Rivers and Lakes

Minnesota is the land of 10,000 lakes, and Minneapolis is known to house a few, too. The mighty Mississippi roars through our city, and our lakes are 24/7 ready for fun: liquid or frozen.

Morning
Enjoy breakfast downtown at any one of our fabulous restaurants—from celebrity chefs to local favorites and ethnic specialties—we're sure to have something for every taste. Or savor breakfast at Nicollet Island Inn, surrounded by panoramic views of the Mississippi River.

By car or by bike, tour the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway and discover the beauty of the Mississippi River and our Chain of Lakes. The Grand Rounds is the only National Scenic Byway in the United States that is located within an urban area. Stop at the free Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum to enjoy the beauty of the Mississippi River and the building designed by architect Frank Gehry. Then visit Minnehaha Falls for another stunning display of the mighty Mississippi and the only waterfalls in the United States that is located within a metro area.

Afternoon
Stop for lunch on the Mississippi River bank at Pracna on Main Historic Dining Saloon, the oldest restaurant on the oldest street in Minneapolis. After lunch, take a stroll across the Stone Arch Bridge to Mill City Museum. Located within the ruins of the historic milling district, the museum is packed with interactive exhibits, an eight-story Flour Tower and fun for visitors of all ages.

Or, enjoy lunch in the heart of Uptown at Barbette, just blocks from Lake Calhoun. Then tour the Bakken Science Museum & Medicinal Garden on the west side of Lake Calhoun.

Take a ride back in time on a Como-Harriet Street Car Line at Lake Harriet. Stroll along the lake or visit the bird sanctuary, rose gardens (second oldest public rose gardens in the U.S. with 60,000 blooms in peak season) and peace gardens near Lake Harriet.

Evening
Savor dinner as you cruise down the Mississippi River aboard the Minneapolis Queen Paddlewheeler, which provides a beautiful look at historic Minneapolis. Or, relax on the patio of Spoonriver in the Riverfront District. Next door at the Guthrie Theater, take in an amazing view of the riverfront area from a bridge-like cantilever that suspends from the lobby over the Mill Ruins Park.

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  • Loring Park Business Association is a non-profit corporation of businesses devoted to enhancing the vitality of the Loring area by promoting area business. LBA strives to create opportunities for local business owners to play a role in the community.
  • metroConnections offers award-winning sightseeing tours for individuals and groups, with English and bilingual speaking step-on guides available.
  • Every Saturday 8am to 1pm, this market is not only a fun neighborhood and destination spot for Minnesota residents, but another way to share the many benefits of local sustainable and organically produced foods.
  • Minne International is a Japanese in-bound tour operator, offering a full-range of services including guides, interpreters, transportation, technical visits and seminars on local business and the Mall of America.
  • Minneapolis means the City of Lakes, but you'll also find a variety of inviting trails and paths, regional parks, neighborhood parks, recreation centers and more. There's so much to see and experience, from the Grand Rounds Parkways, to our enticing Chain of Lakes, plentiful parks, beautiful gardens and activity-filled Recreation Centers. Minneapolis Golf offers five 18-hole championship golf courses, one 9-hole Par 3 golf course, one 9-hole executive golf course, and three driving ranges. We also offer banquet and meeting spaces for weddings, golf tournaments, corporate outings, and other special occasions.
  • The 125 passenger Minneapolis Queen offers public tours and private charters on the Mississippi River cruising through historic Downtown Minneapolis departing from Boom Island Park.
  • Just across the street from the Walker Art Center is the first major urban sculpture park in the United States - the 11-acre Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. At its center is the beloved Twin Cities icon, the found-sculpture Spoonbridge and Cherry. During the summer, spend the afternoon hitting the greens at the artist-designed mini-golf course.
  • Discover the whens, whys and hows of our above average state through the Minnesota Historical Society's award-winning 27 museums, sites and trails.
  • Journey back in time to an 16th Century European village at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival, located in Shakopee. The 2013 Festival will commence Weekends August 17 through September 29, plus Labor Day and Festival Friday, September 27. Gates are open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., rain or shine. King Henry and his court invite one and all to experience the magic of our Realm with 16 stages of live entertainment and live armored jousting! Over 250 artisans fill the Festival marketplace to display and sell their handcrafted wares for a truly unique shopping experience. Patrons can interact with hundreds of memorable characters roaming the village streets and enjoy 7 themed weekends, food and fun for the whole family, and much more The Festival is located seven miles south of Shakopee on Hwy 169. Free parking is provided and discount tickets are available online. For more information visit www.renaissancefest.com.
  • The Minnesota State Capitol is located in Minnesota's capital city, Saint Paul, and houses the Minnesota Senate, Minnesota House of Representatives, the Office of the Attorney General and the Office of the Governor.

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