The Mississippi River and the  Central Avenue Bridge in Minneapolis.

Insider Insights: Minneapolis, Minnesota

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Minneapolis is a vibrant and diverse city and is known for its more than 10,000 lakes as well as having the largest mall in North America. The people there are known for their “Minnesota Nice” so don’t be afraid to ask for directions and they’ll likely give you extra tips on their favorite must-see places. Here are some tips if a visit is in your upcoming travel plans.

Mill City Farmers Market

1. Minneapolis is great for families

Minneapolis offers miles of paved trails that wind around lakes and parkways of the Grand Rounds Scenic Byway showcasing parks, gardens, historical sites, beaches, golf courses, as well as diverse neighborhoods. There are people outside being active year-round and amazing playgrounds, activities, and public schools for kids. Another favorite is the local farmer’s markets throughout the city.

Winter fun at the annual Loppet Winter Festival on frozen Lake Of The Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

2. All four seasons are celebrated

Minnesota truly has and celebrates all four seasons. You can visit in any season and have a very different visit each time. The summers are an amazing time to visit with fairly moderate temperatures and lots of lakes to explore. If you’ll be visiting in the winter just be aware it can get very cold and depending on the year there can be a lot of snow. There’s always a winter festival, skiing or ice fishing as well as lots to do indoors.

The Spoon and Cherry sculpture at the Minneapolis SculptureGarden.

3. Minneapolis has a vibrant arts scene

The opportunities for arts, music and entertainment in Minneapolis are endless. There is world-class theatre, museums, art galleries, orchestras as well as other live music options. The arts scene is one that is well supported and loved in Minneapolis. Minneapolis was the home of the singer Prince and his studio Paisley Park now draws people from around the world to attend tours, concerts, and events. Don’t miss the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, known for the famous Spoonbridge & Cherry as well as 40 other sculptures.

George Floyd mural outside Cup Foods at Chicago Ave and E 38th St in Minneapolis, Minnesota

4. Minneapolis is a center for social justice reform

Minneapolis has been at the center for social justice reform and working through new ways to solve racial injustices and policing issues many cities are facing. Being the home of George Floyd and the center for many protests that came after, this city and the rest of the world will be forever changed. You will find the George Floyd Memorial site that honors him as well as murals and street art throughout the city remembering him.

Split Rock Lighthouse on the north shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota

5. Go north of the city

If you have the time head north about two hours to the North Shore of Lake Superior. Lake Superior is the largest of the Great Lakes and ranks as the second largest lake in the world (by surface area). Minnesota’s North Shore refers to the shoreline of Lake Superior that runs from Duluth, Minnesota to Grand Portage near the Canadian border. This is a beautiful scenic drive that gets you out of the city exploring all of the impressive, natural wonders that Minnesota has to offer.

On this drive, there are eight MN state parks, waterfalls, lighthouses, and great hiking along the way. During the fall season, a must-do is taking the aerial gondola in Lutsen for the best fall leaf color. There are great restaurants, coffee shops, and stores in Grand Marais, and don’t miss Artist Point.

Minneapolis is a city that has so much to offer, from the endless trails to take in the outdoors to the vibrant theatre and arts scene. If you get the chance to visit you will not be disappointed as there's something for everyone.

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Shelly

Author - Shelly

Shelly is a travel blogger and marketer for large travel brands. She can often be found with her husband and three kids on a road trip to accomplish their quest to make it to all 63 of the US national parks. Her blog Almost There Adventures focuses on unique outdoor travel experiences for families.

Last Updated September 12, 2021

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