timber Twister alpine roller coaster.
Just because the air is cold doesn't mean we can't enjoy Minnesota's great outdoors! Head to a winter carnival in MN to enjoy skiing, snowmobiling, 5K and 10K races, art crawls and more. This winter visit one of these 4 Places to Enjoy the Winter in Minnesota.
Every January, thousands gather along the MN North Shore to be a part of the historic and legendary John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon. Today, the 400-mile race is one of the most prestigious and difficult sled dog marathons in the world.
With 10,000 lakes, it shouldn't be a surprise that its hard for us to stay away from the lakes even in the winter and that MN is also home to the world's largest charitable ice fishing compeition, The Brainerd Jaycees $150,000 Ice Fishing Extravaganza, held each January on Gull Lake.
For more than 20 seasons, the Minneapolis Holidazzle Parade delighted children and adults with its costumed characters, storybook themed floats and Santa Claus. While no longer running, if you've never been or you visited each year, this holiday tradition is remembered here.
Spring is arriving in MN and there are plenty of things to do to mark the season. Head outside to enjoy the warmer air and enjoy flower shows, birding, maple syrup events and spring nature tours to mark the changing of the seasons.
Spring is in the air and it's time to get out of the house and see the first blooms of the season at spring flower shows. Macy's Spring Flower Show and the Como Conservatory are annual favorites to enjoy the brilliant colors and scents of the season.
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