The Minneapolis Area (the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul) is a great place to visit and live. Many people unfamiliar with the Twin Cities may have questions about what there is to do and see. Here are our top 10 things to do in the Minneapolis Area:
10. Science Museum of Minnesota: The Science Museum of Minnesota is located in the city of St. Paul next to the Mississippi River. It has several permanent exhibits including several nearly complete dinosaur skeletons. There’s also often a temporary or traveling exhibit which in the past has included King Tut and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Attached to the Museum is the Omni Theatre which is a domed near-360 degree movie theater. With so much to see it’s easy to spend an entire day wandering about.
9. Como Park Zoo and Conservatory: Como Park is a free zoo located in St. Paul. The park has been in existence for well over 100 years and the zoo has a small city feel to it. It’s almost entirely outdoors and contains exhibits for gorillas, polar bears, lions, and tigers (just to name a few). Attached to the zoo is the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory which contains thousand of plants, trees, flowers, and manicured lawns.
8. Minnehaha Park and Falls: Overlooking the Mississippi River, Minnehaha Park is one of the City of Minneapolis‘ oldest parks. It attracts over 850,000 visitors each year and boasts over 153 acres and the 53-foot high Minnehaha Falls. The park includes miles of walking and biking trails, as well as picnic areas, playgrounds, a wading pool (for those hot days), a dog park, bike rentals, and a band shell.
7. Minneapolis Aquatennial: The Minneapolis Aquatennial is a 10 day event held the third week in July. Advertised as the „Best Days of Summer“ it’s a true city-wide event. Included are an annual block party with food and drink, a sandcastle competition, the milk carton boat races, concerts, and a parade and fireworks each and every night. The festival has been going on for over 70 years.
6. Minnesota State Fair: The Minnesota State Fair is another annual even that takes place just prior to Labor Day. The Fair is huge and one of the biggest and well-attended in the country. It includes all the standard fair attractions including animals, rides, concerts, and of course, the food!
5. Walker Art Center and Sculpture Garden: The Walker Art Center is a contemporary art museum located in Minneapolis. It contains many galleries, exhibits, music, and a theatre. Next to the gallery is the outdoor sculpture garden which is a great place to visit and wander. Come see why Newsweek hailed the Walker as „possibly the best contemporary art museum in the country.“
4. St. Paul Winter Carnival: The St. Paul Winter Carnival is an annual event that usually takes place in late January. It’s one of the oldest events in the nation and includes a huge variety of outdoor events (such as ice carving, parades, skiing). It’s a huge event and tons of people attend. Every few years they also build an outdoor ice castle which has to been seen to believed. Winter is long and cold, why not embrace it?
3. Mall of America: Located on the site of the old Met Stadium, the Mall of America is one of the largest indoor malls in the world. It contains over 520 stores and has a full-sized amusement park in it’s interior (Nickelodeon Universe). The mall also has numerous restaurants and places to eat, and even has an aquarium. The mall boasts over 40 Million visitors annually.
2. See a Twins Game: The Minnesota Twins are the Major League Baseball team that calls the Twin Cities home. In 2010 they moved in to their new outdoor stadium called Target Field. The stadium is in Minneapolis and has excellent views of downtown. ESPN Magazine called Target Field the best stadium in North America (for all sports). The concourses are wide, there’s a fantastic variety of food, and there’s not a bad seat in the house.
1. Lakes: Minneapolis is called the „City of Lakes“ with good reason as several are right in the city limits (the most popular are Calhoun and Harriet). Widen out to the seven-county Twin Cities Metro Area and there are many (many) more, including some that are much larger including lake Minnetonka, and Prior Lake. These lake have tons of outdoor activities, including fishing, beaches, water sports, and trails. People here love their lakes!